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Samuel the Faithful Servant

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Sermon: Samuel the Faithful Servant (Heb.11:32)

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND HIS MOTHER’S PRAYERS

1 Sam. 1:5,6

1 Sam. 1:20

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND HIS MENTOR’S GUIDANCE

1 Sam. 3:1  

1Sam. 2:26

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND GOD’S WORD

1 Sam. 3:21

SAMUEL’S FAITH IN ACTION – A CALL TO NATIONAL REPENTANCE

1 Sam. 7:3

SAMUEL’S FAITH SEVERELY TESTED: HE IS REJECTED BY HIS PEOPLE –

1 Sam. 8:5

BY FAITH SAMUEL ANOINTS HIS REPLACEMENT – KING SAUL

1 Sam. 9:15-16

SAMUEL’S PRAYER OF FAITH in his FAREWELL SPEECH

1 Sam. 12:17-18

BY FAITH SAMUEL CONFRONTS KING SAUL ABOUT HIS SINS

1 Sam. 13:13

1 Sam. 15:19

BY FAITH SAMUEL OBEYS GOD AND ANOINTS DAVID AS THE NEW KING

1 Sam. 16:2

1 Sam. 16:4

SAMUEL ENCOURAGES DAVID’S FAITH

1 Sam. 19:18

SAMUEL’S SPEAKS EVEN AFTER DEATH

1 Sam 28:3

1 Sam.28:15-19

Samuel was faithful to God from his birth till his death. Make it your goal to always be faithful to God and never fall away from Jesus!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sermón: Samuel el Siervo Fiel (Hebreos 11:32)

La Fe de Samuel y las oraciones de su Madre

1 Sam. 1:5,6, 20

La Fe de Samuel y su Mentor, su guia

1 Sam. 3:1  

1 Sam. 2:26

La Fe de Samuel y la Palabra de Dios

1 Sam. 3:21

La Fe de Samuel en Acción

1 Sam. 7:3

La Fe de Samuel puesto a prueba

1 Sam. 8:5

Por Fe Samuel unge el nuevo Rey

1 Sam. 9:15-16

La Oración de Fe de Samuel

1 Sam. 12:17-18

Por Fe Samuel reprende a Saul y sus pecados

1 Sam. 13:13

1 Sam. 15:19

Por Fe Samuel obedece a Dios  

1 Sam. 16:2, 4

Samuel anima la Fe de David

1 Sam. 19:18

Samuel habla aun después de su Muerte

1 Sam 28:3, 15-19

Samuel le fue fiel a Dios desde su niñez hasta su muerte. Sigue el ejemplo de Samuel de serle fiel a Dios y nunca apartarte del camino de Cristo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime.  Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

 

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND HIS MOTHER’S PRAYERS

            Do your prayers make a difference?

1:2 but Hannah had none [no children] /

1:5,6 the Lord had closed her womb / VP el Señor le había impedido tener hijos / la había hecho estéril

1:11 And she made a vow, saying, “O Lord Almighty, if you will only look upon your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.” 

NBLH -  Entonces hizo voto y dijo: "Oh SEÑOR de los ejércitos, si Te dignas mirar la aflicción de Tu sierva, Te acuerdas de mí y no Te olvidas de Tu sierva, sino que das un hijo a Tu sierva, yo lo dedicaré [entregaré] al SEÑOR por todos los días de su vida y nunca pasará navaja sobre su cabeza." [se le cortará el pelo]

1:27-28 I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. 28 So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there.  VP  Yo, por mi parte, lo he dedicado al Señor, y mientras viva estará dedicado a él.

 

1 Sam 1:20 So in the course of time Hannah conceived and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel [heard of God], saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”  VP  Así Ana quedó embarazada, y cuando se cumplió el tiempo dio a luz un hijo y le puso por nombre Samuel [Dios oyo, Oído por Dios)], porque se lo había pedido al Señor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND HIS MENTOR’S GUIDANCE

Pray for People that will fill in the GAPS in the lives of your loved ones

2:11 but the boy ministered before the Lord under Eli the priest

VP Luego regresó Elcaná a su casa, en Ramá, pero el niño sequedó sirviendo al Señor bajo las órdenes del sacerdote Elí.

2:18 But Samuel was ministering before the Lord—a boy wearing a linen ephod.

VP  Mientras tanto, el joven Samuel, vestido con un efod de lino, continuaba al servicio del Señor.

2:21 And the Lord was gracious to Hannah; she conceived and gave birth to three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the Lord.

VP  y el Señor bendecía a Ana, la cual quedaba embarazada. De esa manera, Ana dio a luz tres hijos y dos hijas, y el niño Samuel seguía creciendo ante el Señor.

2:26 And the boy Samuel continued to grow in stature and in favor with the Lord and with men. 

VP – Mientras tanto, el joven Samuel seguía creciendo, y su conducta agradaba tanto al Señor como a los hombres. NBLH… crecía en estatura y en gracia para con el SEÑOR y para con los hombres

3:1 The boy Samuel ministered before the Lord under Eli. In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions.  [El joven Samuel seguía sirviendo al Señor

bajo las órdenes de Elí. En aquella época era muy raro que el Señor comunicara a alguien un mensaje; no era frecuente que alguien tuviera una visión]

3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the Lord, where the ark of God was.  4 Then the Lord called Samuel. Samuel answered, “Here I am.”  6 Again the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” 

7 Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord: The word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him.  8 The Lord called Samuel a third time, and Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” Then Eli realized that the Lord was calling the boy. 

9 So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’ ” So Samuel went and lay down in his place.  10 The Lord came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.”  11 And the Lord said to Samuel: “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears of it tingle.  15 Samuel lay down until morning and then opened the doors of the house of the Lord. He was afraid to tell Eli the vision,  16 but Eli called him and said, “Samuel, my son.” Samuel answered, “Here I am.”  18 So Samuel told him everything, hiding nothing from him. Then Eli said, “He is the Lord; let him do what is good in his eyes.” 

Contrast - Eli’s ungodly sons [Hophni y Phineas] with godly young Samuel

 

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND GOD’S WORD

God’s Words became Samuel’s words

3:19 The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of his words fall to the ground.  20 And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba recognized that Samuel was attested as a prophet of the Lord.  21 The Lord continued to appear at Shiloh, and there he revealed himself to Samuel through his word

4:1 And Samuel’s word came to all Israel. Now the Israelites went out to fight against the Philistines. The Israelites camped at Ebenezer, and the Philistines at Aphek. 

3:19  Samuel creció, y el Señor lo ayudó y no dejó de cumplir ninguna de sus promesas.

3:20  Y todo Israel, desde Dan hasta Beerseba, reconoció que Samuel era un verdadero profeta del Señor.

3:21  Y el Señor volvió a revelarse en Siló, pues allí era donde él daba a conocer a Samuel su mensaje

4:1  después Samuel se lo comunicaba a todo Israel. [NBLH -  La palabra de Samuel llegaba a todo Israel] Por aquel entonces se juntaron los filisteos para luchar contra Israel, por lo cual salieron los israelitas a hacer frente a los filisteos, y acamparon junto a Eben-ézer. Los filisteos establecieron su campamento en Afec,

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime. 

                    Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

SAMUEL’S FAITH IN ACTION – A CALL TO REPENTANCE

1 Sam.7:3 And Samuel said to the whole house of Israel, “If you are returning to the Lord with all your hearts, then rid yourselves of the foreign gods and the Ashtoreths and commit yourselves to the Lord and serve him only, and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.”

VP Por esto, Samuel dijo a todos los israelitas: "Si ustedes se vuelven de todo corazón al Señor, deben echar fuera los dios extranjeros y las representaciones de Astarté, y dedicar sus vidas al Señor, rindiéndole culto solamente a él. Entonces éllos librará del dominio de los filisteos."

this was his first recorded public ministry

Repentance was his message….like John the Baptist, like Jesus’ first public sermon

Samuel the Preacher

1Sam.7:2-6 It was a long time, twenty years in all, that the ark remained at Kiriath Jearim, and all the people of Israel mourned and sought after the Lord. 3 And Samuel said to the whole house of Israel, “If you are returning to the Lord with all your hearts, then rid yourselves of the foreign gods and the Ashtoreths and commit yourselves to the Lord and serve him only, and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.” 4 So the Israelites put away their Baals and Ashtoreths, and served the Lord only. 5 Then Samuel said, “Assemble all Israel at Mizpah and I will intercede with the Lord for you.” 6 When they had assembled at Mizpah, they drew water and poured it out before the Lord. On that day they fasted and there they confessed, “We have sinned against the Lord.” And Samuel was leader of Israel at Mizpah. 7 When the Philistines heard that Israel had assembled at Mizpah, the rulers of the Philistines came up to attack them. And when the Israelites heard of it, they were afraid because of the Philistines.

 

Samuel the Prayer warrior/intercessor

8 They said to Samuel, “Do not stop crying out to the Lord our God for us, that he may rescue us from the hand of the Philistines.”  9 Then Samuel took a suckling lamb and offered it up as a whole burnt offering to the Lord. He cried out to the Lord on Israel’s behalf, and the Lord answered him.  10 While Samuel was sacrificing the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to engage Israel in battle. But that day the Lord thundered with loud thunder against the Philistines and threw them into such a panic that they were routed before the Israelites.  12 Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen. He named it Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far has the Lord helped us.” 13 So the Philistines were subdued and did not invade Israelite territory again. Throughout Samuel’s lifetime, the hand of the Lord was against the Philistines.  15 Samuel continued as judge over Israel all the days of his life. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime

           Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

SAMUEL FAITH SEVERELY TESTED: HE IS REJECTED BY HIS PEOPLE –

 

1 Sam. 8:5 They said to him, “You are old[60-70], and your sons do not walk in your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.” VP para decirle: "Tú ya eres un anciano, y tus hijos no se portan como tú; por lo tanto, nombra un rey que nos gobierne, como es costumbre en todas las naciones."  NBLH y le dijeron: "Mira, has envejecido y tus hijos no andan en tus caminos. Ahora pues, danos un rey para que nos juzgue, como todas las naciones."

Samuel greatest failure of faith was as a father

1Sam 8:1-4 When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as judges for Israel. 2 The name of his firstborn was Joel and the name of his second was Abijah, and they served at Beersheba. 3 But his sons did not walk in his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice. 4 So all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah. 5

They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. ….

