Finished 1 Samuel. I’ve been trying to think of an erudite and/or pithy comment to post but this book seems to end in the middle of the story. It made me wonder if our current break between 1st and 2nd Samuel may be artificial in that the original story did not break where it does. Apparently, the Septuagint divide Samuels and Kings into four books of “Kingdoms” so that doesn’t help much. My guess is that these books are compilations of various historical accounts which would explain the “choppiness” in the narrative.
Be that as it may, 1Samuel gives an account of three men of God: Samuel, Saul, and David. Samuel was devoted to God before he was conceived and grew up to be a great prophet who had a personal relationship with God such that God spoke directly to him. Samuel was used by God to anoint both Saul and David the first two Kings over Israel.
I don’t think Saul wanted to be king. He didn’t tell people what Samuel told him and hid on the day of his coronation. The people rejected God as their King in favor of a man like other kings. That is what they got in Samuel; a neurotic with self confidence issues who ultimately chose the people over God, much to his demise and the nation’s as well. Part of his problem seems to be that he nevertheless fully accepted his anointing. He just wanted the people to like him. And he looked good and very kingly.
David, didn’t seek the kingship either, but he trusted God and strove to do what was right in God’s eyes instead of the people’s. The Bible tells us that he was handsome but not kingishly spectacularly good looking like Saul. Saul was the people’s man, whereas David was God’s man.
Who’s judgment do you think is better?
Food for thought.