Friday: January 17, 2020

Reference: 1 Samuel 8:1-22

From reading the text today, I have a number of questions, but will ask two of them:

1. Why did Samuel wait till he was old before appointing his sons as judges in Israel?

If there was precedence to go with, the example of Isaac should have been a reference. In Genesis 27:1ff, Isaac also waited till he was old and his eyes were so dim that he could not see before calling Esau to prepare a meal for him. The outcome of this we recall, was Jacob finding a way to pose as his brother and thus ended up taking his blessing.

So what is it about old age and decision making? The main concern is not that older persons make wrong decisions, No! What is highlighted is the timing of the decisions made. Isaac made his decisions too late and Samuel, probably in rush because he was getting old and there was no one to step in his shoes. My dear, there are some decisions that need not be put off till the very last minute because it might be too late and produce unexpected outcomes. So watch out.

2. Did the sons of Samuel assume a before and after role following their appointment?

After receiving authority, it appears the sons of Samuel changed sides. I doubt  their father would have appointed them to those positions of trust had their ‘greed for money and perversion of the course of justice’ been evident prior to their appointment. Samuel would have been disappointed since his own children did not follow his ways.

Thus we observe: somethings are not automatic but are borne out of choice and decision making. His sons opted to tow a different line not their father’s, and that was their choice. Consequently, the people of Israel noticed and wanted them out. Therefore, while we have the choice to believe and do whatever we choose to, we ought to bear in mind that we are accountable for those decisions.


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