God anointed Saul the Fool

Sometimes I talk about politics.

I am tired of Trump dominating the headlines and media. However, I have an observation to make – one few other people have made.
There is an idea that Trump is God’s anointed leader of America. Let us say God has anointed Trump this way (Religion News Service, 2019).
So, what of it? God anointed King Saul as well – and if Trump has a biblical analog, it will be King Saul. Saul the anointed, the Saul who was a bad king, the Saul who disobeyed and angered God. Saul the fool.
As a refresher….
King Saul ruled the kingdom of Israel during the 10th century B.C (Finkelstein, 2006). Traditionally his reign marked the transition of Judah and Israel from a collection of scattered tribes led by Judges to a society with a centralized government (Toorn, 1993).
Samuel served as the most respected priest during this time and became venerated as a prophet. The tribal leaders came to him and asked for a king to lead and defend the nation against its enemies. Samuel told them this was a bad idea – they insisted on it anyway. Samuel also prayed to God – and God told him that a king was a bad idea, but to do what the people wanted (I Samuel 8:11-22).
So, Samuel did anoint Saul as King.
Saul had accomplishments. This includes defending the nation against its enemies.
He also took Samuel’s place at the altar in a sacred ceremony before a battle (I Samuel 13:8-9). Samuel called him out for this behavior, and King Saul made excuses. God wanted King Saul to destroy the Amalekites. However, Saul looted the city in disobedience. Samuel called him out for this behavior, and King Saul made excuses. At this point, God withdrew his blessings and support from King Saul – this presumably included endorsement signaled by the anointment (I Samuel 16:14).
King Saul ordered the murder of 85 priests out of spite and anger over the escape of David (I Samuel 22: 6-23). King Saul chased David all over the place rather than lead the nation or defend it against the Philistines. King Saul’s sins, failures, and vanity would destroy him and his dynasty. And he had once been anointed by God (Books of Samuel, 1611).
So, what of it if God has anointed Trump? God anointed Saul as king, and King Saul died a fool.
Blessings from God, anointment from God, and being God’s chosen one should serve as responsibilities. They should be burdens and goals one must fulfill. They should not be proverbial blank checks or endless “get out of jail free” cards.
Books of Samuel. (1611). In Samuel, King James bible. London: Nelson.

Finkelstein, I. (2006). The last labayu: King Saul and the expansion of the first north israelite territorial entity. In Y. Amit, E. B. Zvi, & I. Finkelstein, Essays on ancient Israel in Its near eastern context: A tribute to Nadav Naʼaman (p. 171). Jerusalem: Eisenbrauns.

Religion News Service. (2019, November 25). How many Americans believe Trump is anointed by God? Retrieved from Religion News Service: https://religionnews.com/2019/11/25/how-many-americans-believe-trump-is-anointed-by-god/

Toorn, K. V. (1993, October). Saul and the rise of Israelite state religion. Vetus Testamentum, 43(4), 519-542

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