1 Samuel 8 | Countering Conformity

by | Dec 18, 2020

READ 1 Samuel 8

Appoint a king to judge us the same as all the other nations have. (1 Samuel 8:5)

After centuries of life under the judges (where the Israelites repeatedly turned away from God, were disciplined, repented, then were restored), the people have had enough. They ask Samuel to give them a king. This is a personal affront to God, who says, “They have rejected me as their king” (8:7).

Why? God had already promised them a king. Multiple times! So why would he take offense to their request for him to fulfill his promise? Because their words betray their hearts: “Appoint a king to judge us the same as all the other nations.” They’re tired of being different from everyone else. Instead of being holy and set apart, they want to be conformed to the pattern of this world.

How often do you feel the same way? Conforming to your family could end some arguments. Conforming to your coworkers could make life easier at work. Conforming to the world’s financial practices could pad your income.

But God warned Israel that there’s a cost to conformity. He told them a king like the other nations could take their sons as soldiers and their daughters as servants (8:12-13). He could take their fields, crops, animals and employees (8:14-16). He could even force them to become his slave (8:17). Conforming to this world makes us slaves to a merciless master. Only King Jesus can set us free through his grace!

Get Daily Boost posts in your inbox