Tuesday, November 12, 2013

King Oof

1 Samuel 14:24 And the men of Israel were distressed that day: for Saul had adjured the people, saying, Cursed be the man that eateth any food until evening, that I may be avenged on mine enemies. So none of the people tasted any food. 
The men were distressed, oppressed. The word, nagas, means to be driven as by a taskmaster, taxed, harassed, or tyrannized. Saul was treating them like slaves instead of free men of Israel. The text makes it clear that their distress is not from the enemy. The Lord was giving them victory. Their distress came from their own King Saul.
This was a very foolish oath for Saul to make. Why would he utter such a thing? But having uttered it, he is unwilling to take it back, even when he really should do so. It was not the being avenged that was a problem here. In fact, the Lord was routing the enemy and had in mind to utterly and completely rout them. Unfortunately, the King was seeking his own glory (that I may be avenged on mine enemies) again, and this got in the way of wisdom.

1 Sam. 14:28 Then answered one of the people, and said, Thy father straitly charged the people with an oath, saying, Cursed be the man that eateth any food this day. And the people were faint. 
Saul, with a great oath, as if repeated or strongly stated, declared that anyone who ate food that day would be bitterly cursed.
The word for faint is oof. It means to flee or faint from the darknesss of swooning.
This day was meant to be a day of blessing. Yahweh was giving victory over his enemies. The Lord provided honey in the way so that the people would not be faint. They had a great leader to lead them on to victory. However, because of Saul’s foolish oath, the people were faint, as if they were hit in the stomach with a great blow, oof!

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