 

Samuel rejected as their leader

….They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.” 6 But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. 7 And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. 8 As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. 9 Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will do.” 10 Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking him for a king.  19 But the people refused to listen to Samuel. “No!” they said. “We want a king over us.  21 When Samuel heard all that the people said, he repeated it before the Lord.  22 The Lord answered, “Listen to them and give them a king.” Then Samuel said to the men of Israel, “Everyone go back to his town.” 

Our Faith is really put to the test by our failures and our rejections

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime. 

       Be Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

 

BY FAITH SAMUEL ANOINTS HIS REPLACEMENT…..Saul

 

            It takes faith to pass on the mantle/baton to someone else…..

1Sam.9:14–11:14 14 They went up to the town [in the district of Zuph] & as they were entering it, there was Samuel, coming toward them on his way up to the high place. 15 Now the day before Saul came, the Lord had revealed this to Samuel:

9:16 about this X tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him leader over my people Israel; he will deliver my people from the hand of the Philistines. I have looked upon my people, for their cry has reached me.17 When Samuel caught sight of Saul, the Lord said to him, This is the man I spoke to you about; he will govern my people.18 Saul approached Samuel in the gateway & asked, Would you please tell me where the seer’s house is? 19 I am the seer, Samuel replied. Go up ahead of me to the high place, for today you are to eat with me & in the morning I will let you go & will tell you all that is in your heart. 20 As for the donkeys you lost 3 days ago, do not worry @ them; they have been found. & to whom is all the desire of Israel turned, if not to you & all your father’s family? 21 Saul answered, But am I not a Benjamite, from the smallest tribe of Israel & is not my clan the least of all the clans of the tribe of Benjamin? Why do you say such a thing to me? 22 Then Samuel brought Saul & his servant into the hall & seated them at the head of those who were invited—@ 30 in #. 23 Samuel said to the cook, Bring the piece of meat I gave you, the one I told you to lay aside. 24 So the cook took up the leg with what was on it & set it in front of Saul. Samuel said, Here is what has been kept for you. Eat, because it was set aside for you for this occasion, from the X I said, I have invited guests. & Saul dined w/ Samuel that day.25 After they came down from the high place to the town, Samuel talked with Saul on the roof of his house. 26 They rose @ daybreak & Samuel called to Saul on the roof, Get ready, & I will send you on your way. When Saul got ready, he & Samuel went outside together. 27 As they were going down to the edge of the town, Samuel said to Saul, Tell the servant to go on ahead of us & the servant did so- but you stay here awhile, so that I may give you a message from God.

10:1 Then Samuel took a flask of oil & poured it on Saul’s head & kissed him, saying, “Has not the Lord anointed you leader over his inheritance? 2 When you leave me today, you will meet 2 men near Rachel’s tomb, at Zelzah on the border of Benjamin. They will say to you, ‘The donkeys you set out to look for have been found. & now your father has stopped thinking @ them & is worried about you. He is asking, What shall I do about my son? 3 Then you will go on from there until you reach the great tree of Tabor. 3 men going up to God at Bethel will meet you there. One will be carrying 3 young goats, another 3 loaves of bread & another a skin of wine.4 They will greet you & offer you 2 loaves of bread, which you will accept from them. 5 After that you will go to Gibeah of God, where there is a Philistine outpost. As you approach the town, you will meet a procession of prophets coming down from the high place w/ lyres, tambourines, flutes & harps being played before them & they will be prophesying. 6 The Spirit of the Lord will come upon you in power & you will prophesy with them; & you will be changed into a different person. 7 Once these signs are fulfilled, do whatever your hand finds to do, for God is w/ you. 8 Go down ahead of me to Gilgal. I will surely come down to you to sacrifice burnt offerings & fellowship offerings, but you must wait 7 days until I come to you & tell you what you are to do. 9 As Saul turned to leave Samuel, God changed Saul’s heart, & all these signs were fulfilled that day……..14 Now Saul’s uncle asked him & his servant, Where have you been? Looking for the donkeys, he said. But when we saw they were not to be found, we went to Samuel. 15 Saul’s uncle said, Tell me what Samuel said to you. 16 Saul replied, He assured us that the donkeys had been found. But he did not tell his uncle what Samuel had said @ the kingship. 17 Samuel summoned the people of Israel to the Lord at Mizpah  20 When Samuel brought all the tribes of Israel near, the tribe of Benjamin was chosen.  24 Samuel said to all the people, Do you see the man the Lord has chosen? There is no one like him among all the people. Then the people shouted, Long live the king! 25 Samuel explained to the people the regulations of the kingship. He wrote them down on a scroll & deposited it before the Lord. Then Samuel dismissed the people, each to his own home. 

*11:7 He took a pair of oxen, cut them into pieces & sent the pieces by messengers thru out Israel, proclaiming, “This is what will be done to the oxen of anyone who does not follow Saul & Samuel.” Then the terror of the Lord fell on the people & they turned out as one man.  12 The people then said to Samuel, “Who was it that asked, ‘Shall Saul reign over us?’ Bring these men to us and we will put them to death.” 

11:14 Then Samuel said to the people,  “Come, let us go to Gilgal & there reaffirm the kingship.” 

 

SAMUEL’S PRAYER OF FAITH in his FAREWELL SPEECH

            Are your prayers…Prayers of Faith?

Tho rain during wheat harvest (May-June) was unusual, the Lord sent rain/thunder to authenticate Samuel’s words to the people

Personal Testimony: 1 Sam 12:1 Samuel said to all Israel, “I have listened to everything you said to me and have set a king over you. 2 Now you have a king as your leader. As for me, I am old and gray, and my sons are here with you. I have been your leader from my youth until this day. 3 Here I stand. Testify against me in the presence of the Lord and his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? Whose donkey have I taken? Whom have I cheated? Whom have I oppressed? From whose hand have I accepted a bribe to make me shut my eyes? If I have done any of these, I will make it right.” 4 “You have not cheated or oppressed us,” they replied. “You have not taken anything from anyone’s hand.” 5 Samuel said to them, “The Lord is witness against you, and also his anointed is witness this day, that you have not found anything in my hand.” “He is witness,” they said.

Past Acts of God Reviewed: 6 Then Samuel said to the people, “It is the Lord who appointed Moses and Aaron and brought your forefathers up out of Egypt. 7 Now then, stand here, because I am going to confront you with evidence before the Lord as to all the righteous acts performed by the Lord for you and your fathers. 8 “After Jacob entered Egypt, they cried to the Lord for help, and the Lord sent Moses and Aaron, who brought your forefathers out of Egypt and settled them in this place. 9 “But they forgot the Lord their God; so he sold them into the hand of Sisera, the commander of the army of Hazor, and into the hands of the Philistines and the king of Moab, who fought against them. 10 They cried out to the Lord and said, ‘We have sinned; we have forsaken the Lord and served the Baals and the Ashtoreths. But now deliver us from the hands of our enemies, and we will serve you.’ 11 Then the Lord sent Jerub-Baal, Barak, Jephthah and Samuel & he delivered you from the hands of your enemies on every side, so that you lived securely

Prayer Power: 12 “But when you saw that Nahash king of the Ammonites was moving against you, you said to me, ‘No, we want a king to rule over us’—even though the Lord your God was your king. 13 Now here is the king you have chosen, the one you asked for; see, the Lord has set a king over you. 14 If you fear the Lord and serve and obey him and do not rebel against his commands, and if both you and the king who reigns over you follow the Lord your God—good! 15 But if you do not obey the Lord, and if you rebel against his commands, his hand will be against you, as it was against your fathers.  

12:16 “Now then, stand still and see this great thing the Lord is about to do before your eyes! 17 Is it not wheat harvest now? I will call upon the Lord to send thunder and rain. And you will realize what an evil thing you did in the eyes of the Lord when you asked for a king.” 18 Then Samuel called upon the Lord, and that same day the Lord sent thunder and rain. So all the people stood in awe of the Lord and of Samuel. 19 The people all said to Samuel, “Pray to the Lord your God for your servants so that we will not die, for we have added to all our other sins the evil of asking for a king.” 20 “Do not be afraid,” Samuel replied. “You have done all this evil; yet do not turn away from the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart. 21 Do not turn away after useless idols. They can do you no good, nor can they rescue you, because they are useless. 22 For the sake of his great name the Lord will not reject his people, because the Lord was pleased to make you his own. 23 As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right. 24 But be sure to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you. 25 Yet if you persist in doing evil, both you & your king will be swept away

BY FAITH SAMUEL CONFRONTS KING SAUL

3:15-18 Samuel lay down until morning and then opened the doors of the house of the Lord. He was afraid to tell Eli the vision, 16 but Eli called him and said, “Samuel, my son.” Samuel answered, “Here I am.” 17 “What was it he said to you?” Eli asked. “Do not hide it from me. May God deal with you, be it ever so severely, if you hide from me anything he told you.” 18 So Samuel told him everything, hiding nothing from him. Then Eli said, “He is the Lord; let him do what is good in his eyes.”

1 Sam 13:2 Saul chose three thousand men from Israel; two thousand were with him at Micmash and in the hill country of Bethel, and a thousand were with Jonathan at Gibeah in Benjamin. The rest of the men he sent back to their homes. 3 Jonathan attacked the Philistine outpost at Geba, and the Philistines heard about it. Then Saul had the trumpet blown throughout the land and said, “Let the Hebrews hear!” 4 So all Israel heard the news: “Saul has attacked the Philistine outpost, and now Israel has become a stench to the Philistines.” And the people were summoned to join Saul at Gilgal. 5 The Philistines assembled to fight Israel, with three thousand chariots, six thousand charioteers, and soldiers as numerous as the sand on the seashore. They went up and camped at Micmash, east of Beth Aven. 6 When the men of Israel saw that their situation was critical and that their army was hard pressed, they hid in caves and thickets, among the rocks, and in pits and cisterns. 7 Some Hebrews even crossed the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead. Saul remained at Gilgal, and all the troops with him were quaking with fear. 8 He waited seven days, the time set by Samuel; but Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and Saul’s men began to scatter. 9 So he said, “Bring me the burnt offering and the fellowship offerings.” And Saul offered up the burnt offering. 10 Just as he finished making the offering, Samuel arrived, and Saul went out to greet him. 11 “What have you done?” asked Samuel. Saul replied, “When I saw that the men were scattering, and that you did not come at the set time, and that the Philistines were assembling at Micmash, 12 I thought, ‘Now the Philistines will come down against me at Gilgal, and I have not sought the Lord’s favor.’ So I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering.” 13 “You acted foolishly,” Samuel said. “You have not kept the command the Lord your God gave you; if you had, he would have established your kingdom over Israel for all time. 14 But now your kingdom will not endure; the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him leader of his people, because you have not kept the Lord’s command.”

