When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn (Proverbs 29:2).
Israel wanted a king, even though the Lord God was their true king (I Samuel 8:7; 12:12). There were vast differences between Israels first king, Saul, and the King of kings. When it came time for Saul to be introduced by Samuel as the new king, he was nowhere to be found. The Lord revealed Sauls hiding place saying, Behold, he hath hid himself among the stuff (I Samuel 10:22). Unlike the King of kings, Saul had to be notified when his people were in danger. He was after the herd out of the field (I Samuel 11:5) while the city of Jabesh was under siege.
Sauls method of gathering an army by threat and coercion fulfilled the Lords predictions of I Samuel 8:1118. He slaughtered oxen and sent pieces throughout Israel with the message that the men must serve or be cut up like the oxen. Saul was a fearful king and prone to panic. This was illustrated by his decision to make the offerings that only Samuel should have (I Samuel 13:811). Saul forced his army to go without food and thought the enforced fast would earn him the victory (I Samuel 14:24). Contrast the King of kings who feeds His flock like a shepherd (Isaiah 40:11). Sauls lack of wisdom resulted in the children of Israel caught without any weapons to fight (I Samuel 13:22). The Christians weapons of warfare (spiritual) are mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds (II Corinthians 10:4). Sauls final act of incompetence as a leader was to take the spoil from the heathen and lie about his greed (I Samuel 15:915). Our King is not a man that He should lie (Numbers 23:19). He is the King whom even King David trusted and obeyed: Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray (Psalms 5:2). CJH