1 Samuel 12

Samuel's Farewell Address

1 And Samuel said to all Israel, "Behold, I have obeyed 1your voice in all that you have said to me 2and have made a king over you.
2 And now, behold, the king 3walks before you, 4and I am old and gray; and behold, my sons are with you. I have walked before you from my youth until this day.
3 Here I am; testify against me before the LORD and before 5his anointed. 6Whose ox have I taken? Or whose donkey have I taken? Or whom have I defrauded? Whom have I oppressed? Or from whose hand have I taken a bribe to blind my eyes with it? Testify against mea and I will restore it to you."
4 They said, "You have not defrauded us or oppressed us or taken anything from any man's hand."
5 And he said to them, "The LORD is witness against you, and 7his anointed is witness this day, that you have not found anything 8in my hand." And they said, "He is witness."
6 And Samuel said to the people, 9"The LORD is witness,b who appointed Moses and Aaron and brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt.
7 Now therefore stand still that I may plead with you before the LORD concerning all the righteous deeds of the LORD that he performed for you and for your fathers.
8 10When Jacob went into Egypt, and the Egyptians oppressed them,c11then your fathers cried out to the LORD and 12the LORD sent Moses and Aaron, 13who brought your fathers out of Egypt and made them dwell in this place.
9 But 14they forgot the LORD their God. 15And he sold them into the hand of Sisera, commander of the army of Hazor,d16and into the hand of the Philistines, 17and into the hand of the king of Moab. And they fought against them.
10 18And they cried out to the LORD and said, 'We have sinned, because we have forsaken the LORD 19and have served the Baals and the Ashtaroth. But now 20deliver us out of the hand of our enemies, that we may serve you.'
11 And the LORD sent 21Jerubbaal 22and Barake23and Jephthah and 24Samuel and delivered you out of the hand of your enemies on every side, and you lived in safety.
12 And when you saw that 25Nahash the king of the Ammonites came against you, 26you said to me, 'No, but a king shall reign over us,'27when the LORD your God was your king.
13 And now 28behold the king whom you have chosen, for whom you have asked; behold, 29the LORD has set a king over you.
14 If you will 30fear the LORD and serve him and obey his voice and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, and if both you and the king who reigns over you will follow the LORD your God, it will be well.
15 But 31if you will not obey the voice of the LORD, but rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then 32the hand of the LORD will be against you and 33your king.f
16 Now therefore 34stand still and see this great thing that the LORD will do before your eyes.
17 35Is it not wheat harvest today? 36I will call upon the LORD, that he may send thunder and rain. And you shall know and see that 37your wickedness is great, which you have done in the sight of the LORD, in asking for yourselves a king."
18 So Samuel called upon the LORD, and the LORD sent thunder and rain that day, 38and all the people greatly feared the LORD and Samuel.
19 And all the people said to Samuel, 39"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 ourselves a king."
20 And Samuel said to the people, "Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet 40do not turn aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart.
21 And 41do not turn aside after 42empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are empty.
22 43For the LORD will not forsake his people, 44for his great name's sake, because 45it has pleased the LORD to make you a people for himself.
23 Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by ceasing 46to pray for you, 47and I will instruct you in the good and the right way.
24 48Only fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider 49what great things he has done for you.
25 But if you still do wickedly, 50you shall be swept away, 51both you and your king."