Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611


First Samuel

First Samuel was taught by Dr. James Modlish


Chapter Eight


The Lord had been king in Israel from her inception, He had guided, nurtured, admonished, and cared for His people; but now the elders wanted a man to be their king, so that they could be like -the "other nations."

Their request was motivated by several factors:

[1]. Samuel's sons were something less than he;

[2]. the nation had so severely vacillated in every way during the rule of the Judges, that they wanted a more stable ruler;

[3]. Israel wanted to be like everyone else; certainly that was not God's intention (Ex. 19:5; Deut. 14:2; 26:18). As a result of the request upon Israel's part, we see the second major character Of the "Samuels" enter, his name is Saul. His name means "asked," "to inquire," "to demand." Samuel means - "asked of God."








It is a sobering thought to face the fact that a man of spiritual character and integrity of Samuel reared a pair of wayward sons. As we noted concerning the sons of Eli and Samuel, are noticeably absent from the texts. In contrast to this, we see the character of Hannah, Samuel's mother, playing such a significant part in the raising of the prophet.

There are numerous examples of father-son failures in the scriptures, which in any case, reinforces the doctrine of the free will of man. In some cases children brought up in the same home go forth in completely opposite directions.

Consider: Adam's boys, Cain, Abel and Seth; David's sons, Absalom and Solomon. The father of (Luke 15) had two sons, one went into the far country, the other did not. The kings of Israel illustrate the point most vividly: Hezekiah and Manasseh; Jotham and Ahaz, (2 Chron. 27:6; 28:2).

In (1 Sam. 2), we mentioned briefly some of the "besetting sins" of the ministry." Samuel's sons fell to the temptation of "filthy lucre."

(1 Tim. 3:3) disqualifies a man desirous of the office of a bishop, if he is "greedy of filthy lucre." Moses' father-in-law counseled Moses (Ex. 18:21) to provide "able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness…" (Ex. 23:8), "… thou shalt take no gift: for the gift blindeth the wise..." See (Prov. 29:4).

"Make us a king…like all the nations." The "grass always looks greener on the other side. Men are fickle, the "eyes of man are never satisfied." God never intended Israel to be like the other nations, he destined them to be a "peculiar people." "Be not conformed to this world," Paul told the Romans. John said, "Love not the world..." (1 Jn. 2:15); Peter said (1 Pet. 1:14), "...not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts..."



It is very difficult not to be offended when your counsel is ignored or flatly rejected. "The thing displeased Samuel...", yet in the discouragement of the moment, he fell to his knees and "prayed unto the Lord."

Jesus said in (Jn. 7:7), "The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth..." See (Jn. 15:18,19; 1 Jn. 3:13; Lk. 10:16; 21:17; Ex. 16:8). As a Christian there is a reproach to bear if you publicly identify yourself with the cross of Jesus Christ..."so do they also unto thee..." (vs. 8). Note Psalms 69:9; Romans 15:3.

Charlemagne once said, "the voice of the people is the voice of God," he would have made a good Communist. The Lord instructed Samuel to grant "the people" their wish. Here we see the permissive will of God in operation permission without sanction. In doing so "protest solemnly," Samuel! "A d Samuel told all the words of the Lord..."



It is difficult to accept the fact that God's warning was flatly rejected (vs. 19). Of course this wasn't the first time and it wouldn't be the last. Note the warning Moses left in (Deut. 17:14-20) "…set him king ... whom the Lord shall choose" (vs. 15). The Lord said in (Hos. 13:10), "I will be thy King...

Although Saul is not mentioned by name until the following chapter, the manner of this king is set forth here as a type of Anti-Christ. Saul is one of the greatest pictures of Antichrist in the Bible; he's anointed; the people's choice; the adversary of David (type of Christ); and he's a king given by the permissive will of God.

We are bluntly reminded of the expensive cost of the "government of the people, by the people, etc. Note the selfish manner of the king; "He will take" (vs. 11), "himself, his, his, his" " nauseum." "He will take your daughters, fields, seed, menservants, maidservants, and your sheep, your king which ye shall have chosen... (Deut. 17:15). "Ye shall cry out ... the Lord will not hear..." (Prov. 1:28). People usually get the kind of government and leadership that they deserve. Contrasting this false Christ is the true Christ, the Lord Jesus, he was a giver, "Come unto me all ye that labour ... and I will give you rest." (Matt. 11:28). "My sheep hear my voice ... and I give unto them eternal life..." (Jn. 10:27,28). There are two kinds of-people in this world, the "givers" and the "getters."



I suppose the text of (Rom. 13:1-4) has puzzled many generations. "…the powers that be are ordained of God." Here we have a great illustration of this truth. The selection of this king is not the Lord's idea (Hos. 8:4), yet he instructs Samuel to "hearken unto their voice." (Neh. 9:37) says that, "Kings ...have dominion over our bodies ... cattle at their pleasure..." Note (1 Pet. 2:13-17). If a king becomes a "terror to good works" and steps out of the boundaries of the authority that God has laid down for him, he then loses the right to rule and expect obedience "..we ought to obey God rather than men ... " (Acts 5:29).

The Israelites were right in their estimation and judgment of Samuel's sons, but they followed the wrong course of action. They thought a man could do what God could not! "Give us a king to go out before us and fight our battles!" The motive and method is in question. (Ex. 15:3) says, "the Lord is a man of war." (2 Chron. 20:15), "...the battle is not yours but God's." The personalization of this desire was not found in Saul, it was found in God's choice for king, David (1 Sam. 17:32). As he went forward into battle against Goliath, David proclaimed, "the battle is the Lord's" (1 Sam. 17:47). (2 Chron. 32:8), "With him is an arm-of the flesh; but with us is the Lord our God to help us, and to fight our battles..." Hezekiah comforted the children of Israel. When it comes time to go to battle one cannot afford not to have the Lord in his camp, the battle is the Lord's! (Josh. 5: 13-15)

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