Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of I Samuel Chapter 8
Metaphysically Interpreting I Samuel 8:1-18
8:1And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel. 8:2Now the name of his first-born was Joel; and the name of his second, Abijah: they were judges in Beer-sheba. 8:3And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted justice.
8:4Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah; 8:5and they said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations. 8:6But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto Jehovah. 8:7And Jehovah 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 be king over them. 8:8According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, in that they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so do they also unto thee. 8:9Now therefore hearken unto their voice: howbeit thou shalt protest solemnly unto them, and shalt show them the manner of the king that shall reign over them.
8:10And Samuel told all the words of Jehovah unto the people that asked of him a king. 8:11And he said, This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: he will take your sons, and appoint them unto him, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and they shall run before his chariots; 8:12and he will appoint them unto him for captains of thousands, and captains of fifties; and he will set some to plow his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and the instruments of his chariots. 8:13And he will take your daughters to be perfumers, and to be cooks, and to be bakers. 8:14And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your oliveyards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants. 8:15And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants. 8:16And he will take your men-servants, and your maid-servants, and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work. 8:17He will take the tenth of your flocks: and ye shall be his servants. 8:18And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king whom ye shall have chosen you; and Jehovah will not answer you in that day.
July 5, 1903: I Samuel 8:1-10
The esoteric meaning of the word Samuel is given in the Hebrew, first, “Asked of God,” second, “Heard of God.” He symbolizes that faculty of man that asks for Divine Wisdom and receives it. Samuel was a judge ruling Israel, instead of a king, and also a prophet. In this he represents the innate sound judgment native to man, which depends upon Divine revelation for guidance. He was a Nazarite from his birth, and spent his childhood under Eli in the sacred tent at Shiloh, and had grown up secluded from the world, “dressed in his linen ephod, his long locks over his shoulders, on which no razor was ever to pass.” This all fitly represents that natural intuition which has its center of consciousness in the inmost recesses of the soul, and the strength and vitality of which has never been curtailed by artificial limitation. This natural intuitive faculty is an integral part of man's consciousness, and if it were cultivated with right understanding, would always be a safe guide.
But in the development of the whole consciousness certain relations between spirit, soul and body have to be adjusted and reconciled. Intuition gets “old.” Samuel was reported to be about seventy when this demand for a king was made. The intuition loses its vigor and gets inattentive. Its sons, Joel, signifies “Jehovah is God,” and Abiah, “Jehovah is my Father;” [they] are right affirmations, but they become enamored with the things of this world, “turned aside after lucre.” One may be in constant touch with God in the inner depths of being, and the thoughts, or “sons,” that arise from thence be in line with truth, yet the temptations of the world gradually lead into thinking material possessions important. This is spiritual selfishness. When we get selfish in our spiritual work, we begin to infringe upon the rights of the material world, and that realm then wants the ruling power transferred from the spiritual to the material plane of consciousness.
The demand for a king is a call for temporal arbitrary rule instead of spiritual guidance, with its freedom and righteousness. But the mortal sometimes clamors for organized rule in both the religious and the of secular life that the Lord permits it to set up a kingdom and try this makeshift of ignorance. The whole human family is today in bondage to this idea, and the burdens of royalty and the tyranny of secular rulers is palpable testimony to the “manner of the king.” In England today it requires ten percent of every man' s income to pay his taxes. This is parallel of that bondage which one puts himself in who allows his religious life to be influenced by doctrines, creeds or any inflexible rules. Every man should be a law unto himself, responsible only to God. Jesus is the guide in this respect. He was free, and he had power, because he was not bound by human limitations of any character. He said, “Call no man on earth father, for one is your Father, God.”
– UNITY magazine.
Metaphysically Interpreting I Samuel 8:19-22
8:19But the people refused to hearken unto the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay: but we will have a king over us, 8:20that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles. 8:21And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of Jehovah. 8:22And Jehovah said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go ye every man unto his city.