 

It takes faith to confront sin in the lives of those we respect and love

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime. 

                       Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

BY FAITH SAMUEL CONFRONTS KING SAUL…..continued

1 Sam 15:1 Samuel said to Saul, “I am the one the Lord sent to anoint you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the Lord. 2 This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. 3 Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy everything that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.’ ” 4 So Saul summoned the men and mustered them at Telaim—two hundred thousand foot soldiers and ten thousand men from Judah. 5 Saul went to the city of Amalek and set an ambush in the ravine. 6 Then he said to the Kenites, “Go away, leave the Amalekites so that I do not destroy you along with them; for you showed kindness to all the Israelites when they came up out of Egypt.” So the Kenites moved away from the Amalekites. 7 Then Saul attacked the Amalekites all the way from Havilah to Shur, to the east of Egypt. 8 He took Agag king of the Amalekites alive, and all his people he totally destroyed with the sword. 9 But Saul and the army spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and lambs—everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed. 10 Then the word of the Lord came to Samuel: 11 “I am grieved that I have made Saul king, because he has turned away from me and has not carried out my instructions.” Samuel was troubled, and he cried out to the Lord all that night.

VP --Me pesa haber hecho rey a Saúl, porque se ha apartado demí y no ha cumplido mis órdenes. Samuel se quedó muy molesto, y durante toda la noche estuvo rogando al Señor. 12 Early in the morning Samuel got up and went to meet Saul, but he was told, “Saul has gone to Carmel. There he has set up a monument in his own honor and has turned and gone on down to Gilgal.” 13 When Samuel reached him, Saul said, “The Lord bless you! I have carried out the Lord’s instructions.” 14 But Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears? What is this lowing of cattle that I hear?” 15 Saul answered, “The soldiers brought them from the Amalekites; they spared the best of the sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the Lord your God, but we totally destroyed the rest.” 16 “Stop!” Samuel said to Saul. “Let me tell you what the Lord said to me last night.” “Tell me,” Saul replied. 17 Samuel said, “Although you were once small in your own eyes, did you not become the head of the tribes of Israel? The Lord anointed you king over Israel. 18 And he sent you on a mission, saying, ‘Go and completely destroy those wicked people, the Amalekites; make war on them until you have wiped them out.’ 19 Why did you not obey the Lord? Why did you pounce on the plunder and do evil in the eyes of the Lord?” VP - ¿por qué desobedeciste sus órdenes y te lanzaste sobre loque se le quitó al enemigo, actuando mal a los ojos del Señor? 20 “But I did obey the Lord,” Saul said. “I went on the mission the Lord assigned me. I completely destroyed the Amalekites and brought back Agag their king. 21 The soldiers took sheep and cattle from the plunder, the best of what was devoted to God, in order to sacrifice them to the Lord your God at Gilgal.” 22 But Samuel replied: “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king.”  VP Entonces Samuel dijo: "Más le agrada al Señor que se le obedezca, y no que se le ofrezcan sacrificios   y holocaustos; vale más obedecerlo y prestarle atención que ofrecerle sacrificios   y grasa de carneros. 23 Tanto peca el que se rebela contra él como el que practica la adivinación; semejante a quien adora a los ídolos es aquel que lo desobedece. Y como tú has rechazado sus mandatos, ahora él te rechaza como rey." 24 Then Saul said to Samuel, “I have sinned. I violated the Lord’s command and your instructions. I was afraid of the people and so I gave in to them. 25 Now I beg you, forgive my sin and come back with me, so that I may worship the Lord.” 26 But Samuel said to him, “I will not go back with you. You have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you as king over Israel!” 27 As Samuel turned to leave, Saul caught hold of the hem of his robe, and it tore. 28 Samuel said to him, “The Lord has torn the kingdom of Israel from you today and has given it to one of your neighbors—to one better than you. 29 He who is the Glory of Israel does not lie or change his mind; for he is not a man, that he should change his mind.” 30 Saul replied, “I have sinned. But please honor me before the elders of my people and before Israel; come back with me, so that I may worship the Lord your God.” 31 So Samuel went back with Saul, and Saul worshiped the Lord. 32 Then Samuel said, “Bring me Agag king of the Amalekites.” Agag came to him confidently, thinking, “Surely the bitterness of death is past.” 33 But Samuel said, “As your sword has made women childless, so will your mother be childless among women.” And Samuel put Agag to death before the Lord at Gilgal. 34 Then Samuel left for Ramah, but Saul went up to his home in Gibeah of Saul. 35 Until the day Samuel died, he did not go to see Saul again, though Samuel mourned for him. And the Lord was grieved that he had made Saul king over Israel.

1 Sam 16:1 The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel?  It takes faith to confront sin in the lives of those we respect and love

BY FAITH SAMUEL ANOINTS A NEW KING – (David)

            *danger of retribution from King Saul: Faith must always face opposition to be Genuine

 

1 Sam 16:1 The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and be on your way; I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I have chosen one of his sons to be king.” 2 But Samuel said, “How can I go? Saul will hear about it and kill me.”  [¿Y cómo haré para ir? --respondió Samuel--. ¡Si Saúl llega a saberlo, me matará! El Señor le contestó: --Toma una ternera y di que vas a ofrecérmela en sacrificio] The Lord said, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ 3 Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what to do. You are to anoint for me the one I indicate.” 4 Samuel did what the Lord said. [Samuel hizo lo que el Señor le mandó] When he arrived at Bethlehem, the elders of the town trembled when they met him. They asked, “Do you come in peace?” 5 Samuel replied, “Yes, in peace; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Consecrate yourselves and come to the sacrifice with me.” Then he consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice. 6 When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed stands here before the Lord.” 7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 8 Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.” 9 Jesse then had Shammah pass by, but Samuel said, “Nor has the Lord chosen this one.” 10 Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, “The Lord has not chosen these.” 11 So he asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?” “There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered, “but he is tending the sheep.” Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives.” 12 So he sent and had him brought in. He was ruddy, with a fine appearance and handsome features. Then the Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; he is the one.” 13 So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came upon David in power. Samuel then went to Ramah.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime

                      Be Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

SAMUEL ENCOURAGES DAVID’S FAITH

18:10-11 He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the harp, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand 11 and he hurled it, saying to himself, “I’ll pin David to the wall.” But David eluded him twice.

18:17 Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter Merab. I will give her to you in marriage; only serve me bravely and fight the battles of the Lord.” For Saul said to himself, “I will not raise a hand against him. Let the Philistines do that!”

18:25 Saul replied, “Say to David, ‘The king wants no other price for the bride than a hundred Philistine foreskins, to take revenge on his enemies.’ ” Saul’s plan was to have David fall by the hands of the Philistines

19:1 Saul told his son Jonathan and all the attendants to kill David. But Jonathan was very fond of David 2 and warned him, “My father Saul is looking for a chance to kill you

19:9-10 as he was sitting in his house with his spear in his hand. While David was playing the harp, 10 Saul tried to pin him to the wall with his spear, but David eluded him as Saul drove the spear into the wall. That night David made good his escape. 11 Saul sent men to David’s house to watch it and to kill him in the morning. But Michal, David’s wife, warned him, “If you don’t run for your life tonight, tomorrow you’ll be killed.”

19:14-15 14 When Saul sent the men to capture David, Michal said, “He is ill.” 15 Then Saul sent the men back to see David and told them, “Bring him up to me in his bed so that I may kill him.”

1 Sam 19:18 When David had fled and made his escape, he went to Samuel at Ramah and told him all that Saul had done to him. Then he and Samuel went to Naioth and stayed there. [Así fue como David logró escapar. Y fue a ver a Samuel enRamá, y le contó todo lo que Saúl le había hecho. Luego David ySamuel se fueron a vivir a Naiot.]

19 Word came to Saul: “David is in Naioth at Ramah”; 20 so he sent men to capture him. But when they saw a group of prophets prophesying, with Samuel standing there as their leader, the Spirit of God came upon Saul’s men and they also prophesied.  22 Finally, he himself left for Ramah and went to the great cistern at Secu. And he asked, “Where are Samuel and David?” “Over in Naioth at Ramah,” they said.  24 He stripped off his robes and also prophesied in Samuel’s presence. He lay that way all that day and night. This is why people say, “Is Saul also among the prophets?” 

 

 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime. 

                             Be Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

SAMUEL’S DEATH SPEAKS BY FAITH

 

1 Sam 25:1 Now Samuel died, and all Israel assembled and mourned for him; and they buried him at his home in Ramah. Then David moved down into the Desert of Maon. 

            Samuel’s faith greatly impacted those that survived him

God continued to use Samuel, even after he died!!!

1 Sam 28:3 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had mourned for him and buried him in his own town of Ramah. Saul had expelled the mediums and spiritists from the land.  11 Then the woman asked, “Whom shall I bring up for you?” “Bring up Samuel,” he said.  12 When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out at the top of her voice and said to Saul, “Why have you deceived me? You are Saul!”  14 “What does he look like?” he asked. “An old man wearing a robe is coming up,” she said. Then Saul knew it was Samuel, and he bowed down and prostrated himself with his face to the ground. 15 Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” “I am in great distress,” Saul said. “The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has turned away from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets or by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do.” 16 Samuel said, “Why do you consult me, now that the Lord has turned away from you and become your enemy?  17 The Lord has done what he predicted through me. The Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors—to David. 18 Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today. 19 The Lord will hand over both Israel and you to the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also hand over the army of Israel to the Philistines.” 20 Immediately Saul fell full length on the ground, filled with fear because of Samuel’s words. His strength was gone, for he had eaten nothing all that day and night. 

Samuel: Loved God for a Lifetime. 

               Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

Samuel: Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

1Sam.25:1 The death of Samuel, the last of the judges, brought Israel to the end of an era. So widespread was Samuel’s influence among the people that all Israel gathered to lament his death. Wilderness of Paran. A desert area in the NE region of the Sinai Peninsula. Samuel’s death may have taken place while David was in the Wilderness of En Gedi (24:1). His death (or at least the recording of it) came at a propitious time. David had just been acknowledged as the successor of Saul by the king himself, and there was a short-lived truce between the two parties. Samuel’s popularity was evidenced by the fact that the nation of Israel assembled at Ramah to honor him at his burial. The death of Samuel is related at this point. The prophet had been in retirement since his farewell address (ch. 12) except for the private anointing of David (ch. 16). It is a tribute to this godly man that the entire nation rallied for his funeral.

