GOD: “…it is me they are rejecting…They don’t want me to be their king any longer.”
PEOPLE: “We want to be like the nations around us.
Our king will judge us and lead us into battle.”
1 Samuel 8:7, 20
They don’t want Me to be their king any longer! Ouch--talk about rejection! In fact, God said that since He delivered His people from Egypt, they had continually abandoned Him.
But God lovingly warned the Israelites what an earthly king would do--take their sons and daughters, take their best fields and vineyards, take their servants and best animals, and take one-tenth of their harvests and flocks. They would be the king’s slaves.
These people they knew well the stories of their ancestors who were slaves under a king who knew only how to take. And yet, they still wanted to be like those nations! They demanded a king to judge them, even though Moses had said, “What great nation has decrees as righteous and fair as I am giving you?” (Deut. 4:8) They wanted a king to lead them into battle, even though their enemies already quaked in fear because Almighty GOD was their leader.
We shake our heads at such a crazy choice. Why would they want to serve a king who would take all they owned, instead of serving THE King who would give all they needed? Why trade relationship with THE King who cared for them, for a king who would care for himself?
But I wonder, do I ever make the same trade?