Saul Rejected as King

10 Now the word of the Lord came to Samuel, saying, 11 (A)“I greatly regret that I have set up Saul as king, for he has (B)turned back from following Me, (C)and has not performed My commandments.” And it (D)grieved Samuel, and he cried out to the Lord all night. 12 So when Samuel rose early in the morning to meet Saul, it was told Samuel, saying, “Saul went to (E)Carmel, and indeed, he set up a monument for himself; and he has gone on around, passed by, and gone down to Gilgal.” 13 Then Samuel went to Saul, and Saul said to him, (F)“Blessed are you of the Lord! I have performed the commandment of the Lord.”

14 But Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?”

15 And Saul said, “They have brought them from the Amalekites; (G)for the people spared the best of the sheep and the oxen, to sacrifice to the Lord your God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.”

16 Then Samuel said to Saul, “Be quiet! And I will tell you what the Lord said to me last night.”

And he said to him, “Speak on.”

17 So Samuel said, (H)“When you were little in your own eyes, were you not head of the tribes of Israel? And did not the Lord anoint you king over Israel? 18 Now the Lord sent you on a mission, and said, ‘Go, and utterly destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are [a]consumed.’ 19 Why then did you not obey the voice of the Lord? Why did you swoop down on the [b]spoil, and do evil in the sight of the Lord?”

20 And Saul said to Samuel, (I)“But I have obeyed the voice of the Lord, and gone on the mission on which the Lord sent me, and brought back Agag king of Amalek; I have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. 21 (J)But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal.”

22 So Samuel said:

(K)“Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices,
As in obeying the voice of the Lord?
Behold, (L)to obey is better than sacrifice,
And to heed than the fat of rams.
23 For rebellion is as the sin of [c]witchcraft,
And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord,
(M)He also has rejected you from being king.”

24 (N)Then Saul said to Samuel, “I have sinned, for I have transgressed the commandment of the Lord and your words, because I (O)feared the people and obeyed their voice. 25 Now therefore, please pardon my sin, and return with me, that I may worship the Lord.”

26 But Samuel said to Saul, “I will not return with you, (P)for you have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you from being king over Israel.”

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Footnotes

  1. 1 Samuel 15:18 exterminated
  2. 1 Samuel 15:19 plunder
  3. 1 Samuel 15:23 divination