1 Samuel 15

Saul destroys Amalek except for king Agag 1
Samuel goes to Saul who makes excuses 12
Saul is rejected by the Lord 17
Samuel kills Agag and goes away from Saul never to return 32
 1 ¶ Samuel also said unto Saul, The LORD sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the LORD.
.2  Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt.
 3  Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
 4  And Saul gathered the people together, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah.
  1 - Hearken An old word meaning listen and take seriously implying obedience.
  2 - I remember ex1708.
  3 - Utterly destroy Or "you" plural, do this fulfilling the prediction of Balaam nu2420. Those hearkening were to obey.
  3 - Smite Amalek Here the command was in the second person (singular) thus a divine order through the prophet to Saul personally. Moses married into after he fled from Egypt.
  4 - Telaim No information leads to an idea of the location of this city.
 5  And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley.
 6  And Saul said unto the Kenites, Go, depart, get you down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them: for ye shewed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.
.7  And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt.
  5 - Amalek The Amalekites were descendants of Esau ge3612.
  6 - Kenites Probably the same as the Midianites nu1029, jg0116. The families may have been united. They were descendants of Abraham through his marriage to Keturah ex0216. The family accompanied the children of Israel to the land of promise nu1029-32.
  7 - Havilah Location unknown. Some think it may have been among sand dunes in Egypt nu3405.
.8  And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword.
.9  But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.
  8 - Agag Not the same king who attacked Israel many years before. The name may have been a title like "Pharaoh."
 10 ¶ Then came the word of the LORD unto Samuel, saying,
.11  It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the LORD all night.
  10 - Lord ... Samuel It grieved Samuel for his anointing of Saul.
  11 - Cried Spoke out or wept.
.12  And when Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning, it was told Samuel, saying, Saul came to Carmel, and, behold, he set him up a place, and is gone about, and passed on, and gone down to Gilgal.
 13  And Samuel came to Saul: and Saul said unto him, Blessed be thou of the LORD: I have performed the commandment of the LORD.
.14  And Samuel said, What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?
 15  And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.
 16  Then Samuel said unto Saul, Stay, and I will tell thee what the LORD hath said to me this night. And he said unto him, Say on.
  14, 15 I have performed Not really. The sound of the animals spoke clearly.
  15 - The people spared This was partly true v9.
Comments begin below

.17  And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed thee king over Israel?
 18  And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed.
.19  Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?

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  17 - When thou wast little "A literal translation of the Hebrew of v.17 permits either the rendering, "Though [or when] you [were] little in your own sight, [were] you not [made] head of the tribes of Israel?' Or 'Though you [are] little in your own sight, [are] you not head of the tribes of Israel?'
   "In the Hebrew text the verbs are implied rather than expressed, and translation into English requires that they be supplied.
   "Assuming that Samuel here refers to a past experience, the KJV uses the past tense, whereas the RSV and other modern translations consider that he is thinking of Saul's statement of v15 and so addresses him in terms of the present. The KJV understands Samuel to be drawing a contrast between Saul's expressed subordination to the will of the people (v15), a false humility, and his divine appointment as their leader (v17).
   "The phrase, 'the Lord anointed thee king over Israel,' appears to be simply a repetition of the preceding statement, 'Wast thou ... head...' Furthermore Saul had accounted for his conduct on the basis that it was "the people" who had kept "the best" of the spoils -- implying that he had not been able to restrain them (v15).
   "According to the KJV, Samuel challenged Saul's evasion of responsibility-- "you are little in your own eyes,' that is, unable to exercise effective control over your man-- with a solemn affirmation that he was their leader.... [See verses 17-19]. ...
   'The fact that God had given him another heart (1 Sam 10:9) did not mean that Saul could not return to his old manner of life if he so desired." (SDA Bible Commentary) 
.20  And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites.
 21  But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal.
.22  And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings 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.
.23  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.
  22 - Samuel said An awesome principle. ps05116, is0111, ho0606, mi0606.
  22 - To obey is better ... This part of the verse I memorized as a child or youth. Think about the meaning. Also notice that the two verses are in a poetic, parallel form.
  23 - Rebellion How is it equivalent to witchcraft? To seek wisdom from the occult the forces inspired by Satan is to offend the true God. Saul would very soon do just that 1sa2807.
  23 - Because thou hast rejected Before we knew Him, Jesus Christ provided for our salvation ro0508, ro0829. He has given everyone a sample of faith ro1203. Only when a person rejects the Holy Spirit who represents Him, does He sadly reject him. Only when we choose rebellion does He honor that decision.
 24 ¶ And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.
 25  Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD.
 26  And Samuel said unto Saul, I will not return with thee: for thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, and the LORD hath rejected thee from being king over Israel.
 27  And as Samuel turned about to go away, he laid hold upon the skirt of his mantle, and it rent.
.28  And Samuel said unto him, The LORD hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou.
.29  And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.
  24 - I have sinned This was not his position a minute or so before v19. This was not true heart repentance but sorrow for the consequences 2co0709.
  25 - Hath given For Saul, it was too late. See je0716, je1114, je1410.
 30  Then he said, I have sinned: yet honour me now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and before Israel, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD thy God.
 31  So Samuel turned again after Saul; and Saul worshipped the LORD.
  Samuel turned Although Saul's loss of the kingdom was beyond change, the prophet may have realized that he could still rescue his personal salvation. In any case, Samuel would leave no excuse.
.32 ¶ Then said Samuel, Bring ye hither to me Agag the king of the Amalekites. And Agag came unto him delicately. And Agag said, Surely the bitterness of death is past.
 33  And Samuel said, As thy sword hath made women childless, so shall thy mother be childless among women. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the LORD in Gilgal.
.34  Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul.
 35  And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.
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