Scripture: 1 Samuel 8:1-22
Key verse: (7) And the Lord said to Samuel, “Listen to the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them.”
Reflection: After the Hebrew slaves were freed from Egypt and journeyed through the wilderness they settled in the land that God has promised to their ancestor Abraham. The nation of Israel began to form under the leadership of priests, prophets, and judges. When the prophet Samuel grew old, the elders of the people came to him and asked him to appoint a king to govern over them. Samuel knew the request smelled foul and would lead to all sorts of trouble. Apparently he felt personally slighted, offended, and betrayed.
God assured Samuel that he wasn’t being rejected, God was the one the people were rejecting. The people of Israel wanted a king like all the other nations around them. They were probably anxious that other nations might conquer them and destroy them. They were hopeful that a king would be a barrier between Israel and destruction.They were hopeful that a king would protect them and solve their problems.
Appointing a king meant rejecting God. Trusting God for protection was difficult to do. Trusting God to guide and lead was frightening. I wonder how we might be rejecting God and asking for our own “king.” When do we want a quick fix or an easy answer? When do we look for a human response to something only God can really provide?
Prayer: Almighty God, I confess that I look for immediate tangible answers rather than trusting in you. Teach me to place my trust in you always. Through Christ I pray. Amen.
Author: Millie Snyder
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].