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Study In 1 Samuel Presentation 07. Israel Wants A King Chapter 8v1-28 Presentation 07.

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Presentation on theme: "Study In 1 Samuel Presentation 07. Israel Wants A King Chapter 8v1-28 Presentation 07."— Presentation transcript:

1 Study In 1 Samuel Presentation 07

2 Israel Wants A King Chapter 8v1-28 Presentation 07

3 Introduction In order to understand the background for Israel's request for a king we need to remind ourselves of the form of administration that currently existed in Israel. Samuel was a circuit judge 7v16 who also operated a priestly and prophetic function. He further provided any human political leadership that was required. It must have been a great source of sadness to Samuel to discover that his sons did not walk in his ways. Some have asked, 'Was Samuel away from home too much and was he so engaged in his duties that he did not give adequate time to his children?' Presentation 07

4 Introduction Some Christians have almost abandoned their responsibility towards their families and as a result their children have rebelled against both their parents’ faith and God. Sometimes parents use Christian activity as a convenient excuse to avoid what they consider to be the more mundane task of child rearing. Parents need constant reminders that their children are a primary responsibility given them by GOD. That said we are not told why Samuel's children did not walk in his steps. Presentation 07

5 Family Problems There are no absolute guarantees as far as the behaviour of the children of God's people are concerned. There is often a lot of unnecessary guilt in the hearts of parents whose children do not turn out the way they had hoped and prayed for. This should neither produce complacency on the part of the parent nor diminish their confidence of God's covenant of grace, a covenant that encourages believing parents to hold onto God for their children. Presentation 07

6 Family Problems There may well have been later repentance on the part of Samuel's children but the scripture is silent on this matter. What is surprising is that given their spiritual state, Samuel allowed his sons to hold positions of responsibility. It seems clear from v3 that they operated in some sort of judicial capacity. This reminds us of Samuel’s early boyhood experience, when he witnessed Eli's family mismanagement. It is challenging to think how easily we can retain blind spots as far as members of our own family are concerned. Presentation 07

7 Give Us A King The behaviour of Samuel's sons provide the elders of Israel with an excuse to press their claim for a move from a theocracy to a monarchy. But by so doing they play down Samuel's role and the benefits he had brought them as a nation. Did they not think God was capable of raising up another judge like Samuel if he so wished? Samuel's sons’ behaviour is a very weak argument for rejecting the theocracy. The real reason the elders wanted a king was in order to be like the other nations. This reluctance of the people of God to be different from the world is still with us! Presentation 07

8 In practice Israel were rejecting not just the role of prophet-judge from their community but Samuel himself. Rejection is a hard life experience to cope with. How does God deal with the potential psychological effect this rejection could have on Samuel? He tells him that it was not so much the messenger but the One whom he represented who was being rejected. Presentation 07 Give Us A King

9 Think of the way in which Jesus prepared his disciples for rejection in their ministry. He told them, “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first”, John 15v18. He did not want them to be taken off guard or view their experience as inexplicable. The route of rejection should not be viewed as unusual. Why? Because it is an expression of the antipathy that natural fallen man has towards the authority of God and to the unsettling nature of his truth. Presentation 07 Give Us A King

10 That said, in Christian work nothing is more devastating than rejection. Jonathan Edwards was a godly New England minister greatly involved in the C18 th New England revival. Under his ministry many came to faith. He has since been acclaimed one of the greatest theologians born in North America. And yet despite years of faithful, fruitful ministry, to his great personal hurt, he was rejected as minster by the very congregation whom he had served faithfully for many years. We need to place rejection in the perspective of these passages. Presentation 07 Give Us A King

11 We need to place rejection in this passage in this broader perspective. Israel had made up her mind. She wanted a king end of story! Her ears were stopped to any argument no matter how resonable. Samuel quickly realised that no entreaty on his part could alter this stubborn and determined position. A prolonged entreaty would only have aroused a growing resentment. Samuel therefore agrees but under protest. Presentation 07

12 Give Us A King There are times in the work of God when a leader will agree to a course of action that he knows will not serve the best interests of those he is leading but he sees that they will not be won round to a different position. So agrees with their decision having explained why he is against it and what he considers the implications of it to be. There is a frightening principle illustrated here. It is possible to be so determined to have something that is going to be bad for us that God says, "All right you can have it but at a cost”. Cf. Ps. 106.15 Presentation 07

13 Choice With A Consequence The cost to Israel of having a king is now spelled out. It would involve personal, material and spiritual impoverishment 8v11-18. This does not deter them! The elders of Israel were interested in the FUNCTION of the monarchy, i.e. they wanted a political leader who was militarily astute, a rallying point for the nation not least in the face of the Philistine threat, a figure they could look to with pride. Presentation 07

14 Samuel however stresses the NATURE of monarchy and you will notice that the key word here is "take" v11-17. Different passages in 1Samuel give quite different views of the monarchy. 1 Sam. 8 is scathing of kingship and in 12v19 the people acknowledge that they had done evil in asking for a king but clearly in 1 Sam. 10v24, 27 and 11v14 a much more favourable view of kingship is taken. Presentation 07 Choice With A Consequence

15 Conclusion This apparent paradox is resolved as we go through the book and see that it is both the motivation of Israel and their conception of a king that is under criticism. There is a reluctance to humble themselves under God's rule. Note that God's choice of David is set over against someone who was clearly the people's choice - Saul. It is as though God is saying, ‘You have seen what a king who satisfies your criteria for kingship has done to the nation now see what a man after my own heart can do’. Presentation 07

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