Samuel: to appease man…

Cover to Cover

Reading: 1 Samuel 15:1-17:31

Focus: 1 Samuel 15:22-25

It’s so easy for us to say, “Serve God, not people.” However, we walk out the front door and we’re confronted with a way of life which must choose to live as the world does, or to live as God desires us to live. Do we succumb to the peer pressure of our friends to join the latest trends? To join in them in their sprees of the must-have items of the month? To be up-to-date on the latest fashion, playing the latest games, following the latest TV series, etc. Then there are times when we’re put into a position where it’s no longer a bit of fun, but potentially compromises our Christian integrity.

We find Saul slowly settling into his role as king of Israel. God called Saul, through Samuel, to go and wipe out the Amalekites. It was made explicitly clear that they were to kill and destroy every living thing, man and animal alike; however, Saul failed to fulfil this command. Instead, spared the king—Agag, and the best of the livestock. When Samuel confronted him, Saul made the sad excuse of saying that the livestock would be sacrificed to God. [You’d think it’s a valid excuse, except when you remember that in sacrificing animals, the person sacrificing would also get to eat a portion of it also.] Samuel’s response, however, is a wake up call to Saul and anyone who thinks that “living by the book” is what God wants from His people.

God doesn’t want “Sunday Christians”. He wants more than people who simply know how to act like Christians, who teach Sunday school, who lead Bible studies and cell groups, who lead awe-inspiring worship, who speak passionate prayers, who give generously to the church…He wants more than that. He wants people who will obey. He wants people who will seek to do His will at all times, in spite of worldly pressures and challenges. He wants people who will stand out and be different because they won’t follow the crowd. He wants people who will delights in His ways over the ways of the world, who value Him more than the opinions and perceptions of those around them.

Next Reading: 1 Samuel 17:32-19:24