Saul: A study of how to ruin your life

I’ve been enjoying preaching about David’s life, and of course Saul is a large part of that story. Saul was Israel’s first king. He was the wrong man, chosen to be king at the wrong time, for the wrong reason, and tasked with the wrong job: a job that should have been Gods – to fight the other nations.

So with a bit of irony, here are some tips we can learn from Saul’s life about how to ruin your life, even if you are a king😊

1. Focus on the external, and encourage others to do that too.

Saul came from a wealthy family and was tall, dark and handsome in appearance. Scripture states that “there was not a man among the sons of Israel more handsome than he, being taller than any of the people from his shoulder and upward” (1 Samuel 9:2).

2. Embrace passivity, downplay and ignore any significant spiritual growth, or specific calling that you encounter.

Saul was passive from day one. When reluctantly chosen by God, God’s Spirit rushed upon Saul, and he prophesied. After that, Abner (Military general) asked Saul where he had been – he passively doesn’t tell him (1 Sam. 10:16).

o 10:22 - Therefore they inquired further of the Lord, “Has the man come here yet?” So the Lord said, “Behold, he is hiding himself by the baggage.”

3. Allow success to get to your head and warp your conscience.

· 1 Sam. 13 - Saul went on to lead the nation through several military victories as his popularity reached its zenith. Soon after Samuel anointed Saul as king he was instructed to go to Gilgal, wait 7 days for Samuel to arrive and perform the peace offerings (10:8). Saul’s next move is indicative of his entire life: he partially obeyed by waiting 7 days, but he disobeyed by making the sacrifice himself (1 Samuel 13:9–14). This started Saul’s downfall from his kingship.

4. Compromise, embrace halfhearted obedience1 Sam. 15 - Saul’s downward spiral continued as he failed to eliminate all of the Amalekites and their livestock as commanded by God (1 Samuel 15:3). Disobeying a direct and pretty straight forward command from God, he decided to spare the life of King Agag along with some of the choice livestock. He tried to cover up his transgression by lying to Samuel. This disobedience resulted in the Lord removing His spirit from King Saul.

5. Actively resist God’s work

1 Sam. 18-19 – Saul tried to kill David 7 times! So, when we read “Is Saul among the prophets” in 1 Sam. 19:24 we are expecting a negative answer. No. he’s lost the spirit of God and he’s actively trying to kill the Lord’s anointed king.

6. Develop a hatred for anyone (even if it’s family) who supports God’s work

Saul hated David, but his anger also turned towards his own son, whom he not only alienated, but attempted to kill because Jonathan (his son, and heir to the throne) supported God’s plan to have David sit on the throne.

So, let’s emulate David’s faith, and not Saul’s jealous anger as we enjoy walking with the Savior today, John

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