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Discussion Forum : General Topics : Question on 1 Sam. 10 and 13

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dolfan
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Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1632
Alabama

 Question on 1 Sam. 10 and 13

When Samuel first meets Saul and then advises Saul that God has chosen him as king, he gives Saul a couple of immediate signs that Saul will encounter to confirm to Saul that Samuel's words are true, and then he tells Saul to go to Gilgal and wait 7 days there for Samuel, who would arrive then with further instructions.

We don't read anything again about Gilgal until Saul had already reigned for a time and even defeated the Ammonites in 1 Sam 11, and established a garrison at Gibeah with Jonathan commanding it. Only when Israel faces an overwhelming Philistine army does the matter of going and waiting at Gilgal resurface.

In 1 Sam 13 we see the now infamous moment of Saul's failure by waiting 7 days at Gilgal as he was told, but taking matters into his own hands presumptuously when Samuel failed to do as he himself had instructed.

My question is only this: What was Samuel's instruction in chapter 10, an immediate direction to be obeyed at that time(?) or a rule for future use? If a rule for future use, why is that not apparent in the language of 1 Sam 10?


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Tim

 2015/5/22 8:38Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7431
Mississippi

 Re: Question on 1 Sam. 10 and 13

Not sure I can answer your question but in reading these chapters one does see that Saul understood in chapter 13:8 that he was to wait even though the meaning of this is unclear to the reader.

Why Samuel asked Saul to wait is not known either unless it was to test Saul, his obedience. At the beginning he was a humble man but as time progressed he moved away from that - to the point where God rejected him from being king. I suspect God wanted to reveal to Samuel what resided in the heart of Saul by giving this command.

My surmising and understanding.

Sandra


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Sandra Miller

 2015/5/26 14:46Profile









 Re:

Hmm. I've been dwelling on the chapters of Samuel. Here is my two cents.

1 Sam. 10:8 seem to point that Saul was to wait. (MEV) “Then you will go down before me to Gilgal. And listen, I will be coming down to you, in order to offer burnt offerings, and to offer sacrifices of peace offerings. Seven days you will wait, until I come to you. Then I will make known to you what you will do.”

Quote:
dolfan/Tim asked: My question is only this: What was Samuel's instruction in chapter 10, an immediate direction to be obeyed at that time(?) or a rule for future use? If a rule for future use, why is that not apparent in the language of 1 Sam 10?



I think the answer is a bit more all encompassing than 'at a time or future use' instead I think Samuel's directions to Saul were for life.

The torah teaches Shema, love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, strength, etc. You can see the parallel with the words of Samuel in 1 Sam. 12:20, 24 (vs. 20 'serve the Lord with all your heart', vs. 24 'serve Him in truth with all your heart). The Shema encompasses all areas of our lives and with Samuel's application of the Shema you might be able to see how Saul missed the mark.

That's my take. That Saul, instead of focusing on God's plan and direction for things, decided to put the power in his selfish hands. This was then contrasted with David's patience on God's timing to rise David up as king.

I hope it helps.

P.S. I also think Joshua is a good example to how to lead, Joshua inquired of the Lord, time after time.

 2015/5/26 16:21
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5242
NC, USA

 Re:

I am going to say something pretty outrageous but here goes. I think that God never wanted Saul to be king( seems pretty obvious) so he was looking for the smallest offense to get him out of there. I am not saying this is wrong of course because God can do what He wants.

But Saul gave what I thought was a reasonable explanation of his actions at Gilgal in Ch 13. David did much worse than Saul (at least at this stage in sauls career) but Saul gets hammered pretty good because of this one episode.

I find it interesting that in Ch 10 Saul is told that whatever seems right to him to do he should do it, but in Ch 13 when he does what seems right to him he gets his kingdom taken away.

Like I said, it appears God wanted Saul out.


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Todd

 2015/5/26 17:51Profile
dolfan
Member



Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1632
Alabama

 Re:

TMK

I have pondered on it some too. Not precisely where you are but this is not an easy peasy lesson.

