7 Then Saul attacked the Amalekites all the way from Havilah to Shur, near the eastern border of Egypt. 8 He took Agag king of the Amalekites alive, and all his people he totally destroyed with the sword. 9 But Saul and the army spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves[1] and lambs-everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.

Matthew Henry's Commentary on 1 Samuel 15:7-9

Commentary on 1 Samuel 15:1-9

(Read 1 Samuel 15:1-9)

The sentence of condemnation against the Amalekites had gone forth long before, Revelation 18:4. As the commandment had been express, and a test of Saul's obedience, his conduct evidently was the effect of a proud, rebellious spirit. He destroyed only the refuse, that was good for little. That which was now destroyed was sacrificed to the justice of God.