The book of Samuel talks highlights much about the leadership in and how this leadership transformed the way most of the leaders of Israel started relating with one another from the early days of Kingship in Israel. Samuel was the last prophet who led Israel and was the one who commissioned Kingship as a form of leadership in Israel. In those early days, several leaders were involved in controversies about the leadership, and this also brought various conflicts.This paper will look at the way the first of Israel was appointed and the controversies that followed this regarding the Kings rebellion and how his house was dethroned of the Kingship. The paper also analyses the relations in the first two lineages of the first two Kings of Israel and the controversies involved.
Personality of Samuel
Samuel is one of the most important personalities in the Old Testament as well as to the nation of Israel. He was one of the most important leaders who revolutionized the way is Israel was run, and the way leadership was exercised in Israel. He was also one of the leaders of Israel who executed a lot of orders from God that changed Israel in many ways. The role of Samuel as written in the book of Samuel I and II was one of the most important in the Journey of Israel. It is during the time of Samuel that the people of Israel transitioned form being led by Judges and prophets to being led by Kings. Therefore Samuel is depicted as one of the leaders of Israel who did so many things to change the way things were done from the time of Moses to the new order in which Monarchy was embraced. Samuel, therefore, is seen as a person who was conscious about providing proper and acceptable leadership for the Israelites.
The changes that took place in Israel were seen when Samuel was growing older and needed a successor, he had appointed the two of his sons to succeed him in leading the people of Israel, however, based on what people had learnt from the neighboring nations, the people of Israel wanted to lead by Kings just like their neighbors, Samuel therefore talked to God about this matter and later on anointed Saul King of Israel. This action depicts Samuel as a person who listened to the voices of the people and did not impose on them things that they did not want. To this extent Samuel was democratic.
Samuel is also a person who respected Gods command and did not tolerate any form of disobedience of God. This means that he would ensure that a person who disrespected the command of God was punished at all cost. This is shown by he removed the leadership from the house of Saul and anointed David as the King over Israel because Saul had violated the command of God and spared people and Animals that he had been commanded to kill.
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Personality of Saul, David, Jonathan
These three people are important in the History of Israel. They transformed Israel in the way worked and with the Controversies that surrounded their relationships. Saul was the First King of Israel and was anointed by Saul to lead Israel at a time when Israel was facing challenges including war with most of its neighbors. Saul was a strong leader who helped Israel to win so many wars despite the ever increasing attacks that they faced from the neighbors including the Philistines. Saul was also a rebellious leader. He did so many things that angered God and Samuel his prophet. He offered sacrifices for war and spared enemies that he had been told to kill in the war and his rebellion made the Lord angry and he was stripped of the crown of leading Israel. Saul was also a jealous and vengeful person. This character is depicted when he was not happy that more praises went to David than him after David kills Goliath. He is also seen as vengeful because he tries to kill David on more than three occasions after realizing that David was anointed to succeed him.
David is another important person in the History of Israel. He is a courageous person who shows a strong resolve to steer Israel to greater heights despite his young age. His resolve is seen when he challenges the Giant Goliath and wins against him David at a young age, therefore, wins the hearts of the people of Israel just as he wins the heart of God, and God describes him as the man after his own heart. David is a loving person who despite people doing wrongs to Him he does not take any actions to revenge against them. He does not hurt Saul or anybody in his family despite Sauls sustained attempts to kill him. He also shows undying love for his son Absalom despite the rebellion that Absalom shows against him. David even mourns Absalom when he dies and wishes he died in place of Absalom.
Jonathan was the first born son of Saul and is portrayed as one of the kindest people in the house of Saul. Jonathan is the heir to the Kingship of the House of Saul and should in normal situations be jealous of David who is anointed to take the throne, however, contrary to this ideal situation, Jonathan shows a lot of love towards David and becomes his protector. He at some point warns David of Sauls plan to kill David and helps David to escape death. Jonathan is also caring. He shows a lot of care and affection towards David despite the fact that David was not his blood. At one point, Jonathan tells Saul that he should not hurt David since all that David has ever done is to benefit and that David has never hurt him, something that Saul listens to and decides not to kill David for a while. Jonathan is, therefore, kind, grateful and loving towards David and it is one of the things that help David survive the wrath of Saul who has a lot of hatred and Jealousy towards David.
Relationship between Saul and David
The relationship between Saul and David is one that is controversial and marred with mistrust, Jealousy, hatred, happiness, and love as well as appreciation. David first interacts with Saul after he wins the war against Goliath who was feared by all the people of Israel. At this point, Saul is very happy with what David did and ends up rewarding David for his good work and at the same time offering him the chance to live in the Kings palace. Despite the love that Saul feels towards David for helping his army win against the Philistines, he also feels that David threatens his leadership since people praise David more than they praise him, this feeling of Jealousy later turns into hatred when the King, Saul decides on several occasions to kill David.
The mistrust between Saul and David is seen on several occasions in the book of Samuel. First and foremost, Saul wants to kill David because he feels that David wants to take the kingdom from him. This is the reason why David also decides to be cautious at all times when he is around Saul and on at least two occasions dodges a spear that Saul tries to use to kill him. David also on two occasions runs away from Saul and stays in hiding for a long time in the efforts to avoid being killed by Saul. David also acts as a person who entertains King Saul with the harp. David uses his talent to play the harp in the Kingdom, and this entertains the King especially when he is tormented by the evil spirit.
