I Samuel 3
Notes by Ivan Ho 29 Apr 2016
When Samuel was a boy, he did not yet know the Lord, and the word of the Lord was not yet revealed to him. In today’s terms, it is likened to someone attending and serving in the church but has yet come to have a personal encounter with God, and Jesus has not yet revealed Himself to him/her.
Then while Samuel was sleeping, God called his name “Samuel!”. Samuel thought it was Eli who called him. Then God called Samuel second time and he again thought that it was the voice of Eli. And when God called Samuel the third time, Eli taught the boy Samuel how to respond.
Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and it shall be, if He calls you, that you must say, ‘Speak, Lord , for Your servant hears.’ ” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. Now the Lord came and stood and called as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel answered, “Speak, for Your servant hears.”
I Samuel 3:1-10
There was a stage in our lives when we do not yet know how to recognise the voice of God when he spoke to us. That doesn’t mean we are stupid or anything, or that God does not speak to us at all and have an awesome plan for us. It’s just that we have yet to learn how to hear from God and how to respond correctly. We need someone who is more experienced, like Eli, to help us breakthrough and learn how to connect with God.
Sometimes God has to speak to us 3-4 times before we finally realise it was God speaking. Let’s say God gives us a dream and we wake up wondering what it is all about. We can straightaway dismiss it or we can write it down, and God will speak to us again and again the same thing until we get it, but we must have a humble attitude to listen.
If Eli wasn‘t there, Samuel probably had to wait for years before he learnt how to hear and respond to God‘s voice. God puts other people in our lives to fast track our process of maturity.
Notes 26 July 2020
When God speaks to you, you need to learn to respond accurately. God is not into monologues. Samuel had to learn how to dialogue with God. So when the boy finally learnt how to respond accurately, God spoke to him further and revealed to him the impending judgement on the house of Eli.
As Samuel matured, he became the prophet of God who impacted the destiny of the nation of Israel.
Our correct response could have far reaching impact on our destiny!
Then the Lord said to Samuel: “Behold, I will do something in Israel at which both ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them. And therefore I have sworn to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be atoned for by sacrifice or offering forever.”
I Samuel 3:11-14