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Friday, October 23, 2020
Bible Meditation: 
1 Samuel 13: 1-14

…The Lord has sought for Himself a man after His own heart, and the Lord has COMMANDED HIM to be COMMANDER over His people– 1 Samuel 13:14

GOD, not Man instituted the ORDER of LEADERSHIP: But now your kingdom shall not continue. The Lord has sought for Himself a man after His own heart, and the Lord has COMMANDED HIM to be COMMANDER over His people, because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you” (1Sam.13:14). GOD is the Commander of Commanders! He appoints and raises leaders; and rejects and removes leaders! Leadership was God’s plan, not man’s suggestion: Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over…” (Gen.1:26a)! God always wants someone to be in charge, responsible and accountable. Dominion is the God-given instrument of leadership!

GOD is the Model Leader – the Leader of leaders. The Genesis account of creation leaves no one in doubt as to who the Leader was. He was ready to face challenges (Gen.1:1-3). He had clear vision for creation and defined goals for each day. He took the initiative, and coordinated His Trinity Team. He was dynamic, never lacklustre – no idle or dull moment with Him. He acted in Wisdom – in an orderly manner. He not only accomplished and finished His goals, He had a review system in place to evaluate and monitor progress (Gen.1:31). God, in turn, designed Man to lead: to have and exercise dominion. No wonder, every basic and positive principle even in the secular field of leadership is rooted and founded in the Scriptures.

The Bible is filled with examples of God’s search and call for leaders, and how He used them to their fullest potentials despite their human frailties and failings. Todays’ meditation text describes how Saul lost His ‘leadership’ to partial obedience, which equates disobedience in God’s eyes. The king performed an unlawful sacrifice that was meant only for the priest, and recklessly sacrificed his kingdom (v.14). Saul's disobedient actions involved at least three major errors.

First, kings weren't supposed to offer sacrifices on behalf of the nation. By divine order, offering of sacrifices was the domain of priests. Second, Saul was to wait for Samuel to receive the Lord's battle plans. However, with an impatient eye and his dwindling army, he gave in to fear and panic and rushed ahead on his own. He reduced the hallowed sacrifice to a pointless pagan-like ritual. Finally, Saul decided to trust himself in crisis rather than lean on God. He was ready to face the enemy with human strategy – good, maybe, but not God’s! Saul's faith failed. He saw his army dispersing and the enemy threatening, tossed aside any pretence of protocol, and wore the priestly garb along with his crown and signet, contravening divine order!

God’s design is to rule in human affairs, but He chose to  do so indirectly, through selected vessels – leaders: “For the Kingdom is the LORD’s, and He rules over the nations” (Psa.22:28). In His Sovereignty, the most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whoever He wills, and sets up over it the basest of men” (Dan.4:17b). A leader may still be occupying a seat of power even after God no longer reckons with him. That was the case with Saul. He was still on the throne when God commanded Samuel to anoint the young lad, David in his place (1Sam.16:1-3,12-13). A leader’s sin is a leading sin!

Leadership is Influence, the ability of one person to influence others; but this can be positive or negative, constructive or destructive. Leadership involves working with and through people to achieve results or goals. However, that a person occupies a seat of leadership doesn’t make such to be a leader. A Leader is one who knows the way (vision), shows the way (communication), and goes the way (example). The true Leader is not just an administrator, but a Visionary who creates a vision of the future and inspires others to make it a reality. Leadership emerges at all levels of collective human existence: marriage, family, organisation, neighbourhood, city, and nation. May God bless us with true leaders, and make us same!

Adetokunbo O. Ilesanmi (Meditations)

Lord, bless us in the ORDER of LEADERSHIP; make us true leaders at all levels of collective existence, in Jesus name.
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