The corresponding letter to this chapter is Samech- Divine presence and support; stands for the Holy of Holies of the Temple.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:1-9 Then Sh’mu’el said to Saul, "The L-RD sent me to anoint you as king over His people, over Israel; now therefore, listen to the words of the L-RD. Thus says the L-RD of hosts, 'I will punish Amalek for what he did to Israel, how he set himself against him on the way while he was coming up from Egypt. 'Now go and strike Amalek and utterly destroy all that he has, and do not spare him; but put to death both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.' " Then Saul summoned the people and numbered them in T’la’im, 200,000 foot soldiers and 10,000 men of Y’hudah. And Saul came to the city of Amalek, and set an ambush in the valley. And Saul said to the Kenites, "Go, depart, go down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them; for you showed kindness to all the sons of Israel when they came up from Egypt." So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites. So Saul defeated the Amalekites, from Havilah as you go to Shur, which is east of Egypt. And he captured Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword. But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good, and were not willing to destroy them utterly; but everything despised and worthless, that they utterly destroyed.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:10-11 Then the word of the L-RD came to Sh’mu’el, saying, "I regret that I have made Saul king, for he has turned back from following Me, and has not carried out My commands." And Sh’mu’el was distressed and cried out to the L-RD all night.
Saul did not have a heart after G-d and after what G-d wanted.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:12-14 And Sh’mu’el rose early in the morning to meet Saul; and it was told Sh’mu’el, saying, "Saul came to Carmel, and look, he set up a monument for himself, then turned and proceeded on down to Gilgal." And Sh’mu’el came to Saul, and Saul said to him, "Blessed are you of the L-RD! I have carried out the command of the L-RD." But Sh’mu’el said, "What then is this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?"
This is funny! Baaaaaa! Kind of hard to hide live sheep you were suppose to slaughter. G-d wants total obedience!
B’midbar (Numbers) 32:23 But if you will not do so, look, you have sinned against the L-RD, and be sure your sin will find you out.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:15 And Saul said, "They have brought them from the Amalekites, for the people spared the best of the sheep and oxen, to sacrifice to the L-RD your G-d; but the rest we have utterly destroyed."
Instead of admitting his wrong he tries to justify his actions. Baaaaaaaad! I joke, but sin is serious business and trying to justify our sin instead of confessing and repenting is worse.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:16-23 Then Sh’mu’el said to Saul, "Wait, and let me tell you what the L-RD said to me last night." And he said to him, "Speak!" And Sh’mu’el said, "Is it not true, though you were little in your own eyes, you were made the head of the tribes of Israel? And the L-RD anointed you king over Israel, and the L-RD sent you on a mission, and said,' Go and utterly destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are exterminated.' "Why then did you not obey the voice of the L-RD, but rushed upon the spoil and did what was evil in the sight of the L-RD?" Then Saul said to Sh’mu’el, "I did obey the voice of the L-RD, and went on the mission on which the L-RD sent me, and have brought back Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took some of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the choicest of the things devoted to destruction, to sacrifice to the L-RD your G-d at Gilgal." And Sh’mu’el said, "Has the L-RD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the L-RD? Look, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. "For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the L-RD, He has also rejected you from being king."
Stubbornness got the better of Saul. Does stubbornness make you reject the word of the L-rd –Yeshua who is the Word? The Father will reject those that reject Him.
1 Yochanan (John) 2:22-23 Who is the liar but the one who denies that Yeshua is the anointed? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.
The sacrificial system is an expression of living an obedient life. It did not replace our goal of living an obedient life, which is only possible through the Messiah. Jonathan was an example of this. Are you more concerned going through the motions without a concern with what G-d wants? He desires that you follow the path that enables you to live this obedient life in the first place. Will we ever be able to please G-d totally and completely? This is his desire and should be ours too. The heart that is only interested in sacrifice and not in total obedience becomes just an outward act, a show, and nothing more. You may think G-d delights in what you are doing but that is not necessarily the case. If we don’t have a heart for G-d’s plan through His Son, we don’t please Him. He wants total obedience. In the future sacrifices will be reinstated during the time of Yakkov’s trouble and there will be people who still have not accepted Yeshua as their Messiah, which is the desire of the Father.–Do you think this is living an obedient life? Will the L-rd listen then? The goal of the system was to point to the Messiah who comes into our hearts so we can follow Him and live an obedient life through Him. Without him we can do nothing. If one only wants to look back to the sacrifices without looking to what the L-rd was trying to show us through them we are not obedient and nothing will justify our disobedience –even animal sacrifices will not save you from eternal destruction. Total obedience is required! And we cannot live a sinless life without the Messiah because we are born with a sin nature. You may think you are righteous but without the Messiah we are still in our sins. What sin do we have a problem with? How about doing everything perfect and that even includes doing things we should do and sometimes do not. This may even just mean we do not love everyone at every moment like we should. Do you? We all fall short of this at one time or another. His standard is perfection. When you were a child did you do anything wrong? Of course, because we are all born with a sin nature coming from Adam. The second Adam came to restore us in our hopeless state. Our only hope is the Messiah. Don’t miss the true goal of what the plan of G-d is. Accept the Son so you can be lead to the Father. Do you want the kingdom to be taken away from you too?