1Sam.28 28:3–13 Having deprived himself of every legitimate means of spiritual input as a result of his own disobedience and rebellion, Saul walked in foolishness again by seeking out the very resource (a medium) he had previously removed from the land. Saul swore to the medium an oath of safety by the very God that he was disobeying even then. Yet the inexorable curiosity of Saul to consult Samuel, in spite of Samuel’s death, was satisfied by the medium’s willingness to “bring up” Samuel.28:3 mediums and the spiritists. By divine law, they were banned from Israel (Deut. 18:11), and Israel was not to be defiled by them (Lev. 19:31). Turning to them was tantamount to playing the harlot and would result in God setting His face against the person and cutting him off from among His people (Lev. 20:6). Mediums and spiritists were to be put to death by stoning (Lev. 20:27). Even Saul understood this and had previously dealt with the issue (see v. 9).28:4 Shunem. Situated SW of the hill of Moreh and 16 mi. SW of the Sea of Galilee; the Philistines designated it as their camp site. Gilboa. The mountain range beginning 5 mi. S of Shunem and extending southward along the eastern edge of the plain of Jezreel. See note on 31:1.28:5 his heart trembled greatly. Saul had hid himself when he was chosen by lot to be king (10:22). When the Spirit of the Lord came upon him, he was changed (10:6), but after the Spirit had departed (16:14), he was afraid and dismayed by Goliath (17:11, 24). He feared at Gilgal when faced by the overwhelming size of the Philistine army (13:11, 12). Saul was also afraid of David because he knew that the Lord was with David (18:12, 29). But, Saul was to fear God (12:24), not people.28:6 dreams … Urim … prophets. These were the 3 basic ways through which God revealed His Word and His will. Dreams and visions were the common manner through which the Lord revealed Himself and His will during the time of Moses (Num. 12:6). The Urim was used by the priest as a means of inquiring of the Lord (Num. 27:21). It was originally put in the breastpiece of judgment with the Thummim and worn over Aaron’s heart when he went in before the Lord (see note on Ex. 28:30). Somehow, unknown to us, God revealed His will by it. Prophets were formerly called seers (9:9) and were used as a reference for inquiring of the Lord. God also used prophets to declare His Word when people were not interested in it (Amos 7:12, 13). Since Saul had rejected the Lord, God had rejected him (15:23). Saul appears to have had no court prophet in the manner that Gad and Nathan were to David (22:5; 2 Sam. 12); and, by this time, the ephod with the Urim was in David’s possession by virtue of Abiathar the priest (23:6).28:7 Find me … a medium. In Saul’s desperation, he sought the very source that he had formerly removed from the land (28:3). In spite of the ban, Saul’s servant knew exactly where to find a medium. En Dor. Located about 3.5 mi. NW of Shunem between Mt. Tabor and the Hill of Moreh. Saul risked his life by venturing into the Philistine-held territory to seek out the counsel of the medium; thus he went in disguise by night (v. 8).

28:10 swore to her by the Lord. Though blatantly walking in disobedience to God, it is ironic that Saul would swear by the very existence of the Lord as a means of assuring his credibility to the medium. Even more, Saul swore that no punishment would come upon her when the Levitical law required her to be stoned to death (Lev. 20:27).28:12 the woman saw Samuel. Though questions have arisen as to the nature of Samuel’s appearance, the text clearly indicates that Samuel, not an apparition, was evident to the eyes of the medium. God miraculously permitted the actual spirit of Samuel to speak (vv. 16–19). Because she understood her inability to raise the dead in this manner, she immediately knew 1) that it must have been by the power of God and 2) that her disguised inquirer must be Saul.28:13 a spirit ascending out of the earth. The word translated “spirit” is actually the Heb. word meaning “God, gods, angel, ruler, or judge.” It can also be used to designate a likeness to one of these. From the medium’s perspective, Samuel appeared to be “like a spirit” ascending out of the earth. There is no other such miracle as this in all of Scripture.28:14 old man … with a mantle. Obviously age and clothing do not exist in the realm of the spirits of those who have died, but God miraculously gave such appearances so that Saul was able to perceive that the spirit was Samuel. The question arises whether all believers will remain in the form they were in when they died. Samuel may have been as such simply for the benefit of Saul, or he might be in this state until he receives his resurrection body. Since Scripture teaches that the resurrection of OT saints is yet future (Dan. 12:1, 2), Samuel must have temporarily been in this condition solely for the benefit of Saul.

28:15 disturbed me. Samuel’s comment expresses agitation caused by Saul’s efforts to contact him since living humanity was not allowed to seek out discussions with the dead (Deut. 18:11; Lev. 20:6). Witchcraft puts the seeker in contact with demons impersonating those who are being sought, since the dead person cannot ordinarily be contacted, except in this unique case.28:16, 18 your enemy. See 15:26–35. 28:19 will be with me. This could mean with him in “the abode of the righteous.” There is no doubt that Samuel meant this to serve as a premonition of Saul’s soon death. 28:20 no strength in him. Already afraid with a heart that “trembled greatly” because of the Philistines (v. 5), Saul’s fear was so heightened by the words of Samuel that he was completely deprived of strength and vigor, which was reinforced by a lack of nourishment. The woman met his physical needs, and he returned to his camp to await his doom (vv. 21–25)

*28:3-6. Meanwhile Saul also found himself in a desperate situation. Samuel was dead ( 25:1), and the Philistines were camped at Shunem (in the Valley of Jezreel). Saul, who was at Gilboa, five miles northwest of Mount Gilboa, was afraid. He had purged out the mediums(’ōḇôṯ, ”necromancers,“ those who communicate with the dead) and spiritists (yidde‘ōnîm, ”soothsayers,“ those who contact the spirits, v. 3). And the Lord refused to answer Saul’s inquiry for help. 28:7-14. Saul at last resorted to a celebrated medium at nearby Endor who had somehow survived the purge. Disguising himself . . . Saul made his way at night to Endor, in the Valley of Jezreel just north of Mount Moreh. After putting her at ease, Saul asked the medium to contact Samuel. Drawing on the demonic powers of necromancy (Deut. 18:10-11), she called up the apparition of Samuel. So startled was she by Samuel’s appearance that she immediately realized that the work was of God and not herself and that her disguised nocturnal visitor was King Saul. This implies that she did not really expect to raise up Samuel but only a satanic imitation. After she described the vision as a spirit (’ělōhîm, ”mighty one“) and as an old man clad in a robe . . . Saul knew it was Samuel. That Samuel’s appearance, even in visionary form, was not the expected result clearly teaches that necromancers or mediums have no real power over the deceased, especially the righteous, but can only produce counterfeits. Samuel’s appearance here is explained by the intervention of the Lord who graciously permitted Saul one last encounter with the prophet whom he had first sought so long ago in pursuit of his father’s lost donkeys (1 Sam. 9:6-9).

*1 Chron 9:22 Altogether, those chosen to be gatekeepers at the thresholds numbered 212. They were registered by genealogy in their villages. The gatekeepers had been assigned to their positions of trust by David and Samuel the seer. 

*1 Chron 11:3 When all the elders of Israel had come to King David at Hebron, he made a compact with them at Hebron before the Lord, and they anointed David king over Israel, as the Lord had promised through Samuel. 

*1 Chron 26:28 And everything dedicated by Samuel the seer and by Saul son of Kish, Abner son of Ner and Joab son of Zeruiah, and all the other dedicated things were in the care of Shelomith and his relatives. 

*1Chrn 29:29 As for the events of King David’s reign, from beginning to end, they are written in the records of Samuel the seer, the records of Nathan the prophet & the records of Gad the seer

*2 Chron 35:18 The Passover had not been observed like this in Israel since the days of the prophet Samuel; and none of the kings of Israel had ever celebrated such a Passover as did Josiah, with the priests, the Levites and all Judah and Israel who were there with the people of Jerusalem. 

*Ps 99:6 Moses and Aaron were among his priests, Samuel was among those who called on his name; they called on the Lord and he answered them. 

*Jer 15:1 Then the Lord said to me: “Even if Moses and Samuel were to stand before me, my heart would not go out to this people. Send them away from my presence! Let them go! 

*Acts 3:24 “Indeed, all the prophets from Samuel on, as many as have spoken, have foretold these days. 

*Acts 13:20 All this took about 450 years. “After this, God gave them judges until the time of Samuel the prophet. 

11:32 All of the men listed in this verse held a position of power or authority, but none of them is praised for his personal status or abilities. Instead, they are recognized for what each one had accomplished by faith in God. They are not listed chronologically, but are listed in pairs with the more important member mentioned first (1 Sam. 12:11). See Judg. 6–9 (Gideon); 4,5 (Barak); 13–16 (Samson); 11,12 (Jephthah). David. David is the only king mentioned in this verse. All the others are judges or prophets. David could also be considered a prophet (4:7; 2 Sam. 23:1–3; Mark 12:36). Cf. 1 Sam. 13:14; 16:1,12; Acts 13:22. Samuel and the prophets. Samuel was the last of the judges and the first of the prophets (1 Sam. 7:15; Acts 3:24; 13:20). He anointed David as king (1 Sam. 16:13) and was known as a man of intercessory prayer (1 Sam. 12:19,23; Jer. 15:1)

