Tuesday February 13, 2024
Scripture: 1 Samuel 8: When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as Israel’s leaders. 2 The name of his firstborn was Joel and the name of his second was Abijah, and they served at Beersheba. 3 But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice. 4 So all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah. 5 They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not follow your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.” 6 But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. 7 And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. 8 As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. 9 Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.”
Meditation: When the people of God take cues from the secular culture around them over and against the Word of God, the result is without question always degeneration, corruption and bondage.
– The following words clearly reveal what was truly motivating the hearts of the people of God, “now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.”
– It was apparent from the preceding history of Israel as depicted in Exodus, Joshua, Judges and 1 Samuel that the people of God had a love affair with the immoral nations around them, therefore, it was inevitable that they would one day ask for a king, “like all the other nations have”.
– But we are no different today. Today, among the people of God there is constant movement to adopt the practices, moral values or lack thereof, and lifestyles of “all the other nations”; as well as the hedonism of the secular culture around us.
– What this passage also teaches us is that we should be careful of what we ask for because we might regret it when we get it. I see this also playing out in congregations all over western society as pandering to the godless and immoral values of the secular culture is causing the disintegration of many well established, holiness birthed denominations. Churches are finding that when they get what they are asking for it is anything but good.
– Let’s be honest, these things only happen when the people of God make it their intent to throw off the sovereign rule of God for their lives. Instead of living our lives as those who have been created in the image and likeness of God, we instead make it our goal to reinvent a god created in our own image and likeness to suit our own depraved world views. However, like Israel, we soon discover there are terrible consequences when we achieve our desires. Samuel remained true to the Lord even as the nation sought to establish a governance of their own making.