May 2

Written by Bill Grandi on May 2nd, 2019

My title this morning is Blatant Disobedience vs Whole-Hearted Obedience.

I had it in mind to do another devotion this morning but God “arrested” that thought by putting another one its place.

One of the saddest stories in the OT is found in I Samuel 15. It’s the story of Saul’s disobedience and subsequent rejection by God as king.  He is told to battle the Amelekites and destroy everything. E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G! Instead, he spares the king and spares the best sheep, oxen, fattened calves and lambs. Then he lies to Samuel and blames the people for the “spared” animals. Twice he blames them! To all of this Samuel says, “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to listen than the fat of rams.” (15:22-23)

As if to make a point, I was reading Psalm 40 and came across these words: “In sacrifice and offering you have not delighted, but you have given me an open ear. Burnt offering and sin offering you have not required. Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come; in the scroll of the book it is written of me: I delight to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart.’ “  (40:6-8)

I started giving this devotion the title Partial Obedience vs Whole-hearted Obedience, but then began wondering: Can there be partial obedience? Is there such a thing? Actually, no. Disobedience of any measure is still disobedience. Saul’s disobedience was just that: disobedience. What was he going to do with Agag? And while it may seem virtuous to spare the best of the animals, it was a blatant disregard for God’s mandate. Everything must go!!

“Father, please give me a heart abandoned to you and fully obedient. Completely compliant. All in. Help me not to think I can substitute good works or outward compliance for an inward obedience.”

 

5 Comments so far ↓

  1. Thanks, Bill, for this reminder to once again, submit my full will and being to God. Yes, Lord, I want to obey You!
    Blessings!

  2. Ryan S. says:

    Great thought on partial disobedience… There is definitely a line… and to cross it makes me disobedient. I can’t simply put my toe on the other side of the line and think that I have complied.

    Great thoughts, Bill, convicting, but great thoughts.

  3. floyd says:

    Yep. We like to think in terms of grey, but it’s not. It’s almost always black and white. It’s our justification habit that can’t see or act clearly.