Samuel, Israel And Us
"And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and rehearsed them in the ears of the Lord. And the Lord said to Samuel: Hearken to their voice, and make them a king." (1Kings 8:21~22)Right before this the people of Israel are pleading with Samuel for a king so they could be like other nations. Even after Samuel reports to them what God has said will happen if a king is appointed, they still want the king.
This is where the irony struck me. After thousands of years, not much has changed. In reading the reports of Obama's ratings after his first year in office, it would seem that things have not turned out as many of those who voted for him had hoped. I am not going on a political rant here, but this passage just brought to mind the adage: "Be careful what you ask and pray for!"
Israel was relying on the knowledge of the culture instead of God. The same could be said of our current society.
St Augustine also had something to say about this:"Don't be presumptuous, and as it were give knowledge priority over God's instruction, or you will remain full of hot air, instead of solid understanding."
I just love Augustine; he knows how to just say it as it is!
My own observations of the "signs of the times" is that too many in our culture are relying on their own knowledge instead of God's instructions. It didn't work out for Israel they way they had hoped, and I don't think its working out too well for those who voted for our current president.
But there is always hope. God can and will bring about a greater good. From that line of kings came David and from his line came our King, Jesus Christ.
Israel didn't know how the story would end; I am glad that I do!
Notes: You can read the full text of today's Mass readings by clicking the Readings for the Day widget on my sidebar. For those of you who prefer the Douay~Rheims translation from 1Kings, you can find it here in 1Kings 8:4~22