Beware of the Spirit of Saul
Recently, I was listening to a young preacher. He was great and had a tremendous expository ability. God is blessing his ministry in a wonderful way. When listening to his ministry, I was thinking of other pastors who had been critical of him. They were older pastors and they were concerned that he would not continue in the faith. I often hear of older men being critical of younger men in the ministry because of their style, because of their preferences, or because of the number of people that are attending their churches. When I hear an older man criticizing a younger man, I often think, “beware of the spirit of Saul.”
I encourage you to read 2 Samuel 21 & 1 Samuel 17 and 18 before reading the rest of the post, for better context. Below are 5 things we need to beware of, from the life of King Saul’s.
Saul was jealous.
It is hard to imagine that a Christian would be jealous of another Christian’s abilities, talents, or amount of hours they serve in their church. But the longer I pastor, the more I see this happen. I know that there is such a thing as having a godly jealousy, like Paul had towards the Corinthian church. “For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy:for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ
(2 Corinthians 11:2 KJV), I fear thought that much of the jealousy I see is not that kind. It is the kind that tears people apart, rather than build them up. As minister’s of the gospel, we should care for other members of the flock and desire to protected each other from false doctrine.
Saul forgot whose kingdom he was leading.
We must always remember that we are always servants of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He chooses to use His servants in whatever manner He chooses. Our responsibility is to just be faithful to Him in where He wants us to serve. Saul forgot that the kingdom was God’s, not his own. Oftentimes, Christians can forget that the local church and it’s leadership belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ and is not there to serve their own need.
Saul was not spirit filled.
The Bible says very clearly that the Spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul. It is a wonderful thing in the New Testament that that will never happen to us. We are saved, and we are born again in the family of God. Our spirit which was dead was made alive when we received Jesus Christ as Savior. We have the eternal Spirit of God living inside of us. However, we can quench the Spirit and grieve the Spirit when we do things that are dishonoring to Him. If we are filled in the spirit, we will have the fruit of the spirit which is love, joy, and peace. We will not find ourselves continuously criticizing others. We are serving the same Lord that they served.
Saul was afraid.
The Bible says in 2 Timothy 1: 7, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” When we are motivated out of the spirit of fear, we are not being lead by the Spirit of God. We need to be more like David who faced his fears and conquered them in the Spirit of the Lord. This world needs more courageous Christians that burn brightly for His purpose!
Saul sought David’s demise.
When we are looking to cause someone to stumble or be made weak, we are certainly not walking in the Spirit of Christ. In John 3:17, Jesus said, “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” We should be doing all we can to cheer on those who come after us. We are going to leave our ministries to those younger and hopefully, more equipped than we are. Let us help, mentor, encourage, and pray for our young David’s and by all means avoid the spirit of Saul.