Saul was a terrible king for a number of reasons, but one of those reasons is that he did not deal with the Amalekites with a stubborn ruthlessness. He spared the king and the best of the sheep and the oxen (1 Sam. 15.8-9). The Amalekites were evil and harassed and attacked Israel for years, they attacked them in the wilderness, in the promised land – everywhere. God had given Saul a very clear instruction – wipe out the Amalekites. Saul only partially obeyed.
God was not impressed that Saul only partially obeyed. He lost that battle, because he was kind to satan. We cannot be kind to satan, we have to be ruthless with satan. Now in the New Covenant, we must be kind to people, but there are times to even be ruthless with people and insist they shape up or leave your church or business or organization.
But at no time can we be kind to satan! I have seen pastors lose their churches because they have been kind to satan. I have seen pastors see their church ripped in two because they were being kind to disloyal, wicked people. They show mercy to people who have not changed and show no fruit of repentance and let them assault their church over and over. Some pastors are desperate to be even kinder than God is!
God was not kind to the Amalekites – they were trying to rip his people about and hurt them, and God was not going to put up with that. Satan is not about to be kind to you – he will rip your church apart, he will find your weakness and exploit that, he will lie about you, he will be happy to hit you at your weakest, most tired and most vulnerable. Satan will do anything to make you do what he wants.
You are making a huge mistake if you are trying to be kind to satan! And yet, it happens often. Let me give you, as a leader, three scenarios in which you are being kind to satan:
- Men leaders, you are being too kind to satan when you are not ruthless with the way you relate to the opposite sex. Do not leave traces of certain relationships in your life. If a woman even hints at being inappropriate with you, do not give them a second chance. They can be counselled by someone else. I mean no texting, no WhatsApping, no calling them, no Facebooking them, no going out for lunch with them. Be wise, there is a war on for you! Satan wants to destroy you! Do not be gentle with women like that. Do not be kind. I was once working at a church and some of my team (women) complained to the senior pastor and said “I was standoffish”. He wisely said “That’s a good thing, a worse thing would be he was not standoffish”.
- Do not be kind to satan by platforming your accusers. Oh there will always be people who accuse you, but do not platform them. Remove them as elders, take them off the rota, do not let them receive an offering, do not let them have access to your corporate social media accounts.
- When people leave your church offended and attack you as they leave, do not let them just walk back through the door as though nothing has happened. They will come back and rip you apart from within, they are bored at the lack of damage they can cause from outside, they are annoyed people are loyal to you and love you, and they think that coming back in will be the best way to attack you. Do not bring them back on staff, back into leadership, back into anything. Move really really slowly and watch the fruit. If they complain about it, you let them know that you are protecting your people.
- Do not trust people who have a habit of lying to you. I am not saying be unkind to the person, but you do not have to trust what they say. That is being kinder than Jesus!
Pray about every situation, every situation is different and when people fall they should be restored, but when people suddenly join satan’s team, you will have to be ruthless – you will have to be strong, you will have to stand for truth and stand for what you through the grace of God have built.