*1. Those Who Triumphed 11:32–35a The list of individuals mentioned as heroes of faith is coming to a close, but not because the author has depleted his sources. He simply lacks the time to enumerate additional heroes. Instead of describing their deeds of faith, the writer merely records the names of those stalwarts known from Scripture.32. And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets. Ever since the beginning of the epistle, the author modestly refrained from mentioning himself. Here, however, for the first time he uses the first person singular pronoun I. In the concluding part of his epistle, he refers to himself again in the first person singular (13:19, 22, 23). “What more shall I say?” He hesitates in view of the numberless examples of men and women who lived by faith. He takes a sample of names: some of them belong to the period of the judges; others, to that of the kings. To be sure, the author fails to present the names in chronological order. He should have said Barak (Judges 4–5), Gideon (Judges 6–8), Jephthah (Judges 11–12), Samson (Judges 13–16), Samuel (I Sam. 1–16), and David (I Sam. 16–31; II Sam.; I Kings 1–2:12). But the writer of Hebrews has no intention of listing the names chronologically. In effect, he follows the order Samuel gave in his farewell speech to the people of Israel: “Then the Lord sent Jerub-Baal [also called Gideon], Barak, Jephthah and Samuel, and he delivered you from the hands of your enemies on every side, so that you lived securely” (I Sam. 12:11). We have no indication why Samuel and the author of Hebrews follow a sequence differing from the chronological one. The names appear in the sequence of three pairs: Gideon before Barak, Samson before Jephthah, and David before Samuel. The first one named in each set seems to be the more popular. a. Gideon fought with only three hundred men against the multitude of Midianite soldiers. By following faithfully the instruction from God, Gideon became a hero of faith. With his God Gideon was always in the majority (Judges 7:7). b. Barak refused to do battle with Sisera and Jabin’s army unless the prophetess Deborah went with him (Judges 4:8). With the prophetess to guide him, Barak fought the Canaanites and defeated them (Judges 4:16; and see 5:1). c. Samson captures the imagination of everyone relishing physical prowess. But his love affair with Delilah not only deprived him of his strength; it also placed a permanent blot on his name. Yet Samson displayed unshakable faith in Israel’s God when he prayed for strength to mete out justice to his enemies. God heard his prayer. “Thus [Samson] killed many more when he died than while he lived” (Judges 16:30). d. Jephthah’s name is indissolubly tied to his rash vow that compelled him to sacrifice his only daughter (Judges 11:39–40). Nevertheless, Jephthah was filled with the Spirit of God. God used him to defeat the Ammonites and to punish the tribe of Ephraim. He was a man of faith. e. David stands at the head of the kings of Israel. Because he trusted God, David was enabled to conquer his enemies, build his kingdom, and strengthen the people of Israel. He was Israel’s statesman and spiritual leader.  f. Samuel was a prophet, who was called a seer (I Sam. 9:9). He stands first among the prophets and was an outstanding leader in Israel. The people turned to him, for they knew that God’s favor rested on him. God answered his prayers offered in faith. Said Samuel, “As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you” (I Sam. 12:23).

The author no longer provides a commentary on the lives of the heroes of faith. Instead he summarizes categories of deeds of faith.

*Faith can operate in the life of any person who will dare to listen to God’s Word and surrender to God’s will. What a variety of personalities we have here! Gideon was a frightened farmer whose faith did not grow strong right away (Jud. 6:11–7:25). Barak won a resounding victory over Sisera, but he needed Deborah the prophetess as his helper to assure him (see Jud. 4:1–5:31). Both Gideon and Barak are encouragements to us who falter in our faith. The story of Samson is familiar (Jud. 13–16). We would not call Samson a godly man, for he yielded to his fleshly appetites. He was a Nazarite, which meant he was dedicated to God and was never to cut his hair or partake of the fruit of the vine. (A Nazarite should not be confused with a Nazarene, a resident of Nazareth.) Samson did trust God to help and deliver him and, in the end, Samson was willing to give his life to defeat the enemy. However, we must not conclude that believers today can expect to lead double lives and still enjoy God’s blessing. Jephthah’s story is fascinating (Jud. 11:1–12:7). It is unlikely that he sacrificed his only daughter as a burnt offering, for this was forbidden in Israel. Probably he dedicated her to the Lord on the basis of the “law of vows” (Lev. 27), dedicating her to perpetual virginity (Jud. 11:34–40). It is not possible for us to examine each example of faith, and even the writer of Hebrews stopped citing names after he mentioned David and Samuel, who were certainly great men of faith. There are examples in the Old Testament of men and women who won the victories referred to in Hebrews 11:33–35. David certainly subdued kingdoms and wrought righteousness. Daniel’s faith “stopped the mouths of lions” (Dan. 6), and the three Hebrew children overcame the power of the fiery furnace (Dan. 3:23–28). The women of faith mentioned in Hebrews 11:35 have their stories given in 1 Kings 17:17–24 and 2 Kings 4:18–37. The transition in Hebrews 11:35 is important: not all men and women of faith experienced miraculous deliverance. Some were tortured and died! The word translated “others” in Hebrews 11:36 means “others of a different kind.” These “others” had faith, but God did not see fit to deal with them in the same way he dealt with Moses, Gideon, and David.

*11.32–35 El Antiguo Testamento presenta la vida de varias personas que tuvieron esas grandes victorias. Josué y Débora conquistaron reinos (el libro de Josué, Jueces 4; 5). Nehemías administró justicia (el libro de Nehemías). Daniel fue protegido de la boca de los leones (Daniel 6) Sadrac, Mesac y Abed-nego fueron protegidos en el horno de fuego (Daniel 3). Elías escapó de las espadas de los escuderos de la reina malvada Jezabel (1 Reyes 19.2ss). Ezequías llegó a ser fuerte después de una enfermedad (2 Reyes 20). Gedeón fue poderoso en la batalla (Jueces 7). Un hijo de una viuda fue resucitado por el profeta Elías (2 Reyes 4.8–37). Nosotros también podemos tener victoria mediante la fe en Cristo. Nuestras victorias pueden ser parecidas a las que tuvieron los santos del Antiguo Testamento, pero es más probable que cada una de nuestras victorias esté directamente relacionada con la función que Dios quiere que desempeñemos. A pesar de que nuestro cuerpo se deteriora y muere, viviremos por siempre gracias a Cristo. En la resurrección prometida, aun la muerte física será derrotada y la victoria de Cristo será completa.

*11.32 Un detallado estudio de las vidas de quienes aquí se mencionan muestra el lugar sobresaliente de la fe en la experiencia y la conducta de estas personas. Las limitaciones personales se superaban con éxito cuando desviaban la vista de sí mismos y la dirigían hacia la magnificencia de Dios

*32. And what shall I say more? etc. As it was to be feared, that by referring to a few examples, he should appear to confine the praises of faith to a few men; he anticipates this, and says, that there would be no end if he was to dwell on every instance; for what he had said of a few extended to the whole Church of God.He first refers to the time that intervened between Joshua and David, when the Lord raised up judges to govern the people; and such were the four he now mentions, Gideon, Barak, Samson, and Jephthah. It seemed indeed strange in Gideon, with three hundred men to attack an immense host of enemies, and to shake pitchers appeared like a sham alarm. Barak was far inferior to his enemies, and was guided only by the counsel of a woman. Samson was a mere countryman, and had never used any other arms than the implements of husbandry: what could he do against such proved conquerors, by whose power the whole people had been subdued? Who would not at first have condemned the rashness of Jephthah, who avowed himself the avenger of a people already past hope? But as they all followed the guidance of God, and being animated by his promise, undertook what was commanded them, they have been honored with the testimony of the Holy Spirit. Then the Apostle ascribes all that was praiseworthy in them to faith; though there was not one of them whose faith did not halt. Gideon was slower to take up arms than what he ought to have been; nor did he venture without some hesitation to commit himself to God. Barak at first trembled, so that he was almost forced by the reproofs of Deborah. Samson being overcome by the blandishments of a concubine, inconsiderately betrayed the safety of the whole people. Jephthah, hasty in making a foolish vow, and too obstinate in performing it, marred the finest victory by the cruel death of his own daughter. Thus, in all the saints, something reprehensible is ever to be found; yet faith, though halting and imperfect, is still approved by God. There is, therefore, no reason why the faults we labor under should break us down, or dishearten us, provided we by faith go on in the race of our calling. Of David, etc. Under David’s name he includes all the pious kings, and to them he adds Samuel and the Prophets. He therefore means in short to teach us, that the kingdom of Judah was founded in faith; and that it stood to the last by faith. The many victories of David, which he had gained over his enemies, were commonly known. Known also, was the uprightness of Samuel, and his consummate wisdom in governing the people. Known too were the great favors conferred by God on prophets and kings. The Apostle declares that there are none of these things which ought not to be ascribed to faith. But it is to some only of these innumerable benefits of God that he refers, in order that the Jews might from them draw a general conclusion, — that as the Church has always been preserved by God’s hand through faith, so at this day there is no other way by which we may know his kindness towards us. It was by faith that David so many times returned home as a conqueror; that Hezekiah recovered from his sickness; that Daniel came forth safe and untouched from the lions’den, and that his friends walked in a burning furnace as cheerfully as on a pleasant meadow. Since all these things were done by faith, we must feel convinced, that in no other way than by faith is God’s goodness and bounty to be communicated to us. And that clause ought especially to be noticed by us, where it is said that they obtained the promises by faith; for though God continues faithful, were we all unbelieving, yet our unbelief makes the promises void, that is, ineffectual to us

*11:32 And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, To the eighteen examples of faith already given our author appends a few names and a large list of wonderful deeds that this faith has stimulated (vv. 32–38). The previous examples are enough to demonstrate that those with faith do not “shrink back” but “persevere.” They “will be richly rewarded” (10:35–39). Faith gives confidence and improves the understanding of what cannot be seen. Westcott capsulizes this summary in Hebrews, “In part (a) they wrought great things (32–35a): in part (b) they suffered great things (35b–38).” Then he draws attention to the “remarkable symmetry” of the nine phrases in vv. 33–34. The first triplet has only two accents in each phrase; the second and third triplets have three.

