God Chooses Saul
Verses 2, 3 – Saul looked impressive – seemingly good leadership material according to human perception. To own many donkeys was a sign of wealth, and to lose them was a disaster. This encounter with Samuel was no ordinary encounter. Often we think events just happen, but as in this story about Saul, God will use common occurrences to lead us where He wants. No opportunity is wasted.
Verse 6 – The city where the servant said the prophet (or seer) lived was probably Ramah, where Samuel moved after the Philistine battle near Shiloh (7:17). Saul’s lack of knowledge about Samuel showed his ignorance of spiritual matters. Saul just wanted to find the donkeys.
Verses 7, 8 – Saul felt it inappropriate to approach the man of God without a gift. Or he may have thought the prophet would ask for a reward for telling him where the donkeys were.
Verse 9 – The text clarifies that the term “prophet” eventually replaced “seer” but the terms describe the same office.
Verse 13 – Blessing the sacrifice was part of Samuel’s priestly role.
Verse 21 – Saul’s outburst reveals a problem he would face repeatedly – feeling inferior. Everything Saul did was selfish because he was worried about himself. For example, Saul said his clan was “the least” in the smallest tribe in Israel, but in verse 9:1, it says his father was a “man of standing.” Although Saul had been called by God and had a mission in life, he struggled constantly with jealousy, insecurity, arrogance, impulsiveness, and deceit. He never committed wholeheartedly to God.