Obedience Over Spoils: Learning from Saul's Mistake

1 Samuel 15:19
Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?

Let God define for you what you need, and what you don’t! Why? Because your own heart will deceive you, and you will lust after things that you will convince yourself you need, even when you actually don’t. In our text, God instructed Saul to destroy the enemy and all their substance, and not to take any spoil whatsoever. But what did they do? They not only took the spoil, but the Bible says they “didst fly upon the spoil”, meaning they figuratively swooped down upon the spoil as a vulture might swoop down and snatch its prey. This illustrates their singular focus. They were not focused on obeying God’s voice; they were only focused on how they could get richer off of the advantage that victory would grant them. However, all throughout God’s leading and dealing with His people, He is ever teaching them that “man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live” (see Deuteronomy 8:3). And once again, His people failed the test. Ever since the Garden of Eden, God has been striving to teach us the proper way of being blessed, and that one can’t simply take what he or she wants, however they want, whenever they want, while ignoring God’s word. It isn’t that God is out to get us, or withhold from us, or make our lives miserable. In fact, the opposite is true, because according to Psalm 84:11b, “…no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.” So, it is not that God doesn’t want to bless His people; He just wants them to be blessed HIS way by HIS Word! I believe it is this tendency we all have to act like we’re desperate, even though our Heavenly Father owns it all, that God wants to rid us of. See them swooping down upon the spoils as if they had nothing? Blessed with advantage, strength, power, and victory, and yet impoverished in their souls. Oh, children of God, when will we ever let our hearts become filled with the satisfaction of knowing that “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32). We do not need to take siege, without any regard to the principles of God’s Word or the honor of His Son, ANYTHING that we need. When we wait upon Him, this means that we wait for Him to provide in His timing and in His way, with surrendered hearts and resolve to be completely obedient. Let not your heart lie to you and convince you that God has no spoils for you.

~ Pastor Gary Caudill
<< 1 Samuel 15