By consulting a medium (1 Samuel 28:7), Saul not only made a poor choice, he got bad advice – “bad” in the sense of evil. His use of witchcraft was a violation of God’s advice and ultimately led to his death.
“So Saul died for his unfaithfulness; he was unfaithful to the LORD in that he did not keep the command of the LORD, and also consulted a medium, seeking guidance, and did not seek guidance from the LORD. Therefore the LORD slew him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.” (1Chronicles 10:13-14)
God has spoken clearly against seeking spirituality and guidance apart from Him. Peter referenced this principle very early in New Testiment time. Hear it, because it is still very applicable:
“Moses said, ‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet (Jesus) from your brethren as he raised me up. You shall listen to Him in whatever he tells you. And it shall be that every soul that does not listen to the prophet shall be destroyed from the people.'” (Acts 3:22-23)
God also lets us hear this principle as Paul instructs young Timothy:
“Timothy, keep safe what has been entrusted to your care (God’s Word). Avoid profane talk and foolish arguments of what some people wrongly call “Knowledge.” For some have claimed to possess it, and as a result they have lost the way of faith.” (1 Timothy 6:20-21)
In our time, as has always been the case, tons of very popular and even enticing bad spiritual advice is virtually everywhere. The “itching ears” Paul speaks of in 2 Timothy 4:3 are still open to hear this bad advice. Firm faith and devotion to God are required if a believer is to listen exclusively to God for His advice to us. He has kept it available, as He said He would, only in His new covenant, that we call the New Testament.
For the purpose of remaining wrapped in God’s amazing grace, and avoiding the “ruin” God warns about, may God help us keep our commitment to be a people of His Word. May it be that we become so familiar with His pure Word that we are able to quickly distinguish “bad advice” from outside sources and shun it.