Saul’s Stumbling (1 Samuel #15)

Saul’s stumbling

Text: 1 Samuel 13

Saul reigns in Israel, but in this chapter God will cut off Saul’s family from ruling in Israel.

Failure to fight (vss 1-4)

  • Jonathan defeats the Philistines in Geba. But Saul claims Jonathan’s victory. The Philistines hear about Saul’s claim, but know he wasn’t in the battle. Strategically, this reveals something about Saul’s leadership to the Philistines; Saul is afraid, but wants his people to believe he is a valiant warrior.
  • Fight

Failure to encourage the people (vss 5-7)

  • While Saul is taking credit for a victory he didn’t win, the enemies of God are strengthening themselves against Israel. The first failure of Saul in this chapter leads to the second failure.
  • Doing right encourages the right people.
    • Instead of living in your own world. Instead of waiting to see how things are going to go. Consider how your relationship to the Lord or lack thereof affects your family, your church family, fellow Christians.
    • What if I’m the only one? You’ll feel like that and you might be. You want more people to serve God with you? Serve God. Give family and fellow Christians something to follow.

Failure to wait on God (vss 8-10)

  • Saul waits for Samuel to perform the sacrifices, but Samuel is held up. Jonathan  already defeated one Philistine army earlier, so why is Saul waiting for Samuel before he goes to battle?
  • I don’t know if Saul thought he had to wait for Samuel to fight, as Saul always seemed sort of co-dependent on Samuel throughout his life, Saul gets paranoid and makes a bad decision. 

Failed to keep his heart (vss 11-16)

  • Saul has already taken credit for a victory his son won. Saul is unwilling to fight. This unwillingness will cost him his family. As much as the LORD is frustrated with Saul and going to find another king, Saul’s decisions will ultimately leave him without an heir on the throne.

Failure to defend the border (vss 17-18)

  • Saul wouldn’t maintain the walls to protect the country.
  • Personally, controlling your tongue, your attitude, your thoughts is how you defend your soul.

Failure to equip God’s people (vss 19-23)

  • Poor leadership leads to going to the enemy for weapons to fight the enemy
  • The unequipped soul failing to put on the armor of God. No hope, no righteousness, no good news message, no truth.