The difference between God approved men and Those who Failed God’s test of approval is usually very little.
There wasn’t too much between Betrayer Judas and Denier Peter.
There wasn’t too much between Sacrificer Abel and Murderer Cain.
There wasn’t too much between Supplanter Jacob and Profane Esau.
What may make all the difference is something too small for the physical eyes to observe, A heart reality and Posture that only God often notices.
The same is true of Political Saul and Shepherd David.
Both were Choosen by God into Leadership.
Both Were mentored by The Prophet Samuel.
Both made mistakes in their careers and ministries.
But while Political Saul was remembered for his witchcraft and Rebellion, Shepherd David is forever known as the King whose Government symbolized Christ’s eternal Rule!
A closer look at Saul’s Career reveals very interesting facts.
This is a man who was even too shy to accept his Kingship after he was anointed By Samuel.
He hid on the day of his Coronation and appeared to be very meek and humble, Perhaps he was just a pretender politician but Power and Influence eventually exposed his real heart disease which God wasn’t Blind to anyway.
Unlike Shepherd David who “Arrogantly” confronted Goliath, Political Saul seemed slow to have a firm grip on the throne but when he eventually Sat comfortably, His False Humility was exposed.
Nothing Exposed Saul’s political heart like the presence and Absence of People.
His major test was given when God instructed him to anhilate the Amelekites.
Amongst the many lame excuses for his partial obedience was the Phrase :
“…..But I have obeyed the Lord,”……..
And it was only WHEN MY TROOPS DEMANDED IT that I let THEM KEEP the BEST of the sheep and oxen and loot to sacrifice to the Lord.”(1 Sam 15:20-21)
Apparently, Saul’s political heart was rooted in his respect for the PEOPLE over the God who Appointed Him leader over His Flock.
And after Samuel pronounced God’s “Harsh Punishment” to the Political Saul, His chief Request was once again determined by “The People”
“………I have sinned; but oh, at least HONOR ME BEFORE THE LEADERS and BEFORE MY PEOPLE by going with me to worship the Lord your God.”(1 Sam 15:30)
Interestingly, that was Saul’s second failure but the first was also for similar reasons.
……. but Samuel said, “What is this you have done?”Saul replied, “I saw my MEN SCATTERING from me, and you didn’t arrive when you said you would, and the Philistines are at Micmash ready for battle.(1 Sam13:11)
Saul’s undoing was that He loved the People at the expense of His Lord. Saul became a Politician, A “Democrat”, A Man Pleaser, A servant of Men at the expense of His Service to God.
Shepherd David was loved by Many. Infact the women sang his praises after he conquered Goliath……”Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands!”(1 Samuel 18:7)
Shepherd David was loved by the People and although he wasn’t Politically intelligent, His leadership was accepted by Many.
……. Everybody, both the people in general and Saul’s servants, approved of and admired David’s leadership.(1Sam 18:5)
While Political Saul Chased the People’s favor even if it meant disobeying God, Shepherd David Obtained men’s favor by Pleasing the Lord.
David’s Reign was characterized by much loyalty from His mighty men. And for most part of his “Tenure” the people were solidly behind him. But that wasn’t the beginning of His story.
Shepherd David was actually a rejected stone.
Not even His family counted him worthy for the Throne.
Infact Jesse his father almost forgot he had a son in the wilderness when Samuel came visiting.
He didn’t begin as a People’s favorite, He didn’t begin as a Man loved by Men, He didn’t begin as Cult Hero, His beginning was spent in Becoming God’s favourite Vessel! And when that was completed, He became irresistible to Men.
The scriptural description of David Says it all: …He’s a man whose heart beats to my heart, a man who will do what I tell him.” (Acts 13:22)
His GOOD HEART made him a GOOD SHEPHERD;he guided the people wisely and well.(Psalm 78:72)
So “Political Saul” gained men, Lost God and lost the Kingdom.
“Shepherd David” Gained God, Gained the People and Gained the Kingdom.
The biggest test in life and ministry will be concerning “The People”
Will you trade God’s approval for the People’s Praise, Or will you rather Please God even if it means Men will Reject you.
Who will you rather Be?
POLITICAL SAUL or SHEPHERD DAVID?