The Kings of Israel ~
The Kings of Israel
Character Flaws

~ King Saul ~
Hello Folks of Little Cedar and Marshall Lutheran Churches!

Today we are looking at King Saul. As we read some stories about him, I want you to think about what makes for a good leader. What traits are good in a leader?

I Now Crown You King Saul
The stories of Saul being chosen as Israel’s first king can be found in chapter 9-11 of 1 Samuel. I say stories, because it really is multiple stories. The stories have been weaved together to make one relatively cohesive story. You can sense in scripture that there are mixed feelings about Saul as King. In one moment, it seems that God is happy about this, and another moment, not so much. We will just look at a few verses of Saul’s crowning.
Read 1 Samuel 9:1-2, and 10:17-24
Also take just a brief look at chapter 11, which tells the story of Saul leading Israel into war with the Ammonites and defeating them. There is a lot of promise in King Saul. He is handsome, tall and broad, and brave.

A King Who is Full of Promise………or will fail miserably in his own arrogance…
Read 1 Samuel 13:1-7
So off to a pretty good start. Saul is gathering the best to help him protect the Israelites. Although the people are nervous, he is leading the way for them. However, things take a turn for the worse. Saul has trouble listening to the Lord. We are going to look at just one of his failures.
Read 1 Samuel 13:8-15
So as I said, Saul was full of promise, but that didn’t last very long. Saul was not a great king, nor was he even a good man. He was deeply flawed, and the entire first half of Samuel is dedicated to a character study about his failures. When reading through Samuel, you might have a tendency to become critical or judgmental of Saul at times; you’ll probably feel sorry for him at times too. But is we slow down and are honest with ourselves, we can probably find of his character flaws in ourselves. If you’re open-minded, you’ll realize you likely have more in common with Saul than you’d care to admit. The whole point of exploring Saul’s failures is to warn us, so we don’t repeat his mistakes.
I’ve Had Enough of You
God has had enough of Saul and his self-righteous arrogance. God has someone else in mind. And so, in comes David. God sends Samuel to the home of David’s father. It is here that God revealed David to Samuel, and he was anointed. After some time, however, Saul knows he is in trouble and turns against David.
Read 1 Samuel 18:1-9
I can’t say that I blame Saul. David has become the favorite of everyone, even his son Jonathan. We have those tendencies in ourselves as well. Jealousy and arrogance can do some terrible things to a person’s mind.

Read 1 Samuel 18:10-16
Saul’s anger gets the best of him and is ready to put an end to David. Eventually, David ends up needing to flee from Saul, lest he be killed. Friends continue helping our David; Jonathan in particular. In the end, Saul is killed in battle on Mount Gilboa, along with three of his sons. This gives way for David to be officially crowned as king.
God Seems to be a Bit Violent
Some of these stories may seem like a bit much. God really wanted these armies to utterly wipe out their enemies? It’s hard for us to say exactly what is all going on in these stories and how much they are influenced by the writers. However, we also know that God is gracious, merciful, and slow to anger. As we read these stories, it is good to remember this as well.
Come On, Let’s Wrap This Thing Up Already
It’s also hard to say what to make of Saul. Some of his actions seem to have been pretty reasonable. However, I think that it is safe for us to assume that there is probably a bit more to the stories. From the very beginning, Saul relies only on himself. Saul doesn’t take time to pray or seek God out for help. Instead, Saul forges on by himself. In the end, his arrogance and rash behavior gets the best of him.
So, what do you think? Looking at Saul’s stories,
what sort of qualities make for a good leader?

Have a great rest of your day!
Pr. Jeremy

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The Info
Sunday Worship    
Little Cedar 9:00am  
Marshall 10:30

Sunday School      
Marshall 9:30am       
Little Cedar 10:00am

308 NW Lewison St
Adams, MN 55909
Telephone: 507-582-3185

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