- Trace the course of Saul’s disobedience – his excuses (verses 20, 21 24) and his self-interest (verse 30).
Trace also the course of Samuel’s warning (verse 1), denunciation (verses 14, 18, 19), and declaration of divine judgment (verses 22, 23, 26, 28, 29).
What may we learn here concerning God’s ways and the demands of his service?
- From verse 11, and from Samuel’s reply to Saul in verses 22, 23, what do we learn concerning the divine reaction against ritual without obedience, against outward religious observance that masks an inner disobedience?
Have God’s requirements or his attitude changed?
Note. Verse 15. The whole points about the sacred ban was that everything must be destroyed; not one thing must be spared or looted. Cf. Josh. 7:1.
- How does the story of Saul’s public election demonstrate God’s forbearance?
See especially 10:19.
Cf. Pss. 103:14, 15; 78:37-39; Rom. Rom. 2:4.
- To what does Scripture attribute Saul’s vigorous action and his success?
Cf. Acts 1:8. Do these verses come to you as a challenge, or a rebuke?
- Consider what noble qualities Saul displays. See 9:21; 10:9, 16b, 22, 27c. Does your life give evidence of a similar work of God?
Note. 11:9. The men of Jabesh Gilead never forgot Saul’s rescue of them from the Ammonites. See 31:11-13.
This passage describes Saul’s private anointing to be king. 10:20-24 describes his public identification by lot as the man of God’s choice. 11:14, 15 describes his public enthronement.
- 9:1-14. What encouragement can we take from the fact that the free movements of young men and girls, of donkeys and God’s prophet, are overruled here to bring about God’s purposes?
- What three confirmatory signs were given to Saul? How would they give him assurance that Samuel’s words in 10:1 were indeed true? How would this section also show that when God calls, he equips?
- 10:3, 4. It remarkable that the men should give Saul part of the offering that they probably intended to sacrifice at the sanctuary.
- 10:8. Cf. 13:8-14. The event of 11:14, 15 is an interlude and not the visit to Gilgal referred to in 10:8.