The fall of Saul
Note on I Samuel
by Ivan Ho 4 Sept 2016
I Samuel 10:6-8 NKJV
Then the Spirit of the Lord will come upon you, and you will prophesy with them and be turned into another man. And let it be, when these signs come to you, that you do as the occasion demands; for God is with you.
You shall go down before me to Gilgal; and surely I will come down to you to offer burnt offerings and make sacrifices of peace offerings. Seven days you shall wait, till I come to you and show you what you should do.” (Samuel’s prophecy to Saul)
- The first part of the prophecy was about what God would do to Samuel. God fulfilled the prophecy exactly as He said. God always does what He says He will do.
I Samuel 10:9-11 NKJV
So it was, when he had turned his back to go from Samuel, that God gave him another heart; and all those signs came to pass that day. When they came there to the hill, there was a group of prophets to meet him; then the Spirit of God came upon him, and he prophesied among them. And it happened, when all who knew him formerly saw that he indeed prophesied among the prophets, that the people said to one another, “What is this that has come upon the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?”
- The second part of the prophecy was about what Saul should do, that he should wait for Samuel to come to give him further instructions. However, Saul panicked and offered sacrifice before Samuel arrived. He did the religious thing hoping to please God but he did it in disobedience and rebellion of God’s word. As a result, he lost his position of being king of Israel.
I Samuel 13:8-14 NKJV
Then he waited seven days, according to the time set by Samuel. But Samuel did not come to Gilgal; and the people were scattered from him. So Saul said, “Bring a burnt offering and peace offerings here to me.” And he offered the burnt offering. Now it happened, as soon as he had finished presenting the burnt offering, that Samuel came; and Saul went out to meet him, that he might greet him. And Samuel said, “What have you done?” Saul said, “When I saw that the people were scattered from me, and that you did not come within the days appointed, and that the Philistines gathered together at Michmash, then I said, ‘The Philistines will now come down on me at Gilgal, and I have not made supplication to the Lord .’ Therefore I felt compelled, and offered a burnt offering.” And Samuel said to Saul, “You have done foolishly. You have not kept the commandment of the Lord your God, which He commanded you. For now the Lord would have established your kingdom over Israel forever. But now your kingdom shall not continue. The Lord has sought for Himself a man after His own heart, and the Lord has commanded him to be commander over His people, because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you.”
A lot of so called prophetic words only tell people what God will do, that God loves them, that God will prosper them and so on. There is no demand on the people. True prophetic words often foretell what God will do but also instruct what we need to do. God will always honour His words but if we do not follow His instructions, we will bear the consequences of God’s judgement.
In Saul’s case, God continued to carry out His plan by replacing Saul with David.
Abraham also disobeyed God by having child with Hagar and suffered the consequence, but God’s plan and covenant with Abraham never changed. God’s instruction to Abraham was: Leave your family and go to the land I will show you! Abraham went and the rest was history!
All of God’s chosen vessels have faults. Some repent and God prevails with them. Others are stubborn and unrepentant and are judged.