LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET
Splendid to have you here at Daily Bread to continue our study of 1 Samuel. Our study ended
last time with the congregation of Israel at Gilgal rejoicing over their victory
over Ammon and sort of a "renew"ing of the kingdom.
WHAT OCCURRED IN THE LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET AND WHY IS THE LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET IMPORTANT?
Here's something to
think about. When we think of the kings of the Bible, we tend to think of their
position as a holy thing, which, in a perfect world, it would be. What am I
getting at? Israel was God's chosen people. They were different. OTHER nations
had kings to govern them, and that's what Israel was seeking in a king ...
GOVERNment. Not a holy king to guide them in God's Law. But don't forget what
Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the LORD my God
commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess
it. Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your
understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these
statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding
people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them,
as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what
nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as
all this law, which I set before you this day?
They were a nation "so great" that God chose them for His own special people.
But even though they already had God's Law, which was divinely superior to any
other government that could possibly be implemented, it wasn't enough for them.
They weren't satisfied.
Let's talk about the "kings" and "government" topics a little more. In today's
era one would be hard pressed to say that people's incentive to elect any given
candidate is because of their likelihood to carry out God's will, but rather
because of the candidates probability of enforcing policies that would increase
the voters income level and comfort of living, and decrease the voters effort in
LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET LESSON WITH LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET EXPLANATION
Now, for the past four to five hundred years since the Exodus, the children of
Israel had been living under the "government" of God the King. They knew full
well that whenever they (the children of Israel and their forefathers) turned
away from the Lord, things went awry ... Just like He promised. They also knew
full well that whenever they sought the Lord and turned to Him, things went
incredibly well. To have stuck with GOD as King would have been the "holy" thing
Another thing to be
mindful of is that its easy for one to wonder in retrospect, why the children of
Israel didn't see what they were doing. Well, not only was it told by God that
they would be stiff-necked and backsliding, etc., etc., but we tend to lose
sight that these stories happened over generations of time. One would think that
people would learn from the mistakes of their ancestors, but as silly as it
sounds, people want to make their own mistakes, claiming that one can only learn
from their OWN errors. Yes, I know how prideful that sounds, but most people, if
they heard a story about something that happened to their great grand-dad, would
think many things before learning any kind of lesson from it. For instance:
Times have changed; people have changed; the circumstances are different; etc.,
It's almost like
people think that their own mistakes are like part of their own unique
personality ... As if mistakes make up who they are. Some sick psychologist (I
believe) or some other genius, even came up with the idea that mistakes "build
character." Man, I never read anything in the Bible like that! Who do you think
is more respectable in God's eyes, who do you think He views as having more
"character" ... A person that strives not to make mistakes or a person who
believes mistakes are some kind of prerogative? At any rate, the children of
Israel were no different than people today in that sense, and they had thousands
of years less hindsight than we do today.
you may have with yourself is, "Wait a minute ... They had judges didn't they?
How much different could it be to have a king? Well, you might answer this way:
In times of trouble, GOD decided when and who to send to judge (lead, protect
and guide) His people. That sure seems quite different than a king. Well ... You
remember all the things Samuel prophesied about the future kings back in
8. Quite different from any judges, wouldn't you agree? That's not to say that
there weren't any good kings. A king was as good as his faith in God. If he had
strong faith, the Lord blessed him.
It's no wonder that
Samuel (being a judge and all) was offended and upset at Israel's insistence on
having a king. Remember, Samuel's entire life was devoted to serving God, and
now he's old and overwhelmed with disappointment. At the same time, he loves
God's people. You would imagine this was a difficult time for him, and he
probably felt like his heart was being torn in two.
LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET INFORMATION WITH LIFE OF SAMUEL THE PROPHET MEANING
Israel at this celebration they're having, and testifies to them of his
integrity, which the people affirm. He reminds them of the Lord's saving Grace
since the Exodus despite the fact that they had forsaken God numerous times, and how
it was the Lord
that appointed all their deliverers up until king Nahash of Ammon threatened
them, and they demanded a king.
The prophet Samuel
told Israel, Fear the Lord and things will go well with you and your king, but
rebel against the Lord and His hand will be against you. As a sign I will call
to the Lord and He will send thunder and rain, so that you'll understand that
your wickedness is great in asking for a king.
And the Lord did indeed
send thunder and rain that day, and the people revered the Lord and Samuel.
Samuel assured the children of Israel that he would continue to pray for them
and teach them the good and right way.
1 Samuel 12:24-25
Only fear the LORD, and serve him in TRUTH with all your heart: for
consider how great things he hath done for you. But if ye shall still do
wickedly, ye shall be consumed, both ye and your king.
Hurry on back and we'll continue our study of 1 Samuel and find out what's next for
the children of Israel and their new king Saul, right here at Daily Bread.