Category: Women in the Bible

God is Faithful

 

WEEK 26:  

1 Samuel 2:26 And the child Samuel grew on, and was in favour both with the LORD, and also with men.

Samuel became the last judge of the Israelites, as they demanded a king to rule over them just “like the other nations” (1 Samuel 8:5). Samuel served the LORD his God and the people faithfully until his death. He truly was an anointed servant of the LORD. The early years that Hannah took weaning him before taking him to the tabernacle to give him to Eli to present before the LORD to serve him all the days of his life came to fruition.

In contrast to the apostate sons of Eli, Samuel was maturing both spiritually and socially. In the midst of the sins of Eli, Samuel was growing upright in the LORD. God did not overlook Samuel’s loyalty to Him. The people appreciated Samuel’s loyalty to God as well.

God is faithful.

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

YOU CANNOT OUT GIVE GOD!!!

THE A. B. C TO SALVATION IN CHRIST JESUS

Dear Reader – IF you have not accepted Christ Jesus as Lord and Saviour of your life – it is our belief that time is running out. To receive and accept Jesus as Lord is as simple as A. B. C.

A – ACCEPT that you are a sinner, and you need the blood of Jesus to cleanse you of your sins.

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

B – BELIEVE  in you heart that Jesus is the Son of God and He came and died on the cross to take away the sins of Mankind.

John 3:15-18 15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

C – CONFESS – Confess with your mouth that Jesus Christ is Lord.

Romans 10:9-11 9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

PRAY THIS PRAYER IF YOU BELIEVE THE ABOVE

Heavenly Father – I come to you as a sinner in need of the blood of Jesus who shed His blood on the cross of Calvary to forgive me and take away my sins. I ask that You forgive me and wash me and cleanse me with the blood of Jesus of all my sins Lord. I believe in my heart that Jesus is the Son of God. I accept Him today as the Lord and Saviour of my life. I ask Lord that you send your Holy Spirit to come and live within me and help guide my footsteps as I walk in the newness of the new life in Christ Jesus. I thank you Father for writing my name down in the Lamb’s Book of life. In Jesus name I pray. AMEN.

Brothers and Sisters – if you prayed the above pray for the first time – you are NOW born again. WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD.

I would encourage you to tell others of your new found faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Find a church that preaches and teaches the undiluted Word of God without fear of man, and start to grow in the Lord.

WELCOME BROTHER.

WELCOME SISTER.

GOD BLESS YOU ALL. In Jesus name. Amen.

The Number Five

 

WEEK 25:   

1 Samuel 2:21 And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons and two daughters. And the child Samuel grew before the LORD.  

God blessed Elkanah and Hannah for their obedience to the LORD even in the face of the Eli the priest’s disobedience. This is who God is. This is how God is. God gave them five more children. Three sons and two daughters.

The number five in Scriptures symbolises God’s grace, goodness and favour toward mankind, and it is mentioned 318 times in Scripture. Five is the number of grace, and multiplied by itself, which is 25, is grace upon grace.

John 1:16: And of His fullness have we all received, and grace for grace.

What does the Number 5 mean or represent in the Bible?

(1) The Ten Commandments contains two sets of 5 commandments. The first five commandments are related to our treatment and relationship with God, and the last five concern our relationship with others humans.

(2) There are five primary types of offerings God commanded Israel to bring to him.

They are the: (i) Burnt Offerings (Leviticus 1; 8:18 – 21; 16:24), (ii) Sin (Leviticus 4; 16:3 – 22), (iii) Trespass (Leviticus 5:14 – 19; 6:1 – 7; 7:1 – 6), (iv) Grain (Leviticus 2) and (v) Peace Offering (Leviticus 3; 7:11- 34).

(3) The Book of Psalms is divided into five major sections.

Section 1 (Psalm 1 to 41) refers to the Passover, Israel’s beginning, and the start of the God’s plan of salvation that centres around Christ.

Section 2 (42 to 72) sings about a unified Israel in the land and pictures the creation of the New Testament Church.

Section 3 (73 to 89) bemoans the destruction of both God’s Temple and Jerusalem. This section also hints at prophecies regarding the End Time Great Tribulation.

Section 4 (90 to 106) rejoices over the 1,000 reign of Jesus and shows Israel gathered again.

Section 5 (107 to 150) pictures a time when Judah (representing all Israel) shall again be delivered.

(4) There are five books of God’s Law – (i) Genesis, (ii) Exodus, (iii) Leviticus, (iv) Numbers and (v) Deuteronomy commonly referred to as the Pentateuch. ‘Penta’ means five.

(5) There are five books in the Bible that contain only one chapter. (i) 2John, (ii) 3John, (iii) Philemon, (iv) Jude and (v) Obadiah.

(6) Babylon’s King Nebuchadnezzar was given, by God, a dream where he saw a giant statue of a man. This statue, according to the interpretation given by the Eternal to Daniel, represented 5 periods of world-ruling empires.

