Then Samuel addressed the people again: "I have done as you asked and given you a king.
I have selected him ahead of my own sons, and I stand here, an old, gray-haired man. I have served as your leader since I was a boy.
Now tell me as I stand before the LORD and before his anointed one -- whose ox or donkey have I stolen? Have I ever cheated any of you? Have I ever oppressed you? Have I ever taken a bribe? Tell me and I will make right whatever I have done wrong."
"No," they replied, "you have never cheated or oppressed us in any way, and you have never taken even a single bribe."
"The LORD and his anointed one are my witnesses," Samuel declared, "that you can never accuse me of robbing you.""Yes, it is true," they replied.
"It was the LORD who appointed Moses and Aaron," Samuel continued. "He brought your ancestors out of the land of Egypt.
Now stand here quietly before the LORD as I remind you of all the great things the LORD has done for you and your ancestors.
"When the Israelites were a in Egypt and cried out to the LORD, he sent Moses and Aaron to rescue them from Egypt and to bring them into this land.
But the people soon forgot about the LORD their God, so he let them be conquered by Sisera, the general of Hazor's army, and by the Philistines and the king of Moab.
"Then they cried to the LORD again and confessed, 'We have sinned by turning away from the LORD and worshiping the images of Baal and Ashtoreth. But we will worship you and you alone if you will rescue us from our enemies.'
Then the LORD sent Gideon, b Barak, c Jephthah, and Samuel d to save you, and you lived in safety.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)