|“You should read and study God’s Word like you read the morning newspaper. The context gives you the meaning of the words. Let the text make its case. Don’t try and be cleaver by seeing any more or less in the passage than what the words warrant.” Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”)
Thoughts from the Diary of a Desperate Man by Walter A Henrichsen (“Walt”)
“…now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.” I Samuel 8:5
Men would rather be ruled by a tyrant than governed by God. You easily capture this truth from Israel’s desire for a king. The people ask Samuel to give them a king. God said their desire was a rejection of Him, the culmination of a history of not wanting Him as their King. Thus He spells out the consequences of having man rather than God rule them.39
No matter how tyrannical a human ruler may be, the people believe they can influence his decisions, while all know that they cannot manipulate God. Thus they choose the tyrant as their ruler rather than God.
Although it may appear contradictory, men want someone to tell them what to do. For example, when Saul was looking for Samuel the people said, “You will find him, before he goes up to the high place to eat; for the people will not eat till he comes, since he must bless the sacrifice; afterward those eat who are invited.” 40 The people would not eat without Samuel’s permission and blessing. All want to be told to obey and follow tradition in order to feel good about themselves. But this is different from obeying when they don’t want to do it. Seeking to obey in order to feel good about yourself is entirely different from seeking to be God’s obedient subject.
Thus the two thoughts are in reality one. Men crave both autonomy and affirmation. God will affirm them only to the degree that they repudiate their autonomy and submit to His Lordship. Men deceive themselves into believing that in human leadership they can have both, when in reality they end with neither. It is a lesson the rebel refuses to learn.
39 cf. 1 Samuel 8:7-22
Exodus 19-20 Matthew 18:21-35 (New King James Version)
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Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Therefore, I tell you, whatever you ask for in Prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24
Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. James 5:16
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” Psalm 91:2
Devote yourselves to Prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The Prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16
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