Saul is chosen
King of Israel in free Bible Art and lessons
for all ages. Beautifully visual Bible
lessons with Bible verses and Bible people. Sunday School and Church resources.
What Came Before:
WHEN Samuel, the good man and the wise judge, grew old he
made his sons judges in Israel, to help him in the care of the people. But
Samuel's sons did not walk in his ways. They did not try always to do justly.
When men brought matters before them to be decided, they would decide for the
one who gave them money, and not always for the one who was in the right.
The elders of all the tribes of Israel came to Samuel at his home in Ramah, and
they said to him, " You are growing old, and your sons do not rule as well as
you have ruled. All the lands around us have kings. Let us have a king also, and
do you choose the king for us."
This was not pleasing to Samuel, not because he wished to rule, but because the
Lord God was their king, and he felt that for Israel to have such a king as
those who ruled the nations around them would be turning away from the Lord...
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THE TALL MAN WHO WAS CHOSEN KING
I Samuel 8-10
SAMUEL PRAYED TO THE LORD, and the Lord said to him, "Listen to the people
in what they ask, for they have not turned away from you; they have turned away
from me in asking for a king. Let them have a king, but tell them of the wrong
that they are doing, and show them what trouble their king will bring upon
Then Samuel called the elders of the people together, and he said to them, "If
you have a king, as do the nations around, he will take your sons away from you,
and will make some of them soldiers, and horsemen, and men to drive his
chariots. He will take others of your sons to wait on him, to work in his
fields, and to make his chariots and his weapons for war. Your king will take
the best of your fields and your farms, and will give them to the men of his
court who are around him. He will make your daughters cook for him, and make
bread, and serve in his palace. He will take a part of your sheep, and your
oxen, and your asses. You will find that he will be your master and you shall be
his servants. The time shall come when you will cry out to the Lord on account
of the king that you have chosen, and the Lord will not hear you. "But the
people would not follow Samuel's advice. They said, "No, we will have a king to
reign over us, so that we may be like other nations, and our king shall be our
judge and shall lead us out to war."
It was God's will that Israel should be a quiet, plain people, living alone in
the mountains, serving the Lord and not trying to conquer other nations. But
they wished to be a great people, to be strong in war and to have riches and
power. And the Lord said to Samuel, "Do as the people ask, and choose a king for
them." Then Samuel sent the people to their homes, promising to find a king for
There was at that time in the tribe of Benjamin a young man named Saul, the son
of Kish. He was a very large man and noble looking. From his shoulders he stood
taller than any other man in Israel. His father Kish was a rich man, with wide
fields and many flocks. Some asses that belonged to Kish had strayed away, and
Saul went out with a servant to find them. While they were looking for the asses
they came near to Ramah, where Samuel lived. The servant said to Saul, "There is
in this city a man of God whom all men honor. They say that he can tell what is
about to happen, for he is a seer. Let us go to him and give him a present.
Perhaps he can tell us where to find the asses."
In those times a man to whom God made known his will was called a seer; in later
times he was called a prophet.
So Saul and his servant came to Ramah and asked for the seer; and while they
were coming the seer, who was Samuel, met them. On the day before the Lord had
spoken to Samuel, and had said, "Tomorrow, about this time, I will send you a
man out of the tribe of Benjamin, and you shall make him the prince of my
people, and he shall save my people from the Philistines."
And when Samuel saw this tall and noble-looking young man coming to meet him, he
heard the Lord's voice, saying, "This is the man of whom I spoke to you, He is
the one that shall rule over my people. Then Saul came near to Samuel, not
knowing who he was, and he said, "Can you tell me where the seer's house is?"
And Samuel answered Saul, "I am the seer; come with me up
to the hill. We are to have an offering and a feast there. As for the asses that
were lost three days ago, do not be troubled about them, for they have been
found. But on whom is the 'desire of all Israel? Is it not on you and on your
father's house?" Saul could not think what the seer meant in those last words.
He said, "Is not my tribe of Benjamin the smallest of all the tribes? And is not
my family the least of all the families in the tribe? Why do you say such things
But Samuel led Saul and his servant into the best room at his house; at the
table, where thirty had been invited, he gave Saul the best place, and he put
before him the choicest of the meat, and he said, "This has been kept for you of
all those invited to the feast."
That night Saul and his servant slept in the best room, which was on the roof of
Samuel's house. And the next morning Samuel sent the servant on while he spoke
with Saul alone. He brought out a vial of oil and poured it on Saul's head, and
said, "The Lord has anointed you to be prince over his land and his people."
Then he told Saul just what he would find on the way, where he would meet
certain people, and what he must do.
"When you come to the tomb where Rachel is buried, two men will meet you and
will say to you, 'The asses for which you were looking have been found, and now
your father is looking for you.' Then under an oak you will meet three men
carrying three kids, three loaves of bread, and a skin-bottle full of wine; and
these men will give you as a present two loaves of bread. Next you will meet a
company of prophets, men full of God's Spirit, with instruments of music, and
the Lord's Spirit shall come upon you and a new heart shall be given to you. All
these things will show you that God is with you. Now go, and do whatever God
tells you to do."
And it came just as Samuel had said. These men met Saul, and when the prophets
came near, singing and praising God, Saul joined them and also sang and praised
the Lord. And in that hour a new spirit came to Saul. He was no more the
farmer's son, for in him was the soul of a king.
He came home, and told at home how he had met Samuel, and that Samuel said to
him that the asses had been found. But he did not tell them that Samuel had
poured oil upon his head and said that he was to be the king of Israel.
Then Samuel called all the people to the meeting place at Mizpah. And he told
them that they had wished for a king, and God had chosen a king for them. "Now,"
said Samuel, "let the men of the tribes pass by, each tribe and each family by
The people passed by Samuel, and when the tribe of Benjamin came, out of all the
tribes Benjamin was taken; out of Benjamin one family, and out of that family
Saul's name was called. But Saul was not with his family; he had hidden away.
They found him and brought him out; and when he stood among the people his head
and shoulders rose above them all. And Samuel said: "Look at the man whom the
Lord has chosen! There is not another like him among all the people!" And all
the people shouted "God save the king! Long live the king!"
Then Samuel told the people what should be the laws for the king and for the
people to obey. He wrote them down in a book, and placed the book before the
Lord. Then Samuel sent the people home, and Saul went back to his own house at a
place called Gibeah, and with Saul went a company of men to whose hearts God had
given a love for the king. So after three hundred years under the fifteen judges
Israel now had a king. But among the people there were some who were not pleased
with the new king, because he was an unknown man from the farm. They said, "Can
such a man as this save us?" They showed no respect to the king and in their
hearts looked down upon him. But Saul said nothing and showed his wisdom by
appearing not to notice them.
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