July 5, 1908: I Samuel 8:10-22
The children of Israel represent the sum total of our religious thoughts. One may be very religious, yet lack understanding. Superstition and fanaticism are concomitants of religion. Ignorance and mental inertia are everywhere in evidence among so-called God-fearing people. They are mentally and spiritually lazy. Samuel, the wise judge, is set aside and an arbitrary ruler, a king, voluntarily chosen, because the people are too dependent to think for themselves.
This tendency of the religious nature seems almost universal. It is only very strong characters who stand alone with God and seek to know the Truth for themselves. The great majority flock to some popular church where the doctrine is dictated to them in a creed, or some human authority. This is their king or queen, and they meekly bow their necks to the yoke of bondage.
To be under the wise judge, Samuel, is to be guided by one's own higher judgment. The man who goes forth in spiritual independence and asks for the same freedom in religion that he has in government, “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” is in the right way and will attain all that he sets out for. However, it requires stability of purpose and courage to pursue this independent search for truth. One has to fight his own battles and defend his religious liberty at every point. The ecclesiastical syndicate will use all its artifices to make one believe that it is necessary to have a king to “judge us and go out before us, and fight our battles.”
“Where Christ is there is liberty.” Spiritual man should never allow any intervention of authority between himself and his God, nor curtailment of thought in any way. To accept the revelation of another as authority is to put away the message which God is about to give you. To flock with the crowd and depend upon the help of many, weakens the warrior within your soul. Even Jesus did not leave any written authority for his students, but pointed them to the Spirit of Truth who would come and lead them into all truth. In all the light of this what an impertinence it is for man, “vain man, dressed in a little brief authority,” to set up a church and attempt to drive people into it by telling them that all other religions are “counterfeit” and “spurious.”
– UNITY magazine.
June 30, 1918: I Samuel 8:10-22
What in consciousness are the children of Israel? The children of Israel represent the sum total of our religious thoughts.
What does Samuel represent? Samuel is the wise judge of Israel. He stands for man's own higher judgment, and is active in consciousness, so long as man depends upon him and puts his trust in Spirit to direct him and to fight his battles.
Why did the children of Israel desire an arbitrary ruler? Because they lacked understanding, and were mentally and spiritually lazy. They were not willing to be guided by their own higher judgment (Samuel, the wise judge). Samuel is that in man which keeps him in touch with the Source of Wisdom.
When does man “retire the wise judge Samuel”? When he meekly goes with the crowd, uniting with some popular religious movement and trusting the authority of man-made creeds and doctrines for his salvation.
What is the “king” of man's consciousness? The will. When the will is given supreme control, and the judgment ignored, the mind and body are under autocratic rule.
What is the proper course to pursue in religious training? One must recognize the Unity of Spirit. The Spirit of Truth must be acknowledged as the one authority, and the Christ perfection as the one standard. “Where Christ is there is liberty.”
March 31, 1946: I Samuel 8:10-22
What is symbolized by the Children of Israel? Our religious thoughts.
What does Samuel represent? Spiritual perception, discrimination, or judgment. It is active in our consciousness, so long as we depend upon it and put our trust in Spirit to direct us aright.
Why did the Children of Israel desire an arbitrary ruler? Because they lacked understanding and had become mentally and spiritually lazy. They were no longer willing to be guided by their own higher judgment.
What is the “king” of man’s consciousness? The will. When the will is given supreme control, and spiritual judgment ignored, the mind and body come under autocratic rule. Unrestrained exercise of the Will without the saving influence of judgment leads us to act before we perceive the truth of any situation or understand all the factors involved in it.
How is the domination of the will represented in this lesson? By Samuel's recital of the things that Israel's future king might be expected to do to his subjects. The will subjects all a person's better instincts to its own ends without regard for the damage to the person's character that may be caused thereby.
What happens to those who become spiritually lazy? Their faith in the power of Spirit becomes weakened, and they are susceptible to outer influences that ordinarily would not affect or control them.
How can such an eventuality be avoided? By keeping the mind and heart single to God. The Spirit of truth must be acknowledged as the one authority, and the Christ perfection as the one standard.
Transcribed by Lloyd Kinder on 02-02-2014