April 1, 2001
I Samuel 8-10
v. 5 – “Give us a king to judge us” -make us a king
to judge us like the nations.
v. 6 - “But the thing displeased Samuel” - they
had determined to have a king without
consulting the will of God.
Samuel in grief, Lot was vexed, I mourn!
“Samuel prayed unto the Lord” – leaving the
decision to Him.
We should pray, I have prayed. The Lord at work
thwarting liberalism taking it in its own craftiness.
How can a religion so demonstratively Divine, so
designed for our best interests temporal & spiritual,
be so slow in progress is a puzzle to many.
Samuel was deeply wounded, not by the allusion to
his sons but to their aversion to God’s ways & timing.
Sympathy with God is one of the natural fruits of piety!
Deut. 17:14-20 Compare with Phinehas’ wife
Phil Brand’s mother Spurgeon’s mother
Our testimony – “Just and true are thy ways, thou King
v. 7 – “they have rejected me” – don’t take it personally.
They wanted no theocratic king whose first duty would
be to maintain the Mosaic Law, all they wanted was a
soldier who would put an end to their state of anarchy.
God is patient, “He remembered that they were but
flesh; a wind that passeth away, & cometh not again.
Apparently, men misinterpret this patience of God as to
as evidence that they are correct in their position.
We can only pray and be the salt of the earth -
“if the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous
Thus the patience & faith of the saints – they often can
do little more than “protest” against the unbelief and
waywardness of the world. A whole nation on one hand
and Samuel on the other does not convert error into truth
or folly into wisdom.
Men may choose a different course but must bear the
consequences of a dwarfed Christianity.
A desire to be like the nations & a less direct connection
with God. Piety is at a low ebb when the church hankers
and desires to pattern a life pursued by the Christless.
How far the Church can safely conform to the world is
a dangerous question. (Living on the Fringe?)The question
should be, How can the Church best fashion the world to its
own pure and lofty standard.
Preferring to live like heathen nations, what had regal
parade to do with righteousness which alone exalts a
“Righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is a reproach to
any people.” Proverbs 14:34
Degeneration occurs when a church from sheer self-will
and yearning after the outwardly sensational, seeks
to promote private or public ends pertaining to their
Christian calling, by anything not spiritual in character
v. 18 – “ye shall cry out in that day” - the ten tribes
eventually snapped the tie which bound them
to Jehovah; they discarded the ark and all
the services of the sanctuary, & were content
with so poor an imitation of them that all
piously disposed men were compelled to abandon
their lands and migrate to Judea. II Chron. 11:16
The majority of their kings, not being held in check by
Religious influences were tyrants.
SOCIETY NOT HELD IN CHECK TODAY flipped
over obsession with the phantom separation of Church & state.
Israel is going to have their own way but “He gave them their
request; but sent leaness into their soul.” Psalm 106:15
v. 19 – “they refused to obey……….but, we will have a
king over us” – revolting from Jehovah and the
rigorousness of the Mosaic Law.
v. 1 – “a mighty man of power” – from an affluent family
his ancestor must have been one of the 600 who
escaped to the rock Rimmon. Judges 20:45
The Benjamites were about wiped out because of idolatry.
The last three chapters of Judges are full of idolatry,
national corruption and confusion.
Saul’s noble appearance & stature were well fitted to
impress a semi-barbarous people who were better able
to form an estimate of his physical qualities than the
high mental and moral gifts of Samuel.
The people chose their leader by outward appearance.
Physically, Saul looked like a king but he was not a king
at heart. He was an actor that played the part.
Vernon McGee says that “this outward appearance” is what
puts the United States in such a dangerous position today.
The influence of Hollywood and television. We choose men
by the way they look instead of character. We need an X-ray
more than television.
McGee also said, Saul is out looking for asses of his father,
the asses of Israel are looking for a king.
What a commentary on the human race.
Lost in numbers, the youth of today wants to be a star
Here is an excerpt from the Pulpit Commentary written
about 150 years ago.
The chief motive for desiring a king being craving
for outward display, and a corresponding dislike
and distrust of God’s more unseen & immediate
direction of national affairs, it was evidently possible
for steps to be taken which would ruin Israel’s
prosperity. The narrative relates to us a series of
Divinely-governed events, apparently trivial, which
prevented that calamity & insured national safety.
It revealed a moral tendency which, if fed by appropriate
nourishment, would lead to frustration of Israel’s true work
in the world.
God mercifully regarded their condition & governed their
tendencies in such a way as to make the best of a bad case.
