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April 10, 2018

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Reading along with us in 1 Samuel? Here’s today’s reading:

1 Samuel 11 (ESV)

Then Nahash the Ammonite went up and besieged Jabesh-gilead, and all the men of Jabesh said to Nahash, “Make a treaty with us, and we will serve you.”But Nahash the Ammonite said to them, “On this condition I will make a treaty with you, that I gouge out all your right eyes, and thus bring disgrace on all Israel.”The elders of Jabesh said to him, “Give us seven days’ respite that we may send messengers through all the territory of Israel. Then, if there is no one to save us, we will give ourselves up to you.” When the messengers came to Gibeah of Saul, they reported the matter in the ears of the people, and all the people wept aloud.

Now, behold, Saul was coming from the field behind the oxen. And Saul said, “What is wrong with the people, that they are weeping?” So they told him the news of the men of Jabesh. And the Spirit of God rushed upon Saul when he heard these words, and his anger was greatly kindled. He took a yoke of oxen and cut them in pieces and sent them throughout all the territory of Israel by the hand of the messengers, saying, “Whoever does not come out after Saul and Samuel, so shall it be done to his oxen!” Then the dread of the Lord fell upon the people, and they came out as one man....Continue Reading

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This Post Has 3 Comments
  1. After being anointed in chapter 10, Saul is given his first test of leadership. And he shows many good qualities. First he jumps in to address the situation rather than setting it aside or backing away. Second, he sees the importance of motivating and inspiring the people. Maybe his approach is a little extreme, but so is the situation fellow Israelites are in. And what he does works and he then leads the Israelite army into battle. It is interesting that already the number of men from Judah is distinguished. A third quality he shows is an ability for strategy. He separates his men into 3 divisions. I wonder if it was therefore a three pronged attack or just different divisions improving communication and leadership.

    Saul is successful and his position of King is affirmed. So much so that the peoples want to take care of those who criticized him. And Saul shows a couple of other aspects of leadership: restraint and grace.

  2. 14Then Samuel said to the people, “Come, let us go to Gilgal and there renew the kingdom.” 15So all the people went to Gilgal, and there they made Saul king before the Lord in Gilgal. There they sacrificed peace offerings before the Lord, and there Saul and all the men of Israel rejoiced greatly.

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