  • The statue’s head of gold represented Babylon (Daniel 2:32, 38)

  • The Chest and Arms of Silver symbolized the Persian Empire (Daniel 2:32, 39)

  • The Belly and Thighs of Bronze (brass) represented the Macedonian Empire under Alexander the Great (Daniel 32, 39)

  • The Two Legs of Iron symbolized Rome’s Empire (Daniel 2:33, 40 – 43)

  • The Ten Toes of Iron mixed with Clay are the successors to the Roman Empire (Daniel 2:41 – 44)

Whenever you see the number 5 in the Scriptures, take notice, because it’s a type of “grace”. The 5th commandment is the only one of the Ten Commandments that has a “grace period”.

Exodus 20:12: Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

David slew Goliath with 5 smooth stones out of the brook (1Samuel 17:40). Did David take 5 as a symbol pointing to the typology that it is by grace you are saved through faith, not of works, it is a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8)?

David is seen as a type of Christ in the Scriptures, who slays Goliath. Goliath is the enemy of our soul – the devil himself and it is by grace that we are saved – not of works lest he boast (Ephesians 2:9).

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

 

References:

http://www.biblestudy.org/bibleref/meaning-of-numbers-in-bible/5.html

He is the Potter – We Are the Clay

 

WEEK 24:

1 Samuel 2:9-10 9 He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail. 10 The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed.

Verses 9-10 – We are God’s workman. He is the Potter. We are the clay. We are a work in progress. When God is finished moulding us, and doing what He will with us, He will put His name on us – the finished product. God will put His name on us, and He is going to give us a new name.

Revelation 22:4: And they shall see His face; and His name shall be in their foreheads.

That is the reason why He allows us to go through those difficulties and all those tests; trials; tribulations and hardships. The potter takes the clay, and he moulds it; and shapes it, and re-shapes it if necessary and he makes it into his image – the image that he desires it to be. However, part of that process is not only the potters’ wheel which is spinning so many miles per hour, but after that the clay has to go into the kiln.

What is a Kiln?

A kiln is a special kind of oven for firing things like pottery and bricks. Depending upon the type of kiln used (there are glass kilns, clay kilns, and modern day electrical kilns). Some kilns look more like furnaces than ovens, and they can reach temperatures up to 3,000 degrees. Kilns have been around for thousands of years and have taken many different forms. Ancient civilizations used them to create ceramic and glass vessels to store food and water. Later they were used to create metal tools and weapons but since the dawn of their existence they were used to create art.

Today kilns are found everywhere from industry to classrooms. Their main function is to create enough heat to temporarily or permanently change the physical structure of Clay, Glass and Metal. Some kilns look more like furnaces than ovens, and they reach temperatures far beyond regular household ovens. Electricity is used to power many modern kilns, while others use older techniques of burning wood or even coal. Making mugs and bowls is the primary use of kilns, but there are some that dry lumber, tobacco leaves, or hops as well

Clay is permanently transformed from being soft and pliable to hard and rigid.

Glass is temporarily heated to go from being hard and rigid to soft and pliable so it can be formed into shapes and then cooled back to a rigid form.

Metal can be heated in a kiln to make it harder or softer simply by the way it is cooled.

Whatever you use it for, the results seem magical. People who own kilns rarely lose that feeling of anticipation when they open the lid and see their pieces magically transformed.

It is the kiln – in the fire of the furnace that the clay is strengthened. Then after it comes out of the kiln, the potter begins to do all of the artistic work on it, and when he is done, when he is all finished and it is all completed, he puts his name on it – it is his workmanship.

That is what God is doing in allowing us to go through all of those trials that we go through – think of all what Job went through. Remember his end.

Job 42:12: So the LORD blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning, for he had fourteen thousand sheep, and six thousand camels, and a thousand yoke of oxen, and a thousand she asses.

Verse 10 is a prophetic picture that points to the person of Jesus Christ. How you may ask? When Hannah says “and He shall give strength unto His King, and exalt the horn of His Anointed”, it is the FIRST TIME it is mentioned in all of the Scriptures – referring to Jesus Christ – the Saviour to come as the Messiah – which is what it means in the Hebrew – “the Anointed One”. In the Greek – Christos. The Law of First Mention simply means that the very first time any important word is mentioned in the Bible.

He is the Christ. The Anointed One. He is the Saviour. He is the One that God would anoint as King. How did Hannah know that? Could it be because she was intimately and experientially in a very close and personal relationship with her God? Hannah was so indwelt and empowered by the Holy Spirit that the Holy Spirit gave her these words to speak. The Holy Spirit gave her those words to pray.

“Hannah was the first to sing about the Anointed King, and as there was actually no king over Israel in her days (judges ruled), the words would seem to have a prophetic reference to Christ – He is the crown of all the saints, joyous and their songs reach their highest notes where they sing of the Anointed” Source: Charles Spurgeon.

Every book in the Old Testament points to the person of Jesus Christ. EVERY!!! God has worked everything together for Hannah’s good. However, it wasn’t just for her good, it was for His glory. God will always be glorified, and God will be glorified chiefly in those who love God; who know God and are called according to the purpose of God (Romans 8:28).

