"GIVE US a KING!" -by Andrew Strom. The Old Testament gives us a clear picture of the difference between leaders "after God's own heart" and leaders who rule by the arm of the flesh. This same distinction applies today. Remember, Israel was originally set up with NO KING - only God Himself as ruler. There were "Judges" in the land, but they did not rule over the people as kings and lords. When the people of Israel went into battle, they were led by Priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant. In other words, GOD HIMSELF was leading them into battle. All the other nations were led into war by a king - but Israel was different. GOD was their KING - literally. The last in the great line of Judges was Samuel the prophet. But as he grew old, and his sons did not follow in his godly ways, the elders of Israel finally came to Samuel and said, "Give us a king to rule over us!" In other words, they wanted to be just like the other nations around about them. They wanted a human leader to rule them, to tell them what to do, and to be like a "mini-god" to them. And they were happy to pay any price for this. How devastated Samuel was when they made this demand. Everything he stood for and everything Israel stood for was being sold out. But as God told Samuel, "It is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected ME as their king" (1 Sam 8:7). God decided to give the people exactly what they were asking for. Samuel warned them what a king would do to them - taking their gold and their land, their sons for soldiers, living in luxury and lording it over them. The people didn't care. They wanted a human king - at any price. And so they got SAUL. And it is not too different in the Body of Christ today. All too often the people themselves demand a "king". They want someone in a nice suit, educated and handsome, to stand between them and God, telling them what to do. They secretly enjoy the modern doctrine of "submission". -It absolves them of a lot of responsibility. And they are happy to pay someone to "rule" over them - to be a Christian 'superman' in their stead - so they don't have to seek God too hard themselves. -They can pay someone else to do it. They are quite happy having another man command them what to do with their money and their time. There is security and comfort there. There is also a degree of 'IDOLATRY'. -And this is the core of the problem. You see, GOD WANTS HIS CHURCH BACK! He is tired of other 'kings'. He is jealous over His church. And this is the key difference between the current leadership and the leadership of the coming move of God. The new leadership will live - not to become 'rulers' themselves - but to make GOD THE RULER OF HIS CHURCH once more. They will be like the 'Judges' - not rulers and lords out for themselves, but rather "good shepherds" and true servants - out for HIS GLORY AND RULERSHIP. They will literally seek to MAKE GOD KING ONCE AGAIN - to give Him the actual reins of His church - not in "theory" - but in 'REALITY'. In this they will truly show the heart of a 'David' and not a Saul. Position, wealth and earthly power will be avoided. They will not seek to make 'soldiers' who are personally loyal to them, or to manipulate the sheep to 'give'. Their motives will be the exact opposite. They will be "servant leaders". This is not to say that they will have no authority. All true leaders appointed by God have authority. But the 'Davids' use theirs differently. They use it to ESTABLISH THE RULERSHIP AND LEADING OF GOD amongst His people - while other 'kings' mostly use theirs to ESTABLISH THEIR OWN RULERSHIP. -That is the difference. And it all comes out in the way they TREAT PEOPLE. -That is usually where you see it played out. Leaders who truly LOVE and SERVE God's people with a heart of David are simply DIFFERENT from those who have a heart of Saul. And it will COME OUT. It is not hard to see. Even when a 'Saul' tries desperately to be a "David", often people can still see through it. You either have it in you (-through years of brokenness) or you don't. You cannot "fake" it for long. People ask, "When will the new Reformation begin?" My answer is simple. It will begin when the new 'Davids' arise to take the place of the Sauls. "The kingdom will be taken from you and given to another." -This is the process of 'Reformation' in a nutshell. And God, as always, is about the business of restoring His kingdom. The mini-'kings' are about to be dethroned, and the 'Judges' restored to the land. God bless you, my friends! Kindest regards in Christ, Andrew Strom.