Partial Obedience is Disobedience
Does the Lord take pleasure in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord? Look: to obey is better than sacrifice, to pay attention is better than the fat of rams. 1 Samuel 15:22
Saul had been given one simple task; He was to completely annihilate the Amalekites. God had spoken to him through the prophet Samuel that he was to spare nothing. He was to eliminate the men, women, children, infants, oxen, sheep, camels and donkeys. When it came down to it however, Saul was only partially obedient. When he defeated the Amalekites, instead of being completely obedient to God, Saul spared Agag the king, as well as the best cattle and choice animals, they were not willing to destroy the worthless and unwanted things.
Samuel confronted Saul, and Saul answered his confrontation with the statement "I did obey the Lord!" But what Saul didn't understand, is that his obedience was conditional, and as a result of conditional obedience, Saul was rejected as king. Saul's obedience was based on pride, he was proud of what he rounded up, and he even tried to make excuses saying that he wanted to "save these things in order to sacrifice the best to God."
Disobedience is a revelation of a rebellious heart. I know I myself, am guilty of conditional obedience. Many times, we, like Saul don't understand obedience. Obedience is black and white, there is no gray area. I can say to God, "I will obey you as long as you don't take me out of my comfort zone", but complete obedience is on God's terms, not ours. We can make excuses, but as we see in Scripture, there is nothing more important in God's eyes. Where are you today? Will you join me in asking the Lord to examine our hearts to convict us in areas of disobedience? Spend some time in prayer with Him today pledging complete obedience.
Lord, I want to bring delight to your heart through 100 percent obedience. Help me Lord to know the areas of my life where I have been prideful, and rebellious, and only obedient for my own gain. Help me to live a life that is completely dedicated to you and only you, with a kingdom perspective, and eyes on the cross. Though I'm a sinner, I thank you for the cross and that I am made new because of the blood of Jesus. I love you Lord, Amen.
Spend some time in prayer this week, asking God to show you areas of your life where you are living in disobedience. Meditate on Deuteronomy 6:4-9 this week.