When we think of King Saul, we automatically think of an evil, jealous, and sinful man. A demented king burning with hate against the innocent David. Blinded by rage, he spent the end of his life relentlessly hunting a man he could never kill. With God’s Spirit and anointing taken from him, Saul dies bitter and tormented.
But…I can’t help but pity Saul!
You see, Saul started out a pure soul. He had favor in God’s eyes. When Israel pleaded for a King, God gave them Saul. God chose Saul out of all the men in Israel.
1 Samuel Ch. 9:15-17 “…Thou shalt anoint him to be captain over my people Israel, that he may save my people out of the hand of the Philistines: for I have looked upon my people, because their cry is come unto me. And when Samuel saw Saul, the Lord said unto him, Behold the man whom I spake to thee of! this same shall reign over my people.”
The prophet Samuel anointed Saul and he was officially king over Israel. The people rejoiced and Saul truly had God’s blessing. Everything was looking good. He obeyed the laws, was respectful to the prophet, and was humble before the Lord. God was pleased with Saul.
So, how does he go from that to a delusional reprobate?
The Israelites always gave a sacrifice unto God before any battle. This kept God’s hands of protection over them and gave them victory over their enemy. Before one particular battle, Saul was supposed to wait for the prophet Samuel to give a sacrifice. But, Saul got impatient waiting, took over, and performed the sacred sacrifice on his own (huge no-no). This showed disrespect and rebellion towards the holy and sanctified things of God. It all went downhill from there.
But, still…I pity Saul! My heart breaks when I read 1 Samuel 15:30, “Then he said, I have sinned: yet honour me now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and before Israel, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD thy God.”
Saul would sin repeatedly, then mourn and weep as he begged for mercy- repeatedly. He had random moments where he would show reverence and respect to the traditions and beliefs of the Jewish people. Although he was losing his sanity and anointing, he would have glimpses of reality. A small spark of his consciousness would shake him and wake him up. But, soon his mind would fall asleep again into the darkness of his immorality.
God was not mocked nor fooled. He took His precious Spirit from Saul and an evil one tormented him instead (1 Samuel 16).
Saul’s life serves as a warning to us. It is an example of what happens when you try to love light and darkness. He loved God and had a desire to do right. But the love of his own pride and desire to please himself was greater. Saul became too confident in his own abilities and position. He put God on a shelf and tried to determine and govern his future with no regard to the One who made him king.
How often does Saul’s life reflect our own? Do we take mercy for granted? Have we lost respect and reverence to God, the church, ministry, and leaders in our lives? Have you been walking around haughty, prideful, and arrogant?
If you have answered yes to a few of those questions- don’t panic! It’s never too late to turn back to the righteous One. But, be warned. Do not fool yourself as Saul did. It is impossible to love light and darkness, to choose our will and God’s, and to want reverence and not give it.
Don’t be fooled and don’t let your story have the ending of Saul’s tragic life.
Charity Huba is a 23 year old Floridian, fond of the State’s hot summers and tropical beauty. She is a leader in youth ministry, music ministry, and Sunday school. She has her degree in Political Science and works for the government in the Division of Elections. She adores quality time with her loved ones, musicals, and moon-lit nights.