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Israel Demands a King
1When Samuel became old, he made his sons judges over Israel. 2The name of his firstborn son was Joel, and the name of his second, Abijah; they were judges in Beersheba. 3Yet his sons did not walk in his ways but turned aside after gain. They took bribes and perverted justice.
4Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah 5and said to him, "Behold, you are old and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint for us a king to judge us like all the nations." 6But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, "Give us a king to judge us." And Samuel prayed to the Lord. 7And the Lord said to Samuel, "Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. 8According to all the deeds that they have done, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt even to this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are also doing to you. 9Now then, obey their voice; only you shall solemnly warn them and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them."
Samuel's Warning Against Kings
10So Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking for a king from him. 11He said, "These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen and to run before his chariots. 12And he will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and some to plow his ground and to reap his harvest, and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. 13He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. 14He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive orchards and give them to his servants. 15He will take the tenth of your grain and of your vineyards and give it to his officers and to his servants. 16He will take your male servants and female servants and the best of your young men and your donkeys, and put them to his work. 17He will take the tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. 18And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the Lord will not answer you in that day."
The Lord Grants Israel's Request
19But the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel. And they said, "No! But there shall be a king over us, 20that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles." 21And when Samuel had heard all the words of the people, he repeated them in the ears of the Lord. 22And the Lord said to Samuel, "Obey their voice and make them a king." Samuel then said to the men of Israel, "Go every man to his city."
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CHAPTER 8.
1And it came to pass when Samuel was old, that he appointed his sons to be judges over Israel. 2Now the name of his firstborn son was Joel: and the name of the second was Abia, judges in Bersabee. 3And his sons walked not in his ways: but they turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment. 4Then all the ancients of Israel being assembled, came to Samuel to Ramatha. 5And they said to him: Behold thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: make us a king, to judge us, as all nations have. 6And the word was displeasing in the eyes of Samuel, that they should say: Give us a king, to judge us. And Samuel prayed to the Lord. 7And the Lord said to Samuel: Hearken to the voice of the people in all that they say to thee. For they have not rejected thee, but me, that I should not reign over them. 8According to all their works, they have done from the day that I brought them out of Egypt until this day: as they have forsaken me, and served strange gods, so do they also unto thee. 9Now therefore hearken to their voice: but yet testify to them, and foretell them the right of the king, that shall reign over them. 10Then Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people that had desired a king of him, 11And said: This will be the right of the king, that shall reign over you: He will take your sons, and put them in his chariots, and will make them his horsemen, and his running footmen to run before his chariots, 12And he will appoint of them to be his tribunes, and centurions, and to plough his fields, and to reap his corn, and to make him arms and chariots. 13Your daughters also he will take to make him ointments, and to be his cooks, and bakers. 14And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your best oliveyards, and give them to his servants. 15Moreover he will take the tenth of your corn, and of the revenues of your vineyards, to give his eunuchs and servants. 16Your servants also and handmaids, and your goodliest young men, and your asses he will take away, and put them to his work. 17Your flocks also he will tithe, and you shall be his servants. 18And you shall cry out in that day from the face of the king, whom you have chosen to yourselves, and the Lord will not hear you in that day, because you desired unto yourselves a king. 19But the people would not hear the voice of Samuel, and they said: Nay: but there shall be a king over us. 20And we also will be like all nations: and our king shall judge us, and go out before us, and tight our battles for us. 21And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and rehearsed them in the ears of the Lord. 22And the Lord said to Samuel: Hearken to their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said to the men of Israel: Let every man go to his city.