1 Samuel 3 & 4: Ichabod
Verse of the Day: (4:21) And she named the child Ichabod, saying, The glory is departed from Israel: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband.
1. I (3:1-21)
That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I. (3:4)
God calls those whose hearts are willing to serve Him, rather than those who are qualified in the eyes of the world. Hannah prayed to God that if He would give her a male child, she would dedicate to Him. God indeed answered her with a male child named Samuel, who became His first prophet of Israel. Samuel’s heart was responsive as 3 times he answered God, Here am I, although he thought that the voice was from Eli, the priest. Before the Bible, God’s Word, was written by men inspired by the Holy Spirit, He would directly speak to men or used His creation or creatures such as the burning bush (Exodus 3:1-6) or even an ass (Numbers 22:21-35). Today, God only speaks to men through the Bible, and let us read, study and meditate it, as it is His holy Word. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
2. Israel (4:1-18)
And it came to pass, when he made mention of the ark of God, that he fell from off the seat backward by the side of the gate, and his neck brake, and he died: for he was an old man, and heavy. And he judged Israel forty years. (4:18)
There will always be enemies or oppositions in our lives, and it is really how we overcome them with God’s glory and grace. Israel’s long time enemy was the Philistines, and they were the toughest, and this time, they managed not only to defeat Israel, but took their ark of God, which represented God’s glory and grace. God allowed the Philistines to punish Israel because of their rebellion, as even Eli, the priest, had failed to lead Israel in serving God. Eli, who judged Israel for 40 years, fell off his seat and died, when he heard that the Philistines had taken God’s ark. For whom God loves, He disciplines them, so that they repent of their sins, and turn to Him. (Hebrews 12:1-11)
3. Ichabod (4:19-22)
And she said, The glory is departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken. (4:22)
The worst for Christians is that God’s glory is far from us, while the best for us is that God’s glory is with and in us. Ichabod means God’s glory is departed, and His glory was indeed departed from Israel as they had sinned against Him. Except for Prophet Samuel, the rest of Israel, including Eli, the priest, sinned against God. This was why God allowed the Philistines not only to defeat them, but even took God’s ark from them. Let us hence grieve not God and the Holy Spirit in us once we receive Jesus Christ as our personal Saviour, but repent our sins, and please God and the Holy Spirit in us. (Ephesians 4:30-32)
Prayer of the Day:
Dearest God, please help me to always have Your glory and grace with and in me.