1 Samuel

1 Samuel 15-17

Chapter 15: I think this chapter is an easy read but I get a lot of texts about a “How can a Loving God, wipeout (completely destroy) women, children, and animals”.  Chapter 15 is a perfect opportunity to break that down.   In verse 3 the Lord gives the command:

‘I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.’”

Think of the Amalekites as cancer and Israel is the body.  Would a good Dr. say “take out most of the cancer, but leave a little in there”?  The Amalekites have been a cancer to the Israelites since day one.  They are brutal attackers that have a history of guerilla warfare.   They attack tribes, stealing their women and children (raping them), and their idolatrous religious practices will always be enticing to the Israelites.  I know if Merideth Grey was the Dr., she would get all the cancer from the body.

Saul disobeys God’s commandment (again).  Agag the king is captured and as Samuel points out “What is that bleating of sheep in my ears?” Saul did not come close to following God’s orders in this surgery!!

However, with love, I say:

Don’t throw a stone at Saul until you can read the Sermon on the Mount and see if you are Saul (do you pick and choose what to obey?  I am not talking about the subtitles: I am talking about the fine print) Click here.

Saul: He is impatient, disobedient, dishonest, and arrogant. But here is the deal, God is never without a plan.  We knew from the beginning Saul was not going to work out because we KNOW that the kingship must go through the line of Judah, not Benjamin!

Samuel’s response is very important for us to understand because it is said in Psalms 40, Psalms 51, Proverbs 21, Isaiah 1, Jeremiah 7, Hosea 6, Micha 6, Mathew 12, Mark 12, and Hebrews 10!

“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord,
he has rejected you as king.”

Without question, the offering of sacrifices was an important part of worship in ancient Israel BUT it was an empty ritual without proper motivation and obedience.  Genuine repentance and obedience are necessary accomplishments to the presentation of the sacrifice.   When we deliberately disobey the Lord’s commands, he rejects the sacrifice, in Saul’s case: He rejected him as king.

Samuel ends the chapter as a Judge when he killed Agag.

Chapter 16

A Catholic Notebook: Jesse Tree December 11

At the anointing of David in front of his 7 older brothers, he is empowered with the Holy Spirit and it will remain with hin forever.  Simultaneously, God chose to withdraw the Spirit from Saul. (Remember it isn’t until Pentecost in Acts that the Holy Spirit is promised to all believers, so don’t panic that the Lord will do this to you).  An evil spirit (lower case ‘s’) will torment Saul as a means to get David into the Palace, sort of like an apprentice.  He is very young and has a lot to learn.

Chapter 17- You can call it David and Goliath (I will call it God and Goliath).  I am going to say something true, ready?  Some of you have grown up in church or have attended church for a long time and you can “tell” this story.  Big guy..little guy…sling-shot… BUT I am betting that there are many of you that have NEVER actually read the whole chapter.  How do I know?  Because until recently I had never read it either (but I had seen veggie tales!)

Let’s get our geography:

2. David and Goliath: Bold Faith (1 Samuel 17). Life of David ...

Victory | | Fernridge Faith Center

Lessons from Gladwell's David and Goliath applied to the problem ...

(I bet you were expecting the slingshot picture 😋)

Listen, it is Easter and if I start breaking down these 58 verses, we will be here all day!  So go enjoy a Sabbath Day with your Lord and family.




11 thoughts on “1 Samuel 15-17

  1. I found it interesting that it says God sent an evil spirit to torment Saul. I’ve never considered anything pertaining to evil to come from God.


    1. It could be 2 things: the spirit that taunts Saul could be a now human characteristic any of us could fight since the Fall of man such as depression, paranoia, bi-polar etc. However, nothing from God is evil BUT he has complete CONTROL over everything, including what is evil. If a “true” evil spirit entered Saul it was by permission from God. He allowed it and used it for His plan. This is why come election time, I don’t get bent out of shape by who is elected. God is in control of all.


  2. I have never read these 2 chapters in order 16 & 17. if Samuel comes to the house of Jesse and anoints David, why was he still taking care of sheep, why did he not go to the battle if he was anointed? wouldn’t he be the one he wanted, and why was he a man of valor- so he could play the flute to Saul and now in chap 17 he is just a child?…should the chapters be switched?


    1. That’s the beauty of David and his trust in the Lord. If I were David I would have run back and said “get off my throne Saul”, but David stays humble and trusts the Lord the entire time that He will put him in position when it is time. As David flees it amazes me that the whole time he trusts the Lord. Did he not once think “maybe I should kill Saul and get this party started?” Like so many people we have read about who “help” God with his plan to fulfill HIs promises (always backfires), David doesn’t. David is far from perfect BUT he trusts the Lord!


        1. I hope you mean 17:55-58 or my Bible is cheating me out of a few scriptures! I love that you noticed how he didn’t even recognize David. It shows how self-indulged Saul is! Here this young boy plays for him to soothe his the mood and he never took the time to probably even look at him, talk to him, thank him, or care about him! Think of the present-day application of that! A good leader at work or at church. I have been at both where my boss or my pastor don’t even acknowledge those “under” him, and I have also seen the opposite, a leader at work and at church that is a man after God’s heart.


          1. I’m officially losing it, you are correct on the numbers. For some reason that just really struck me that in the earlier verses Saul seemed to enjoy his services but never even knew him. You are correct, sadly we all do that.


  3. I wondered the same thing. But then I thought about it and read it as David was younger when he was was first involved with saul. Then he went back home and years later shows up on the battlefield, grown up and looking different. So Saul didn’t realize it was David from the past?


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