21 June 1 Samuel 3:1-21

21 June. God calls Samuel at Shiloh

“The boy Samuel served the LORD under Eli. In those days the LORD did not speak directly to people very often; there were very few visions.”

“Eli’s eyes were so weak he was almost blind. One night he was lying in bed. Samuel was also in bed in the LORD’s house, where the Ark of the [Covenant] Agreement was. God’s lamp was still burning.”

“Then the LORD called Samuel, and Samuel answered, ‘I am here!’ He ran to Eli and said, ‘I am here. You called me.’ But Eli said, ‘I didn’t call you. Go back to bed.’ So Samuel went back to bed.”

“The LORD called again, ‘Samuel!’ Samuel again went to Eli and said, ‘I am here. You called me.’ Again Eli said, ‘I didn’t call you. Go back to bed.’”

“Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the LORD had not spoken directly to him yet. The LORD called Samuel for the third time. Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, ‘I am here. You called me.’”

“Then Eli realised the LORD was calling the boy. So he told Samuel, ‘Go to bed. If he calls you again, say, “Speak, LORD. I am your servant and I am listening.”’ So Samuel went and lay down in bed.”

“The LORD came and stood there and called as he had before, ‘Samuel! Samuel!’ Samuel said, ‘Speak, LORD. I am your servant and am listening.’”

“The LORD said to Samuel, ‘Watch, I am going to do something in Israel that will shock those who hear about it. At that time I will do to Eli and his family everything I promised, from beginning to end. I told Eli I would punish his family always, because he knew his sons were evil. They acted without honour, but he did not stop them. So I swore to Eli’s family, “Your guilt will never be removed by sacrifice or offering.”’”

“Samuel lay down until morning. Then he opened the doors of the house of the LORD. He was afraid to tell Eli about the vision, but Eli called to him, ‘Samuel, my son!’ Samuel answered, ‘I am here.’”

“Eli asked, ‘What did the LORD say to you? Don’t hide it from me. May God punish you terribly if you hide from me anything he said to you.’ So Samuel told Eli everything and did not hide anything from him. Then Eli said, ‘He is the LORD. Let him do what he thinks is best.’”

“The LORD was with Samuel as he grew up; he did not let any of Samuel’s messages fail to come true. Then all Israel, from Dan to Beersheba, knew Samuel was a true prophet of the LORD. And the LORD continued to show himself at Shiloh, and he showed himself to Samuel through his word.”

          (1 Samuel 3:1-21)



One night, the LORD spoke to Samuel while he was sleeping in the sanctuary at Shiloh. Samuel ran to Eli, thinking it was the old priest speaking; but after doing this three times, it became clear that it was God himself calling Samuel.

On the third occasion, the LORD spoke to Samuel about Eli’s failure to discipline his sons, who treated their role as priests with contempt. He promised to punish Eli and his family.

The next morning, Eli asked Samuel what the LORD had told him. Samuel was afraid to tell Eli the LORD’s message, but was eventually persuaded to do so. Eli received the LORD’s condemnation with quiet resolution.

The LORD continued to reveal his word to Samuel as he grew older, and “all Israel from Dan to Beersheba” recognised Samuel as "a true prophet of the LORD" (1 Samuel 3:20).

Samuel went on to serve as a ‘judge’ of the people of Israel during the time of the Philistine oppression following Samson’s death in c.1062BC, and especially following Eli’s death in c.1024BC (see 1 Samuel 4:18).

The photo (by Vassil) shows a gilded bas-relief at Auch Cathedral, France, depicting the Ark of the Covenant which was housed in the sanctuary at Shiloh.

You can read more about Samuel @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/biblejourney2/29-the-journeys-of-ruth-and-samuel/samuel-is-taken-to-shiloh/

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