The Rise of Israel

One of my prayers for the E-100 is that by reading Scripture in this broad way, you will begin to see the narrative or “thread” that ties the Bible together from Genesis to Revelation.  Consider the concept of a king:

  • God’s people are ruled by a king (Pharaoh) in Egypt for hundreds of years; a king who enslaved and mistreated them.
  • God’s people are delivered from the king of Egypt by whom?……their king in heaven!
  • But wait…..Judges 21:25 provides a summary statement about the attitude of the people even after this deliverance…“In those days Israel had no king; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”  (Can anyone say Genesis 3!?!)
  • The people made themselves king over their own lives, but this doesn’t work out too well as they continue to be oppressed by foreign nations.
  • So, this statement is made in the reading this week….”when the people said, ‘Give us a king to lead us,’ this displeased Samuel, so he prayed to the Lord.  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.” (1 Samuel 8:6-7)

This question of “Who is King?” is one of the primary threads that ties the biblical narrative together.  So, here’s some questions I’d love to hear your response to:

  • Why do you believe that the people of Israel rejected God’s authority through the prophet Samuel, asking for a human king instead?
  • In what ways to do you see people (not exluding ourselves!) rejecting the authority of our king in heaven, doing what is “right in our own eyes” instead?
  • As Israel did with King Saul, in what ways do we voluntarily enslave ourselves to a “king” resulting in harm when our king in heaven desires to give us blessing and freedom?

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

Pastor Clint

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One thought on “The Rise of Israel

  1. I wonder how sometimes we too, insist on something in prayer from God and then experience the results as less than a blessing when we get what we asked for. We ahave been encouraged to be careful in what we ask for, we might get it. There is a Biblical principle that God sometimes gives us the answer to our prayer or gives us what we wanted but then sends leanness or wilderness to our soul. I know that sometimes I have gotten waht I asked for but what I got seemed different. The Israelites insisted on a King and got the answer to their prayers. Saul was the answer to their prayers but also so much more than that. In asking for a King the Israelites really were asking to be allowed to be like all the other nations. Do we as Christians want that same thing; to be blessed by God but also to get to be like the “world” around us? Judges and the early kings reminds us to really be careful in insisting on our own way we might just get it. Blessings on the lenten path.

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