This one year study thru the Bible for kids is designed to hit the highlights and provide practical application. I encourage you to read the whole section of scripture (1 Samuel 8 ) while we focus in on just a few verses.
Background: After the taking of their Promised Land under the leadership of Joshua, the nation of Israel fell into rebellion and were defeated by their enemies. During that time God sent Judges (leaders) to help them. The very last Judge was a man named Samuel. At the end of Samuel’s 40 years of judging Israel, the people come to him and ask if Samuel would appoint a king for them.
Ask the children…
Why did the people want a king?
“Give us a king to judge us like all the other nations have.” (1 Samuel 8:4)
They wanted to be like all the other nations who had kings. Who were they rejecting because they wanted a human king?
“The Lord replied, ‘for it is me they are rejecting, not you. They don’t want me to be their king any longer.’” (1 Samuel 8:7)
What did Samuel warn them that a human king would require of them?
“The king will draft your sons and assign them to his chariots and his charioteers, making them run before his chariots…The king will take your daughters from you and force them to cook and bake and make perfumes for him…He will take your male and female slaves and demand the finest of your cattle[b] and donkeys for his own use
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. 17 He will demand a tenth of your flocks, and you will be his slaves.” (1 Samuel 8:11, 13, 16, 17)
God’s people had rebelled from Him and God had brought consequences into their lives in the form of famine and slavery to their enemies. Instead of turning back to God and asking for forgiveness and receiving His blessings, they rejected God and turned to a human king. This was a bad idea and would impact their nation for 1,500 years until God sent His Son to be their true king.
Ask your children who they want to be the king in their lives? Ask them if they have given the throne of their lives to Jesus? In other words, does Jesus get to make the decisions and direct their lives? If not, have them pray a prayer of commitment to Jesus as their King and Lord right now.
Feel free to share your own stories below in the comments section.
If you like what you read about ways to teach children the Bible, check out the children’s book, Hooked on the Book, on this website. It is great for parents and kids because it provides the Big Story of God’s miraculous plan for His children in all 66 books in the Bible. CHECK OUT A FREE SAMPLE OF CHAPTER ONE BELOW.