I - Chapter 8
Translation and Transliteration of
Listen to this chapter in Hebrew:
1When Shmuel grew old, he appointed his sons judges over Yisrael.
vai-HI ka-a-SHER za-KEN she-mu-AYL, va-YA-sem et ba-NAV sho-f'-TEEM l'-yis-ra-AYL
אוַיְהִ֕י כַּאֲשֶׁ֥ר זָקֵ֖ן שְׁמוּאֵ֑ל וַיָּ֧שֶׂם אֶת־בָּנָ֛יו שֹׁפְטִ֖ים לְיִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃
2The name of his first-born son was Yoel, and his second son's name was Aviya; they sat as judges in Be'er Sheva.
vai-HI, shem b'-no ha-b'-KOR yo-EL, v'-shem mish-NE-hu a-vee-YA, sho-f'-TEEM bi-VE-er sha-VA
בוַיְהִ֞י שֶׁם־בְּנ֤וֹ הַבְּכוֹר֙ יוֹאֵ֔ל וְשֵׁ֥ם מִשְׁנֵ֖הוּ אֲבִיָּ֑ה שֹׁפְטִ֖ים בִּבְאֵ֥ר שָֽׁבַע׃
3But his sons did not follow in his ways; they were bent on gain, they accepted bribes, and they subverted justice.
v'-LO ha-l'-KHU va-NAV bi-d'-ra-KHAV va-yi-TU a-kha-RAY ha-ba-TZA va-yi-KHU-sho-KHAD va-ya-TU mish-PAT
גוְלֹֽא־הָלְכ֤וּ בָנָיו֙ בִּדְרָכָ֔ו וַיִּטּ֖וּ אַחֲרֵ֣י הַבָּ֑צַע וַיִּ֨קְחוּ־שֹׁ֔חַד וַיַּטּ֖וּ מִשְׁפָּֽט׃
4All the elders of Yisrael assembled and came to Shmuel at Rama,
va-yit-ka-B'-tzu kol zik-NAY yis-ra-AYL va-ya-VO-u el sh'-mu-A-EL ha-ra-MA-ta
דוַיִּֽתְקַבְּצ֔וּ כֹּ֖ל זִקְנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל וַיָּבֹ֥אוּ אֶל־שְׁמוּאֵ֖ל הָרָמָֽתָה׃
5and they said to him, “You have grown old, and your sons have not followed your ways. Therefore appoint a king for us, to govern us like all other nations.”
va-yo-M'ru e-LAV hi-NEH a-TAH za-KHAN-ta u-va-NE-kha lo ha-l'-KHU bi-d'-ra-KHE-kha a-TAH see-MAH-la-NU me-LEKH l'-shof-TAY-nu k'-KOL ha-go-YIM
הוַיֹּאמְר֣וּ אֵלָ֗יו הִנֵּה֙ אַתָּ֣ה זָקַ֔נְתָּ וּבָנֶ֕יךָ לֹ֥א הָלְכ֖וּ בִּדְרָכֶ֑יךָ עַתָּ֗ה שִֽׂימָה־לָּ֥נוּ מֶ֛לֶךְ לְשׇׁפְטֵ֖נוּ כְּכׇל־הַגּוֹיִֽם׃
6Shmuel was displeased that they said “Give us a king to govern us.” Shmuel prayed to Hashem,
va-YAY-ra ha-da-VAR b'-ay-NAY sh'-mu-AYL ka-a-SHER a-m'-RU t'-nah LA-nu ME-lekh l'-shof-TAY-nu va-yit-pa-LAYL sh'-mu-AYL el a-do-NAI
ווַיֵּ֤רַע הַדָּבָר֙ בְּעֵינֵ֣י שְׁמוּאֵ֔ל כַּאֲשֶׁ֣ר אָֽמְר֔וּ תְּנָה־לָּ֥נוּ מֶ֖לֶךְ לְשׇׁפְטֵ֑נוּ וַיִּתְפַּלֵּ֥ל שְׁמוּאֵ֖ל אֶל־יְהֹוָֽה׃
8:6 Shmuel was displeased
While Shmuel expressed his displeasure with the people’s request, it was not their actual request for a king that troubled him. In fact, the Torah includes a commandment requiring the people to appoint a king (Deuteronomy 17:15). The problem, Rashi notes, was that they wanted a king “like all the other nations” (verse 5). This request ignores the uniqueness of the People of Israel, and the unusual type of leader their king should be, a very different model than that followed by “all the other nations.” Rabbi Shlomo Aviner notes that because of their request, this is exactly the kind of king they receive. King Shaul is a righteous individual who is very successful in uniting and organizing the people. But a king of Israel is required to be even more than that. He is to meant lift the people spiritually, to bring them closer to Hashem so that they can serve as a “light unto the nations” (Isaiah 42:6). King Shaul is unable to do this. For example, as detailed in Chapter 15, he does not completely destroy Amalek and their animals, thereby defying God’s will in order to please the people. By contrast, King David constantly seeks to elevate the nation, even at the expense of his own honor. For example, he dances before the Holy Ark when it was brought to Yerushalayim, even though this conduct could be deemed unseemly for a king. Therefore, Shaul’s kingship is of a temporary nature, while David’s dynasty becomes the eternal monarchy of the Jewish People.
