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Jehovah’s Witnesses


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The Bible in Living English

1 Samuel 8:1-22

8  And when Samuel grew old he installed his sons as judges of Israel: 2  the name of his older son was Joel, and of his second son Abijah, judges at Beer-Shebaʽ. 3  And his sons did not follow his paths, but turned aside after profit, and took bribes, and warped the law. 4  And all the elders of Israel assembled and came to Samuel at Ramah 5  and said to him “Here you have grown old, and your sons have not been following your paths: now appoint us a king to judge us, like all the nations.” 6  And the thing displeased Samuel when they said “Give us a king to judge us,” and Samuel prayed to Jehovah. 7  And Jehovah said to Samuel “Obey the people in everything that they say to you; for it is not you but me that they have rejected as king over them. 8  As in all the things that they have done to me from the day that I brought them up out of Egypt to this day, leaving me and worshiping other gods, so they are doing to you too. 9  Now obey them; only you shall make a protest to them and tell them about the government of the king who will reign over them.” 10  And Samuel told all Jehovah’s words to the people who were asking him for a king: 11  he said “This is what the government of the king who will reign over you will be. He will take your sons and put them to his carriages and his horse guards, and they shall run before his carriages; 12  and to be appointed as his captains over a thousand or over fifty, and to do his plowing and harvesting, and to make his weapons and the fittings for his carriages. 13  And he will take your daughters for perfumers and cooks and bakers. 14  And he will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive-orchards and give them to his officers. 15  And he will take a tenth of your grain and fruit and give it to his eunuchs and officers. 16  And he will take the best of your slaves and oxen and your donkeys to do his work with. 17  And he will take a tenth of your sheep—and you will be his slaves, 18  and will cry out in that day because of your king whom you chose to have, and Jehovah will not hear you in that day.” 19  But the people refused to obey Samuel, and said “No, we will have a king over us 20  and be the same as all the nations are, and have our king judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.” 21*  And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and repeated them for Jehovah to hear; 22  and Jehovah said to Samuel “Obey them and set up a king over them.” And Samuel said to the men of Israel “Go home to your cities.”


8:21 Lit. repeated them in the ears of Jehovah