King Saul - A Brief Devotional
I was thinking recently about Christ as the rejected king that the Jews didn't want - "we will not have this to reign over us!" It put me in mind of the king that God rejected, the man Saul. There is a lovely comparison between the two.
- Saul was the king who was very much the people's choice, although God put him there. Our Lord Jesus Christ was ever God's choice - ('behold my Servant'... 'this is my beloved Son')
- Saul was a man physically that the people desired, and would look up to (literally for he was head and shoulders above them). Think of the Lord; "There is no beauty that we should desire him" "He hath no form nor comeliness..." Although the Lord Jesus was head and shoulders above them all morally! Perfect and sinless He was.
- Saul was marked by disobedience to the word of the LORD, his disobedience in 1 Sam 13 in acting as a priest and offering burnt offerings instead of waiting for Samuel to come, and his disobedience in ch 15 in not annihilating the Amalekites left God no option but to reject Saul from continuing and prospering as king of Israel. None of this could be said of our blessed Lord as his 'meat was to do the will of him that sent him'... ('I delight to do thy will'... 'I do always those things that please the Father')
- Remember that there was a time when Saul showed an astonishing lack of compassion for his people, when he enforced a fast upon them. I can't help but think of the time our Saviour looked out upon the people and saw them as sheep not having a shepherd, and moved with compassion he fed them miraculously in the wilderness! He would not send them away faint and hungry.
- Saul was also marked by a lack of self-control and often lost his temper. The Lord Jesus was always in control, and was marked by meekness and was gracious even in the face of extreme provocation - ('I am meek and lowly'... 'when he was reviled he reviled not again, and when he suffered he threatened not.')
- Saul was an extremely jealous man, wanting something that was not his, and driven by bitter envy. Of our Lord Jesus it is said that the earth is His and the fullness thereof, there was nothing he desired that was not his already by right. Though he was rich, yet for our sakes he became poor - what a contrast! Our blessed Lord humbled himself, and made himself of no reputation, while Saul raged and clung onto power with everything he had.
- We read that an evil spirit came upon Saul and tormented him, sent from God. I can't help but think of the Lord Jesus, who was full of the Holy Spirit, led by the Spirit, and driven by the Spirit.
- Saul was the man who wouldn't go down into the valley to face the giant. Driven by self-preservation he would let a teenage David go down instead to claim the victory for God. Think of our Saviour who would say "Here am I, send me", who willingly went down into the depths, and of whom it could be said "I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me... all thy waves and billows have passed over me..."
- Think of Saul's end - his death was one of shame, failure and defeat on Mt Gilboa. Now think of our blessed Saviour, who died on Mt Calvary. Yes it was a death of shame ('cursed is every man who hangeth upon a tree') but his death was one of victory, not defeat! He triumphed over death, hell and the grave, a death which brought many sons to glory!
- Saul had his kingdom taken away from him, it would not endure forever. I am reminded of our Lord Jesus - "he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end."
Praise be to his name! Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.