A Shocking Postmortem Report
1 Chronicles 10:13 “Saul died because he was unfaithful to the LORD; he did not keep the word of the LORD and even consulted a medium for guidance,
(10:14) and did not inquire of the LORD. So the LORD put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David son of Jesse.”
Postmortem Report is done to establish the cause of death of an individual. This report helps those who study diseases (pathologists) to help prevent further deaths from the same disease. This report helps those who investigate crimes to establish how a person died and who is responsible for that death, in order for justice to be done. This report clarifies under what circumstances a person died in order to put to rest speculation of foul play or establish ill motive. A shocking postmortem Report is one whose results were never expected by the pathologists or the public.
1 Chronicles 10:2 “The Philistines pressed hard after Saul and his sons, and they killed his sons Jonathan, Abinadab and Malki-Shua.
(10:3) The fighting grew fierce around Saul, and when the archers overtook him, they wounded him.
(10:4) Saul said to his armor-bearer, “Draw your sword and run me through, or these uncircumcised fellows will come and abuse me.” But his armor-bearer was terrified and would not do it; so Saul took his own sword and fell on it.
(10:5) When the armor-bearer saw that Saul was dead, he too fell on his sword and died.
(10:6) So Saul and his three sons died, and all his house died together.”
King Saul’s postmortem report is shocking because we thought from earlier verses (1 Chronicles 10 :2-6), that he died of suicide after sustaining arrow injuries. King Saul’s postmortem report is shocking because we thought the one who killed him is either Philistine archers or suicide, but the report ignores all that. This postmortem report therefore puts to question all past postmortem reports and we are tempted to revisit other past deaths. This postmortem report brings in a new cause of death that we have consistently ignored or downplayed. It is a shocking postmortem report.
What further shocks is that it is a report by the best pathologist of all time. The report cannot even be doubted on the basis of who performed the postmortem. All past postmortems have been done and even today are being done by inferior pathologists compared to this one. This pathologist is God, to whom all knowledge is ascribed and nothing is hidden. He can’t be wrong. It is a shocking postmortem report.
While on the surface it seems it is Philistine archers who struck King Saul with arrows and later on he took his own life, the Bible reports that, it wasn’t the cause of death. The actual cause of death is that King Saul was unfaithful to the LORD. God killed him. Not Philistines and not suicide. A shocking postmortem report.
King Saul was unfaithful to God who gives life. He ignored the word of God by which the whole universe was created and is sustained. “Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from God.” – Matthew 4:4. He ignored the word of God that gives life more than physical food. King Saul knew the word of God but he didn’t keep it. He was a hearer but not a doer of the word (James 1:22-25). He was like many who attend church and read the Bible, but never live according to what they are taught or know. If this is a common practice, and it caused Saul’s death, couldn’t it have caused more past and present deaths than we know? It is a shocking postmortem report.
King Saul’s other cause of death is that he consulted a medium for guidance, instead of God. He went to the witch of Endor to make inquiries (1 Samuel 28). Don’t we have people who also consult diviners, magicians, palm readers, astrologers, zodiac signs, stars in relation to dates of birth, people who purchase love potions, good luck charms, etc. These practices are fatal. Innocent as they seem, they caused King Saul’s death and they still cause death. Ignoring to trust God and putting your faith in these practices that purport to tell the future or manipulate it in your favor, is fatal. It killed Saul and still kills many and postmortem reports don’t show. This is a shocking postmortem report.
God killed King Saul, but all along he was foolishly not afraid of God, instead he was afraid of the Philistines. Matthew 10:28 “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Luke 12:4 “I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.
(12:5) But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.” While King Saul was afraid of the Philistines, he forgot to fear and reverence God who too can and does kill. We have so many people today who fear everything that causes disease, and they fear criminals and terrorists, but they don’t fear God. This postmortem report should add the fear of God in our list of things to fear, and perhaps, we may rethink our relationship with God. This postmortem report shows that it is foolish to fear everything and everyone and not fear God.
We fear enemies and we get weapons to protect ourselves, but we forget God. We burglar proof our homes and get round the clock security, and forget that God can’t be stopped. We fear diseases and we adopt even crazy healthful practices to try to evade death but we forget God. We preach good health messages and we listen a lot to causes of cancer and other lifestyle diseases, but we care less about repentance, baptism, re-baptism and a good relationship with God. We easily adopt to any practice and herbs and exercise and practice that though unverified is purported to prevent disease and death. But we can hardly change our place and practice of worship that is outright wrong and contrary to the Bible. We find it easier to be vegetarian in order to prevent disease and death, than to keep Saturday as the true biblical sabbath and consequently please God who grants good life. We have people who are so faithful to the gym and jogging hours but are hardly faithful to attend worship. We fear cancer more than adultery. We fear terrorists more than breaking the biblical Sabbath. We fear cardiac diseases more than hate. Yet these things we don’t fear offend God and keep causing death and aren’t captured in routine postmortem reports. This is a shocking postmortem report.
Our concern is more of getting quality life from what we eat and drink. Yet the focus of our eating and drinking should never be avoiding cancer, diabetes, hypertension, etc. Focus of our eating and drinking should be to glorify God whether in sickness or good health. Didn’t Job glorify God in his sickness? God’s glory is a priority over and above our obsession with eating right to prevent disease and death. Live according to His will and be His people fully. 1 Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” Our first priority in life should be to glorify God by doing His will. We still need to follow healthful practices and live right, but they should not be a priority over faith or be an end in themselves.
This shocking postmortem report should inform our emphasis of the programmes we mount regularly and the books and merchandise we prefer to sell most and the content we share on social media. The Spiritual is consistently ignored even by Christians, and instead health fads take its place, yet it is the greatest cause of death, and at the end of the world, it will be the only cause of death for billions of people in Hell. Hell fires will not spare the physically fit and vegetarians. Hell fires will not be roasting cancer patients, and those who are diabetic or those with lifestyle diseases. Hell fires will cook those who like King Saul have been unfaithful to God and His word. Take note that ignoring healthful living too is ignoring God’s word. Ignoring healthful living will end you up in Hell. But the key reason will not be that you ignored healthful living, but that you ignored the word of God on healthful living. Healthful living is not the only word of God. If you ignore any other word of God and cling to healthful living, you will still end up in Hell. We should be concerned that many more people will die in Hell, than for any other reason that we seem to prioritise today.
Contraceptives, condoms can prevent pregnancies and sexually transmitted illnesses but not the mass death in Hell due to the sin of adultery and fornication. Amazingly for many believers the focus is on pregnancies and sex related diseases, without fear of Hell. If this postmortem report is anything to go by then we need to know that what is killing the youths today may look like disease, drugs and crimes, but it is lack of God in their life. This postmortem report should inform our message and practice in view of preventing death of many in Hell as opposed to our current focus. It is a shocking postmortem report.
The cause of death and failure everyday is not what we have been thinking it is, it has everything to do with whether we relate well with God or not. May God help us to be faithful to Him and His word, may death be ultimately preventable by eternal life, may success from God be ours daily in Jesus name. Amen! (C)firstname.lastname@example.org (do not delete any part of this post, including this. You are free to share these posts but don’t edit the authorship or content… thank you and be blessed!)