But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD.
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George Leo Haydock
Samuel. Nothing could be more disrespectful to him, nor more ungrateful to God, who had distinguished them from all other nations, and had taken the government upon himself, and appointed the judges as his lieutenants. The foolish Israelites wished to throw off this sweet yoke, and to be ruled in an arbitrary manner, like the infidels, as if God could not otherwise protect them from their enemies.
Lord. Josephus says that he passed the night without food or sleep, and the Lord appeared to him. The will or petition "of the people, filled Samuel with great uneasiness, who on account of his innate justice, did not like the regal power, as being too exorbitant. He rather approved of an aristocracy, as more conducive to the welfare of the people. "(Antiquities vi. 4.) He means such an aristocracy as the Israelites had been accustomed to, under the guidance of men divinely commissioned, whence he elsewhere very properly styles it a theocracy, or "the government of God. "(Haydock)