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CHAPTER 13 Jul. 1 
Saul Rebuked by Samuel
Saul reigned a year, and when he had reigned two years over Israel 2Saul chose three thousand men of Israel, of which two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and in the Mount of Bethel, and one thousand were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin, and the rest of the people he sent back to their tents. 3Jonathan attacked the garrison of the Philistines in Geba, and the Philistines heard of it. Saul blew the trumpet throughout all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear! 4All Israel heard that Saul had attacked the garrison of the Philistines, and that Israel had become odious to the Philistines. The people were gathered together to Saul in Gilgal. 5The Philistines assembled themselves to fight with Israel: thirty thousand chariots, six thousand horsemen and people as numerous as the sand which is on the seashore, and they came up and encamped in Michmash, east of Beth Aven. 6When the men of Israel saw that they were in great peril and the people were distressed, they hid themselves in caves, thickets, rocks, coverts and in pits. 7Now some of the Hebrews had gone over the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead, but Saul was still in Gilgal, and all the people followed him trembling. 8He waited seven days, according to the time set by Samuel, but Samuel didn’t come to Gilgal, and the people were scattered from him. 9Saul said, Bring here the burnt offering to me, and the peace offerings. He offered the burnt offering. 10As soon as he had finished offering the burnt offering Samuel came, and Saul went out to meet him, to greet him. 11Samuel said, What have you done? Saul said, When I saw that the people were scattered from me and that you didn’t come within the days appointed, and that the Philistines assembled at Michmash, 12I thought ‘Now the Philistines will come down on me to Gilgal, and I haven’t entreated the favour of Yahweh’. I forced myself therefore, and offered the burnt offering. 13Samuel said to Saul, You have done foolishly. You have not kept the commandment of Yahweh your God which He commanded you; for now Yahweh would have established your kingdom in Israel forever. 14But now your kingdom shall not continue. Yahweh has sought for Himself a man after His own heart, and Yahweh has appointed him to be prince over His people, because you have not kept what Yahweh commanded you. 15Samuel arose and went from Gilgal to Gibeah of Benjamin. Saul numbered the people who were present with him, about six hundred men.

Israel without Weapons
16Saul and Jonathan his son and the people who were with them stayed in Geba of Benjamin, but the Philistines encamped in Michmash. 17Raiders came out of the camp of the Philistines in three companies: one company turned towards Ophrah in the land of Shual; 18another company turned towards Beth Horon, and another company turned towards the border land overlooking the valley of Zeboim facing the wilderness. 19Now there was no smith to be found throughout all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears. 20All the Israelites went down to the Philistines to have their ploughshares, mattocks, axes and sickles sharpened. 21The price was two thirds of a shekel to sharpen a mattock and a ploughshare, and one third for the forks and axes, and to set the goads. 22So on the day of battle no soldier had either sword or spear among the people who were with Saul and Jonathan; only Saul and Jonathan his son had swords and spears. 23The garrison of the Philistines went out to the pass of Michmash.


13:9 Are we going to be like those Israelites who offered a peace offering, when actually they were not at peace with God at all (see too  2 Kings 16:13; Prov. 7:14; Am. 5:22)? This is a thought worth bearing in mind as we approach the breaking of bread service.
13:13 Yahweh would have established your kingdom in Israel forever – God sets up amazing potentials for people, and yet they fail to achieve them. It must be so tragic for God, seeing all the wasted potentials of humanity. And yet this would explain His enthusiasm to confirm us in our attempts to rise up to the potentials He has enabled for us. God’s punishment of Saul may appear severe, but Saul’s actions obviously embodied a large amount of unspirituality which was beneath the surface.
13:14 A man after His own heart- The God whose ways are above our ways as far as Heaven is above earth can say that David was of the same mind as Himself. This shows the extent of God’s humility, His enthusiasm to connect with man, and His eagerness to count our feeble spiritual mindedness for far more than it really is of itself.