Israel Asks for a King
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.”
Israel wanted a king. Samuel’s sons were not fit to lead and the 12 tribes had difficulties between each other. They thought a king would unite them. They wanted to be like the neighboring nations. They did not realize that having a king would cause them to forget God was their real leader. It was not wrong to want a king to lead the nation, but it was wrong to reject God. They were looking to human strength to lead the nation, when in reality only God’s strength will bring flourishing. Are you running on your own strength? Is God your leader? If you have been floundering in life, make a change. Put God first in all that you do, and see if your life flourishes.