- Saul disobeyed God. He was faced with a battle against the Philistines and was terribly outmatched. His men were hiding in caves and pits out of fear. He waited for Samuel to arrive and offer a sacrifice to God before they began the battle, but Samuel was very late. Faced with the option of starting a battle without first seeking Gods favor or offering a sacrifice by himself (which was sin), he offered the sacrifice. Samuel’s response was that because of Saul’s disobedience, God would not let his family rule Israel forever. Instead, God had found another man, a man after his heart, who would be King.
- Saul told all the men that they could not eat until they had defeated the Philistines. As a result, they were all hungry. Saul’s son, Jonathan, however, ate some honey in ignorance. That night, Saul inquired of God whether they should attack the Philistines under the cover of night. God did not respond. So, Saul suspected that someone had done something wrong and swore to kill the person. They divined and found out that it was Jonathan but the people would not let Saul put Jonathan to death because he had helped them achieve a great victory that day. They said “What he did, he did with God’s help”.
- In other words, they thought that Jonathan’s choice in disobeying his father and eating was God’s plan; an interesting conclusion given the fact that God had refused to speak to them because of Jonathan’s actions.
- Israel had war as long as Saul was king. They fought against the people around them who oppressed them. The Philistines (who had taken away all their blacksmiths so that they had no weapons), the Amalekites, Moabites, Ammonites and others.