1 Samuel 10:19
And you have this day rejected your God, who himself saved you out of all your adversities and your tribulations; and you have said to him, No, but set a king over us. Now therefore present yourselves before the LORD by your tribes, and by your thousands.
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1 Samuel 10:19. Your God, who himself saved you, &c. — By raising up judges whenever you cried to him for help, who never failed to conquer your enemies. Ye have said unto him, Nay, &c. — When he desired you to continue under his government you refused, and would not be denied in what you asked. Now, therefore, &c. — He puts them upon choosing their king by lot, that all might know God had chosen Saul, (for the disposal of the lot is of the Lord,) and to prevent all dispute and exception.10:17-27 Samuel tells the people, Ye have this day rejected your God. So little fond was Saul now of that power, which soon after, when he possessed it, he could not think of parting with, that he hid himself. It is good to be conscious of our unworthiness and insufficiency for the services to which we are called; but men should not go into the contrary extreme, by refusing the employments to which the Lord and the church call them. The greater part of the people treated the matter with indifference. Saul modestly went home to his own house, but was attended by a band of men whose hearts God disposed to support his authority. If the heart bend at any time the right way, it is because He has touched it. One touch is enough when it is Divine. Others despised him. Thus differently are men affected to our exalted Redeemer. There is a remnant who submit to him, and follow him wherever he goes; they are those whose hearts God has touched, whom he has made willing. But there are others who despise him, who ask, How shall this man save us? They are offended in him, and they will be punished.For the use of "thousand" as equivalent to "family," see 1 Samuel 23:23; Judges 6:15 margin. In Numbers 1:16 it may mean whole tribes. 17-25. Samuel called the people together … at Mizpeh—a shaft-like hill near Hebron, five hundred feet in height. The national assemblies of the Israelites were held there. A day having been appointed for the election of a king, Samuel, after having charged the people with a rejection of God's institution and a superseding of it by one of their own, proceeded to the nomination of the new monarch. As it was of the utmost importance that the appointment should be under the divine direction and control, the determination was made by the miraculous lot, tribes, families, and individuals being successively passed until Saul was found. His concealment of himself must have been the result either of innate modesty, or a sudden nervous excitement under the circumstances. When dragged into view, he was seen to possess all those corporeal advantages which a rude people desiderate in their sovereigns; and the exhibition of which gained for the prince the favorable opinion of Samuel also. In the midst of the national enthusiasm, however, the prophet's deep piety and genuine patriotism took care to explain "the manner of the kingdom," that is, the royal rights and privileges, together with the limitations to which they were to be subjected; and in order that the constitution might be ratified with all due solemnity, the charter of this constitutional monarchy was recorded and laid up "before the Lord," that is, deposited in the custody of the priests, along with the most sacred archives of the nation. Ye have this day rejected your God; you this day declare that you persist in your former act of rejecting God’s government: See Poole "1 Samuel 8:7".

Who himself saved you; who by his own special providence took care to raise up judges and saviours for you, and to deliver you at all times, when you needed his help, and did not by your sins obstruct it.

Ye have said unto him, i.e. unto me his prophet and ambassador; and consequently unto the Lord, whom I represented, and in whose name I spake and acted.

By your tribes, and by your thousands; for each tribe was divided into thousands, Numbers 10:36 Deu 33:17 Joshua 22:14,21 Mic 5:2, as in England counties are into hundreds. And ye have this day rejected your God,.... As their king, by desiring another to be set over them:

who himself saved you out of all your adversity and your tribulations; that they had been in at any time in Egypt, in their passage through the wilderness to Canaan, and after they were settled there:

ye have said unto him, nay, but set a king over us: they did as good as say God should not be their King, but they would have one set over them like the kings of the nations about them; Samuel reminds them of this their request and resolution to have a king, which they had expressed some time ago, that it might appear to them that this was wholly of their own seeking; the motion came from themselves, and not from the Lord, nor from Samuel, and therefore, whatever ill consequences might follow upon it, they had none to blame but themselves:

now therefore present yourselves before the Lord by your tribes, and by your thousands; by the heads of their tribes, and by the rulers of the thousands into which their tribes were divided, that it might be known either by Urim and Thummim, or rather by casting lots, out of which tribe, and out of which thousand, house, and family in it, their king was to be chosen; which method, an it would clearly appear to be a choice directed by the Lord, so it would prevent all contention and discord among themselves.

And ye have this day rejected your God, who himself saved you out of all your adversities and your tribulations; and ye have said unto him, Nay, but set a king over us. Now therefore present yourselves before the LORD by your tribes, and by your thousands.
19. And ye have this day rejected your God] Once more the prophet is directed to rebuke the people for their ingratitude and unbelief. See above on 1 Samuel 8:6.

ye have said unto him] The request made to Samuel was virtually addressed to God.

by your tribes, and by your thousands] The natural subdivision of the nation into tribes: of the tribes into families or clans: of the families into houses: of the houses into men (Joshua 7:14): was supplemented by Moses with an artificial organization of thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens (Exodus 18:25). The thousand corresponded to the family, and the terms appear to be used here as synonymous, Cp. ch. 1 Samuel 23:23; Jdg 6:15; Joshua 22:14.Verse 19. - Samuel, therefore, protests unto them, Ye have this day rejected your God, because what you want is a divorce of your national well being from religion. Nevertheless, God granted their request, it being a law of his providence to leave men free to choose. The king was, however, to be appointed by him, the selection being by lot. By your thousands. The natural subdivision of a tribe is into families; but when Moses distributed the people into thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens (Exodus 18:25), the numerical arrangement was probably made to yield as far as possible to the natural, so that about a thousand men more or less of the same kin should be classed as a family. Hence the terms are synonymous here, and in Numbers 1:16; Numbers 10:4; Joshua 22:14, etc. When Saul had left off prophesying, and came to Bamah, his uncle asked him and his attendant where they had been; and Saul told him, that as they had not found the asses anywhere, they had gone to Samuel, and had learned from him that the asses were found. But he did not relate the words which had been spoken by Samuel concerning the monarchy, from unambitious humility (cf. 1 Samuel 10:22, 1 Samuel 10:23) and not because he was afraid of unbelief and envy, as Thenius follows Josephus in supposing. From the expression "he came to Bamah" (Eng. ver. "to the high place"), we must conclude, that not only Saul's uncle, but his father also, lived in Bamah, as we find Saul immediately afterwards in his own family circle (see 1 Samuel 10:14.).
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