And Samuel said, Hath 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 hearken than the fat of rams.
1 Samuel 15:22
READ: 1 Samuel 15:22-23.
22 And Samuel said, Hath 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 hearken than the fat of rams.
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.
It is needless to reiterate that perfect obedience to God and His word helps us set our priorities right. Sacrifice is good; God expects all His children to present their bodies as living sacrifices- holy and acceptable to Him (Romans 12:1). However, God prefers obedience to sacrifice. 1 Samuel 15:22 says:
“……Hath 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 hearken than the fat of rams.”
Obedience is an act of doing and being willing to do what one is told to. In a spiritual sense, obedience is total submission to the written and spoken word of God. Obedience is an express commandment of God. One distinguishing characteristic of all who are great in the service of the Lord is prompt obedience. The Bible is full of stories of men and women who became great for God as a result of their complete and immediate obedience to the word of God. Heroes of obedience include Abraham, Joshua, Ruth, David, Elijah, Elisha and our Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible says:
“ As soon as they hear of me, they shall obey me: the strangers shall submit themselves unto me. The strangers shall fade away, and be afraid out of their close places.” Psalm 18:44-45
True and perfect obedience comes from a heart of love. It is real and not mere eye service. Boldness is a vital ingredient of perfect obedience. Peter and other disciples boldly confronted the Jewish elders when they chose to preach, saying they would rather please God and displease men.
“But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye.” Acts 4:19
Are you facing persecution because of your obedience to Christ? Don’t give up! Don’t compromise your stand. Obedience cannot be done halfway. Partial obedience is equal to disobedience. Disobedience is rebellion, which is “as the sin of witchcraft” (1 Samuel 13:23). Partial obedience was the undoing of the first king of Israel- Saul. Obedience starts with knowing the will of God then carrying out His directives promptly and completely.
Obedience is better than sacrifice.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Job 27-28.
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN 12: IN CHRIST ALONE.
In Christ alone my hope is found,
He is my light, my strength, my song;
This Cornerstone, this solid Ground,
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace,
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My Comforter, my All in All,
Here in the love of Christ I stand.
In Christ alone! – who took on flesh,
Fullness of God in helpless babe.
This gift of love and righteousness,
Scorned by the ones He came to save:
Till on that cross as Jesus died,
The wrath of God was satisfied –
For every sin on Him was laid;
Here in the death of Christ I live.
There in the ground His body lay,
Light of the world by darkness slain:
Then bursting forth in glorious day
Up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me,
For I am His and He is mine –
Bought with the precious blood of Christ.
No guilt in life, no fear in death,
This is the power of Christ in me;
From life’s first cry to final breath,
Jesus commands my destiny.
No power of hell, no scheme of man,
Can ever pluck me from His hand:
Till He returns or calls me home,
Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand.