This is a call to the prophetic voices of this hour who will choose obedience over sacrifice. This is for those who are battling against the Sauls, the ones who are trying to hold a position of blessing out of rebellion and presumption. If Agag is cheerfully coming into your presence because of Saul, this is for you. Weeks ago, the Lord led me to 1 Sam. 15. I spent hours looking up words from this account, jotting things down in my ministry journal and tucking the journal away. I did not understand why God wanted me to study this passage so intently until now.
In 1 Samuel 15, Samuel instructs Saul to devote to destruction the Amalekites and all of their livestock. Amalek ("violent") was the grandson of Esau, the one who sold his birthright to Jacob (Israel) for a bowl of soup. These groups were related, but you see, this is what happens when a person forfeits an inheritance: They risk the destinies of future generations to come. Amalek fought against Israel when they came from Egypt and because of that, God promised to blot out their memory from under heaven (Ex. 17:14).
Partial Obedience Is Disobedience
Saul's mission was clear. He was to fulfill the declaration of the Lord from hundreds of years earlier by devoting the Amalekites to destruction. Devote to destruction means, "to set apart as an offering to the Lord." However, instead of doing as instructed, he spared King Agag and the best of the livestock while devoting to destruction all that was worthless and despised (1 Sam. 15:9). He set apart as an offering to the Lord that which was deemed worthless and kept the best for himself. Not only that, but he set up a monument on Mount Carmel to himself after the battle.
Sauls enjoy the spoils of battle and the recognition of the people. They want the honor without demonstrating honor to the Lord and to leadership. They despise fresh oil. Status is everything to them, because their security rests in position rather than the right posture before God. What they fail to understand is that status does not exempt one from the call to obedience and accountability.
We find later that Samuel confronts Saul about his sin, only to find Saul shifting blame onto his own people. Samuel responds by saying,
Does the Lord delight in burnt offering and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Obedience is better than sacrifice, a listening ear than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He has also rejected you from being king.
Dishonor Cannot Reproduce Honor
Though Saul admits his dishonor and insecurity, he still wants to be honored by Samuel. His haste in desiring honor accelerated his dethronement by him inadvertently tearing Samuel's robe. The word "rebellion" means "stubbornness, the refusal to obey the precepts laid down by the Lord, open resistance to a ruler, resisting authority." The word "listen means" "to pay close attention."
Sauls operate in rebellion and resist authority in secret. We see this in 1 Samuel 28 when Saul consults a witch to communicate with Samuel after he died. It is interesting to me that Samuel prophesies to him about rebellion and divination when addressing the situation with Agag and the livestock. Sauls do not pay close attention to instruction. They hear but do not listen, and they believe that what they are doing is the will of the Lord when in fact, they are operating in witchcraft.
After confronting Saul, Samuel calls for King Agag. The Word says that Agag came cheerfully, thinking that the "bitterness of death [was] past" (1 Sam. 15:32c]. Soon after, Samuel puts Agag to death, describing it as hacking him to pieces before the Lord.
Prophets of Honor Are Advancing Forth
What does all of this have to do with us? As I meditated on this word and what God was showing me, I began to understand the importance for this account in our time. There are people right now who are trying to hold their positions out of rebellion and arrogance. They refuse to obey the voice of the Lord and their false confidence rests upon their current status and not in obedience unto God. These individuals desire man's honor over the word of the Lord while dishonoring God and others.
We need the Samuels in this day to declare the mandate of the Lord and to put to death the things of the enemy without compromise. You are called to release fresh oil and Saul hates that. You are called to dismember what Saul chooses to esteem. You are called to carry out what God has ordained over the body of Christ. Prophets of honor may weep to the Lord over the dishonor of the Sauls, but they are set in their course to fulfill the command of the Lord.
Agag came cheerfully before Samuel because he had stood in the presence of Saul without harm, but he met a violent end. Some of you have been met by a cheerful enemy operating in opposition to you because of a rebellious Saul in your life entertaining Agag. Bring it to a violent end through prayer and intercession, the Word and your worship unto God. If you are called of God as a prophet, be a prophet of honor. When we honor the Lord and fulfill His instruction, fresh oil flows to fill our horns.
Dawn Hill is a Christ-follower and a freelance writer. She writes a blog called Lovesick Scribe. For the original article, visit lovesickscribe.com.
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