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1 Samuel 15

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 1 Samuel also said to Saul, "The LORD sent me to anoint you to be king over his people, over Israel; now therefore listen to the voice of the words of the LORD."

 2 Thus says the Lord of hosts, "I remember what Amalek did to Israel, how he ambushed Israel in the way, when he came up from Egypt.

 3 Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and do not spare them; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass."

 4 And Saul gathered the people together, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah.

 5 And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and set up an ambush in the valley.

 6 And Saul said to the Kenites, "Go, separate yourselves from among the Amalekites, or I will destroy you along with them; [I will spare you] because you showed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt." So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.

 7 And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah to as far as Shur, which borders the east of Egypt.

 8 And he took Agag, the king of the Amalekites, alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword.

 9 But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatted cattle, the lambs, and everything that was desirable. They were not obedient to completely destroy everything; only those things that were undesirable and worthless, were completely destroyed.

 10 Then the word of the LORD came to Samuel, saying,

 11 "It grieves me that I have set up Saul to be king because he has turned back from following me, and has not performed my commandments." This also grieved Samuel, and he cried to the LORD all night.

 12 And when Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning, Samuel was told that Saul had come to Carmel, had set up a monument, and had left to go down to Gilgal.

 13 Samuel went to Saul, [and when Saul saw Samuel], Saul said to him, "Blessed are you of the LORD. I have performed the commandment of the LORD."

 14 And Samuel said, "What is the meaning of this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen that I hear?"

 15 And Saul said, "They have brought them from the Amalekites because the people spared the best sheep and oxen to sacrifice to the LORD your God; but the rest we have completely destroyed."

 16 Then Samuel said to Saul, "Stay, and I will tell you what the LORD has said to me this night." And Saul said to him, "Go ahead, Say on."

 17 And Samuel said, "When you were little in your own sight, were you not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed you king over Israel?

 18 And the LORD sent you on a journey, and said, 'Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are consumed.'

 19 Why then did you not obey the voice of the LORD, but you instead seized on the spoil, and thus did evil in the sight of the LORD?"

 20 And Saul said to Samuel, "Yes, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way that the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have completely destroyed the Amalekites.

 21 But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the best of the things that should have been utterly destroyed, in order to sacrifice to the LORD your God in Gilgal."

 22 And Samuel said, "Has the LORD a greater delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, than in obeying the voice of the LORD?1 Behold, to obey is better than to sacrifice, and to listen and heed is better than the fat of rams.

 23 For rebellion (disobedience) is as bad as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as bad as iniquity and idolatry.2 Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, he has also rejected you from being king."

 24 And Saul said to Samuel, "I have sinned and have transgressed the commandment of the LORD and your words because I was afraid of the people, and acquiesced to their vocal desires.

 25 Now therefore, I pray you, pardon my sin, and come back with me that I may worship the LORD."

 26 And Samuel said to Saul, "I will not come back with you because you have rejected the word of the LORD, and the LORD has rejected you from being king over Israel."

 27 As Samuel turned about to go away, he grabbed the bottom of Saul's cloak, and it tore.

 28 And Samuel said to him, "The LORD has torn the kingdom of Israel from you this day, and has given it to a neighbor of yours, who is better than you.

 29 And also the [God, who is the ] Strength of Israel will not lie nor change his mind because he is not like a man that changes his mind."

 30 Then Saul said, "I have sinned, yet honor me now, I pray you, before the elders of my people and before Israel; and come back with me, that I may worship the LORD your God."

 31 So Samuel went back with Saul, and Saul worshipped the LORD.

 32 Then Samuel said, "Bring, Agag the king of the Amalekites, here to me. And Agag came to him confidently, saying, "Surely the bitterness of death has past."

 33 And Samuel said, "As your sword has made women childless, so will your mother be childless among women." Then Samuel chopped Agag up with a sword into pieces before the LORD in Gilgal.

 34  Samuel then departed to go to Ramah, [his home]; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul.

 35 Samuel did not return to see Saul until the day of his death; nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul. The LORD regretted that he had made Saul king over Israel.


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1 Has the LORD a greater delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, than in obeying the voice of the LORD? To obey the voice of the Lord is the key to spiritual progress. When you obey, do nothing less, do nothing more. Do everything thing he commands you. Saul failed to do everything the Lord commanded, and eventually lost everything.Saul again (first time in Chapter 13:14) has failed to follow the Lord's instructions completely; and that failure caused Samuel to declare his kingship over and to abandon him, never seeing him again. Listen to and obey my voice, and I will be your God, and you will be my people; and walk completely in the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well to you. Jer 7:23.

2 Take Note! Rebellion (disobedience) is as bad as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as bad as iniquity and idolatry.

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