Tag Archives: King Saul

You snooze, You lose

To snooze is to have a catnap or kip. It is usually momentary that may just make one lose a golden opportunity which may never be possible to recoup. The magnitude of the loss may be out of tune with the individual’s expectation. If one had remained watchful or always expectant of a worthy cause, to lose would be very rare. Even if one had achieved success, it is still another thing to pay candid attention to maintaining the standard already reached while there could still be more of future opportunities. Vigilance, they say, is the price of liberty.

Nehemiah knew his homeland was in distress and wished he could return to Jerusalem to effect the needed transformation. In-spite-of his heavy heart over the situation in Jerusalem, he continued to work diligently in the service of King Artaxerxes but clearly focused on getting an opportunity to go back to Jerusalem to rebuild the walls. Under this obsession, the king noticed the change in his countenance for Nehemiah was on fasting and prayer mode. It paid off for the king sponsored his return to Jerusalem to rebuild the Walls round Jerusalem. On arrival, Nehemiah undertook to do need analysis, mapped out strategies for accomplishing the goal of his mission and kept strictly focused before showing up to the public. Those who worked with him never snoozed and armed themselves to the teeth, to accomplish the task in fifty-two days. The result was obvious. Adversaries, in the persons of Sanballat, Tobias, the Arabians, the Ammonites, and the Ashdodites conspired against the work being done. Nehemiah 4: 1-23

King Saul snoozed as he effected an agenda alien to God’s instruction requiring him to wipe out the Amalekites. In consequence, he lost the King’s dynasty that God promised him. 1 Sam 15:1-35. He lost his sanity for the rest of his life during which he fruitlessly pursued the life of David who eventually became the king over the twelve tribes of Israel.

Col. Muammar Gaddafi (June 7, 1942 – Oct 20, 2011) ruled Libya for 42 years  49 days. He was the longest ruling non-royal ruler from 1900 till he died (Wikipedia.org). For his failing to quit when the ovation was loudest, he was killed as if he did nothing good to his country before the Arab spring. President Robert Mugabe was adjudged to have deviated from his revolutionary ideas and ideals and was ‘respectfully’ eased out of power recently.

From other angles, a judge that fails to uphold justice and equity will ever remain a snoozing judge and would in the end lose out from the revered seat of justice as well as in the case of a politician. However celebrated he or she may be, up to the time the keg of the gun powder of his sexual harassment explodes, such a politician will then come to realize that he/she had snoozed and should lose out in disgrace. An African proverb says, “Pounded yam of twenty years can still be too hot for the hand to touch”. In the present US congress (Senate and the House) the spate of accusation of sexual misconduct is no more news. We have witnessed series of accusations and denials leading to loss of vital election, abrupt resignation to preempt formal call for withdrawal or going under the hammer of being found guilty of having violated the ethical rules of the Congress. This idea is relevant to individual relationship to self and others as well as in intranational and international relations.

Failure to resolve to carry out the purpose for which one had set out to achieve amounts to snoozing. Surely, losing out is not negotiable.

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BROODING IS COUNTER-PRODUCTIVE

Brooing over anything means living or acting in self-pity. To avoid brooding over past mistakes or continuing to blame self for wrong acts of the past , try to avoid taking rash decisions , “look before you leap” or be quick to hear but slow to react so as to prevent doing what one would regret later on. The life of Cain and Abel epitomized the harmful effect of brooding over a bad situation in which there was no thought given to reconciling with God. God has always been gracious with man.  The two brothers individually made sacrifice to God. Cain’s offering was not honored by God whereas Abel’s own was well received by God.  Since Cain’s offering was rejected because of the unworthy items he offered, he became obsessed with anger and envy for Abel. He seized the opportunity of being with each other alone on the field to kill Abel. So Cain became the first recorded felon or a murderer in the history of mankind. If Cain had not resorted to unholy anger, he would have chosen the path of reconciliation, believably, he would have gotten a reprieve rather than eternal damnation. Genesis 4: 3-11.

An unholy anger can always be the cause of brooding in view of action taken to wrong another person or other persons. Whereas, if the person had approached the matter with deep-rooted positive thinking one would not have arrived at self-pity. A situation that can lead to self-pity is like when a center-forward player in a soccer final match where gold cup is at stake allowed the spur of the moment to abandon  his sure goal in the offing to be derailed by a foul in a goal-mouth struggle. He abandoned the code of conduct and reacted his own way thereby losing the winning goal just as the final whistle ended the match. There is no way the wasted goal will not continue to haunt the psyche of the person who deprived his team from winning a glorious battle.

