CONFORMITY TO THE WORLD

Scripture Reading: I Samuel 8:4-22

“Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah and said to him, ‘Behold, you are old and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint for us a king to judge us like all the nations.'” (I Samuel 8:4,5)

The people’s demand for a king was not entirely wrong. The office of king had been anticipated. The problems were the kind of king they wanted and their failure to consult God. Nowhere do you see the people asking for God’s will in the matter. They wanted a king like the other nations had.

Their real sin was the rejection of God as their king — “And the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me from being king over them” (v. 7). God told Samuel to warn the people about the kind of king they would have (vs. 9-18). In the years that followed, the people suffered under most of their kings.

The people wanted a king like the other nations had. They wanted to be conformed to the nations around them. They wanted to be conformed to the world. This is a danger that all of us face. We want to be like others and we easily conform to their ways. The Scripture is clear on the matter — “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).

God wants us to have transformed lives, those that seek Him above all else. He does not want us to be conformed to the world, but rather He wants us to be conformed to the image of His Son — “For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers” (Romans 8:29).

Lord God, forgive me when I yield to the ways of the world rather than to Your ways. Forgive me for being conformed to worldly desires rather than being conformed to the image of Your Son Jesus. Protect me from the world. Do not let me love the world but let me love You above all else.

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