In demanding a king, Israel became like every other nation of the world. Instead of asking God for relief from counterfeit spiritual leaders, they cried, “Give us a king!” They rejected God’s rule in favor of human leadership.
Moses had written about the danger of a human monarchy (Deut 17:14-20). He warned future kings against large stables, horse-trading with Egypt, collecting many wives, and accumulating wealth. The lives of Israel’s kings appear to be an effort to do exactly what God had warned against.
1 Samuel 8:6-9 – 6 But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the Lord.
7 And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.
8 According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, wherewith they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so do they also unto thee.
9 Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit yet protest solemnly unto them, and shew them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.