Because they felt threatened by other groups such as the Philistines. They wanted to be unified under one leader. The wise judge Samuel chose the first two kings, Saul and David.
Was the first king chosen by Samuel in 1020BC He helped fend of the Ammonites saving a Hebrew city, so the Hebrews wanted to have Saul as their king Before Saul’s kingship, the Israelites were just a bunch of tribes loosely held together by their traditions and religion. They wanted to have a strong nation to keep the Philistines and other groups from invading.
David was a young shepherd and harpist who came to King Saul’s attention when he slew Goliath a huge warrior in the Philistines army. For many years Saul treated David as a son (David even became his son-in-law), until he became jealous of David’s success on the battlefield. He tried, unsuccessfully, to have David killed on several occasions. Saul died when he was cornered by the Philistines on Mount Gilboa.
David became the new king 1000BC andhelped to unify Israel even more. David conquered the Philistines finally so that they were no longer a threat to Israel. David’s son, Solomon, became his successor in the year 962 BC.
Was gifted with great wisdom and wealth. He constructed the Temple in Jerusalem as his father had instructed. He became distracted by women from other countries and began to make unwise choices. Near the end of his reign he was cruel and tyrannical to his subjects. Solomon’s Temple
Was Solomon’s son. He was even more cruel than his father was to the people of Israel. He promised to be more unforgiving than his father was. Jeroboam, a rebel, started an uprising and left with all of the tribes but Judah and Benjamin.
When the tribes separated from Rehoboam, they formed a kingdom in the north and continued to be called Israel. Judah and Benjamin stayed in the south and now called themselves Judah.
In about 722 BC, Assyria invaded Israel, which had a weak army and conquered it. In 612 BC, Babylonia conquered the Assyrians, taking control of Israel. Although the people of Judah resisted being conquered by Nebuchadnezzar, the temple of Solomon was destroyed and many Judeans were taken as slaves. .
The Jewish people struggled to keep their faith and customs. They hoped to return to Judah someday and rebuild the temple. The hoped for a messiah (anointed one) to rescue them and restore their kingdom. They listened to prophets who gave them messages of hope from God.
When the Persians conquered the Babylonians in 539-8 BC, the Persian king Cyrus, released the Jews. About 40,000 Jews returned to Judah, while many stayed behind in Babylon. Under Persian governance, the Jews rebuilt their society and their temple. The second temple was finished in 515BC. Cyrus the Great