The LORD calls Samuel. Samuel becomes established as a prophet.
VERSE 1. The child Samuel ministered to the LORD before Eli. The LORD’s word was rare in those days. There were not many visions, then.
The LORD’s word was rare in those days. A revelation from the LORD was quite uncommon.
There were not many visions, then. A vision was infrequent.
Those two facts are very sad. Had people become indifferent to the things of God? Did they no longer seek him?
VERSE 2. At that time, when Eli was laid down in his place (now his eyes had begun to grow dim, so that he could not see),
VERSE 3. and God’s lamp hadn’t yet gone out, and Samuel had laid down in the LORD’s temple where God’s ark was,
Samuel had laid down in the LORD’s temple. Samuel is the portrait of a godly person:
|Laid down to sleep||Contemplative Prayer|
|Next to the Ark of the Covenant||The Scriptures|
|Next to the lamp of God||The fire of the Holy Spirit|
VERSE 4. The LORD called Samuel. He said, “Here I am.”
VERSE 5. He ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; for you called me.” He said, “I didn’t call. Lie down again.” He went and lay down.
VERSE 6. The LORD called yet again, “Samuel!” Samuel arose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; for you called me.” He answered, “I didn’t call, my son. Lie down again.”
VERSE 7. Now Samuel didn’t yet know the LORD, neither was the LORD’s word yet revealed to him.
VERSE 8. The LORD called Samuel again the third time. He arose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; for you called me.” Eli perceived that the LORD had called the child.
VERSE 9. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down. It shall be, if he calls you, that you shall say, ‘Speak, the LORD; for your servant hears.’ ” So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
VERSE 10. The LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak; for your servant hears.”
Speak; for your servant hears. Samuel has the ideal attitude in prayer: “Speak, for your servant is listening.”
But most of us get it backwards. Our attitude in prayer is more like this: “Listen, for your servant is speaking.”
We talk and talk and talk in prayer. But unlike most of us, Samuel listened.
Deuteronomy 26:14. I have not eaten of it in my mourning, neither have I removed any of it while I was unclean, nor given of it for the dead. I have listened to the LORD my God’s voice. I have done according to all that you have commanded me.
VERSE 11. The LORD said to Samuel, “Behold, I will do a thing in Israel at which both the ears of everyone who hears it will tingle.
VERSE 12. In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from the beginning even to the end.
VERSE 13. For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knew, because his sons brought a curse on themselves, and he didn’t restrain them.
he didn’t restrain them. Why did Eli turn a blind eye to the wicked deeds of his sons? Why didn’t he get his sons under control? Or why didn’t he forbid them from leading the worship and sacrifices of the people?
Eli reminds us of Catholic bishops who knew their priests were sexual abusers. But they turned a blind eye to the situation. Or they protected the priest.
VERSE 14. Therefore I have sworn to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be removed with sacrifice or offering forever.”
VERSE 15. Samuel lay until the morning, and opened the doors of the LORD’s house. Samuel was afraid to show Eli the vision.
VERSE 16. Then Eli called Samuel and said, “Samuel, my son!” He said, “Here I am.”
VERSE 17. He said, “What is the thing that he has spoken to you? Please don’t hide it from me. God do so to you, and more also, if you hide anything from me of all the things that he spoke to you.”
VERSE 18. Samuel told him every bit, and hid nothing from him. He said, “It is the LORD. Let him do what seems good to him.”
let none of his words fall to the ground. God did not permit Samuel’s words to be without effect. This reminds us of Isaiah:
Isaiah 55:11. so is my word that goes out of my mouth: it will not return to me void, but it will accomplish that which I please, and it will prosper in the thing I sent it to do.
VERSE 20. All Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the LORD.
VERSE 21. The LORD appeared again in Shiloh; for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the LORD’s word.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.