Apr 8 (Daily reading: 1 Samuel 1-3) The books of Samuel reveal how the troubled tribes of Israel, led by judges, became a powerful nation. Three main characters are introduced: Samuel, Saul, and David. The story of Samuel is one often used when parents dedicate their children to God. It tells how Hannah, who was childless, prayed for a child, and promised: “I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life” (1:11). God answered her prayer, and Samuel was born. While he was still very young, Hannah brought Samuel to Eli, the priest, and said: “I have dedicated him to the LORD; as long as he lives he is dedicated to the LORD” (1:28). As a result, “The boy Samuel grew up before the LORD” (2:21). There can be no greater thing that we can do for our children than offer them to the Lord for His direction and service!
Because of Hannah’s commitment to God, and the fulfillment of her promise concerning her son, Samuel was placed in a position where he could hear and respond to God’s call (3:1-14). My own heart is grateful to God for the things my parents did that positioned me to hear and respond to His call upon my life!
“Now Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and He let none of his words fail” (3:19). Samuel was confirmed as a prophet of the LORD in the eyes of all of Israel. This was important since “word from the LORD was rare in those days” (3:1). The people were reassured when God “revealed himself to Samuel through his word” (3:21, NIV). It will always be true that the world needs people who will be open to God’s revelation through His word!
– Al Gary