The story of King Saul in my opinion is one of the saddest stories in the Bible. He wasn’t asking to be king…he wasn’t pursuing it…in fact it even seemed that he was a little hesitant about taking on the role. But he accepted because God chose him for it and God equipped him for it. It is good to know that when God calls us he equips us…isn’t it.
And Saul started out so well…compliments and praise that were given to him, he deflected to God. He sought the Lord, prophesied, and honored the Lord. But that didn’t last long. He quickly took that role of God as the center of his universe and made everything about himself. And one of the biggest tragedies was that he places his men in a position to fail.
1 Samuel 14 tells the story about how Saul and his army were chasing and killing a huge Philistine army, who were on the run because of the faithfulness and courage of Jonathan, and Saul makes a foolish vow. That no man could have anything to eat until, I (Saul, not God) am avenged.
So you have a large army fighting all day, not being allowed to eat anything…they were exhausted and extremely hungry.
Finally the battle is over and Saul gives them the go ahead to eat…and the men go completely bananas. They are so hungry from the days battle that they pounced on the spoil and took sheep and oxen and calves and slaughtered them on the ground. And the people ate them with the blood.
The men where so hungry that they ate the animals with the blood still in it…a clear violation to God’s Law.
This is the sad part. King Saul had established a culture in his kingdom that put more weight and authority on his words than Gods. The men in his army where willing to submit themselves to Saul’s law, but not God’s.
We live in a day and an age where everything and everyone is trying to establish their own kingdom…let us guard well against submitting to the wishes of men and ignoring the Laws of God. And in our homes let us be diligent about putting God’s law above our own preferences…establishing a culture that places a high premium on obedience to God rather than obedience to us.