Samuel did not meet Saul's expectation, nor did Samuel keep his word.
What was Saul's error? Was it not presumptuousness when God's man failed to do as he had said? Is there not a tendency in Saul to second guess the man of God at his first opportunity? Is it a form of cynicism in Saul where Samuel is concerned? Is that cynicism not the antithesis of David's treatment of Saul way later? Was this cynicism what so repulsed God that He would remove Saul? This is worth examining.

David, OTOH, was confident about God. Against Goliath. When he fled to Achish. Read Psalm 59, for example. Saul prophesied when the Spirit was upon him, but these early Psalms of David on the run -- David trying to outwait Saul because he honored God vs Saul not overwaiting Samuel because Saul wanted an answer that evidently was not due to honor -- the early Psalms of David show a heart that loved Jehovah and would wait in Him.

This is the only way God's actions make any sense to me, here, in ch 13.

I look at Samuel and see a man of flaws. He was a horrible father. He did not confront the wrong done by his own sons, but when his failure played a part in Saul's failure --- and, it did --- Samuel appeared to have never checked up.

Maybe the narrative of 1 Samuel simply does not care about these facts. Maybe they are just beside the point.


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Tim

 2015/5/26 22:14Profile









 Re:

Quote:
Tim said: nor did Samuel keep his word



I disagree. Saul just finished an offering to the Lord and Samuel got there. (1 Sam. 13:7-11) In addition Samuel's words were 'Seven days you will wait, until I come to you.' (1 Sam. 10:8) Note 'until' I come to you. Finally, seven days wasn't a rigid timeline instead it was a guideline of waiting. I say this because of the difference between Greek/Hebrew logic.

Quote:
Tim said: Maybe the narrative of 1 Samuel simply does not care about these facts. Maybe they are just beside the point.



This brings me back to pointing you to a theological idea called Hebrew/Greek logic. In short, Greeks were systematic, people who think like the Greek would create something we know today as 'systematic theology'. It's not wrong, just different than our Hebrew/Jewish roots. For Hebrew's way of thinking their emphasis wasn't structure, it was obedience. For a breakdown of these ideas checkout this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gU6aTdjgKOk

It looks like the publisher has other videos on similar ideas but I don't have the time to review them all. I'd suggest checking them out.

Hebrew/eastern/block/circular logic are all similar.

Greek/western/step/systematic logic are all similar.

Both groups are different ways to frame and speak of things.

P.S. Looks like there is an article on SI about this by Robert Wurtz II. http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/articles/index.php?view=article&aid=3324

P.P.S. I was trying to find a better teaching regarding all of this Block/Step logic. Jeff Benner has better videos.

One starting point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nR5GQ--YNpI

Another starting point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNN3szSv9lA

All videos: https://www.youtube.com/user/ancienthebreworg/videos

 2015/5/27 9:35
dolfan
Member



Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1632
Alabama

 Re:

My goal is not to blame Samuel for Saul's failures.

But, "He waited seven days, the time appointed by Samuel. But Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and the people were scattering from him..." v. 8.

IDK why Samuel failed to show. The narrative seems not to care. Saul cared. Had Samuel shown up on time perhaps Saul would not have sinned at all at Gilgal. Who knows?

The truth is Samuel was flawed. The truth is also that the biblical text seems mostly unconcerned with it. Samuel serves his purpose in God's plan and quietly leaves the scene. What Samuel DOES accomplish inside the text is as Saul's foil until David ascends toward kingship, whereupon David becomes Saul's foil. Samuel is useful to expose the inner disregard that Saul has for God. Samuel's failure exacerbates this in Saul.


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Tim

 2015/5/27 13:36Profile









 Re:

Quote:
Tim said: IDK why Samuel failed to show. The narrative seems not to care. Saul cared. Had Samuel shown up on time perhaps Saul would not have sinned at all at Gilgal. Who knows?



