"He waited for seven days … but Samuel did not come … the people were scattering from him. So Saul said, 'Bring to me the burnt offering and the peace offerings.'” – 1 Samuel 13:8-9 NASB
Soon after becoming king, Saul led Israel’s army to victory in a battle with the Philistines. Eager to retaliate, the Philistines returned with a large army that included dozens of chariots. The sight of this massive force caused great fear among the Israelites. Many hid. Others fled. Those who remained trembled. What was Saul to do?
Through the prophet Samuel, God promised to provide what they needed. Saul was to go Gilgal and wait for seven days. Then Samuel would come and make a sacrifice. Saul waited, but nothing happened. On the seventh day, Saul decided he had waited long enough, so he went ahead and made the offering himself.
Just as Saul finished the sacrifice, Samuel arrived. Explaining his actions, Saul described how the Israelites were scattering. He felt that, as king, he needed to do something. Rather than continue waiting, Saul had moved forward.
Saul felt justified, but to God, he had failed a test. Having “acted foolishly” he proved he was not a man after God’s heart (v. 13). The kingdom would be taken from him. This is a picture of how God works in our lives. He has given us His Word and His Spirit to teach us (John 14:26). He also has given us the choice of when to respond. Will we obey? Wait for His time?
As you face these choices, commit to obeying God. Trust Him completely, always waiting for His perfect timing.
PrayerFather, forgive me for times I have been impatient. Help me trust You completely and wait for Your time. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Extended Reading1 Samuel 13