In God’s purpose for us, He works everything for our good and His glory, but He does so by pointing us to Christ while at the same time He is making us more like Christ. The more God does that in our lives, the more Christ like we become. God is faithful!!!

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

 

References:

https://www.vocabulary.com/dictionary/kiln             

http://kilnarts.org/education/kilns-101/what-is-a-kiln/

God Exalts the Humble

 

WEEK 23: 

1 Samuel 2:5-8 5 They that were full have hired out themselves for bread; and they that were hungry ceased: so that the barren hath born seven; and she that hath many children is waxed feeble. 6 The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up. 7 The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up. 8 He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORD’S, and he hath set the world upon them.

Verses 5-8 – There are five truths that we can see here.

The first truth is that God will have the final Word to those who arrogantly speak against God and against God’s people as did Peninnah. Peninnah was not only mocking her, she was also mocking her God. When the God that you pray to, that you weep before, that you cry out to, and Hannah is saying “here I am LORD, Peninnah is having all these children LORD, You are blessing her with the fruit of the womb, and LORD I have no issue to call my own. Where are You LORD’? Bearing in mind, that the culture in that day – and in some cultures today even in the 21st century, not to have any children and to be barren and infertile was seen as a sign of God’s curse on that person, on that woman. If she could not give her husband children then according to their customs, the husband would be justified in divorcing her and finding another wife who could bear children, because it was so important and especially so to have a male child to carry on the family name forward.

How did Hannah feel? Take a moment to think about that. To be the talk of the town or village or city. To see fingers pointing and wagging at you. For voices to fall silent when you walk into the grocery store, or you go to the market. How humiliating it must have been for Hannah knowing that Peninnah had born Elkanah children – both males and females, yet she was the first wife and she could not.

This went on for years, but we do not know how many years. Hannah had to endure being mocked and ridiculed for so many years. It begs the question – did Hannah in her heart know because she knew the LORD intimately, because she knew how good God is, Hannah just knew that she had to believe that the God she knew – that it was God who was going to have the final word?

Perhaps that is why when she was rejoicing and praying and she’s thanking God – “thank you God, thank you God for all those people who spoke so arrogantly against You and Your goodness – thank you God”.

The second truth is that God will vindicate us before those enemies who intend evil for us and He does that by bringing good from that which they meant for evil. I am reminded of Joseph and his brothers. His brothers left him in the pit for dead, took his garment of many colours, killed a goat, shed and smeared the goat’s blood all over Joseph’s garment, returned back home and showed Jacob their father the coat of many colours, told a lie that they had found this coat, and asked Jacob to discern if this was Joseph’s coat (Genesis 37:24 – 33). That was the plan of Joseph’s 10 brothers (Benjamin was not allowed to follow his brother to Shechem – he was too young). They sold Joseph for 20 pieces of silver to the Midianites (Genesis 37:27). Joseph ended up going from the pit to the Palace and was second in command in the whole land of Egypt – only Pharaoh was held in higher esteem than Joseph. Joseph was 17 years old when he was sold by his brothers. Joseph was 30 years old when he was promoted by Pharaoh. Pharaoh has two dreams that no one in the land could interpret. Joseph is brought before Pharaoh. God gives him the ability to interpret the dreams. There is going to be 7 years of plenty followed by 7 years of famine. So Joseph is 30 years old – then 7 years of plenty follows.

That makes Joseph 37 years old. 20 years (37 years – 17 years = 20 years) after Joseph was sold by his brothers – God shows Himself strong on Joseph’s behalf. His 11 brothers do come and bow before him (Genesis 42:6). Joseph eventually reveals his identity to his brothers (Genesis 45:3). He forgives them for their wrong doing to him over 20 years ago. Just before Joseph dies, he calls his brothers. 73 years later (110 -37 = 73 years), his brothers are still ridden by guilt. Joseph was 110 years old when he died (Genesis 50:22). He assures them with these words of comfort –

Genesis 50:20:-But as for you, ye thought evil against me: but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day to save much people alive.

That is why I believe we have these accounts written into Scripture – to show us how though He may tarry – God will surely show up. He is never too early. He is never too late. God is always on time. We His children WILL BE vindicated against those who wish to do evil unto us. The LORD God Almighty will show up and vindicate us.

The third truth we can glean from Hannah’s prayer is that God will humble those who exalt themselves, and He will also exalt those who humble themselves, and in so doing, He will put to silent the boasters. We have the story of Esther to see this whole scenario play out when Haman came against Mordecai – Esther’s adopted father. God will not tarry, although it may seem so. God will always have the final say about those who boast and brag. The proud will be silenced.

The fourth truth is that God will work it out and set it right just as He sets the world upon pillars of the earth. As Hannah prays, that is an image – a picture of the pillars of strength. If God can put the whole world set right on these pillars and holds them up so that it is unmovable, so too will He set us up on those pillars of strength so that we are unmovable, and our foot will never be moved.

