Israel Wants a King — Israel rejects God as their king.
Reading 1: 1 Samuel 7
Reading 2: 1 Samuel 8
Reading 3: Hosea 13:9-11
With the Ark back in Israel, Samuel becomes Israel’s judge.
He commands them to get rid of their idols and Asherah poles. Worship of this fertility goddess was widespread at many points of Israel’s history, just as pornography, prostitution and sexual sin are common today. All these things are sin because they distract from God and defile people made in God’s image. Even if promoted as the exercise of free-will, they lead instead to bondage because true freedom is only found in God and in living as God created us to live.
Samuel had a similar problem to Eli before him – his sons were ungodly, and this time the people of Israel demand a king to replace their judge. Despite Samuel’s warnings, they insist on having a king to take advantage of them. God explains to Samuel that this is really a rejection of God Himself.
In the same way, if we insist on our own way, demanding the “right” to choose for ourselves what is right and wrong, we will be rejecting God too, just as clearly as Adam and Eve rejected God’s rule when they chose to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Whenever you and I stray from willing obedience to God and choose instead to make our own determination of rightness and direction, we will end up far from God.
Instead, today, let’s welcome Jesus as our King!
Have a great day!