May 1

1 Samuel 15:1-3, 10-21

What’s that noise?

Saul fought against the enemies of Israel and won every battle. One day, Samuel said to Saul, “The Lord says that you must attack the Amalekites and completely destroy everything they own—don’t leave a thing!”

So, Saul went out and defeated the Amalekites but he did not kill the best sheep and cattle or destroy things that were good. His army only destroyed what was worthless. Early the next morning, Samuel went to see Saul and asked, “What is all that mooing and bleating I hear?”

Saul explained, “My men kept the best sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the Lord, but we did destroy the weak and unwanted.“

“Stop!” Samuel said, “I will tell you what the Lord said to me last night. He told you to destroy everything, but you disobeyed the Lord by keeping the best.”

“But I did obey the Lord,” Saul replied. “We fought and killed all the Amalekites.”

“You did not obey the Lord’s instructions fully,” Samuel said, “and so He has rejected you as king of Israel.”

Is it okay to obey most of God’s commands?

Most kids in your grade would probably be happy to get eight out of ten questions right in a test. To pass a class test, you may not even need to score as high as that. What do you think God’s pass mark for obedience would be? Would obeying just some of God’s commands—or even most of them—be good enough?

Not doing what God wants us to do is as much a sin as doing what God has forbidden us to do (James 4:17). When it comes to obeying God, we must do everything He says! Even if we disobey in something we may think is small and unimportant, we allow sin to stain our hearts.

Perhaps you have done something that didn’t seem so bad at the time, but it bothers you now. Ask the Lord to forgive you; then your heart will be pure, and He can keep blessing and using you.

Verse for today

For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. James 2:10