1 Samuel 12:19 MEANING

1 Samuel 12:19
Verse 19. - Pray for thy servants. On Samuel's mediatorial office see 1 Samuel 7:5, 8.

12:16-25 At Samuel's word, God sent thunder and rain, at a season of the year when, in that country, the like was not seen. This was to convince them they had done wickedly in asking a king; not only by its coming at an unusual time, in wheat harvest, and on a clear day, but by the prophet's giving notice of it before. He showed their folly in desiring a king to save them, rather than God, or Samuel; promising themselves more from an arm of flesh, than from the arm of God, or from the power of prayer. Could their prince command such forces as the prophet could do by his prayers? It startled them very much. Some will not be brought to see their sins by any gentler methods than storms and thunders. They entreat Samuel to pray for them. Now they see their need of him whom shortly before they slighted. Thus many who will not have Christ to reign over them, would yet be glad to have him intercede for them, to turn away the wrath of God. Samuel aims to confirm the people in their religion. Whatever we make a god of, we shall find it deceive us. Creatures in their own places are good; but when put in God's place, they are vain things. We sin if we restrain prayer, and in particular if we cease praying for the church. They only asked him to pray for them; but he promises to do more, to teach them. He urges that they were bound in gratitude to serve God, considering what great things he had done for them; and that they were bound in interest to serve him, considering what he would do against them, if they should still do wickedly. Thus, as a faithful watchman, he gave them warning, and so delivered his own soul. If we consider what great things the Lord hath done for us, especially in the great work of redemption, we can neither want motive, encouragement, nor assistance in serving him.And all the people said unto Samuel, During the tempest, and in the midst of it; it was the general cry of the people, they were unanimous in it:

pray for thy servants unto the Lord thy God, that we die not; though they had rejected him as their judge and supreme governor in desiring a king, now they were his humble servants, at least feignedly; and knowing what interest he had with God in prayer, they entreat him to make use of it on their behalf, who having sinned so greatly, had not the assurance to call the Lord their God, though they had no doubt of his being the God of Samuel, whose prayers he had heard, of which this tempest was a full proof; and was so violent, that if it continued, they were afraid they should be destroyed by the thunder and lightning, or they and their cattle, with the fruits of the earth, be washed away with the prodigious rain:

for we have added unto all our sins this evil, to ask us a king; though Samuel had laid before them the evils and inconveniences of having a king, and had in the name of the Lord charged them with rejecting God as their king; yet nothing convinced them of their evil till this storm came, and then all their sins came fresh to their minds; and this added to the weight of them, and lay heaviest on them, that they had rejected the Lord, and slighted his prophets, and, notwithstanding all remonstrances, resolved on having a king.

Courtesy of Open Bible