Hoshea (Hosea) 6:6 For I delight in loyalty rather than sacrifice, And in the knowledge of G-d rather than burnt offerings.
Mikhah (Micah) 6:6-8 With what shall I come to the L-RD And bow myself before the G-d on high? Shall I come to Him with burnt offerings, with yearling calves? Does the L-RD take delight in thousands of rams, in ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I present my first-born for my rebellious acts, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the L-RD require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your G-d?
Hebrews 10:3-14 But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins, because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Therefore, when Messiah came into the world, he said: "Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. Then I said, `Here I am-it is written about me in the scroll- I have come to do your will, O G-d.'" First he said, "Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them" (although the law required them to be made). Then he said, "Here I am, I have come to do your will." He sets aside the first to establish the second. And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Yeshua HaMashiach once for all. Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of G-d. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made PERFECT FOREVER those who are being MADE HOLY.
Once we are under the Messiah, Does this mean we are perfect? No, G-d knows we are not. What he wants is progress. If there is a certain sin in an area of your life you have a problem with ask the L-rd to help you with it. Ask that He change your heart in regards to this sin. Do what is pleasing in His eyes and surrender to it and walk the path that leads to His Son.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:24-25 Then Saul said to Sh’mu’el, "I have sinned; I have indeed transgressed the command of the L-RD and your words, because I feared the people and listened to their voice. Now therefore, please pardon my sin and return with me, that I may worship the L-RD."
Are we more concerned about what people say than about doing what is right? He seemed more sorry because of the consequences than that he had offended the L-rd.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:26-30 But Sh’mu’el said to Saul, "I will not return with you; for you have rejected the word of the L-RD, and the L-RD has rejected you from being king over Israel." And as Sh’mu’el turned to go, Saul seized the edge of his robe, and it tore. So Sh’mu’el said to him, "The L-RD has torn the kingdom of Israel from you today, and has given it to your neighbor who is better than you. And also the Glory of Israel will not lie or change His mind; for He is not a man that He should change His mind." Then he said, "I have sinned; but please honor me now before the elders of my people and before Israel, and go back with me, that I may worship the L-RD your G-d."
Still concerned with what the people thought and how he looked.
Sh’mu’el Alef 15:31-35 So Sh’mu’el went back following Saul, and Saul worshiped the L-RD. Then Sh’mu’el said, "Bring me Agag, the king of the Amalekites." And Agag came to him cheerfully. And Agag said, "Surely the bitterness of death is past." But Sh’mu’el said, "As your sword has made women childless, so shall your mother be childless among women." And Sh’mu’el hacked Agag to pieces before the L-RD at Gilgal. Then Sh’mu’el went to Ramah, but Saul went up to his house at Gibeah of Saul. And Sh’mu’el did not see Saul again until the day of his death; for Sh’mu’el grieved over Saul. And the L-RD regretted that He had made Saul king over Israel.
And Sh’mu’el hacked Agag to pieces before the L-RD at Gilgal - Wow! I always pictured Sh’mu’el as a non-violent guy. This is pretty graphic. Lets talk about this for a minute. I have heard it said that one of the commandments is “Thou shall not kill”. However, that is not accurate. The scripture says “Thou shall not MURDER”. There are plenty of times that G-d commands someone to kill the enemy of Israel. Here, Sh’mu’el, the prophet was left to do the job because Saul did not obey the L-rd.
What does this reveal to us? Do you still want just a human King? Or one who is totally human and totally Divine?