In 11:32 the author lists four judges, then David, Samuel, and “the prophets,” explaining, “I do not have time to tell about them.” How did each of these exercise faith? Gideon seemed very reluctant to respond to God’s call to save Israel. He wanted a sign before each major event to which God called him. When God had him tear down his father’s altar to Baal and its accompanying Asherah pole, he did it at night, because he was afraid; but because he believed, he did it. Later, with only 300 men holding trumpets and torches, he attacked and routed the army of Midianites, Amalekites and other eastern people who were “thick as locusts” having camels that “could no more be counted than the sand on the seashore” (Judg 7:12). His faith seemed very timid, but he did what God directed him to do.Barak defeated Sisera the Canaanite and his 900 iron chariots. Barak refused to go to battle until Deborah the prophetess agreed to go with him. She “was leading Israel at that time” (Judg 4:4). In the Bible text Deborah is always mentioned before Barak. Samson has little evidence in the Bible text that he trusted God. His parents raised him as a Nazirite as the angel had directed when he explained that “he will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines” (Judg 13:5). Four times are recorded that “the Spirit of the Lord came upon him,” once when a lion attacked him (Judg 14:9), twice to fight Philistines (Judg 14:19; 15:14). See also Judges 13:25. His whole life seemed to be an expression of trusting God for superhuman strength as a Nazirite until Delilah lured him to uncover his vow. The clearest expression of his faith came at the end of his life. Taunted as a prisoner in the temple of Dagon, he prayed for his strength to return. With it he pulled down the temple killing more Philistines at his death than during his life. Evidently, faith may return when one repents and asks to be used again by God. Jephthah’s remarkable faith is seen in keeping a careless vow, even though it was very costly to him (Judg 11:29–40). He made a solemn agreement with God before the battle. God kept his part and helped him win, so Jephthah determined to keep his part. The vow may have been foolish. The faith in God was not. Scholars offer different interpretations of whether Jephthah kept his vow by killing or by banishing his daughter. Either way, Jephthah’s faith is indeed remarkable. David is the only person whom God calls “a man after my own heart” (Acts 13:22 based on 1 Sam 13:14). His life is so full of deeds of faith that anyone interested in pursuing this feature of his life should read 1 Samuel 16–31; 2 Samuel; 1 Kings 1–2; 1 Chronicles 11–29 and the many Psalms bearing his name. In addition, there are many indications of David’s faith in the character and writings of his son Solomon. One caution must be taken in examining every one of these models of faith. Great faith does not mean perfect life or character. Samuel marks the transition from judges to kings and prophets. He was the last of the judges (1 Sam 7:6, 15–17; etc.) and the first of the prophets (1 Sam 3:20; 2 Chr 35:18; especially Acts 3:24 and 13:20). His deeds of faith, like David’s, are numerous, and may be read at leisure in 1 Samuel 1–19 and Jeremiah 15:1. The faith of “the prophets” is generally seen as they deliver God’s messages in the face of difficulties of all kinds. It may be almost a rule of thumb that the only prophets who have no recorded difficulty because of delivering their messages are those of whom no narrative at all is recorded. The book of Hebrews began by noticing “the prophets” (1:1). At this point, after mentioning the prophets, Hebrews simply lists numerous afflictions and achievements of the faithful (vv. 33–38). The most prominent judges who appear in the book of Judges are selected in Hebrews 11:32, two who are earlier and two later. The names can been seen as pairs, though the grammatical structure of the Greek text does not suggest pairing except for David and Samuel. The chronological order within each of the three pairs is reversed. This may reflect their relative importance in the pair. Attridge thinks it is more likely that “the systematic departure from a strict scriptural sequence is a part of the attempt to create an image of a vast horde of exemplars of faith.” That impression had begun by the time the author got to these names. Three of these judges are mentioned with Samuel in 1 Samuel 12:11 as examples of those whom God sent to deliver Israel when they cried out for mercy from their oppression, “Then the Lord sent Jerub-Baal [also called Gideon], Barak, Jephthah and Samuel, and he delivered you from the hands of your enemies on every side, so that you lived securely.” The Bible makes Joshua a transition figure between Moses and the judges in much the same way Samuel was a transition figure between judges and kings. Samuel himself became in a sense the first of the prophets (1 Sam 3:20; 9:9; Acts 3:24; 13:20–21). Technically, there were “prophets” before Samuel, but with him the emphasis shifted from the independent rule of individual judges to the sustained rule of a succession of kings assisted by prophets. The author of Hebrews appears to notice this transition with “David and Samuel” being followed simply by “the prophets.” Samuel and David are very closely related in Scripture. For example, in setting up the order of worship and the personnel for the temple, the gatekeepers were “assigned their positions of trust by David and Samuel the seer” (1 Chr 9:22).

*The six men named, who are not listed in chronological order, were all rulers of one kind or another. Several are outstanding Bible characters, while the others are less known. Samuel was both a judge and a prophet, and David was a king and a prophet. But none of the men is praised for his office. All are praised for what they accomplished by faith. Gideon, a judge and military leader, had assembled 32,000 men to fight the Midianites and the Amalekites. To keep Israel from thinking the coming victory was by her own power, God cut her forces down to 10,000 and then to a mere 300. These 300 were separated out solely on the basis of how they drank water from a spring. The enemy, by contrast, were “as numerous as locusts; and their camels were without number, as numerous as the sand on the seashore” (Judg. 7:12). Yet Gideon’s men were outfitted only with trumpets and with pitchers with torches inside. With even fewer men and less effort than used to defeat Jericho, the entire heathen enemy army was routed (7:16–22). Only a fool would have attempted such a courageous approach to battle apart from God’s direction and power. From the perspective of faith, only a fool would not attempt such a thing when he has God’s direction and power. Barak is unknown in Scripture outside the brief account in Judges 4–5 and the mention of his name in Hebrews 12:32. We are told nothing of his background or training. Through Deborah, the judge, God promised that Israel would be delivered from Jabin, the Canaanite king, whose great commander, Sisera, had a large, powerful army that boasted 900 iron chariots. According to the Lord’s instruction, Deborah asked Barak to assemble an Israelite force of only 10,000 men, taken from two tribes, Naphtali and Zebulun. The rest of the tribes were not asked to participate, apparently to show Israel, and the Canaanites, that God could be victorious with only a token army from a small part of Israel. Barak assembled his men on Mt. Tabor and charged Sisera as he had been commanded by God. “And the Lord routed Sisera and all his chariots and all his army, with the edge of the sword before Barak” (Judg. 4:15). Barak and his men were involved, and probably fought valiantly, but the success of the campaign was the Lord’s. Without His help, Israel would easily have been slaughtered. Barak was told in advance that the glory of victory would not be his. Not only did the Lord fight the battle for His people, but he allowed a woman to kill Sisera, so that Barak would have even less cause for claiming credit for himself (4:9). Barak believed God’s promise of victory and was not the least concerned that a woman would get credit for slaying Sisera. In fact he insisted that Deborah, a woman judge, go to battle with him (v.8). He wanted her spiritual, not her military, help. She was the Lord’s special representative in those days, and Barak wanted the Lord’s person with him. The fact that he wanted her along was another indication of his trust in the Lord. As God’s prophetess, she was of greater value to him than his 10,000 men. Barak was not concerned about Sisera’s power, because he had God’s power. By such courageous faith he conquered kingdoms. Samson is not most remembered for his faith, but for his physical strength and personal gullibility. In many ways he was immature and self-centered, unable to cope with the miraculous power God had given him. Yet he was a man of faith. He never doubted that God was the source of his power, of which his hair was only a symbol. Samson was a judge of Israel and was given the special task of opposing the Philistines, who then ruled over Israel. Samson’s own motives for fighting the Philistines were often mixed, but he knew he was doing the Lord’s will in the Lord’s power. From his early manhood the Spirit of the Lord had been with him, and we are told specifically that it was the Spirit that strengthened him in his amazing one-man battles (Judg. 13:25; 14:19; 15:14; 16:28). Samson knew that God had called him and that God had empowered him to “begin to deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines,” just as He had told Samson’s mother before her son was even conceived (13:5). God had promised him power and Samson trusted God for that power. He faced the Philistines not in the courage of physical prowess but in the courage of faith. We are inclined to judge Samson by his weaknesses. But God commends him for his faith. Jephthah preceded Samson as judge of Israel, and his responsibility was to subdue the Ammonites, one of Israel’s many enemies. Despite his foolish vow (Judg. 11:30–31), Jephthah’s trust was in the Lord, and his power was from the Lord (vv. 29, 32). Even people of faith make mistakes, and God honored Jephthah for his faith. David stands out as one of the obviously great men of the Old Testament. His trust in the Lord began when he was a boy, tending sheep, killing lions and bears, and taking on Goliath with a slingshot. David faced Goliath in utter confidence that the Lord would give him power to defeat this giant. While the rest of Israel, including the king and David’s own brothers, were cowering in fear, David calmly walked up to Goliath and announced, “This day the Lord will deliver you up into my hands, and I will strike you down and remove your head from you” (1 Sam. 17:46). It seems never to have occurred to David not to trust the Lord. Like the other heroes of faith, David was not perfect, but God called him “a man after My heart, who will do all My will” (Acts 13:22). He pleased God because of the courage of his faith to trust Him and do His will.

Samuel is added to this list of warriors, though he was not a warrior. But he fought a battle equal to any that soldiers face. His great foes were idolatry and immorality. He had to stand up in the middle of a polluted society and fearlessly speak God’s truth. His severest opponents frequently were not the Philistines, the Amorites, or Ammonites—but his own people. It often takes more courage to stand up against our friends than against our enemies. Social pressure can be more frightening than military power. This prophet of God, who was also Israel’s last judge, began “ministering before the Lord, as a boy wearing a linen ephod” (1 Sam. 2:18) and continued faithful to God throughout his life. In the courage of faith, he ruled and prophesied.

The prophets are unnamed except for Samuel. As the writer mentions in the opening of verse 32, he does not have time to go into detail about the many other faithful people of the Old Covenant, or even to mention them all by name. These prophets, just as Gideon, Barak, and the others, risked everything for the Lord. They cheerfully, courageously, and confidently accepted God’s commands and faced whatever opposition came along. They did not fight on battlefields, but they had many victories in the Lord because they believed Him. They, too, conquered through the courage of faith. The exploits of 11:33–34 are general and refer collectively to the persons in verse 32. The mouths of lions may refer to Daniel, and quenched the power of fire to Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. The point of mentioning these works is to show that, whether the need was for political victory, helping those in need, receiving promises, overcoming natural enemies, protection from war or weakness, or winning in war—the power to accomplish these things was from God and the power was received by faith in Him

*A Summary of the Faithful (11:32–38) This survey of the faith of men and women in the past could have gone on to greater lengths, but the author feels that his epistle must not become burdensome to read. He refers to others in more general terms, mentioning only six more names. Their varied actions of faith are successful, whether in triumph or in suffering (vv. 32–38). The six names span the history of Israel from the days of the judges to the early monarchy. Included are Gideon, noted for his victory over Midian with a reduced army of only 300 men; Barak, who was encouraged by the prophetess Deborah and defeated the Canaanite army of Sisera; Samson, famous as the muscleman of Israel, fatally susceptible to the charms of young women, but nevertheless the instrument of God to deliver Israel from Philistine oppression; Jephthah, haunted by his rash vow concerning his daughter, but also conqueror of the Ammonites and punisher of the tribe of Ephraim; David, Israel’s greatest king and the author of many psalms, “a man after God’s own heart”; and, finally, Samuel, first of the prophets and last of the judges, who lived by faith from his boyhood to his final days. Others are simply listed as the prophets, which would surely include the great names of Elijah, Elisha, Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezekiel and others. The faith these men possessed led them to three kinds of action (vv. 33–34). Faith helped some to govern—conquered kingdoms (David over the Philistines), administered justice (Solomon—1 Kings 21:9) and gained what was promised (Josh 21:43). Faith helped others to triumph over fearful odds—shut the mouths of lions (Dan 6), quenched the fury of the flames (Dan 3:17), and escaped the edge of the sword (2 Kings 6:11–18). Still others were enabled by faith to be mighty in battle—whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies (1 Sam 14:14). These were all actual historic incidents, familiar to the readers of this letter from the Old Testament accounts.

