1 Samuel 15 2/5
9 But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.
In that slaughter, Saul was further commanded to even kill the animals. Why? This was mainly for the reason of covetousness. After a big slaughter, some soldiers could become quite well-off quickly by taking a bit of booty home. However, along with the booty came a curse upon Israel (Example - Joshua 7).
Further, and just as accursed, would be the obscenity of offering those beasts as sacrifices or using them as beasts of burden for work in Israel, the blessed nation. God provided a law for Israel which gave them the unique ability to put a difference between the holy and unholy, clean and unclean, righteous and profane, not according to their own ideas but God's. No other nation had that indelible imprint of God’s nature in writing, and He didn't want any of it sullied. he also kept King Agag alive; the current leader of this
13 And Samuel came to Saul: and Saul said unto him, Blessed be thou of the Lord: I have performed the commandment of the Lord. 14 And Samuel said, What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear? 15 And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the Lord thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.
Saul, in an attempt to cover his unholy desires and casual approach to God’s instructions, re-interpreted those instructions.
Like the leaders of 79% of the seven churches in Revelation, and so many churches over time and today, Saul didn't think God meant what He said. Nor had he considered the penalty. It was a clear case of Eve, who allowed the serpent to plant a seed of unbelief to enter her mind, “Yes, hath God said, ye shall not east of every tree of the garden?” (Genesis 3:1) had the serpent also added the penalty, Eve may not have proceeded. Re-interpreting God’s Word is the same as writing our own Bible; e.g. Scripture according to the Word of Saul! Saul thought in his mind, “Did God really mean for me to destroy everything or just most of it?” When God asks of us to obey those parts of scripture which focus on cleanliness, holiness and righteousness, are we like Saul? Do we say, “Oh, God won't mind that much!” Today’s prayer: Dear Lord. help me pay greater attention to the Lord’s requirements for my life, particularly what is holy, clean and righteous. I do not want to write my own Bible.