Monday, June 16, 2014

A Scriptural Duh Moment

A thought struck me as we discussed poor King Saul in the Old Testament on Sunday: Likening the scriptures to ourselves means looking micro, not macro.

First, the story of King Saul. Israel wants a king, and the Lord settles on Saul, a member of the tribe of Benjamin and self-described as coming from the least of the houses of the smallest tribe. He’s given the kingship and advised that Samuel, the chief ecclesiastical authority, will arrive at a certain spot when representatives of all twelve tribes are gathered together to perform peace and burnt offerings to inaugurate Saul’s reign.

But Samuel is late so Saul takes it upon himself to perform the sacrifices – keeping the gathered tribal representatives together but completely overstepping his authority.

Macro view: Sometimes our leaders get their heads full of fart, overstep their authority, and get duly shuffled off to Buffalo for their crimes.

Maybe that applies. But the micro view is this: How might we, ourselves, and just us be overstepping our authority, putting our own kingdom – our own salvation – at risk? Maybe we’re taking it upon ourselves to reason that, for example, gay marriage might not be a completely bad thing. And maybe we’re taking that beyond individual thought and getting things organized to convince others of the same thing. I admit to the former – but have not yet wandered into the latter, beyond a few blog posts.
My point is it’s really easy to see faults in others and genially overlook the same faults in ourselves.
Here’s the ah-hah moment in 1 Samuel 15 verses 22-23:

And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offering and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou has rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

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