Israel rejected God as their leader, and they demanded a king. In today’s story, God chose Saul as Israel’s first king. Follow along with this devotion, which you can walk through with your family in 10-15 minutes one night this week or review it in 3-5 minutes over the course of the week.
KEY VERSE – DAY ONE:
Review the key verses and hand motions for this unit with your children.
“Then Jesus spoke to them again, ‘I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.’” – John 8:12 (Backyard Kids Club Cave Quest Key Verse)
“Sing a song of wisdom, for God is King of all the earth. God reigns over the nations; God is seated on His holy throne.” – Psalm 47:7-8
BIG PICTURE QUESTION – DAY ONE:
Ask your children the Big Picture Question for this unit: Who is our King? Jesus is our King forever, and He rules over the world.
MAIN POINT – DAY ONE:
Share with your children that this week’s main point is: God chose Saul as Israel’s first king.
BIBLE PASSAGE – DAY TWO:
This week’s Bible story comes from 1 Samuel 8-10. This story can be found on page 74 of the Big Picture Interactive Bible Storybook. Take some time now to read these passages with your children or you can refer to the Bible story summary below!
BIBLE STORY SUMMARY:
Samuel was a judge over Israel. At this time, Israel had no king, but they wanted a king.
Samuel had two sons, Joel and Abijah. Because Samuel was getting old, he let his sons be rulers over Israel. But, Joel and Abijah were not good judges like their father was.
The leaders of Israel went to Samuel. “You were a good judge,” they told Samuel, “but your sons are not like you. We don’t want them to lead us. The nations around us have a king. We want a king, too!”
Samuel wasn’t sure how to respond, so he prayed to God. God said, “Samuel, they are not rejecting you; they are rejecting Me as a king. Give them what they want.”
Samuel warned the Israelites that they would have to do whatever the king wanted and that they would regret asking for a king, but the Israelites did not care. “Give us a king!” they said.
Meanwhile, a wealthy man named Kish was looking for some of his donkeys that had wandered off. Kish told his son Saul to take a servant with him and search for the missing animals. Saul searched, but he was unable to find the donkeys.
“Wait,” his servant said. “There is a man of God in this city. Let’s talk to him; maybe he knows where we can find the donkeys.” Saul and his servant found the man of God – it was Samuel.
“Don’t worry about the donkeys,” Samuel said. “They have been found.”
Samuel invited Saul to have dinner with him. The next morning, Samuel told Saul that God had chosen Saul to be the king of Israel. Samuel used oil to anoint Saul. “You will be king!” Samuel said.
Some time later, Samuel gathered the Israelites to introduce Saul, their new king. Saul stood among all the people. “Long live the king!” they said.
REVIEW QUESTIONS – DAY THREE:
After reading the Bible story or going through the summary, ask your children these review questions:
- Whom did the Israelites want to lead them? (a king)
- Was wanting a human king a right thing or a wrong thing? (wrong thing)
- What did Samuel say a king could do? (make the people do whatever the king wanted)
- By wanting a king, whom were the Israelites saying they did not want as their leader? (God)
- Whom did God choose to be king of Israel? (Saul)
- What was the name of Israel’s last judge? (Samuel)
- Name one of Samuel’s two oldest sons. (Joel and Abijah)
- What did the Israelites tell Samuel they wanted? (a king)
- Did the Israelites reject Samuel or did they reject God? (God)
- What warning did Samuel give the Israelites? (they would have to do whatever the king said)
- Did Samuel say the Israelites would enjoy having a king or regret it? (regret it)
- What animals was Saul searching for? (donkeys)
- Who was the man of God that Saul went to for help? (Samuel)
- What did Samuel use to anoint Saul? (oil)
WORSHIP – DAY FOUR:
CHRIST CONNECTION – DAY FIVE:
It’s amazing to see how things that happened in the Old Testament are connected to the New Testament and the Gospel – the good news that Jesus came to Earth to die for our sins because of His love for us. These Christ connections show us that God has been preparing us for a relationship with Jesus since the beginning of time.
The Israelites did not trust God. They wanted a king. God gave the Israelites a king, but He had a plan to send His Son, Jesus, to be King over the whole world. Jesus would be the perfect King. Jesus would bring peace and save people from sin.
God intended for a heavenly king to rule over Israel, but the Israelites did not trust God’s plan. So God chose Saul to be their king. God had a plan to one day send His Son, Jesus, to rule over the entire world. Jesus would be the perfect King who would bring peace and salvation to the world.
PRAY – DAY FIVE:
As you pray, ask God to help us to trust in Him to rule over us. Ask God to turn our hearts towards Him everyday. Praise God that He is in control of everything and that He sent King Jesus to rescue us from sin.