Today’s Reading: 1 Samuel 13 – 14:45
In today’s reading: Israel battles with the Philistines early in the reign of Saul. Saul’s son Jonathan proves to be more courageous than his father: “Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the LORD will work for us. For nothing restrains the LORD from saving by many or by few.” (1 Samuel 14:6). Saul unlawfully offers a sacrifice before battle and for this Samuel says his kingdom will not continue. Saul’s weakness is also seen when Jonathan unknowingly disobeys a vow Saul had made and the king is unable to punish him because of the popular support for Jonathan.
Perhaps most significant in today’s reading is the pronouncement that Saul will ultimately be rejected as King. Saul disobeyed the the law by presumptuously offering a sacrifice (not being a priest). According to 1 Samuel 13:12 he said he didn’t want to go into battle without seeking the Lord’s blessing and he “felt compelled” to make an offering to God, but ultimately it was disobedience. What should we learn from this case?