Dr. Dave Burnette
1 Samuel 3 - Being Prepared
1 Samuel 3
1And the child Samuel ministered unto the LORD before Eli. And the word of the LORD was precious in those days; there was no open vision. 2And it came to pass at that time, when Eli was laid down in his place, and his eyes began to wax dim, that he could not see; 3And ere the lamp of God went out in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was, and Samuel was laid down to sleep; 4That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I. 5And he ran unto Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou calledst me. And he said, I called not; lie down again. And he went and lay down. 6And the LORD called yet again, Samuel. And Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And he answered, I called not, my son; lie down again. 7Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him. 8And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And Eli perceived that the LORD had called the child. 9Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth. So Samuel went and lay down in his place. 10And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth. 11And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle. 12In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an end. 13For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not. 14And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the iniquity of Eli's house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for ever. 15And Samuel lay until the morning, and opened the doors of the house of the LORD. And Samuel feared to shew Eli the vision. 16Then Eli called Samuel, and said, Samuel, my son. And he answered, Here am I. 17And he said, What is the thing that the LORD hath said unto thee? I pray thee hide it not from me: God do so to thee, and more also, if thou hide any thing from me of all the things that he said unto thee. 18And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he said, It is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good. 19And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words fall to the ground. 20And all Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the LORD. 21And the LORD appeared again in Shiloh: for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the word of the LORD.
Today's Scripture Meaning
The word of the Lord first revealed to Samuel. (1-10) God tells Samuel the destruction of Eli's house. (11-18) Samuel established to be a prophet. (19-21) Verses 1-10: The call which Divine grace designs shall be made effectual; will be repeated till it is so, till we come to the call. Eli, perceiving that it was the voice of God that Samuel heard, instructed him what to say. Though it was a disgrace to Eli, for God's call to be directed to Samuel, yet he told him how to meet it. Thus the elder should do their utmost to assist and improve the younger that are rising up. Let us never fail to teach those who are coming after us, even such as will soon be preferred before us, (Joh 1:30). Good words should be put into children's mouths betimes, by which they may be prepared to learn Divine things, and be trained up to regard them. Verses 11-18: What a great deal of guilt and corruption is there in us, concerning which we may say, It is the iniquity which our own heart knoweth; we are conscious to ourselves of it! Those who do not restrain the sins of others, when it is in their power to do it, make themselves partakers of the guilt, and will be charged as joining in it. In his remarkable answer to this awful sentence, Eli acknowledged that the Lord had a right to do as he saw good, being assured that he would do nothing wrong. The meekness, patience, and humility contained in those words, show that he was truly repentant; he accepted the punishment of his sin. Verses 19-21: All increase in wisdom and grace, is owing to the presence of God with us. God will graciously repeat his visits to those who receive them aright. Early piety will be the greatest honour of young people. Those who honour God he will honour. Let young people consider the piety of Samuel, and from him they will learn to remember their Creator in the days of their youth. Young children are capable of religion. Samuel is a proof that their waiting upon the Lord will be pleasing to him. He is a pattern of all those amiable tempers, which are the brightest ornament of youth, and a sure source of happiness.
Today's Scripture Application
Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we Continue in the book of 1 Samuel with Chapter 17 and we see the familiar story of David and Goliath. What catches my eye today is How the Lord was with David in the face of this battle where it appeared that he was over matched. The Lord had prepared David all his life for this battle teaching him how to sling the stone as shepherd boy. In making application we see the Lord preparing us today for tomorrows victories. You might think that Lord has forgotten you in your day to day activities but the truth is that He is preparing you with skills and abilities to be used in a mighty way. It reminds me of of when the Lord called me into ministry. I taught the Bible on a local radio station on Sunday afternoons for about a year. In all the time I never heard a comment from anyone who would have listened but what I didn't understand is that the Lord was preparing me for the Bible teaching I do to this day. How about you? Do you see the Lord preparing you for service through the small details of your life? Let us learn from out text today and the victory of David to remind us that the Lord is preparing us for service.
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Sincerely, Dr. David Burnette
Director, The United States Bible Society, Inc.