The fifth truth is that God will be glorified in and through the hardship and difficulty He calls us to. God does not take any pleasure in having His children go through hardship unless there is a purpose for His children to go through hardship (Romans 8:28-29). What is God’s purpose? God’s purpose is to make us more like His Son Jesus Christ, for faithful is He who has begun that good work (Philippians 1:6).    

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Hannah Praises the Lord

 

WEEK 22:

1 Samuel 2:1-4 1 And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the LORD, mine horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 2 There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God. 3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. 4 The bows of the mighty men are broken, and they that stumbled are girded with strength.

Verses 1-4 – As we start chapter 2, we are still on the heels of the period of the judges. It’s a dark time in Israel’s history when the Israelites just did whatever was right in their own eyes – they just did whatever they wanted to do, and that’s why they needed the judges to deliver Israel out of the hands of their enemies – the Midianites and all the other enemy nations that were surrounding them.

It is during these times when it’s darkest, that the light of the world shines brightest. The darkest part of the night is right before sunlight. Just before the sun rises, that is the absolute darkest time of the night.

Hannah’s barrenness was turned into blessedness. Her dark time in the night – her weeping turned into rejoicing. That’s just how it is – that’s how it just always tends to work out – eventually. That is who God is. That is how good God is. God is able to take whatever situation or circumstance you are in, as perilous as it may seem, as difficult as it may be, as dark as the night may be, we don’t know when He is going to show up, or when He is going to do it, or how He is going to do it, but we can know that He is going to do it.

That which Hannah sought in prayer and through prayer, did not mean that Hannah would cease from prayer. Hannah did not stop praying. She was thanking God; she was praising God; she was just magnifying God for what He had done for her by giving her a son.

In addition to her continuing and abounding in prayer after receiving her heart’s desire, she doesn’t break her vow.

Ecclesiastes 5:4- When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for He hath no pleasure in fools; pay that which thou hast vowed.

Scripture warns us about making a vow to the LORD and not fulfilling that vow – for the LORD has no pleasure in fools.

Hannah follows through on her vow. Remember, she is there at the tabernacle, after waiting all those years – she was cursed; abused, mocked and ridiculed by Peninnah her sister wife for all those years, and now she has her son, and she is at the tabernacle and she is going to leave him there. She is going to sacrifice her only son. God would bless her for this – far above she can imagine or think in giving her first son to God’s service. She is releasing him, she is offering him for the LORD’s service – I doubt that could have been easy, after yearning for her heart’s desire for many years and then to hand him over for the LORD’s service – how emotional and soul wrenching that must have been – BUT – a vow is a vow, and she had vowed to the LORD.

Her horn is exalted in the LORD. What Hannah is saying here, is that her strength to leave her son and fulfil her vow as difficult as it would be, that strength could only come from the LORD. The horn is a type in the Scripture of strength and power – the Ox’s strength. So when one is saying “you are my strength”, what you are saying is that it is the LORD who is strengthening you or empowering you to do what you could not do in your own strength – it is the LORD who will empower you to do what He has called you to do.

God’s calling will always come packaged with God’s empowering. God’s calling are God’s enabling’s. God will never call us to do anything that He will not allow us to follow through and do.

Hannah had a personal and experiential knowledge of not only the God of the Word, but the Word of God. Hannah’s prayer bears a striking resemblance to another prayer that would be prayed many generations later by Mary – the mother of Jesus Christ.

Luke 1:46-47:- And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

Mary’s prayer is very similar to Hannah’s prayer here. I wonder – did Mary know Hannah’s prayer? There is no doubt that Hannah knew how to pray. She had to know intimately experientially the Word of God and the God of the Word.  

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

Hannah Fulfils Her Vow

 

WEEK 21: 

1 Samuel 1:25- 28 25 And they slew a bullock, and brought the child to Eli. 26 And she said, Oh my lord, as thy soul liveth, my lord, I am the woman that stood by thee here, praying unto the LORD. 27 For this child I prayed; and the LORD hath given me my petition which I asked of him: 28 Therefore also I have lent him to the LORD; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the LORD. And he worshipped the LORD there.

Verses 25-26 – Samuel was taken to the tabernacle in Shiloh to be under the care of Eli, to be instructed and trained up by him in the service of the tabernacle. It appears that Elkanah the husband of Hannah came along with her at this time. How difficult this must have been! Not only hard for Hannah, but hard for Elkanah also. Their willingness to fulfil the vow, even at great personal cost, is evidence of godliness in both Elkanah and Hannah.

We see 1 Samuel 1:24  it mentions three bulls brought to Shiloh, but  1 Samuel 1:25 mentions only one being sacrificed, this emphasizes that one of the bulls was specifically made as a burnt offering for the cleansing and consecration of little Samuel.

“Bullocks … flour … wine”: According to (Num. 15:8-10), a bull, flour, and wine were to be sacrificed in fulfilment of a vow. Hannah brought all 3 in larger measures than required. An Ephah was about three fourths of a bushel.

