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Bible Study: Holy King for the nations

NASHVILLE (BP) –This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with Lifeway Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, Lifeway publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.

This week’s Bible study is adapted from The Gospel Project curriculum.

Bible Passage: 1 Samuel 7-10

Discussion Questions:

  • What are some of the lures of the world that attract and tempt God’s people?
  • Why should we view all sin as an implicit rejection of God as our rightful King?
  • Where have you been reluctant to obey the Lord, and how will you obey now in honor of King Jesus?

Food for Thought:

God raised up Samuel to judge His people and to call them to repentance. Under Samuel’s leadership, Israel experienced freedom from the surrounding nations, restoration of land, and revival in worship. During his lifetime, Samuel traveled throughout the nation to ensure the people were faithful to the covenant the Lord had made with them. But when Samuel was old his sons, whom he had appointed as judges, proved to be wicked leaders who took advantage of the people (1 Samuel 8:3). So the Israelites, in their discontentment, demanded to have a king like the nations around them.

God knew the Israelites eventually would ask for a king, even for one like all the other nations had. So the Lord had given His people instructions through Moses for how a king should be appointed after they settled in the land:

1) The king should be one the Lord chooses.

2) The king should be an Israelite, not a foreigner.

3) He must not be arrogant or self-serving, acquiring many horses, wives, or much silver and gold for himself and

4) He was to write a copy of the law, read it every day, and obey its instructions (Deuteronomy 17:14-20).

But just because God planned ahead for this, the circumstance did not absolve the Israelites of wrong motivations (Deuteronomy 24:1 and Matthew 19:3-9). A desire to be like or emulate “the nations” was contrary to God’s design for His people, who were to be a blessing to the nations through being set apart from them and their wickedness (Exodus 19:5-6).

God also promised that kings would come from Abraham (Genesis 17:6), but one king in particular was promised for God’s glory and His people’s good. This king would not be like those of the nations but would come as the perfect Son of God to save people from their sins, to bring salvation to people from every tribe, tongue and nation. This Son, Jesus, came to redeem all sinners who repent and believe, and to make them like Himself – holy and pleasing to God.

The Gospel Project

The Gospel Project is a chronological, Christ-centered study for kids, students, and adults. The Bible is not a collection of stories. It is one story of God’s plan to rescue His people from sin and death. It is the story of redemption, the Gospel message of Jesus Christ. More information can be found at Lifeway.com/gospelproject.

    About the Author

  • Staff/Lifeway Christian Resources