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I Samuel 15 & 16

A. Saul’s disobedience.

1. The context of chapter 14:47-52:

a. How does the list of Saul’s victories stand in contrast to the history of Saul and Israel after his disobedience as recorded here in chapter 15 (Compare with 16:14 and 17:11)?

 b. In light of I Samuel 8:11, what is the significance of the last phrase of 14:52 – that Saul took all the strong men for his army?

2. Preparations for war with Amalek:

a. Who were the Amalekites (Gfcn. 36:16)? Why is it important to know this in the light of God’s command to Saul (Mai. 1:2-4)? Of whom are the Amalekites a type?

b. When Samuel came to Saul he reminded Saul of what Amalek had done to Israel: what was that (Ex. 17:8-16, Num. 24:20, Duet. 25:17-19)?

c. What was Saul commanded to do in his war with Amalek (15:3, Deut. 25:19) and why?

d. In verse 6 the Kenites are mentioned. Who were they and why did Saul tell them to depart from among the Amalekites (Num. 10:29-32, Judg. 1:16, 4:11, 17)?

3. Saul’s sin:

a. Why did Saul keep alive the best of the cattle and the King? What was his excuse when Samuel came to him?

b. What other sin did he commit according to verse 13?

c. What reason does Samuel give in verse 17 which required obedience on Saul’s part? Do we stand in the same position as Saul with respect to the commands of God (Deut. 4:37-40, 6:20-25)?

d. What commandments did Saul break by his sin (Heid. Cat., Lord’s Day XXXIV, 104, XLIV, 113)?

4. Saul’s punishment:

a. What was Saul’s punishment and in what ways was it different from the punishment of his previous disobedience?

b. Was Saul’s punishment in harmony with his sins? Cf. Deut. 21:18-21.

c. Explain chapter 15:23. How is disobedience like witchcraft and idolatry (cf. Lord’s Day XXXIV, 94, 95, and Rom. 13:1, 2)?

d. What sign did Saul receive in connection with his punishment and what did the sign mean?

5. The result of these things:

a. What reasons did Saul have for wanting Samuel to stay after Samuel had announced his punishment? Were they good reasons?

b. In light of the last question do you think Saul’s sorrow for his sin was sincere (II Cor. 7:10)? Can you find other evidence to support your answer?

c. Explain verses 11 and 29. Do these verses contradict each other? If not. what do they mean?

B. The King of God’s choice.

1. In general:

a. Why was Samuel’s grief for Saul wrong? In this connection, what must our attitude be toward those, even of our own children who manifest themselves as unbelievers (Deut. 21:18-21, II Thess. 3:14, 15)?    .           .                                                                         .

b. What was the lineage of Jesse the father of David? What tribe was he from and what notable ancestors did he have (Ruth 4:18-22, Matt. 1:3-5)? Why was the family of Jesse chosen (Gen. 49:8-10)?

2. The anointing of David:

a. Why did Samuel hesitate to anoint another king and why did he try to keep the matter secret (20:30-33, 22:1 1-16)?

b. Why did the Lord bring David to Samuel only after Samuel had seen all the other sons of Jesse? Why is it mentioned that David was the youngest (Ps. 75:6, 7, Dan. 2:21, 4:17, I Cor. 1:27-29)?

c. Why does the Scripture tell us also that David was caring for his father’s sheep when he was called (Ps. 78:70-72, Jn. 10:11-16)?

d. What does it mean that the Spirit of God came upon David? Was this different than with Saul (10:6, II Sam. 23:2)?

3. David in Saul’s house:

a. What does it mean that an evil spirit troubled Saul (vs. 14)? Does this mean that he was insane or does it just mean what Paul says in Romans 1:28?

b. Why, in His providence, did God bring David to the house of Saul?

4. David and Saul:

a. What was the difference between David and Saul in relation to God (8:5, Ps. 2:6), spiritually, and in their relation to God’s people (8:10-18, Ps. 78:72)?

b. What does David’s name mean (Ps. 60:5. 108:6) and what is its significance (Ps. 2:6, 7, Matt. 3:17. Eph. 1:6)?