7and Hashem replied to Shmuel, “Heed the demand of the people in everything they say to you. For it is not you that they have rejected; it is Me they have rejected as their king.
vai-YO-mer a-do-NAI el sh'-mu-AYL, sh'-MA b'-KOL ha-AHM l'-KOL a-SHER yo-M'-RU e-LE-kha, KI lo o-T'-KHA ma-A-su, KI o-TEE ma-A-su mi-m'-LOKH a-l'-HEM
זוַיֹּ֤אמֶר יְהֹוָה֙ אֶל־שְׁמוּאֵ֔ל שְׁמַע֙ בְּק֣וֹל הָעָ֔ם לְכֹ֥ל אֲשֶׁר־יֹאמְר֖וּ אֵלֶ֑יךָ כִּ֣י לֹ֤א אֹֽתְךָ֙ מָאָ֔סוּ כִּי־אֹתִ֥י מָאֲס֖וּ מִמְּלֹ֥ךְ עֲלֵיהֶֽם׃
8Like everything else they have done ever since I brought them out of Egypt to this day—forsaking Me and worshiping other gods—so they are doing to you.
k'-KOL ha-ma-a-SIM a-SHER a-SU mi-YOM ha-a-LO-tee o-TAM mi-mitz-RA-yim v'-ad ha-YOM ha-ZEH va-ya-aZ-vu-NEE va-ya-aVDU e-lo-HEEM a-khe-REEM, KEN he-MAH o-SEEM gam-LAKH
חכְּכׇֽל־הַמַּעֲשִׂ֣ים אֲשֶׁר־עָשׂ֗וּ מִיּוֹם֩ הַעֲלֹתִ֨י אוֹתָ֤ם מִמִּצְרַ֙יִם֙ וְעַד־הַיּ֣וֹם הַזֶּ֔ה וַיַּ֣עַזְבֻ֔נִי וַיַּעַבְד֖וּ אֱלֹהִ֣ים אֲחֵרִ֑ים כֵּ֛ן הֵ֥מָּה עֹשִׂ֖ים גַּם־לָֽךְ׃
9Heed their demand; but warn them solemnly, and tell them about the practices of any king who will rule over them.”
v'-a-TAH sh'-MA b'-ko-LAM akh KEE ha-ED ta-EED ba-HEM v'-hi-GAD-ta LA-HEM mish-PAT ha-ME-lekh a-SHER yim-LOKH a-LE-hem.
טוְעַתָּ֖ה שְׁמַ֣ע בְּקוֹלָ֑ם אַ֗ךְ כִּֽי־הָעֵ֤ד תָּעִיד֙ בָּהֶ֔ם וְהִגַּדְתָּ֣ לָהֶ֔ם מִשְׁפַּ֣ט הַמֶּ֔לֶךְ אֲשֶׁ֥ר יִמְלֹ֖ךְ עֲלֵיהֶֽם׃
10Shmuel reported all the words of Hashem to the people, who were asking him for a king.
