King Saul: An Example of Double-Mindedness

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.  Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded (James 4: 8 NASB).

BACKGROUND:  Samuel was the last of the judges.  The people wanted a king instead of a judge because the surrounding nations were governed by kings.  God tells Samuel that the people have not rejected him; they have rejected God.  God directs Samuel to anoint Saul, a humble man, as king.  In I Samuel 10: 10 , The Spirit of God comes upon Saul and he prophecies. But once he becomes king, Saul disobeys God by assuming the role of priest and offering sacrifices–something that only Samuel is commissioned to do. Clearly, Saul is NOT a man after God’s own heart.  This is first but not the last time that Saul disobeys God.

English: Saul Tries To Kill David; as in 1 Sam...

English: Saul Tries To Kill David; as in 1 Samuel 18:5-16; illustration from a Bible card published by the Providence Lithograph Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Enter David.  God directs Samuel to anoint David as Saul’s predecessor.  David kills Goliath and earns favor with King Saul.  But when Saul hears the women shout, “Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands” (1 Samuel 18: 7 KJV).  Saul become insanely jealous, and starts pursuing David with the intent to kill him. When David repeatedly proves his loyalty to King Saul,  the latter laments and promises to leave David alone.  But Saul cannot be trusted.  He keeps pursuing David.  Saul is double-minded.

After the prophet Samuel dies, King Saul is lost because he has no one to consult. Afraid to fight the Philistines, he seeks a spirit medium to conjure up Samuel for advice.  This occurs after Saul has  banished mediums from his kingdom.  Consulting the “Witch of Endor” is the last straw–Saul’s final act of disobedience, which results in his death.  (See Deuteronomy 18: 9-13 and I Chronicles 10: 13.)

Saul and the Witch of Endor

Saul and the Witch of Endor (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

KEY VERSES:

To obey is better than sacrifice (I Samuel 15: 22b KJV).

For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry (I Samuel 15: 23a KJV).

And also the Glory of Israel [God] will not lie or change His mind; for He is not a man that He should change His mind (I Samuel 15: 29 NASB).

For the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart (I Samuel 16: 7b).

When you enter the land which the LORD your God gives you, you shall not learn to imitate the detestable things of those nations.  There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.  For whoever does these things is detestable to the LORD; and because of these detestable things the LORD your God will drive them out before you (Deuteronomy 18: 9-12 NASB).

Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had lamented and buried him in Ramah his own city.  And Saul had removed from the land those who were mediums and spiritists (I Samuel 28: 3 NASB).

When Saul saw the camp of the Philistines, he was afraid and his heart trembled greatly.  When Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by prophets.  Then Saul said to his servants, Seek for me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her.  And his servants said to him, “Behold, there is a woman who is a medium at Endor.”  I Samuel 28: 5-7 NASB).

So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to inquire of it; (I Chronicles 10: 13 KJV).

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