The magnitude of Elkanah’s offering when Samuel was dedicated to the LORD – offering an entire bull – shows that a grown up offering for sin was made at his dedication, even though Samuel was only about three years old. This is a subtle reference to the inherited nature of our sinfulness. Though Samuel has not sinned as much as an adult, he is still a guilty sinner, because he has inherited a sinful nature from Adam – as we all have. Thank You for the cross LORD.

 “As thy soul liveth” – literally “by the light of your soul”. This was a common oath formula. Bear in mind that Eli had not heard what Hannah had prayed for in the tabernacle. Eli only saw her lips moving and he presumed that she was drunk. Eli did not hear her prayer, but he answered her request.

1 Samuel 1:17: Then Eli answered and said Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of Him.

Verses 27-28 – This is the first time that Eli is aware she had promised her son to God. It had probably been a while since he had seen her – possibly up to four years, so she felt the need that she had to remind him of who she is. Hannah has reminded Eli of who she is, and she now has little Samuel’s tender hands in hers, as she presents him to Eli.

The son Hannah requested God had given, and she gives her gift back to the Giver. It is possible because of his age, that Eli may not have even remembered that he had foretold that “so shall it be” (1 Samuel 1:17). Though he knew not what particularly it was she asked; nor did she reveal to him her petition at the time (after all, Eli thought she was drunk), as she now did. Having obtained of the LORD what she was so solicitous for, and now she makes mention of with thankfulness.

“I also have lent him to the LORD”. Hannah reiterates to Eli the priest her vow. This is what she prayed for. Hannah knows that she does not own the child, but that she is lending him to the LORD. The child Samuel is her prayer, or the fulfilment of her prayer to the LORD.

Worship is a repeated characteristic of this family (1 Samuel 1-3; 19, 28). It would appear that Samuel observed his mum’s relationship with the LORD. In good times and in not so good times. It is apparent that Samuel learned a valuable lesson from his mum. Even though he was to be left with this stranger at the tender age of three years old, Samuel still knew the importance of worshipping Yahweh. We have seen from the Scriptures, that even in difficult situations and hard times, they can worship the LORD. Praising God on the day you give your long awaited little son away may not be easy, gut wrenching even, but it is praise God is pleased with.  It is a sacrifice.

Hebrews 13:15: By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name.

What she is really saying is that she has given her son back to the LORD. She had promised she would give him to the service of the LORD all the days of his life and she is fulfilling that vow. And as a Nazarite for life too. No razor would ever come near his head. Such must be our covenant with God be, a marriage covenant, as long as we live, we must be His, and never forsake Him. He certainly will never forsake us (Hebrews 13:5).

Personally, I believe that all four persons there present worshipped the LORD – even Samuel at his tender age, as he was taught and trained up, bowed himself before the LORD, and worshipped Him in the tabernacle as soon as he was brought into it, though a child.

Eli realizes what the magnitude of this is, and worships the LORD. Samuel will never stop being her son, but he will never stop being God’s servant either. He will be trained by Eli the high priest, in the ways of the LORD.

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

Hannah Nurtures Samuel

 

WEEK 20:      

1 Samuel 1:21-24 21 And the man Elkanah, and all his house, went up to offer unto the LORD the yearly sacrifice, and his vow. 22 But Hannah went not up; for she said unto her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever. 23 And Elkanah her husband said unto her, Do what seemeth thee good; tarry until thou have weaned him; only the LORD establish his word. So the woman abode, and gave her son suck until she weaned him. 24 And when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, with three bullocks, and one ephah of flour, and a bottle of wine, and brought him unto the house of the LORD in Shiloh: and the child was young.

Verses 21-22 – Back in the day, it was not uncommon for mothers to nurture their children for a long time – sometimes even up to three years.  If this was the case, it begs the question as to why Hannah would wait up to three years before she would fulfil her vow, and take Samuel to the tabernacle. Two possible reasons spring to mind.

The first reason could have been spiritual. Israel is still being an obstinate people. Disobeying the LORD. Doing as they would. Ignoring the commandments and statutes and laws and edicts of the LORD. They were wanton. The behaviour and reports coming forth about the conduct of Eli’s two sons did not help the situation either.

Could it be that since it appeared as though Eli had lost all control over his two sons, unable to discipline them and get them to turn from their wicked and evil ways and to serve the LORD with all their heart and might and strength, that the LORD spoke to Hannah’s heart and asked her to nurture and bring up her son Samuel in the fear and admonitions of the LORD from an early age? It is well documented, that most of a child’s learning – solid foundations takes place from birth to about five years old. An awful amount of learning also gets instilled within the first 18 months of a child’s life too.  I submit, that it is possible the LORD prompted Hannah to teach Samuel the Word of God, and the ways of the LORD, and the LORD would hasten His Word to perform that which he the small lad had heard. Whatever his mother taught him, the LORD would bring it back to his remembrance.