vai-YO-mer sh'-mu-AYL AYT kol di-v'-RAY a-do-NAI el ha-a-AM ha-sho-a-LEEM may-i-TO me-LEKH
יוַיֹּ֣אמֶר שְׁמוּאֵ֔ל אֵ֖ת כׇּל־דִּבְרֵ֣י יְהֹוָ֑ה אֶל־הָעָ֕ם הַשֹּׁאֲלִ֥ים מֵאִתּ֖וֹ מֶֽלֶךְ׃
11He said, “This will be the practice of the king who will rule over you: He will take your sons and appoint them as his charioteers and horsemen, and they will serve as outrunners for his chariots.
vai-YO-mer ZEH yi-HE-yah mish-PAT ha-ME-lekh a-SHER yim-LOKH a-LE-khem et b'-NE-khem yi-KAKH v'-SAM LO b'-mer-KAV-to u-v'-fa-ra-SHA-v u-RA-tzu lif-NEI mer-KAV-to
יאוַיֹּ֕אמֶר זֶ֗ה יִֽהְיֶה֙ מִשְׁפַּ֣ט הַמֶּ֔לֶךְ אֲשֶׁ֥ר יִמְלֹ֖ךְ עֲלֵיכֶ֑ם אֶת־בְּנֵיכֶ֣ם יִקָּ֗ח וְשָׂ֥ם לוֹ֙ בְּמֶרְכַּבְתּ֣וֹ וּבְפָרָשָׁ֔יו וְרָצ֖וּ לִפְנֵ֥י מֶרְכַּבְתּֽוֹ׃
12He will appoint them as his chiefs of thousands and of fifties; or they will have to plow his fields, reap his harvest, and make his weapons and the equipment for his chariots.
v'-la-SUM LO sa-RAY a-la-FEEM v'-sa-RAY cha-mi-SHEEM v'-la-cha-ROSH cha-REE-sho v'-lik-TZOR k'-TZI-ro v'-la-a-SOT k'-lei-mil-cha-MTO u-k'-lei rikh-BO
יבוְלָשׂ֣וּם ל֔וֹ שָׂרֵ֥י אֲלָפִ֖ים וְשָׂרֵ֣י חֲמִשִּׁ֑ים וְלַחֲרֹ֤שׁ חֲרִישׁוֹ֙ וְלִקְצֹ֣ר קְצִיר֔וֹ וְלַעֲשׂ֥וֹת כְּלֵֽי־מִלְחַמְתּ֖וֹ וּכְלֵ֥י רִכְבּֽוֹ׃
13He will take your daughters as perfumers, cooks, and bakers.
v'-et b'-no-tei-KHEM yi-KAkh l'-ra-ka-KHOT u-l'-ta-ba-KHOT u-l'-o-FOT
יגוְאֶת־בְּנוֹתֵיכֶ֖ם יִקָּ֑ח לְרַקָּח֥וֹת וּלְטַבָּח֖וֹת וּלְאֹפֽוֹת׃
14He will seize your choice fields, vineyards, and olive groves, and give them to his courtiers.
v'-ET s'-DO-te-KHEM v'-ET kar-ME-khem v'-zei-TE-khem ha-TO-vim yi-KAKH v'-na-TAN la-a-va-DAV
ידוְאֶת־שְׂ֠דֽוֹתֵיכֶ֠ם וְאֶת־כַּרְמֵיכֶ֧ם וְזֵיתֵיכֶ֛ם הַטּוֹבִ֖ים יִקָּ֑ח וְנָתַ֖ן לַעֲבָדָֽיו׃
15He will take a tenth part of your grain and vintage and give it to his eunuchs and courtiers.
v'-zar-EY-khem v'-khar-MEY-khem ya-a-SOR v'-na-TAN l'-sa-ree-SA-v v'-la-a-va-DAV
טווְזַרְעֵיכֶ֥ם וְכַרְמֵיכֶ֖ם יַעְשֹׂ֑ר וְנָתַ֥ן לְסָרִיסָ֖יו וְלַעֲבָדָֽיו׃
16He will take your male and female slaves, your choice young men, and your asses, and put them to work for him.
v'-et a-v'-DE-khem v'-et shif-KHO-tei-KHEM v'-et ba-KHU-rei-KHEM ha-TO-vim v'-et cha-mo-rei-KHEM yi-KACH v'-a-SA l'-mal-akh-TO
טזוְאֶת־עַבְדֵיכֶם֩ וְֽאֶת־שִׁפְח֨וֹתֵיכֶ֜ם וְאֶת־בַּחוּרֵיכֶ֧ם הַטּוֹבִ֛ים וְאֶת־חֲמוֹרֵיכֶ֖ם יִקָּ֑ח וְעָשָׂ֖ה לִמְלַאכְתּֽוֹ׃
17He will take a tenth part of your flocks, and you shall become his slaves.
