12 1AND SAMUEL said to all Israel, I have listened to you in all that you have said to me and have made a king over you. 2And now, behold, the king walks before you. And I am old and gray, and behold, my sons are with you. And I have walked before you from my childhood to this day. 3Here I am; testify against me before the Lord and Saul His anointed. Whose ox or donkey have I taken? Or whom have I defrauded or oppressed? Or from whose hand have I received any bribe to blind my eyes? Tell me and I will restore it to you. 4And they said, You have not defrauded us or oppressed us or taken anything from any man’s hand. 5And Samuel said to them, The Lord is witness against you, and His anointed is witness this day, that you have not found anything in my hand. And they answered, He is witness. 6And Samuel said to the people, It is the Lord Who appointed Moses and Aaron and brought your fathers up out of Egypt. 7Now present yourselves, that I may plead with you before the Lord concerning all the righteous acts of the Lord which He did for you and for your fathers. 8When Jacob and his sons had come into Egypt [and the Egyptians oppressed them], and your fathers cried to the Lord, then the Lord sent Moses and Aaron, who brought forth your fathers out of Egypt and made them dwell in this place. 9But when they forgot the Lord their God, He sold them into the hand of Sisera, commander of Hazor’s army, and into the hands of the Philistines and of the king of Moab, and they fought those foes. 10And they cried to the Lord, saying, We have sinned because we have forsaken the Lord and have served the Baals and the Ashtaroth; but now deliver us from the hands of our enemies, and we will serve You. 11And the Lord sent Jerubbaal and Barak and Jephthah and Samuel, and He delivered you out of the hands of your enemies on every side, and you dwelt safely. 12But when you saw that Nahash king of the Ammonites came against you, you said to me, No! A king shall reign over us--when the Lord your God was your King! 13Now see the king whom you have chosen and for whom you have asked; behold, the Lord has set a king over you. 14If you will revere and fear the Lord and serve Him and hearken to His voice and not rebel against His commandment, and if both you and your king will follow the Lord your God, it will be good! 15But if you will not hearken to the Lord’s voice, but rebel against His commandment, then the hand of the Lord will be against you, as it was against your fathers. 16So stand still and see this great thing the Lord will do before your eyes now. 17Is it not wheat harvest today? I will call to the Lord and He will send thunder and rain; then you shall know and see that your wickedness is great which you have done in the sight of the Lord in asking for a king for yourselves. 18So Samuel called to the Lord, and He sent thunder and rain that day; and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel. 19And [they] all said to Samuel, Pray for your servants to the Lord your God, that we may not die, for we have added to all our sins this evil--to ask for a king. 20And Samuel said to the people, Fear not. You have indeed done all this evil; yet turn not aside from following the Lord, but serve Him with all your heart. 21And turn not aside after vain and worthless things which cannot profit or deliver you, for they are empty and futile. 22The Lord will not forsake His people for His great name’s sake, for it has pleased Him to make you a people for Himself. 23Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you; but I will instruct you in the good and right way. 24Only fear the Lord and serve Him faithfully with all your heart; for consider how great are the things He has done for you. 25But if you still do wickedly, both you and your king shall be swept away.
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