Rebellion damages a person and it never travels alone. Rebellion travels with jealousy, anger, resentment and a host of bedfellows that creep into the soul and does its worse to its host.
The deception is vengeance, the delusion that your paying someone else back for their actions toward you. But, in reality your are only damaging yourself, hurting your own soul.
Saul’s disobedience and disrespect for GOD’s Word was losing him the kingdom. No amount of pointing the finger and blaming David was going to get him back into position.
He is the anointed of GOD, and yet he turns to the weapons of the world to regain spiritual territory.
I Samuel 15:23
For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.
From that point on Saul would not listen to the instructions given to him through the authoritative figure the prophet Samuel who had brought the anointing upon King Saul and anointed him. The culture at this time in Israel is dominated by the prophets in the Old Testament. (Hebrew scriptures)
Saul’s refusal and act of rebellion to obey the prophet Samuel was a refusal to the authority that gave the instruction. God Himself gave the orders, and it made Saul open to the spirit of witchcraft.
Saul had become hardened and took no regard for disobeying the Prophet Samuel. What he did not realize was, that he wasn’t actually disobeying Samuel… he was disobeying GOD.
We find in 1 Samuel 16:15 following in the context, that after Samuel sights Saul’s sin as the sin of witchcraft in 1 Samuel 15:23.
1 Samuel 16:15 says…
15. And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.
The author of the book of 1 Samuel is the Prophet Samuel himself.
2 Samuel is written by Samuel, Gad and Nathan.
In 1 Samuel 16; Samuel the prophet is very careful to articulate to us an evil spirit from God.
Does God send evil spirits?
Why did God allow the one who is anointed by Him at one point in time; but is no longer His anointed, to be troubled by an evil spirit?
This verse justifies how the evil power had domination over someone who was once anointed.
Saul visits the witch of Endor.
4. And the Philistines gathered themselves together and came and pitched in Shunem: and Saul gathered all Israel together, and they pitched in Gilboa.
5. And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines, he was afraid, and his heart greatly trembled.
6. And when Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.
Saul and the Medium of Endor
7. Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and inquire of her. And his servants said to him, Behold, there is a woman that hath a familiar spirit at Endor.
It was the spirit of witchcraft that took his life.
Witchcraft cleverly presents itself as a solution…illumination, even wisdom. It is not.
Saul sought out the woman with a familiar spirit. He said, “that I may go to inquire of her.”
That very spirit of witchcraft took his life because within a 24-hour period he was dead after consulting with the witch of Endor.
The Almighty God allowed this incident before his death to manifest. It was a manifestation of a hidden spirit that was dominating his life.
Throughout the whole scripture we find that an evil spirit troubled him, but we do not have the identification of that spirit till just before his death.
Hebrew Word Study: pah-neem
pah-neem in Hebrew means ‘face’
Because who better than our own maker knows that we have more than one face! Our faces are multi-faceted, filled with expressions- even expressions that leak out…ones that we try not to project!
pah-neem is a very interesting Word in GOD’s Hebrew Language.
In Hebrew, words ending with “eem” are in plural form. To say face in Hebrew, GOD set the word for face in plural form, not singular. Why?
We are creatures of many dimensions and levels. We have the face we show our families and the face we show our enemies. The face of kindness, love and respect and the face of contempt, unhappiness and apprehension. We have the face for all occasions, the one that masks our true face underneath.
Saul wore the face of a King. The face of an obedient servant of GOD. The face of disobedience, jealousy, friendship and deceit. (among others).
Our faces are pah-neem, because we are not one-dimensional beings, and sooner our later, our true face reveals itself for who we really are in our hearts.
And just before his death, Saul’s true face manifest.
How does it manifest?
Through his desire to consult with the witch at Endor.
So, this spirit was hidden even though it was upon him.
His true identity, that the spirit of witchcraft was hidden within him. Perhaps, even unbeknownst to Saul was his hunger to maintain power and control. Coming face to face with what he was willing to do to maintain that control. His level of desperation.
