Friday, August 26, 2011

Saul, First King of Israel : Before the Crown

I know you're all anxious for me to begin another blogging series, am I right?
I've decided to do one about Saul, the first king of Israel. I've always been intrigued by him, and I feel that he's a misunderstood character that receives worse critique than he deserves. After all, he tried to murder David, but, we all love David and forgive that he, along with other Bible heroes like Moses, were in fact cold-blooded murderers. I'm not saying that Saul is an excellent example for the Christian. There are reasons we try to emulate David and reject Saul's example, however, I believe there is a lot to be learned from Saul, especially in the climate of lukewarm Christianity in which we now live!
This is my preface post:
We'll briefly look at the Saul before the Crown:
Saul was the son of Kish, and he was a mighty handsome man. He looked the part of a king. The Lord was going to use Saul to show the people of Israel that the world looks beautiful, but following their ways lead to unhappiness.
When we first meet him, Kish has lost some donkeys. He sent his son and a servant to fetch them. Saul's reaction was to dutifully venture out and search far and near for them. He doesn't seem like such a bad guy, now does he?

"And the asses of Kish Saul's father were lost. And Kish said to Saul his son, Take now one of the servants with thee, and arise, go seek the asses. And he passed through mount Ephraim, and passed through the land of Shalisha, but they found them not: then they passed through the land of Shalim, and there they were not: and he passed through the land of the Benjamites, but they found them not" - I Samuel 9:3&4
Finally, when Saul and the servant had exhausted themselves, they sought a man of God that he might help them search.
"And he said unto him, Behold now, there is in this city a man of God, and he is an honourable man; all that he saith cometh surely to pass: now let us go thither; peradventure he can shew us our way that we should go" - I Samuel 9:6
This is a right reaction isn't it. He's seeking guidance from the Lord. The only problem is that he didn't seek the Lord first. This is the tell to what Saul's life and reign shall be. He does seek the Lord. He does want to honor Him, but not first.
Before we judge him too harshly, is this not an overwhelming problem in the lives of nearly all Christians? I know it is in mine. Perhaps we're all a little more like Saul than we think...


  1. The problem with Saul is he is like all unregenerate people. I often compare him and David pointing out that over all the sins of David are much greater from our perspective as you have noted. The reason that David is lifted up an Saul condemned, is not because of their actions, but because of the diference in a regenerate vs. unregenerate heart.

  2. Unregenerate or unrepentant? I'm going to address this so I won't post a new blog in a comment, but I feel there are a lot of reasons to think that Saul is not a picture of unsaved, but of the extreme backslidden. We can not discern his heart, and I believe we'll only know when we enter eternity.

  3. I have to agree with Bekah. Disobedience to the LORD & a reluctance to serve Him first & foremost definitely is not exclusive to the unsaved. In fact there is a wealth of examples in the Bible of true believers exhibiting this same pattern of disobedience. It exists in the Church today -where a dependence on our Redeemer should be is often found misplaced pride, arrogance, and reliance on self & an ability to produce outward signs of holiness. Like Saul, most of us do not trust that God's way is best & therefore attempt to do things by our own methods & means. Satan has spent many centuries convincing believers that they don't have to be wary of committing the same wrong deeds of Saul, because "he wasn't really saved". What a foolish victory to hand him.