Soon after Saul performed a sacrifice he should not have made, he failed to obey God’s explicit instruction to completely destroy the Amalekites and their possessions. Saul kept King Agag alive as well as some of the animals, presumably to perform a sacrifice to the Lord.
When Samuel confronted the king in his sin, he told him something quite profound, “to obey is better than sacrifice” (v. 22). Samuel was surely not saying that sacrifice—worship—is unimportant. We know that we were created to worship God and God expects worship from us. These words were not a matter of worship being unimportant but rather the centrality of obedience. If we truly are worshiping God, recognizing His great worth, then we will obey. We must. We cannot proclaim the glory of God from a posture of disobedience. Our disobedience disproves our worship. Obedience, on the other hand, affirms it. Saul’s supposed act of worship was nothing of the sort because he was in a state of disobedience. Obedience and worship are fused together.
In what ways might you be disobeying God and thus impairing your worship?