[b-hebrew] The 'need' for a king?

JBarach at aol.com JBarach at aol.com
Wed Aug 15 02:37:22 EDT 2007

In a message dated 8/14/2007 9:26:03 P.M. Pacific Daylight Time,  
rosewalk at concentric.net writes:

And, the  reason that  Samuel responded to our request for a king with  
disappointment and anger, is because we requested a king only " so  
that we could be like all the surrounding nations" - instead of 
asking  for a righteous king who would lead us, inspire us and set an 
example of  selfless and wholehearted service to G-d, we asked only to 
imitate other  nations - THAT is why Samuel got angry

But in Deuteronomy 17:14-15, it seems to allow the people to want to set a  
king over them like the nations around them.
    When you come to the land which YHWH your God
    is giving you, and you possess it, and you  dwell
    in it, and you say, "I will set a king over me  like
    all the nations that are around me," you  shall
    surely set a king over you whom YHWH your
    God chooses....
In that passage, it doesn't sound as if the desire to have a king like  the 
nations around Israel is necessarily a bad thing.  Rather, Israel is  told that 
when they want a king like the nations, they must pick only the king  that 
YHWH chooses, a brother, not a foreigner, and the king must act in a  certain 
way, not multiplying horses or causing the people to return to Egypt to  
multiply horses, not multiplying wives, not multiplying silver and gold, but one  who 
writes out the law, and so forth.
I've been inclined to think that desiring a king like the nations was the  
problem in 1 Samuel, but as I read Deuteronomy 17, I'm not sure that that  
interpretation will stand.
John Barach    (541) 531-2906
Pastor, Reformation Covenant Church (CREC)
706 Beekman Avenue
Medford, OR   97501
_http://barach.us_ (http://barach.us) 
_http://rccso.com_ (http://rccso.com) 

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