tzo-N'-khem ya-SOR v'-a-TEM tih-YU-lo la-a-va-DEEM
יזצֹאנְכֶ֖ם יַעְשֹׂ֑ר וְאַתֶּ֖ם תִּֽהְיוּ־ל֥וֹ לַעֲבָדִֽים׃
18The day will come when you cry out because of the king whom you yourselves have chosen; and Hashem will not answer you on that day.”
u-ze-a-k'-TEM ba-YOM ha-HU mi-lif-NAY mal-k'-KHEM a-SHER b'-khar-TEM LA-khem v'-lo ya-a-NEH a-do-NAI et-KHEM ba-YOM ha-HU
יחוּזְעַקְתֶּם֙ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא מִלִּפְנֵ֣י מַלְכְּכֶ֔ם אֲשֶׁ֥ר בְּחַרְתֶּ֖ם לָכֶ֑ם וְלֹא־יַעֲנֶ֧ה יְהֹוָ֛ה אֶתְכֶ֖ם בַּיּ֥וֹם הַהֽוּא׃
19But the people would not listen to Shmuel's warning. “No,” they said. “We must have a king over us,
vai-ma-a-NU ha-AM lish-MO-a b'-KOL sh'-mu-AYL, va-YO-meru LO ki im me-LEKH yi-HE-yeh a-LE-nu
יטוַיְמָאֲנ֣וּ הָעָ֔ם לִשְׁמֹ֖עַ בְּק֣וֹל שְׁמוּאֵ֑ל וַיֹּאמְר֣וּ לֹּ֔א כִּ֥י אִם־מֶ֖לֶךְ יִֽהְיֶ֥ה עָלֵֽינוּ׃
20that we may be like all the other nations: Let our king rule over us and go out at our head and fight our battles.”
v'-ha-YI-nu gam-a-NAKH-nu k'-KOL ha-go-YIM u-sh'-fa-TA-nu mal-KAY-nu v'-ya-TZA l'-fa-NE-nu v'-nil-KHAM et-mil-kha-MO-tei-NU
כוְהָיִ֥ינוּ גַם־אֲנַ֖חְנוּ כְּכׇל־הַגּוֹיִ֑ם וּשְׁפָטָ֤נוּ מַלְכֵּ֙נוּ֙ וְיָצָ֣א לְפָנֵ֔ינוּ וְנִלְחַ֖ם אֶת־מִלְחֲמֹתֵֽנוּ׃
21When Shmuel heard all that the people said, he reported it to Hashem.
vai-YISH-ma SHE-mu-EL et kol di-v'-RAY ha-AM, va-y'-da-b'-REM b'-o-z'-NAY a-do-NAI. (Selah)
כאוַיִּשְׁמַ֣ע שְׁמוּאֵ֔ל אֵ֖ת כׇּל־דִּבְרֵ֣י הָעָ֑ם וַֽיְדַבְּרֵ֖ם בְּאׇזְנֵ֥י יְהֹוָֽה׃
22And Hashem said to Shmuel, “Heed their demands and appoint a king for them.” Shmuel then said to the men of Yisrael, “All of you go home.”
vai-YO-mer a-do-NAI el sh'-mu-AYL, sh'-MA b'-ko-LAM v'-him-lakh-TA la-HEM ME-lekh, vai-YO-mer sh'-mu-AYL el an-SHAY yis-ra-AYL, l'-KHU eesh l'-ee-RO.
כבוַיֹּ֨אמֶר יְהֹוָ֤ה אֶל־שְׁמוּאֵל֙ שְׁמַ֣ע בְּקוֹלָ֔ם וְהִמְלַכְתָּ֥ לָהֶ֖ם מֶ֑לֶךְ וַיֹּ֤אמֶר שְׁמוּאֵל֙ אֶל־אַנְשֵׁ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל לְכ֖וּ אִ֥ישׁ לְעִירֽוֹ׃