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November 26, 2013


“There was a man of Benjamin whose name was Kish . . . .” (I Sam. 9:1)  And he had a son who was tall and handsome and who was so considerate of Kish that he worried about his father worrying about him.  He was a humble and kind son who wanted to do the right thing whatever it was.  He was such a man that God took notice of him and made him king over his people Israel.

         He was such a man that, when his coronation came, his friends had to find him where he was hiding.  He was such a man that when certain ones refused to support him as king, but events catapulted him into public adulation, he refused to punish those critics. 

         What could go wrong with a man like that?  It seems that what went wrong was success.  Saul exceeded expectations.  He routed their enemies, the Ammonites.  He established a standing army.  He challenged the Philistines.  As his power and approval grew, so did his ego.  It grew so much that presumption overtook him.  Being king wasn’t enough; he grabbed also for priestly prerogatives. 

         Time was running out, so he made the sacrifice himself. (13:9) Where was that meek young man now?  Power led to presumption, and presumption led to a fatal flaw.  Pride led to arrogance.  Arrogance led to jealousy.  Jealousy led to attempted murder and to persecution of God’s new anointed.  At the Battle of Mount Gilboa he died with two of his sons.

         Good beginnings don’t always end well.  But they don’t have to end as tragically as did Saul’s life.  Guard your ways, your eyes, your mouth, your moods, and your thoughts.  Beware of dabbling in things that are higher than you.  Above all, observe God’s boundaries and honor Him with all the obedience that you know how.  Keep humble before Him, and He will lift you up. (Js. 4:10)

                                                            Larry A. Shelley

  Here is another offering from the pen of Larry Shelley. I enjoy the way that Larry approaches a lesson. It is sometimes puzzling to tell what he has in mind at first, but you see the whole picture when he is done.


One Comment
  1. If we start well. we need to keep on our toes to finish well

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