1Sam 9:1-20, 6 And he said to him, “Look now, there is in this city a man of God, and he is an honorable man; all that he says surely comes to pass. So let us go there; perhaps he can show us the way that we should go.” …vs.”10 Then Saul said to his servant, “Well said; come, let us go.” So they went to the city where the man of God was.”
The story begins with Saul and his father. In vs. 1 we meet his father, followed by who Saul was and his stature. In vs.3 we learn of an assignment given to him by his father which involved taking a servant on a journey. From vs. 4 onward, he and his servant embark on a journey to find his father’s lost donkeys. In vs. 5, indicates their unsuccessful journey which would push them to want to quit and go back home lest his father be worried of what became of him. In vs. 6 his servant came up with an idea of them going to meet prophet Elisha.
Up to this point, you see moves made by Saul and his servant. It started with his father’s request, their reasoning, and their quest to find these missing donkeys. In vs. 15, the story takes a huge turn and changes everything, it says, “15 Now the Lord HAD told Samuel in his ear THE DAY BEFORE Saul came, saying, 16 “TOMORROW ABOUT THIS TIME I WILL SEND YOU A MAN from the land of Benjamin, and you shall anoint him commander over My people Israel…“. In this story, the revelation of God is concealed until an appointed time and it becomes clear who was behind every move and every decision Saul made. I see free will, however this free will is confined to God’s leading where God is not forcing or bending Saul. Rather, there is a God guided influence and in that Saul finds freedom to operate. Trains find freedom to move in the confinement of the tracks given.
God told Samuel a day before that He would send Saul. From the beginning it appeared Saul was orchestrating every plan and move, vs. 15 reveals that it was God at work. Phil 2:13 “for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure”. The willingness and the ability is of Him, we respond and He takes all the credit. Jesus said to His disciples, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit…”, (Joh 15:16). While it appears Saul chose to go and meet the prophet, it’s God who chose him and led him through circumstances to the right place. No conflict and Saul does not say he was tricked.
We did not choose God, God chose us and we received that acceptance and rejoice in it. “But now after you have known God, or rather are known by God” (Gal 4:9 NKJV)” The Lord does the choosing, the saving, the keeping and He gets all the glory.