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Mar11FriMarch 11, 2016Fearing the Lord means we obey the word of the Lord but how many Christians are actually following through on this. Many have convinced themselves that they are obeying God but yet there are many areas such as tithing, daily devotions, trusting, believing just to name a few where they have not surrendered completely to God. So we have to ask how many bleating sheep are out back? What you ask? Saul was anointed King and was given orders to carry out. 1 Samuel 15 “Samuel said to Saul, “I am the one the Lord sent to anoint you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the Lord. 2 This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. 3 Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.” 7 Then Saul attacked the Amalekites all the way from Havilah to Shur, near the eastern border of Egypt. 8 He took Agag king of the Amalekites alive, and all his people he totally destroyed with the sword. 9 But Saul and the army spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and lambs—everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.”So how does this relate to us today, as we do not go around destroying people? 2 Corinthians 10:3 “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” We have been commanded to be a holy people and to keep His commands. 1 John 2:3 “We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. 4 Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.”So back to King Saul. He was given an order but he changed it and did what he wanted to do. By doing that he disobeyed God as he was unwilling to carry out the order. Jesus said John 14:15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 21 Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.” Then the response came from God. 1 Samuel 15:10 “Then the word of the Lord came to Samuel: 11 “I regret that I have made Saul king, because he has turned away from me and has not carried out my instructions.” Samuel was angry, and he cried out to the Lord all that night. 12 Early in the morning Samuel got up and went to meet Saul, but he was told, “Saul has gone to Carmel. There he has set up a monument in his own honor and has turned and gone on down to Gilgal. 13 When Samuel reached him, Saul said, “The Lord bless you! I have carried out the Lord’s instructions.” Saul actually believed that he had obeyed the order given to him by God. Many Christians are in the same position as they have convinced themselves that being lukewarm for God is pleasing to God even though Jesus said Revelation 3:16 “So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”Saul had even set up a monument in his own honour. This is not a person who has Galatians 2:20 been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Romans 6:6 “For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin.” We cannot place ourselves above Christ. We must carry our cross. Luke 14:27 “And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”Then the obvious happened. Saul had told Samuel he had carried out the orders yet 14 Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears? What is this lowing of cattle that I hear?” Then the excuses came out. How many Christians have tried to do this before God? 15 Saul answered, “The soldiers brought them from the Amalekites; they spared the best of the sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the Lord your God, but we totally destroyed the rest.” Amazingly Saul thought he could put one over on God by becoming very religious in his disobedience. He then is told 17 Samuel said, “Although you were once small in your own eyes, did you not become the head of the tribes of Israel? The Lord anointed you king over Israel. 18 And he sent you on a mission, saying, ‘Go and completely destroy those wicked people, the Amalekites; wage war against them until you have wiped them out.’ 19 Why did you not obey the Lord? Why did you pounce on the plunder and do evil in the eyes of the Lord?” 20 “But I did obey the Lord,” Saul said. “I went on the mission the Lord assigned me. I completely destroyed the Amalekites and brought back Agag their king. 21 The soldiers took sheep and cattle from the plunder, the best of what was devoted to God, in order to sacrifice them to the Lord your God at Gilgal.” 22 But Samuel replied: “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king.” Even as Samuel spoke to Saul he still tried to convince him that he did obey. Are you still trying to convince God you are obeying above the sound of bleating sheep?