And Samuel said,
Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams. For, rebellion is as the sin of divination, and insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He has also rejected you from being king. 1 Samuel 15:22-23
Here, we see Samuel informing Saul that he has lost his favor in the sight of the LORD, and consequently, he has lost his position as the king of Israel before God. This is after Saul hastily makes sacrifices in the battlefield—a priestly task, not one to be done by a king—and spares the life of Agag, the king of the Amalekites, and “the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good” (1 Sam.15:9). This was done despite the LORD’s command to utterly destroy everything. Saul’s excuse for disobeying the LORD’s command was that he wanted to sacrifice the best of the spoils to the LORD.
Samuel makes it clear to Saul that God does not need his sacrifice per se. It is more important for him to obey the LORD than to make a sacrifice. The LORD knows the future, and knows the implications of our decisions. We walk in darkness if we act only according to our humanly and worldly wisdom. First and foremost God desires us to obey His commands for our own good, even if the wisdom behind those commands is not clear to us at the time. He despises disobedience to the point that Samuel compares it to divination—consulting and depending on other gods. He who disobeys the LORD is indeed depending on the gods of human wisdom, the world’s culture, man’s acceptance, and immediate fleshly desires and fears. Samuel equates insubordination with idolatry, because through insubordination we are worshipping another god rather than the LORD.
Are you putting another god before the LORD today? Are you trusting the media, or your friends, or what you read in newspapers or see in the movies, or man’s wisdom and reason before the LORD’s commandments?
He who disobeys the LORD is choosing to sit on his own throne and put his own word before the word of God. This is no different than what Adam and Eve did in the Garden. They chose their own logic before the word of God, and the rest is history!