This is more or less true of all men not yet judicially abandoned.
There is enough of evil in men to destroy them speedily but for
the restraining hand of God.
Haven’t we all been chastened, controlled, guided to things
better than we have chosen.
The daily mercies of God are more than can be numbered
and come because He delighteth in mercy, not because we
"Blessed be the Lord who daily loadeth us with benfits" - Ps. 68:19
They come as links in a chain of causation, events affecting
individuals and families governed by some Divine reason.
When in Heaven we at last come to see what God hath
wrought, and we review all life’s checkered course and
see the workings of the Spirit, we can sing a new song
with great significance, “Not unto us, O Lord, not unto
us, but unto thy name give glory”.
v. 5 – “lest my father” – good family evidences.
Saul’s servant was more acquainted with Samuel
v. 8 – “fourth part of a shekel” – incident of this
servant having a coin - reminds of Peter
at the bidding of Christ casting a hook and
catching a fish with a coin to pay taxes with.
v. 12 – “He came today to the city” – Compare Ruth
who happed upon the field of Boaz.
v. 15 – “Now Jehovah told Samuel in his ear”
v. 16 – Saul’s office essentially military. He belonged
to the most warlike tribe of Israel & his country
was the seat of perpetual combat with the
“Their cry is come unto me” - Compare Ex. 2:23 and
our cries – Luke 18:7
v. 25 – “communed with Saul upon the house” –
Samuel anxious to impress on Saul’s mind
the great principles of theocratic government
and the nature of the remedies for Israel’s
recovery from its present misery.
“He spake unto him the Word of God”
Apparently, this did little good – so often this has
been ignored down through history.
While on the human side, Saul proved not unworthy
of a royal crown, in his relation to God he failed
because he let self-will & earthly policy prevail over
obedience and trust in God.
Vs. 25-27 – Public Affairs
Great calamities have been brought on communities
from the predominance in state affairs of irreligious
principles and unprincipled men.
When the “rulers of Sodom, men of godless lives, are
left to have charge of affairs, and men are in control
of whom you would not want to leave your private
affairs, disaster has come and ever will come.
California ruling this week against Bible clubs.
There should not be a day on which a Christian does
not bear all the interests of his country on his heart,
and give them some direct or indirect support.
In the struggle between good & evil forces in society,
there are opportunities for every righteous man to
do his best in securing a righteousness in the state.
Good Christians are Good Citizens, something that
the liberal left does not recognize.
The question is, how much of national trouble, sorrow,
and poverty is connected with neglect on the part of
the moral element of society.
Does love, righteousness, truth and peace mean more
to you than social customs or party ties?
v. 1 - Samuel anoints Saul & gives him three signs
that his appointment is from God.
Abraham had the support of occasional manifestations.
Moses was given signs.
Christ promised proofs when sending out His disciples.
Arrangements were made to support their faith & duty.
Modern servants of God can point to promises fulfilled.
There is a consciousness of a power not their own!
v. 6 – “The Spirit of Jehovah will come upon thee”
“and thou….shalt be turned into another man”
v. 7 – “God is with thee” – success is sure
v. 8 – Go down to Gilgal & wait – Israel’s war of
independence from the Philistines must begin
with religious rites.
v. 9 – God gave him another heart and all those signs
came to pass that day.
v.10 – “he prophesied” – given the highest & rarest
of gifts, that of direct inspiration.
v. 18 – God had always done for them the very thing
which they desired of a king.
Their deliverance had been made dependent upon
their own conduct; they were required to repent of
their sins and purge the land from idolatry.
What they really wanted was national independence
freed from this condition and secured by an
organization of their military resources.
Heard this one before: we want a good economy stupid,
not morality stupid. The Bible plainly teaches that they
cannot be separated!
The self-willed character of Israel’s conduct.
v. 19 – God granted their request though they had
Another chance is given to retreat if they willed.
Providence raises up a voice or circumstance which,
before a final step is taken sounds the last warning
and creates a consciousness of unchained responsibility.
The very first step is attended with embarrassment.
All nature is at war with wrong.
v. 25 – “laid it before Jehovah” – what a theocratic
king ought to be.
v. 26 – “whose hearts God had touched”
“but the children of Belial” – the depraved section
of the people, the ones prone to disapprove of
anything not done solely by the themselves.
The example of Saul
The example of Jesus: He did not strive, nor cry,
nor lift up His voice in the streets.
He was meek and lowly in heart and He knew
what was in man.