It's clear in the text that Samuel, the chosen prophet/priest of God, did the correct thing. There is no indication that Samuel did anything wrong based on the surrounding scriptures, if you feel there is a scripture, I'd encourage you to cite it.

Quote:
Tim said: Samuel is useful to expose the inner disregard that Saul has for God. Samuel's failure exacerbates this in Saul.



I don't see how you can view this situation as a failure of Samuel in any way. Samuel was the one to atone for the sins of the people and as prophet give direction to the people as well. Saul's impatience to act as priest was a grave sin, especially under the Old Covenant.

Even though scripture may imply that Samuel was 'late' that isn't directly spoken of. Also, 1 Sam. 13:8-10, namely vs 10 states 'As soon as he [Saul] finished... Samuel came' which looks like to me that Samuel didn't come a different day, just the same day and not early enough for hasty Saul.

But even if Samuel was late, the Torah/Shema still stands, as Samuel applies it for Saul. "Wait until I arrive" (1 Sam. 10:8).

Samuel, priest/prophet, was to give direction to God's people and new king. If that direction was delayed, then our plans delay, as we are to wait upon the Lord, not the other way around. We aren't to grasp for power instead we are to cast all our thoughts, desires, ideas upon Him and wait until He shows us the way.

 2015/5/27 16:06
dolfan
Member



Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1632
Alabama

 Re:

LMH, you are reading into my thoughts what is not there.

Samuel is not a villain. He is the prophet and the priest and the judge. But, he is not infallible. The Scripture does not imply or insinuate that Samuel was late. It says so explicitly. That did not make him culpable for Saul's actions.

Samuel gave Saul instructions on what to do when he would go to Gilgal to inquire of the Lord. Samuel instructed, committed even, to meet Saul within an appointed time. Saul went to Gilgal, and Samuel did not keep the appointment. He was not merely fashionably late. He missed his own target altogether. It was after Samuel failed to appear within the appointed time that Saul sinned, and after Saul sinned, Samuel showed up.

I am not justifying Saul. I am searching out the Word. Two things appear to me in this passage.

1. Samuel was late and had he been on time the text gives us no reason to believe that Saul would have sinned here.

2. Saul's sinfulness within existed regardless of his acts; Saul acted from what I see as cynicism about God (some may say impatience or presumptuousness, and that is true too). Saul never truly believed in his heart that God was who He had said He is. Two of the signs from God described by Samuel in chapter 10 were given to Saul immediately when Samuel told him he was king; this was the third sign -- that at Gilgal, God would meet and direct. Between the end if the early two signs to Saul and ch 13, Saul charges ahead in control, putting fighting forces in place, advancing his son Jonathan even. Time lapsed. Saul whipped some folks. Only, when the time came, and Philistines stood up in real force against him, Saul went to Gilgal and sign number three of God's faithfulness awaited. Saul took matters into his own hands when Samuel was late/delayed/had donkey trouble/lost his sundial charger and track of time/whatever. Saul was unconvinced that God truly selected him and that God was with him and for him, and he tempted God when he jumped ahead of Samuel at Gilgal.

Now, why do I say Saul was cynical? Because this account is tucked tightly in between a brief flyover of Saul the newbie king who NEEDS signs in the first place (Samuel never gave David signs) and the much longer account of Saul's systematic, absolute disbelief in God (paying lip service only when he needed favor) as contrasted to David's long patient, praising, believing heart while he was chased all over the countryside like a fugitive criminal by Saul. David who had no signs to prove God's choice of him, David who had ANTI-signs, if anything, at Saul's hand but whose belief in God endured and recorded for us so many Psalms in that circumstance.

This is all I am saying.


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Tim

 2015/5/27 17:34Profile
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5242
NC, USA

 Re:

Saul is symbolic of self sufficient humanistic man. He served God for his own sake, not Gods. David was the opposite.

I wonder now if Samuel was late on purpose to test Saul. If so it wasn't very nice.


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Todd

 2015/5/27 18:24Profile





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