In I Samuel 13:11 King Saul explained that he did not wait on Samuel to offer the sacrifice before the battle with the Philistines “Because I saw that the people were scattering …”. One of Saul’s problems was that he based his actions on the things he SAW instead of basing them on faith in God’s revealed truth.
God had told Saul, through Samuel, to wait on Samuel’s arrival for the sacrifice (:8). And furthermore, God’s Law did not allow Saul, who was not a priest, to offer the sacrifice. And yet despite knowing these prohibitions, Saul “saw” the scattering of his people, the gathering of the enemy, and the non-appearance of Samuel (:11) and he decided that he just “had” to compromise what he knew God had said. He offered the sacrifice himself, betraying his lack of confidence in what God had told him.
How often do we do the same! We know what God’s word says, but we “see” how things are around us, and we respond based on our observations instead of on the scriptures. The Bible says we are to “walk by faith and not by sight” (II Cor. 5:7), and “the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (II Cor. 4:17). This sad episode of Saul’s is a reminder to us that God does not want us to merely respond to what we “see” happening around us, but to act on FAITH in His word, for “without faith, it is impossible to please Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)