1 Samuel 10:1-8 (Part 1) – …And I Just Can’t Wait to Be King…

Posted: December 23, 2017 in Book of 1 Samuel
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1 Samuel 10:1-8 (Part 1 of 2)
Samuel Anoints Saul as King

Back in the day around 1994-1995, when my youngest daughter was between the ages of 4-5 and my youngest stepson (when I was married to my second wife) was between 2-3, it was in the middle of the second golden age of Disney animated movies and that age of greatness started with the megahit animated classic, The Lion King. I love that movie to this day because, well, it’s a great story but it also reminds me of when my kids were young. Even then my oldest was only 9-10. But when the VHS came out (yes kids there was once a video format called VHS and you had to buy videos of your favorite movies at stores or rent them at Blockbuster…what’s Blockbuster…well, Wayne Huzienga is asking the same thing too), but back when the video came out, my second wife along with moms all over the United States waited in lines at retail stores such as K-Mart and Wal-Mart when The Lion King was released at retail. And, Taylor, my youngest, and Dillon, Trena’s youngest, would sit and watch the Lion King over and over again…and over and over again….and well, over and over again. They played it incessantly every day. Every scene of that movie I began to know by heart. Every song in that film I began to know by heart. If you were a parent of a child born anywhere from 1985 to 1992, you know what I am talking about. Those songs, the dialogue, everything about the movie you remember probably as well as your kids do. Who else remembers, “Mufasa…say it again…Mufassssaaa.” Who remembers, “Talk about ya fixer uppers!” Who remembers, “Pinned ya!…Pinned ya again!”

But one of my favorite sequences of the movie is scene where Simba and Nala are talking about when he grows and will be king of the lions. It’s a tune called, “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King”. With music by Elton John and words written by Tim Rice, the song is performed by the characters of Simba (Jason Weaver), Nala (Laura Williams) and Zazu (Rowan Atkinson) in the film, the lyrics go like this:

I’m gonna be a mighty king, so enemies beware!
(Well, I’ve never seen a king of beasts with quite so little hair)
I’m gonna be the main event, like no king was before
I’m brushing up on looking down, I’m working on my ROAR
(Thus far, a rather…uninspiring thing)
Oh, I just can’t wait to be king!

(You’ve rather a long way to go, young master, if you think…)
No one saying do this
(Now when I said that, I–)
[Nala:] No one saying be there
(What I meant was…)
No one saying stop that
(Look, what you don’t realize…)
[Simba and Nala:] No one saying see here
(Now see here!)
Free to run around all day
(Well, that’s definitely out…)
Free to do it all my way!

(I think it’s time that you and I arranged a heart to heart)
Kings don’t need advice from little hornbills for a start
(If this is where the monarchy is headed, count me out!
Out of service, out of Africa I wouldn’t hang about… aagh!
This child is getting wildly out of wing)
Oh, I just can’t wait to be king!

Everybody look left!
Everybody look right!
Everywhere you look I’m standing in the spotlight!
(Not yet!)

[Chorus]
Let every creature go for broke and sing
Let’s hear it in the herd and on the wing
It’s gonna be King Simba’s finest fling
[Simba and Chorus:] Oh I just can’t wait to be king!
Oh I just can’t wait to be king!
Oh I just can’t waaaaaait … to be king!

To bring back your memories, here is the sequence from the movie:

In this sequence of the movie, this song represents Simba’s desire not to be told what to do. He wanted to be grown up. He wanted it to already be his time to be king. We all can relate to his childhood feelings. We all spend our growing up years wanting to be already grown-up. However, we often don’t take into account the fact that with the freedoms we have as adults that we do not have as children comes greater responsibility. For many of us when we become adults, we begin wishing that we were kids again because we think we had more freedom as kids. In Simba’s case, his adult years required him to have this titanic struggle to regain the throne against Scar. It was at first a battle that he shied away from. He then figured out that anything worthwhile requires sacrifice and struggle and difficulty. Simba finally does take his rightful place as the king of the lions but it is not without difficulty.

