The men of Israel saw what a tight spot they were in; and because they were hard pressed by the enemy, they tried to hide in caves, thickets, rocks, holes, and cisterns.
Some of them crossed the Jordan River and escaped into the land of Gad and Gilead. Saul’s Disobedience and Samuel’s Rebuke Meanwhile, Saul stayed at Gilgal, and his men were trembling with fear.
Saul waited there seven days for Samuel, as Samuel had instructed him earlier, but Samuel still didn’t come. Saul realized that his troops were rapidly slipping away.
So he demanded, “Bring me the burnt offering and the peace offerings!” And Saul sacrificed the burnt offering himself.
Just as Saul was finishing with the burnt offering, Samuel arrived. Saul went out to meet and welcome him,
but Samuel said, “What is this you have done?” Saul replied, “I saw my men scattering from me, and you didn’t arrive when you said you would, and the Philistines are at Micmash ready for battle.
So I said, ‘The Philistines are ready to march against us at Gilgal, and I haven’t even asked for the ’s help!’ So I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering myself before you came.”
“How foolish!” Samuel exclaimed. “You have not kept the command the your God gave you. Had you kept it, the would have established your kingdom over Israel forever.
But now your kingdom must end, for the has sought out a man after his own heart. The has already appointed him to be the leader of his people, because you have not kept the ’s command.”
Samuel then left Gilgal and went on his way, but the rest of the troops went with Saul to meet the army. They went up from Gilgal to Gibeah in the land of Benjamin. When Saul counted the men who were still with him, he found only 600 were left!
References for 1 Samuel 13:15
Saul and Jonathan and the troops with them were staying at Geba in the land of Benjamin. The Philistines set up their camp at Micmash.