The second reason could have been for physiological reasons. Mother’s breast milk is literally impossible to duplicate with modern medicine. The formula that we have today, cannot get anywhere near the hormones that mother’s milk possesses. Man simply cannot make a synthetic copy of it.

There are a number of benefits associated with breast feeding.

Breast milk gives your baby everything he/she needs to thrive.

Here are just a few of the ways that breastfeeding is best for your baby:

  • It may reduce your baby’s risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), also known as cot death.

  • It helps your baby to fight infection. Breast milk contains antibodies that help to protect your baby against tummy bugs (gastroenteritis), colds, chest infections and ear infections.

  • Breastfeeding plants good (probiotic) bacteria, which can fight inflammation, in your baby’s digestive system.

  • It helps you and your baby to feel close to one another and may help to prevent postnatal depression (PND).

  • It prepares your baby for different tastes. Unlike formula milk, the flavour of breast milk can change according to what you’ve eaten, so your baby may be less of a fussy eater when he’s/she’s weaning.

  • It can be a great comfort to your baby when he’s/she’s older and he’s/she’s too ill to eat, but still able to breastfeed. Breast milk can also help your baby to recover from illness more quickly.

  • Continuing to breastfeed your baby once he/she started solids at around six months may protect him/her against developing food allergies.

  • Exclusively breastfeeding for at least six months can protect babies against childhood leukaemia.

  • It can protect him/her long-term health. Breastfed babies may be less likely to become obese or develop diabetes as adults.

                                                                          
As well as the antibodies that are already in your breast milk, your body will make new antibodies as soon as you are exposed to an infection.

When your baby catches a cold, you’ll pick up the cold virus from him/her. Your immune system gets to work, making antibodies to fight the virus. Your antibodies transfer to your milk, ready to help your baby fight the infection next time he/she has a breastfeed.

Your baby is likely to recover more quickly from illnesses throughout his/her first year if you breastfeed exclusively for the first six months. This may motivate you if you’re thinking about stopping breastfeeding, or switching to mixed feeding.

Breastfeeding may also reduce the risk of your baby wheezing in early childhood and developing severe eczema.

Breast milk contains long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are essential for helping your baby’s brain to develop.

Breastfeeding is the healthiest choice for you, too. It may help you to lose weight and keep it off. It reduces your risk of type 2 diabetes, breast cancer and ovarian cancer in later life.

In the short term, breastfeeding can prevent ovulation, so you may be free of periods for a while, too.

Two practical benefits of breastfeeding are that it’s free, and can make life easier. You won’t have bottles and teats to wash, sterilise or prepare, and your milk is always at the right temperature. As soon as your baby needs a feed, it’s ready.

What’s more, you’ll feel a real sense of achievement to see him/her growing and developing thanks to the food your body has made for him/her.

Is extended breastfeeding for you? Read how your baby can continue to benefit from your milk.

Last reviewed: March 2017

 

Verses 23-24 – It seems as though the LORD has been working on Elkanah. Verse 23 highlights the Godliness, the submissiveness and the growth of Elkanah. Looks like he has come a very long way from Chapter 1:10 when it all started to happen. Did God do a powerful thing in Elkanah’s heart, in and which He did in his wife’s Hannah’s womb?

According to the Law, a husband could override the vow (Numbers 30:6-8).

Number 30:13: Every vow, and every binding oath to afflict the soul, her husband may establish it, or her husband may make it void.

For Elkanah to honour the vow that his wife made to the LORD even though it was made in his absence – verse 1:11 “And she vowed a vow and said”…….it showed his commitment towards Hannah. Elkanah could easily have disavowed her vow to the LORD, especially when it had to do with his long awaited firstborn son through Hannah. It clearly demonstrates how committed he is to his God and how supportive he is of his wife and her vow.

Elkanah needed to come to the place – that place. He needed to grow to that place. It came from his desire that he only wanted God’s Word to be established in his home.      

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

Reference: https://www.babycentre.co.uk/x536357/what-are-the-benefits-of-breastfeeding

By Emma Dufficy (Midwife)

A Joyful Countenance

 

WEEK 19:

1 Samuel 1:17-20 17 Then Eli answered and said, Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of him. 18 And she said, Let thine handmaid find grace in thy sight. So the woman went her way, and did eat, and her countenance was no more sad. 19 And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the LORD, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the LORD remembered her. 20 Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.

Verses 17-20 – It would appear as though Hannah has changed, Hannah has changed inwardly, but her circumstances haven’t changed outwardly. She is just as barren as she was when she got to the tabernacle, and she’ll still be barren when she leaves the tabernacle, yet we read that her countenance has changed.

Nothing has changed in terms of her barrenness, yet something has changed in terms of her heart concerning her barrenness. Hannah leaves the tabernacle in peace and with a joyful countenance and finally she is able to eat something.

What happened? What is it that took place there in the tabernacle that would be such a game changer? What is it that happened that would rise to the level of having Hannah completely have the change of heart concerning her situation? Could it be that Hannah chose to believe NOW??? Hannah made a decision not based on her feelings, not based on the emotions of the moment, but it would appear that she made a decision by faith, because of the word she heard when Eli said to her “Go in peace the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of Him”.