The spirit of witchcraft does not make itself obvious. The spirit of witchcraft is very clever, very patient, subtle and subdued in our life, until we are crushed by it and suddenly destroyed.
If we do not recognize it, the spirit of witchcraft begins to creep in and take up a seat. It presents itself as control, manipulation, jealousy, rebellion, stubbornness, baseless hatred, anger, vengeance, etc.
When this spirit is upon a person, they will not fully follow the instructions of God the way He has given them. Yet, time and time again, they will redress and justify their actions, blame and point the finger, and rearrange their words as if they have done exactly what GOD has instructed.
Saul operated in all these wicked character traits that eventually lead to his destruction, before going to the witch at Endor. He became Jealous of David, after David’s fight with Goliath.
1 Samuel 18:1-30 —The Roots of Saul’s Jealousy
1And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
2 And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father’s house.
3 Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.
4 And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
5 And David went out whithersoever Saul sent him, and behaved himself wisely: and Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul’s servants.
6 And it came to pass as they came, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women came out of all cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet king Saul, with tabrets, with joy, and with instruments of musick.
7 And the women answered one another as they played, and said, Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands.
8 And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?
9 And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.
10 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and there was a javelin in Saul’s hand.
11 And Saul cast the javelin; for he said, I will smite David even to the wall with it. And David avoided out of his presence twice.
12 And Saul was afraid of David, because the Lord was with him, and was departed from Saul.
13 Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people.
14 And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the Lord was with him.
15 Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him.
16 But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them.
17 And Saul said to David, Behold my elder daughter Merab, her will I give thee to wife: only be thou valiant for me, and fight the Lord’s battles. For Saul said, Let not mine hand be upon him, but let the hand of the Philistines be upon him.
18 And David said unto Saul, Who am I? and what is my life, or my father’s family in Israel, that I should be son in law to the king?
19 But it came to pass at the time when Merab Saul’s daughter should have been given to David, that she was given unto Adriel the Meholathite to wife.
20 And Michal Saul’s daughter loved David: and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.
21 And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Wherefore Saul said to David, Thou shalt this day be my son in law in the one of the twain.
22 And Saul commanded his servants, saying, Commune with David secretly, and say, Behold, the king hath delight in thee, and all his servants love thee: now therefore be the king’s son in law.
23 And Saul’s servants spake those words in the ears of David. And David said, Seemeth it to you a light thing to be a king’s son in law, seeing that I am a poor man, and lightly esteemed?
24 And the servants of Saul told him, saying, On this manner spake David.
25 And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king’s enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.
26 And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king’s son in law: and the days were not expired.
27 Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king’s son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.
28 And Saul saw and knew that the Lord was with David, and that Michal Saul’s daughter loved him.
29 And Saul was yet the more afraid of David; and Saul became David’s enemy continually.
30 Then the princes of the Philistines went forth: and it came to pass, after they went forth, that David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul; so that his name was much set by.
In 1 Samuel 28:8b
Saul disguised himself and put on other raiment.
This is a prophetic insight into what is happening here.
Because often, a spirit of witchcraft does not look like a spirit of witchcraft because it is hidden and disguised as something else. (masking itself behind another face).
This is why Saul was so susceptible to this spirit of witchcraft that took his life. He opened himself up to it through jealousy and rebellion.
But we see here what the motive is for consulting the witch at Endor. King Saul was not satisfied with the answer he was getting from God. –so he became determined to go around GOD!
The answer God gave King Saul was silence, and there is a reason for that silence. Silence meant God’s spirit departed from him.
That silence meant you are not going to hear from me until you repent.
But Saul, like so many of us have experienced a moment when God is silent.
We should never attempt to create (or obtain) the Word of the Lord on our own when we do not like the answer (or the silence) that we get from God. Even when God may tell us things that are hard to accept or when His silence is difficult to understand.
We do not reinvent the will (The Instructions) of GOD.
When Saul did not get the answer that he wanted from God, this was the very springboard to Saul consulting the witch at Endor.
(Saul wanted an answer from GOD. God gave his answer through total silence. God answered with silence in order to instigate repentance.)
In Part 3, we will take a look at how Saul responded to silence...