“Does God delight in burnt offering and sacrifices as much as obeying the voice of the Lord. To obey is better than sacrifice. …… For rebellion is the sin of divination or ( or witchcraft in some translations)
1 Samuel 15:22-23
This is the words of Samuel the prophet to King Saul. Saul had received specific instructions from the Lord but he did not obey and instead offered a sacrifice to God instead. The rest of Samuels word was because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as King. God takes our obedience very seriously. He sees our wilful disobedience as rebellion and divination or witchcraft. We think seriously. Yes seriously. I remember hearing someone say the clearer we hear God speak means there is less room for disobedience and sometimes when we don’t hear God clearly it is because of Gods mercy. It means we have some leeway as we seek God and we are trying to be obedient in doing his will. When God speaks very clearly and you know it, watch out because if you don’t obey it can become rebellion in Gods eyes. With Sauls case the reason he did not obey was fear of the people and he gave into them which is found in v24. He thought he could just offer an animal sacrifice to God and build and alter and all would be well. He openly admitted it when confronted by Samuel. Be careful of offering sacrifices to compensate for your disobedience. Gods not impressed or fooled. He just wants our obedience.