Hannah merely heard the word spoken from the lips of Eli the priest that God had heard her prayer and has harkened unto the voice of her cry, and she received that by faith.

Roman 10:17: So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Hannah believed that by faith. Eli spoke a word of knowledge into Hannah’s life, and she received it.

Was Hannah’s faith pleasing to God?

Hebrews 11:6: But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he that cometh to God MUST believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that DILIGENTLY seek Him.

This is how God MUST be pleased. He is most pleased when His people trust Him explicitly and put their faith in Him – that is what pleases God. In addition to this, we must be diligent in our requests/petitions to Him.

Ask. Seek. Knock. It’s all about A.S.K-ing

Matthew 7:7: ASK, and it shall be given you, SEEK, and ye shall find, KNOCK and it shall be opened unto you.

We note in verse 7, that Hannah went up to the tabernacle year after year, and year after year she was tormented by her sister wife. It is evident that Hannah did not just pray once unto the LORD and then left it. NO!!! On the contrary, she was diligent. Hannah kept asking. Hannah kept seeking. Hannah kept knocking. She was persistent. She was unrelenting. She was undeterred. She laboured in asking and petitioning. She knew the LORD God whom she served. She was not going to let Him go until He blessed her. Just like we see with Jacob, when he wrestled with the angel of God all night and refused to let him go (the angel) until he blessed him (Genesis 32:24-25). Since the LORD is not constrained by time, but we as His children are usually always in a hurry, the LORD is never too early, neither is He ever too late. His timing is perfect. It tends to be us His kids who are so impatient. We want it and we want it NOW!!! That is not how God works. He will not be swayed by our tantrums. Like a kid throwing his/her toys out of the pram when he/she doesn’t get what they think their parents should give them this instance.

I do admire Hannah. What was Hannah’s secret? How did she keep it all under control? After years of being tormented by Peninnah, how come Hannah did not snap at either God? Her husband? Or Peninnah? Peninnah’s children may also have had a dig at Hannah. They were the offspring of their daddy Elkanah. Hannah could not even point to a daughter yet alone a son. This had to be God. There is no other way that one would be taunted by ones adversary daily, weekly, monthly and yearly and not snap. How pious was Hannah? Hannah had to dig deep. VERY DEEP.

There had to be a well. A deep well from which Hannah could draw the water of faith. Could it be:

Romans 10:17: Faith comes from hearing, and hearing from the word of God.

Was that Hannah’s well? It’s a gift of faith. Hannah not only heard the Word of God, she heeded the Word of God.

James 1:22: But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

That is how it came. It had to be. Hannah heeded the Word. Hannah clearly had big faith. Massive faith in fact. Great faith. She had to have.  As we will read later on, Hannah eventually gives birth to a son whom she named “SAMUEL”. Samuel means “the LORD has heard”. The name is the nature. She prayed. He heard. She named him after what she went through. God heard. His name is SAMUEL.

7 Characteristics of Hannah – a Woman of God.

Hannah prayed for children to God

Hannah prayed for her children to God.

Hannah saw her child as a gift from God.

Hannah dedicated her child for God.

Hannah was a woman of God.

Hannah had a personal relationship with God.

Hannah raised her child to serve God.

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

Hannah Exhibits a Meek and Mild Spirit

 

WEEK 18:

1 Samuel 1:13-16 13 Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken. 14 And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken? put away thy wine from thee. 15 And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the LORD. 16 Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial: for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto.

Verses 13-14 – Hannah is crying out to the LORD. Out of the anguish of her heart is she speaking – yet she is not. Her lips are moving, but there is no utterances coming forth – nothing audible. The priest Eli is probably thinking “oh no – yet another drunkard who comes to the house of the Lord” (for such was the time, that anything seemed to be permissible). Eli rebukes her. He tells her off. He calls Hannah a drunkard. The irony of it all – it was Eli’s sons who were drunkards, and got up to all manner of sorts.

Eli’s rebuke towards Hannah kind of suggests that it was the norm for people getting drunk, mis-behaving at or near the tabernacle of the LORD, and doing all manner of things. Such a  lawless set of people they had become. He sees Hannah moving her lips and automatically concludes that Hannah is drunk. Intoxicated. Legless. Not another one he thinks – be gone woman!!! Remember, it was how it was in the very dark days of the judges in these days. The condition of God’s people was abhorrent.

Verses 15-16 – It was rare to see a woman like Hannah come into the tabernacle of the LORD and PRAY. She genuinely came to worship, pray and praise God. This perhaps was a rare sight. In all probability, Eli was more than likely shocked to find out that she wasn’t actually drunk, but that she was pouring her heart out to the LORD.

Did it encourage Eli to see such? There is yet hope he may have thought. Religion was at a very low ebb in Shiloh, for it seems that drunken women did indeed come to the place and lewd women were also found there.