Relationship between Saul and Jonathan
Saul is the father of Jonathan and their relationship first and foremost that of Father and Son. Saul believes that Jonathan is his rightful heir and therefore wants him to work towards getting David out of the way for his throne. Jonathan is a loving son to his father Saul and has always worked towards ensuring that his father who is the King governs the Kingdom well and successfully. Jonathan however, at some point goes against the wishes of his father when it comes to the issue of killing David and on several occasions protects David against his Father which makes Saul unhappy.
Saul, on the other hand, plays the role of a loving father and does a lot of things to prepare his son Jonathan for the throne of Kingship. Jonathan is his Sauls eldest son, and therefore Saul ensures that the care he shows towards Saul is one that is meant to make him happy. It is for this love that Saul has towards Saul that he does not feel that his son has betrayed or gone against him when Jonathan is involved in protecting David. However, this keeps going on; Saul starts feeling uncomfortable with the way Jonathan has been protecting David, he gets angry and paranoid and starts insulting Jonathan on the Suspicion that he might be planning to involved in hatched plan to overthrow him as king with David who at this point Saul hates so much. At some point, Saul is even involved in an attempt to kill Jonathan by pelting him with a javelin, which luckily does not kill Jonathan. Saul also gets to the point of insulting Jonathans mother who he accuses David of having a relationship with. Jonathan despite his fathers rebellion against God his prophet Samuel, and the apparent dislike for his protection of David still believe in his fathers leadership which makes him a good and caring son towards his father.
Relationship between David and Jonathan
David and Jonathan are the best of friends despite their differences in Age. Jonathan who is relatively older that David gives him the kind of love that some scholars in the modern times has marred with controversy. Jonathan is portrayed as one of the protectors of David especially when David is threatened by Saul. Jonathan loves David so dearly; he loves David as he does love himself. Despite the fact that Saul accuses Jonathan of conspiring with David to steal the Kingship from him, this accusation does not scare Jonathan who believes in Davids abilities to lead and also believes that David is the next King of Israel. This is why Jonathan asks David to take care of his family.
David, on the other hand, has the same love towards Jonathan and on many occasions listens to what he is told by Jonathan who has proved to be a caring and loving person towards him. David on many occasions faces death threats that are directed towards him by Saul but are averted by his good friend Jonathan. When David meets with Jonathan in their last meeting, they have an agreement or covenant in before God, this is a binding agreement between the two Friends that they must be and will always look out for one another and also take care of one anothers interests.
The scholarly arguments that have put controversies on the relationship between David and Jonathan have been based on the argument that their relationship was not just about friendship but was also sexual. Some scholars have argued that the relationship was erotic and that David and Jonathan were involved in a homosexual relationship. This argument does not, however, hold much weight because God does not approve such relationships and since God loved David so much, it is not possible that he would have approved a person with evil deeds to be in charge of Israel.
Sauls thinking of the relationship between David and Jonathan
The closeness between David and Jonathan is one of the biggest problems that Saul deals with. Saul thinks that David and Jonathan are conspiring to take his work of being the King of Israel. He believes that the friendship between David and Jonathan is one that means harm for his leadership and therefore the twos should be terminated. Saul also thinks that David is involved in a romantic relationship with his wife who is the mother of Jonathan and he thinks that Jonathan is involved in this kind of arrangement to steal his wife and the throne from him, thus making David and Jonathan people whom Saul does not have much love for.
Sauls major reason for is the fact that David could be planning to take his throne, and that since Jonathan was his closest friend and protector, Saul believes the two are accomplices in stealing his throne. The issues further bother Saul because his son who should be his heir and who should also be working towards ensuring that Kingship remains in his house is working towards giving the Kingship to David by asking for the protection of his family from David.
Relationship between David and Absalom
Absalom was one of Davids Sons and was considered one of the favorite sons of David. Absalom was one of the people who can be described as power hungry and who decides to try and steal the Kingdom from his father and declares himself King by stealing the hearts of the people. Absalom avenges the rape of his sister by killing one of his brother's something that is considered wrong in the Kingdom, and he then flees, but due to the love that David has towards him, he is once again allowed into the Kingdom by the King who truly loves him.
After being accepted back into the Kingdom, Absalom worked towards ensuring that he dislodges his father from the leadership of Israel, this was seen when he managed to steal the hearts of the people of Israel and in the process managed to make his father go into hiding. He pursued his father and tried to kill him so that he remains the undisputed king over Israel. Despite the rebellious nature of Absalom, David still did not wish that his Son gets killed and it is for this reason that when he finally learns of the death of Absalom, he gets so sad and mourns Absalom so much. He even states he would have wished to have died in place of Absalom.
Given a chance, I would wish to have a conversation with David. This is based on the fact that David was one of the wisest and the strongest Kings in Israel, Davids courage from a young age is inspirational and one that leads to great admiration. David is also a person who shows a lot of love and care to people around him, and this is depicted in the way he treats both Jonathan and Absalom. David also shows that he can prove to people that he can come from humble beginnings them become King. His residence makes him a person with great Zeal and who is committed to having great achievements and also in serving God.
In Conclusion, all the characters in the books of Samuel show how the great nation of Israel had leaders who shaped the way the Kingdom was ruled and the way the changes that they made in the leadership impacted on the lives of the people. Through the works of King David for instance, Israel remains to be seen as one of the most important nations in the history of Christianity and also in the history of mankind s most of the major world religions like Islam and Judaism also have similar stories that depict Israel as a great nation.