What does this animated classic have to do with Saul becoming the first king of Israel? In this passage, we see Saul become king. Based on what we know of Saul later in life, we can envision him having a Simba-like excitement. But with great power comes great responsibility. Saul did not handle it well. When we become leaders its more than just about being in the spotlight as Simba desires in this scene. With that idea in mind, let us read about Saul becoming king now. Let us read 1 Samuel 10:1-8 together now:

Chapter 10
1 Then Samuel took a flask of olive oil and poured it over Saul’s head. He kissed Saul and said, “I am doing this because the Lord has appointed you to be the ruler over Israel, his special possession.[a] 2 When you leave me today, you will see two men beside Rachel’s tomb at Zelzah, on the border of Benjamin. They will tell you that the donkeys have been found and that your father has stopped worrying about them and is now worried about you. He is asking, ‘Have you seen my son?’

3 “When you get to the oak of Tabor, you will see three men coming toward you who are on their way to worship God at Bethel. One will be bringing three young goats, another will have three loaves of bread, and the third will be carrying a wineskin full of wine. 4 They will greet you and offer you two of the loaves, which you are to accept.

5 “When you arrive at Gibeah of God,[b] where the garrison of the Philistines is located, you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the place of worship. They will be playing a harp, a tambourine, a flute, and a lyre, and they will be prophesying. 6 At that time the Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them. You will be changed into a different person. 7 After these signs take place, do what must be done, for God is with you. 8 Then go down to Gilgal ahead of me. I will join you there to sacrifice burnt offerings and peace offerings. You must wait for seven days until I arrive and give you further instructions.”

In this passage, we see the beginning of the ceremony surrounding the coronation and anointing of Israelite kings. When an Israelite king took office, he was not only crowned but he was also anointed. The coronation was the political act of establishing the king as ruler. The anointing was the spiritual act of making the king God’s representative to the people. A king was always anointed by a priest or a prophet. The special anointing oil was a mixture of olive oil, myrrh, and other expensive spices. It was poured over the king’s head to symbolize the presence and power of the Holy Spirit of God in his life. This anointing ceremony was to remind the king of his great responsibility to lead his people by God’s wisdom and not his own.

Saul did what He was told at first by Samuel as we see in this passage. But what we know of Saul is that he was a very self-centered man who became consumed with his position. He reminds us much of Scar from The Lion King. Scar was the lion who usurped the throne from Mufasa and chased off Mufasa’s rightful heir, his son, Simba. Scar was so consumed with enjoying the spoils of being king that he destroyed the kingdom. He was not a good leader and the kingdom of the lions suffered to the point that Timon uttered the famous line when he saw the kingdom for the first time, “talk about ya fixer uppers!” With great power comes great responsibility. We can learn much from Saul and from the Scar and from Simba.

Saul did what he was told in this passage and was even filled with the spirit here at the beginning of his reign to the point where he prophesied. However, he became obsessed with his power and his position and almost destroyed the kingdom. Similarly, Scar almost destroyed the kingdom of the lions in The Lion King because he was obsessed with his position, about erasing the memory of the great king, Mufasa, and about what the kingdom could do for him. As well, Simba, as a child wanted all the fun of being king but did not know of its responsibilities. Further, Simba avoided taking on the responsibility of saving his kingdom until it was almost too late.

As leaders in the church, we must take heed the lessons of Saul, Simba, and Scar. We can start off in ministry filled with spirit and passion because it’s new and fresh and it seems like so much fun being a minister or a leader in the church. But we must count the cost of leadership of souls as well. We must always remember the good of God’s kingdom. We cannot make our leadership about what it can do for us. We cannot make our appointments to leadership in the church as part of some grand political game – if I ally myself with this group, it will help me get this done or that done. We as leaders cannot make it about maintaining some power structure. We as leaders cannot make our leadership about positioning ourselves for the next thing, the next appointment, the next higher leadership role.

We must always think of the good of God’s kingdom first. We must make everything we do about Jesus Christ and representing him well. We must make it about giving him glory and not ourselves. We must make everything about (1) whether it expands God kingdom by reaching more and more lost people and (2) making our people fully devoted disciples of Jesus Christ in every aspect of their lives who attract others to Jesus Christ. When we make our leadership about us, we become like Saul and Scar and scorch the earth around us. When make our leadership about the fun of being in power like young Simba, we fail to see that we must think of others more than ourselves when we are in leadership. We must take on the responsibilities of being in leadership which can be quite heavy and unfair at times and do the hard things that need doing because we have giving God the glory through our actions as our prime directive. May we always keep the good of God’s kingdom in view when we lead. May we always make drawing people unto Christ and then helping them grow deeper and deeper in their relationship with Jesus Christ what we are about. Always.

Amen and Amen.

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