One other thing I think is necessary to point out is about Hannah’s Godly character.

Elkanah her husband had shown insensitivity to her.

Peninnah her sister wife had shown insensitivity towards her.

Now Eli the priest likewise abuses her and is insensitive towards her.

Yet nowhere in the narrative do we read of Hannah getting angry or retaliating, or lashing out. What we can glean from this account, is a Godly woman who doesn’t get offended, or become disrespectful or take Eli the priest to task about his wrong assertion about her. On the contrary, her demeanour and response is that of a meek and kind and gentle woman who has been the recipient of anything but.

Meekness which is also a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), is a lovely ornament of plenty. Meekness is not a sign of weakness it must be said. Meekness is strength under control. It is that meekness that is under the control of the Holy Spirit. That is why it is a fruit of the Spirit. When you have the spirit of meekness guiding you by the Holy Spirit, you do not respond in kind – even though you have been wronged!!!

#ionlykneelforjesus.com

                                                                 

Take it to the Lord in Prayer

 

WEEK 17:

1 Samuel 1:9-12 9 So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD. 10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore. 11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head. 12 And it came to pass, as she continued praying before the LORD, that Eli marked her mouth.

Verses 9-10 – Hannah knew that as loving and as caring as her husband was, he could not fully understand her. She knew that although she believed and knew in her heart that Elkanah loved her and he tries to please her, and as genuine and sincere as he is, there is no way that he could ever understand what she was going through as a woman who was barren and unable to conceive.

Hannah was wise enough not to burden her husband and put the onus on him. Sometimes, it is incumbent on wives to recognise and realise that one cannot always expect ones’ husband to do for you only that which the LORD can do for you. There are going to be times in one’s marriage more often than not, that your husband will be incapable of meeting your needs as a woman at/in that moment. At such a time, if a wife is expecting something from their husband, when the wife does that, they are setting themselves up for a terrible disappointment. Then the wife gets angry/upset and it can just escalate and get out of control. At such a time, it would be more prudent to go over your husbands’ head and take it to the LORD in prayer. Allow the LORD to deal with your husband.

Notice, that Hannah does not appear to get angry with Elkanah, or nag him, or argue with him, or yell at him (Job’s wife – Job 2:9). Hannah knew that her husband was going to fall short. She has decided in her mind that she is not going to put pressure on him to do for her that which she knew only the LORD can do for her.  Nor does she retaliate and fight her adversary sister wife Peninnah.

Hannah could easily have been angry with God and her husband because of his second wife who took pleasure in taunting her day in day out. “God – where are you? LORD – look upon my affliction? LORD – do you not see how my adversary mocks me daily? LORD – see how she antagonises me? Can you not see LORD how she proudly parades her children in front on me on a regular basis? She has many children LORD – You will not even give me one – why LORD why? I am a laughing stock in the neighbourhood – do you not see LORD?  LORD – I have served You all the days of my life thus far – will You not take away my reproach”? Hannah could have been very angry in the natural.

However, Hannah knew that she could not go to her husband to meet this pressing need. She could only go to God. Hannah was also aware that what Peninnah was doing, was not the blessing of the LORD, and that God was not only going to bless Peninnah, but that He was also going to bless her – only in His time. In some situations, only the LORD can comfort you. Allow the LORD to deal with your husband – after all, He knows him inside out – He made him.

Verses 11-12 – Hannah vowed a vow. One must be very careful and exercise the utmost caution when vowing a vow to the LORD.

Ecclesiastes 5:4– when thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it: for He hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed.

Hannah makes the vow of a Nazarite. No razor shall come upon his head LORD. Did Hannah want a Godly Son? She was aware of the times she was living in. She knew Israel had fallen away from God. She knew that Israel was in desperate need of a deliverer or a prophet – another judge even. She wanted a son to be born that she could dedicate to the LORD’s service there in the tabernacle in Israel, during a period of time that the Israelites just did whatever seemed right in their eyes. Hannah knew the need for Israel to have a Godly man, and she wanted to be the mother to give birth to such a man. Eli the priest and his two sons were not fit for the office.

I wonder – could it be that God saw the desire of her heart and thus He answered her prayer? We can see that Hannah is clearly seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33), and as such, God would add all these things – even other children under her, because her first and foremost priority was God’s kingdom and God’s people.

Did God honour Hannah’s request because of her desire to have a son, dedicate him to the LORD all the days of his life, wean him, take him to the tabernacle to be with Eli and then leave him there? This whole account defies logic in the natural. Hannah longs for a child for years. She’s been ridiculed by her sister wife; neighbours, family members and everyone else who feels the need to heap abuse on to her. She prays to the LORD for a son, and should the LORD answer her prayers and grants her a son – she’ll hand right back to Him to serve Him all the days of his life!!!!!!!

I don’t get it. But I believe that is the exact reason WHY this account of Hannah is in His Word. It defies logic, but as we will see later on in the next chapter, you simply cannot out give God.               

#ionlykneelforjesus.com