Part Way Isn’t Enough
In 1 Samuel 15, Saul was to utterly destroy the Amalekites, but spared the king and the best of the spoils. In verses 20 and 21 Saul says that he had destroyed the Amalekites—and that he had obeyed God’s word.
Saul had killed almost all of the Amalekites, and he had destroyed most of their possessions. He had completed part of what God had told him to do. Verse 26 says, “But Samuel said to Saul, ‘I will not return with you, for you have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you from being king over Israel.”
We can gather that part way didn’t cut it. Carrying out part of God’s word still counts as a full rejection of God’s word, which leads to the rejection of the Lord. The whole of what we are told to do in the Bible must be followed.
When becoming a Christian we cannot just believe and repent to be saved - we must also be baptized (Acts 2:37-38). And those who have done that and become saved cannot stop there. We cannot be baptized and then set down the Bible and expect to remain with God. Becoming a Christian is only a part of God’s word. We must continue to read and study from God’s word. To be saved (and remain saved) we must strive to follow all of God’s word continually - we must “continue in the faith” (Colossians 1:21-23).
In 2 Timothy 4:7, Paul likens our spiritual journey to a race. He said that he had “finished the race” - he had completed it fully. Paul ran the entire race and so must we. It is impossible for a runner to win a race by only running part of it. In order to cross the finish line the entire track must be completed.
Jesus has shown us the track that God wants us to run, and we must follow that track - that path - in its entirety in order to make it to our finish line. The track is laid out for us in the Bible. In order for us to run the entire track we must follow the entire Word.
We can use Saul’s error in 1 Samuel 15 as an example of what not to do. He followed part of God’s word and was rejected for that. On that final Day that Paul speaks of in 2 Tim. 4:8 we do not want to find out that we will be rejected from that glorious home in heaven. To avoid that we must go all the way by following all of the Bible.
-- John Thrower Jr.