1 Sam 11 — Saul Defeats the Ammonites
1 Sam 12 — Samuel’s Farewell Address
1 Sam 13:1-7 — Saul Battles the Philistines
1 Sam 13:8-23 — Saul’s Unlawful Sacrifice
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One Reply to “Mar 3 — 1 Samuel 11-13”
Being oppressed by the Ammonites, the Israelites at Jabesh Gilead sent word to Saul to ask for advice. “The Spirit of God came powerfully upon him, and he burned with anger” (1 Sam 11:6). Saul told them they would be rescued “by the time the sun is hot tomorrow” (1 Sam 11:7). The leaders at Jabesh told the Ammonites they would surrender and so they were not expecting the surprise Saul had in store for them. “During the last watch of the night…” (1 Sam 11:11) Saul’s forces broke into the camp and slaughtered the Ammonites. Few escaped. This battle confirmed Saul as their king and though the people wanted the naysayers put to death, Saul wisely states, “no one will be put to death today, for this day the Lord rescued Israel” (1 Sam 11:13).
Samuel gives one last speech in 1 Sam 12. He reminds them of God’s faithfulness through Jacob, Moses and Aaron, Samson, Barak (Deborah), Jepthah and himself. Samuel exhorts them to always follow the Lord, for he alone is faithful and steadfast.
The Philistines assembled to fight Israel, but when the Israelites saw the massive army they “hid in caves and thickets among the rocks” (1 Sam 13:6), they scattered! Saul waited seven days (as told by Samuel), but Samuel didn’t show up on time, so Saul took matters into his own hands and “felt compelled to offer the burnt offering” (1 Sam 13:12). Samuel arrived and declared, “you have done a foolish thing…your kingdom will not endure” (1 Sam 13:13-14). He left Saul with 600 men and no weapons. Not a good situation at all!
With one great victory, Saul assumes he can now make up his own rules. From humble beginnings to arrogance is such a short time. Lord, keep me humble! To you be all the glory and honor in all things!