*11:32–34      And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies.   The roll call of heroes continues with the words “what more shall I say?” The Old Testament records the lives of many people who experienced great victories; a few are selected for mention here. None of these people were perfect; in fact, many of their sins are recorded in the Old Testament. But these were among those who believed in God:

•     Gideon, one of Israel’s judges, was known for conquering the Midianite army with only three hundred men who were armed with trumpets and jars (Judges 6:11–8:35).

•     Barak served with Deborah (another judge of Israel) in conquering the army of General Sisera from Hazor (Judges 4:4–23).

•     Samson, another judge, was a mighty warrior vs God’s enemies, the Philistines (Judg 13–16)

•     Jephthah, still another judge, delivered Israel from the Ammonites (Judges 11:1–33).

•     David, the beloved king of Israel, a warrior, brought peace to Israel, defeating all his enemies

•     Samuel, the last judge of Israel, was a very wise leader. He also was a prophet. He, along with all the prophets, served God selflessly as they conveyed God’s words to an often rebellious people

These people demonstrated that faith will accomplish much:

•     They conquered kingdoms. Throughout their years in the Promised Land, the Israelites had great leaders who brought victory against their enemies. People such as Joshua, all of the judges, and King David were great warriors.

•     They administered justice. Many of the judges, as well as leaders such as Nehemiah, administered justice to the people.

•     They gained what was promised. Some people actually did see the fulfillment of some of God’s promises, such as possession of the Promised Land.

•     They shut the mouths of lions. Daniel was saved from the mouths of lions (Daniel 6). This statement could also refer to Samson (Judges 14:6) or to David (1 Samuel 17:34–35).

•     They quenched the fury of the flames. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were kept from harm in the furious flames of a fiery furnace (Daniel 3).

•     They escaped the edge of the sword. Elijah (1 Kings 19:2–8) and Jeremiah (Jeremiah 36:19, 26) had this experience.

•     Their weakness was turned to strength. Hezekiah was one who regained strength after sickness (2 Kings 20).

•     They became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. This refers to Joshua, many of Israel’s judges, and King David.

We, too, can experience victory through faith in Christ. We may have experiences similar to those of the Old Testament saints; more likely, however, our victories will be directly related to the role God wants us to play. Your life may not include the kinds of dramatic events recorded here, but it surely includes moments where faith is tested. Give testimony to those moments, publicly and honestly, and thereby encourage the faith of others. Even though our bodies deteriorate and die, we will live forever because of Christ. In the promised resurrection, even death will be defeated, and Christ’s victory will be made complete. STEADFAST This chapter summarizes the lives of great men and women of faith. Some experienced outstanding victories, even over death. But others were severely mistreated, tortured, and even killed. Having a steadfast faith in God does not guarantee a happy, carefree life. On the contrary, our faith almost guarantees some form of abuse from the world. On earth we may never see the purpose of our suffering. But we know that God will keep his promises to us. Hold on to God; never give up; never give in. The Old Testament people of faith are cheering you on. These persons were of every age and temperament—shepherds, statesmen, prime ministers, psalmists, poets, border chieftains, prophets, women martyrs—but they are all trophies of faith…. Their circumstances and trials were widely different, but in all the talisman of victory was faith’s watchword—“God is able.” There is no kind of need, trial, persecution, experience for which faith is not the sufficient answer. It is the master key for every lock of difficulty. F. B. Meyer

* The writer begins by listing half a dozen obvious winners who were empowered for victory: “And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets” (v. 32). At God’s direction Gideon underwent a remarkable divestment of power in preparation for his phenomenal victory over the Midianites. Obediently he reduced his troops from 32,000 to 10,000 to 300. Then the 300, armed with trumpets and pitchers that concealed torches, routed the Midianites whose “camels could no more be counted than the sand on the seashore” (Judges 7:12). Gideon’s feat was a stupendous act of faith. Likewise, Barak, obeying God’s word as given through Deborah, sallied forth to meet the great army of Sisera with its 900 chariots of iron and myriads of troops, Barak himself having only 10,000 men drawn from just two of Israel’s tribes, Naphtali and Zebulun (Judges 4:6). But his token army was victorious. Once again faith carried the day.Normally, we do not think of Samson as a man of faith, but rather a great dunce whose moral brain waves had gone flat! But there was a subterranean substance of faith in Samson. He knew God had given him power to deliver his people from the Philistines—though he frittered it away. But once blinded, he regained his spiritual perspective, and in a great act of faith he prayed and received strength to avenge himself (Judges 16:25–30).Neither would we imagine Jephthah as a man of faith because of his infamous and foolish vow to sacrifice his own daughter (Judges 11:30–39). Nevertheless, this illegitimate son, this outcast Hebrew Robin Hood, was called back to save Israel—which he did through his faith in God. He conquered because of his faith—notwithstanding that his raw uninformed faith tragically was perverted so that it became the source of his rash and wrongful vow to sacrifice “whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me” (Judges 11:31).King David, on the other hand, is well-known for his acts of faith, not the least of which was his challenge and defeat of Goliath, to whom he cried, “It is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands” (1 Samuel 17:47). Towering faith! The prophet Samuel had lived a life of faith since he was a little “boy wearing a linen ephod” (1 Samuel 2:18), serving Eli in the house of the Lord. Through faith he fearlessly delivered God’s word to anyone anywhere at anytime—even the sinning King Saul (1 Samuel 15:22, 23). This faithful proclamation was the hallmark of all true prophets. Viewed together, this dynamic half-dozen bore remarkable similarities to one another. Each lived in a time when faith was scarce—definitely the minority position. During the days of the judges, everyone did “what was right in his own eyes” (Judges 21:25), and this ethic was very much alive during the transfer to the monarchy. From Gideon to David, each battled overwhelming odds—Gideon with his 300 against an innumerable host—young David against the giant. Each stood alone contra mundum. And most significantly, perhaps, each of these heroes had a flawed faith. John Calvin remarked: There was none of them whose faith did not falter. Gideon was slower than he need have been to take up arms, and it was only with difficulty that he ventured to commit himself to God. Barak hesitated at the beginning so that he had almost to be compelled by the reproaches of Deborah. Samson was the victim of the enticements of his mistress and thoughtlessly betrayed the safety of himself and of all his people. Jephthah rushed headlong into making a foolish vow and was over-obstinate in performing it, and thereby marred a fine victory by the cruel death of his daughter.

And to this we could add that David was sensuous (2 Samuel 11:1ff.), and Samuel lapsed into carelessness in domestic matters (1 Samuel 8:1ff.). Calvin concludes: In every saint there is always to be found something reprehensible. Nevertheless although faith may be imperfect and incomplete it does not cease to be approved by God. There is no reason, therefore, why the fault from which we labour should break us or discourage us provided we go on by faith in the race of our calling. How encouraging! There is hope for every man, woman and child of us. Faith’s empowerment is not beyond any of us. As believers we have untapped faith capacities that will surprise not only others but, most of all, ourselves. We each possess interior spiritual nitroglycerin that faith can detonate.The Empowerments To further strengthen his argument regarding the power that faith brings to life, the preacher lifts his focus from the empowered to the empowerments that they and others experienced. He lists nine empowerments grouped in three successive groups of three. The first three give the broad empowerments of authentic faith: “who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised” (v. 33a). This was not only the corporate experience of the half-dozen, but the general experience of the preceding sixteen members of the Hall of Faith. The second trio lists some of the forms of personal deliverances that they experienced: “who shut the mouths of lions, quenched the fury of flames, and escaped the edge of the sword” (vv. 33b, 34a). Samson, David and Beniah all shut the mouths of lions through physical force. Samson, barehanded, took a charging lion by the jaws and ripped it apart. David grabbed a sheep-stealing lion by the beard and thrust it through. Beniah descended into a pit on a snowy day and dispatched another king of the beasts. But Daniel is the preeminent example, through his faith and prayer (Daniel 6:17–22). Shadrach, Mesbach and Abednego trusted God, and thus coolly conversed in a blazing furnace while the awe-struck king looked on (Daniel 3:24–27). King David, as well as the prophets Elijah and Elisha, escaped the sword, as did many others (1 Samuel 18:10, 11; 1 Kings 19:8–10; 2 Kings 6:31, 32; Psalm 144:10). The third triad tells about the astounding power that came by faith: “whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. Women received back their dead, raised to life again” (vv. 34b, 35a). Elijah stretched himself out three times on the dead form of the son of the widow of Zarephath and cried to God for his life—and then carried the child alive down to his distraught mother (1 Kings 17:17–24). Elisha, his understudy, accomplished a similar feat for the Shunammite woman’s son—“mouth to mouth, eyes to eyes, hands to hands… the boy’s body grew warm” (2 Kings 4:34). Three triads—nine empowerments—what power comes through faith! This was important to know and believe under the darkening skies of Nero’s impending pogrom. The examples of the empowered six and the litany of the triads of empowerments that have come to the church ought to make one thing very clear: God delights to effect mighty triumphs through people of faith. Faith pleases God—and faith empowers. God can deliver the faithful anytime he wants from anything! Noah’s family was delivered from a flood that drowned all the rest of the human race. Moses and Israel walked through the Red Sea. Joshua and Israel crossed the flooded Jordan. Rahab survived the fallen walls. Gideon prevailed while outmanned a thousand to one. God can deliver us triumphantly from anything if he so pleases—sickness, professional injustice, domestic woe, the growing oppression of a neo-pagan culture—whatever! And he will do it again and again and again. But remember, it is always “by faith” in his Word. But the parallel truth is, God has not promised wholesale deliverance in this life for his people at all times and in every situation. Not all of us will be “winners” in this life. From the world’s point of view some people of faith are huge “losers.”