King Saul was full of self-pity over his usurpation of Prophet Samuel ‘s divine prophetic role without sense of remorse. Perhaps , if he was remorseful he would not have lost the promise of zoning the kingship dynasty to his lineage forever. It is believed that Saul knew how the compassion of God had been so great over the children of Israel, Isaac and Abraham, for God’s compassion on Saul was great to the extent of choosing him from a small tribe in Israel? He knows HIS children’s frailty more than they can ever know Him. It was a known fact that the whole of Israel had always been sinning but once they perform sin offering they had always gotten the  needed forgiveness. Even, when they sinned in the wilderness, Moses interceded for them and God did not wipe them out as He wanted to do. God as Yahweh to the children of Father Abraham has all the time been ready to forgive anyone born of a woman.

In political arena blunder committed can occasion brooding over failed strategy. In another vein, one that loses in a demodratic free and fair election can choose to brood over the failure. On the contrary, the loser is enjoined to go back to the drawing board to scan and research the cause of the failure. A war-general who always takes stock of successes and failures that were his lot stands the  chance of staying above adversaries because of his positive outlook to life. If Peter were to continue brooding over his breach of trust, remember, he told Jesus he would not deny Him even when Jesus  said Peter would deny Him thrice before the cok crowed Matthew 26: 34 “Jesussaid unto him, Verily I say unto thee,That this night, before the cock crow,thou shall deny me thrice”. It did happen and he went out of the Chief Priest vicinity and wept bitterly and was later restored. John 21: 15-17 says : “So when they had dined , Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith  unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him,  Feed my sheep”. (KJV)

Only God is sinless and had given us his only begotten Son to be the sacrificial lamb for our forgiveness even unto eternity. We do not need to continue carrying our woes and sorrows without letting it go. Hand all challenges to Christ Jesus and He will see us through.

Integrity

One with integrity can rise from prison to palace. Integrity is a word that denotes a set of character or behavior pattern or an adorable constant characteristic in a person that conforms with what the Lord demands from human beings in our daily living. The holiness of god can be translated to mean integrity. God’s “Yea is Yea and Nay is Nay”. HE does not blow hot and cold at the same time. A person to be known to have integrity must be able to say or do something and stand by it, even it brings sorrow and anguish but at last one would be vindicated. Thus, one canexplain as inviolable trith that cannot be decicrated.

Let us look at the sweet-sour life of Samson that was born with special anointing to combat and contain the ravaging Philistines. He started well.He later lost focus and was no more able to adhere to the tenets of theanointing upon him even inspite of his parents’ admonition. Judges 13 talked about his miraculous birth while chapters 14-16 how he lost his integrity which was the hallmark of his anointing. Man is prone to sinning but confessing and asking God to return him to the path of righteousness in order to get him saved from eternal damnation.The last minuterequest he made to God gave the anointed power to avenge his ordeal by killing The man  more at death than he did  in his early life. “The man of integrity  walks securely, but he who takes crooked paths will be found out”. Proverbs 10: 9.

The life of David is such that his becoming king was based on what God ad seen in his heart and not on his physical attributes. to choose who to anoint king after KIng Saul. God Prophet Samuel who wanted to use physical for choosing the king until young was brought from the wilderness where he was tendering the flock. 1 Chronicles 29:17 says “I know my God,that you test the heart and are pleased with integrity” Joseph’s journey to Egypt and from prison to palace agreed with what the bible recorded. He showed he was a man of integrity by refusing to blot his inviolable character of fearing the Lord and to stand for truth and for honorable character. He refused to sleep with his master’s wife. It could have ruined his destiny of becoming an alien Prime Minister  of Egypt. In Psalm 84:11, the psalmist wrote, “The Lord God is a sun and shield,the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless”. It is more or less an epitaph on the life of Joseph in Egypt.

Integrity sustained the life of David long before he became king, especially when he was on the run for dear life. king Saul took 3000 men from the cream of his soldiers to search, find and kill David. In a cave located in the Wilderness of Engedi saw King Saul sleeping defenceless in the midst of his bodyguards who were also fast asleep. Ordinarily, he had every reason to strike King Saul to death but the fear of the Lord prevented him from killing the God’s anointed. he regarded such as most heinous sin. Were he to have seized the possibly rare opportunity kill King Saul his own soldiers would have unconsciously imbibed the culture of killing the incumbent in order to ascend to the throne. He would have unconsciously taught them that such was the best option as road to the throne 1Sam 24. In 1Sam 26: 22-24, we saw David’s integrity at its best. David replied, “Here is the King’s spear!; Let one of your servants cross over and get it.The lord rewards each man for his integrity and loyalty.Even though today the Lord delivered you into my hand, I was not willing to extend my hand against the Lord’s anointed one. In the same way I valued your life this day, may the Lord value my life and deliver me from all dangers”.

Known biblical reference pointed to Achan as one without integrity and it led to Israel’s defeat in the hand of a small town called Ai, whereas with God on the side of Israel, they destroyed  Jericho (that was a strongly fortified city) with songs of praises and dancing round it for seven days . On the last day, final action was taken in obedience to God and the Walls of Jericho fell. It is obvious that one with integrity can rise from grass to grace.