*

19:18 Ramah. With the mention of Samuel’s birthplace, the author establishes a verbal link with 1:1, and also reminds the reader of Saul’s first encounter with Samuel the seer in Zuph (Ramathaim Zophim). Naioth. Perhaps dwellings or quarters within the town limits of Ramah, where Samuel and his company of prophet-disciples met for training, prayer, and fellowship (cf. Elisha at Gilgal, 2 Kin. 6:1, 2). David fled to Samuel in Ramah, a godly friend he knew he could depend on, and Samuel took him to the fellowship of the prophets where they could worship God and seek His face. The word naioth means “dwellings” and was probably a section in Ramah where the “school of the prophets” assembled. There Samuel and David could worship and pray and ask God for wisdom, and the prophets would pray with them. But Saul’s spies were everywhere and they reported to Saul where he could find David. The king sent three different groups of soldiers to capture David, but when they arrived at the place where the prophets had assembled, they were immediately possessed by the Spirit and began to praise and worship God! The Hebrew word translated “prophesy” can mean “to sing songs and praise God” as well as “to foretell events.” Saul’s soldiers didn’t become prophets; they only uttered words inspired by the Spirit of God. God protected David and Samuel, not by sending an army but by sending the Holy Spirit to turn warriors into worshipers. “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds” (2 Cor. 10:4).Three groups of soldiers had failed, so Saul decided to go to Ramah himself. David’s presence in Ramah was no secret because the people at the great cistern knew where he and Samuel were and they told Saul. Perhaps the entire town knew that some kind of “spiritual revival” was taking place at the school of the prophets. Saul hastened to the place only to be met by the Spirit of God and made to praise the Lord. He took off his outer royal garments and became like any other man, and he lay on the floor before Samuel. This would be their last meeting until that fateful night when Samuel came from the realms of the dead to pass judgment on the king (1 Sam. 28:7ff). But Saul had had a similar experience after Samuel had anointed him king (10:9–13), and from it came the proverbial saying, “Is Saul also among the prophets?” After Saul’s experience at Ramah, the proverb was resurrected. These two events prove that a person can have a remarkable religious experience and yet have no change in character. In Saul’s case, both experiences were actually sent by the Lord, but Saul didn’t profit from them. Special religious manifestations aren’t evidences that a person is even saved (Matt. 7:21–23). Judas preached sermons and even performed miracles (Matt. 10:1–8), yet he was not a believer (John 6:67–71; 13:10–11; 17:12), and he betrayed the Lord and ended up committing suicide. Saul, like Judas, had many opportunities to see the Lord’s hand at work, and yet he never had a life-changing experience with the Lord. While Saul was occupied at the school of the prophets, David slipped away from Ramah and went to meet Jonathan somewhere near Gibeah. David and Jonathan would make one final effort at reconciliation with Saul, and it would almost cost Jonathan his life. Saul was a “double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (James 1:8). He would try to rule the land and defeat the Philistines while at the same time chasing David and seeking to kill him. The longer David eluded him, the more fanatical Saul became, until finally he ended his own life on the battlefield, lacking the help of the one man who could have given him victory.

Sermon: Samuel the Faithful Servant

Heb 11:32 And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, 

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND HIS MOTHER’S PRAYERS

1 Sam.1:5,6

1 Sam 1:20 So in the course of time Hannah conceived and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.” 

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND HIS MENTOR’S GUIDANCE

3:1 The boy Samuel ministered before the Lord under Eli. In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions. 

1Sam.2:26 And the boy Samuel continued to grow in stature and in favor with the Lord and with men

SAMUEL’S FAITH AND GOD’S WORD

1 Sam.3:21 The Lord continued to appear at Shiloh, and there he revealed himself to Samuel through his word. 

SAMUEL’S FAITH IN ACTION – A CALL TO NATIONAL REPENTANCE

1 Sam.7:3 And Samuel said to the whole house of Israel, “If you are returning to the Lord with all your hearts, then rid yourselves of the foreign gods and the Ashtoreths and commit yourselves to the Lord and serve him only, and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.”

SAMUEL’S FAITH SEVERELY TESTED: HE IS REJECTED BY HIS PEOPLE –

1 Sam. 8:5 They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.”

BY FAITH SAMUEL ANOINTS HIS REPLACEMENT – KING SAUL

1 Sam.9:15 Now the day before Saul came, the Lord had revealed this to Samuel: 16 @ this X tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him leader over my people Israel; he will deliver my people from the hand of the Philistines. I have looked upon my people, for their cry has reached me

SAMUEL’S PRAYER OF FAITH in his FAREWELL SPEECH

1 Sam.12:17 Is it not wheat harvest now? I will call upon the Lord to send thunder and rain. And you will realize what an evil thing you did in the eyes of the Lord when you asked for a king.” 18 Then Samuel called upon the Lord, and that same day the Lord sent thunder and rain. So all the people stood in awe of the Lord and of Samuel.

BY FAITH SAMUEL CONFRONTS KING SAUL REGARDING HIS SINS

1 Sam.13:13 “You acted foolishly,” Samuel said. “You have not kept the command the Lord your God gave you; if you had, he would have established your kingdom over Israel for all time.

1 Sam.15:19 Why did you not obey the Lord? Why did you pounce on the plunder and do evil in the eyes of the Lord?”

BY FAITH SAMUEL OBEYS GOD AND ANOINTS DAVID AS THE NEW KING

1 Sam 16:2  But Samuel said, “How can I go? Saul will hear about it and kill me.”….

4 Samuel did what the Lord said.

SAMUEL ENCOURAGES DAVID’S FAITH

1 Sam 19:18 When David had fled and made his escape, he went to Samuel at Ramah and told him all that Saul had done to him. Then he and Samuel went to Naioth and stayed there.

SAMUEL’S DEATH SPEAKS BY FAITH

1 Sam 28:3 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had mourned for him and buried him in his own town of Ramah. Saul had expelled the mediums and spiritists from the land

1 Sam.28:15 Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” “I am in great distress,” Saul said. “The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has turned away from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets or by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do.” 16 Samuel said, “Why do you consult me, now that the Lord has turned away from you and become your enemy?  17 The Lord has done what he predicted through me. The Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors—to David. 18 Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today. 19 The Lord will hand over both Israel and you to the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also hand over the army of Israel to the Philistines.”

Samuel: Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

* The faithful ministry of Samuel before the Lord was in sharp contrast to the disobedience of Eli’s sons. *2:18-21. As though to show the contrast between the ungodly and the godly about which Hannah had sung, the narration now contrasts the family of Samuel with that of Eli. Though Samuel’s mother had given Samuel to the Lord, she retained her maternal love and responsibility. She came yearly to Shiloh to attend to the needs of her son. Nor did the Lord forget Hannah. As is so often the case, He gave her not only what she had prayed for but much more—in her case three sons and two daughters (Rachel, Gen. 30:22-24; 35:16-18).

*Observe that “the word of the Lord” (3:21) has become equivalent to “the word of Samuel.” 

*The word of the Lord had been rare in those days, now however, it would be common, for God had found a man to whom He could entrust it

Samuel: Faithful in service to the Lord from the very Beginning to the very End

* 3:19 the Lord was with him. The Lord’s presence was with Samuel, as it would be later with David (16:18; 18:12). The Lord’s presence validated His choice of a man for His service. let none of his words fall to the ground. Everything Samuel said with divine authorization came true. This fulfillment of Samuel’s word proved that he was a true prophet of God (Deut. 18:21, 22). 3:20 Dan to Beersheba. The traditional limits of the land of Israel from the N to the S. prophet of the Lord. Samuel’s status as a spokesman of God’s message was acknowledged by all throughout Israel. 4:1 the word of Samuel came to all Israel. The text of 1:1–3:21 climaxes with the establishment of Samuel as God’s spokesman/representative. Observe that “the word of the Lord” (3:21) has become equivalent to “the word of Samuel.”  3:15-21. This first act of Samuel as a prophet was recognized by Eli as having come from God. This was only the beginning of a public ministry as prophet, which would last through a lifetime and be recognized by all the people as a divine calling. The word of the Lord had been rare in those days (v. 1). Now, however, it would be common, for God had found a man to whom He could entrust it. The sign that Samuel was a spokesman for God was the fact that God let none of his words fall to the ground (v. 19), that is, everything he prophesied came to pass. All Israel from Dan to Beersheba (the northernmost and southernmost towns in Israel—a distance of about 150 miles) recognized that Samuel was . . . a prophet of the Lord. There was no clearer indication that a man was called to be a prophet than the fact that his predictive word invariably was fulfilled (Deut. 18:21-22). When it was understood that Samuel’s credentials as a prophet were established, a new era was under way. Revelation through priest and ephod was passing away, and revelation through prophets was beginning. The ark (chaps. 4-7) the capture of the ark (chap. 4) The Philistines, Israel’s principal enemy during the period of the last of the Judges (Jud. 10:6-8; 13-16)

Chps.3-5 arc captured by Philistines, chp.6 it’s returned, chp.7 he calls the people to Repent. 7:2 twenty years. Coupled with v. 3, the 20 years designated the period Israel neglected God and chased after foreign gods. After those 20 years, Israel returned to the Lord. 7:3 prepare your hearts for the Lord … and He will deliver you. This statement recalls the cycle in the book of Judges: apostasy, oppression, repentance, and deliverance. It previews the contents of this chapter. *After this disaster at Beth Shemesh the ark was moved again (1 Sam. 6:21), this time to Kiriath Jearim (modern Abu Ghosh, about 10 miles NW of Jerusalem). [6:21 Kirjath Jearim. A city located approximately 10 mi. NE of Beth Shemesh. It would remain the resting place of the ark until David brought it to Jerusalem (2 Sam. 6:1–19). This location had long been associated with Baal worship (Josh. 15:9, 60; 18:14)] No doubt the ark was taken there rather than to Shiloh, because the latter was destroyed by the Philistines, perhaps after the battle of Aphek (chap. 4; Jer. 26:9). The ark remained in the custody of the family of Abinadab (1 Sam. 7:1) for about 100 years. the restoration of the ark (7:2-17) The return of the ark to Kiriath Jearim seemed to be a tangible sign that God was once again among His people to bless them and deliver them from all their oppressors. The mere presence of the ark did not guarantee God’s favor, however, as Israel had learned at the battle of Aphek. Rather, it was submission to the God of the ark that was essential (v. 4). 7:2. After the ark was at Kiriath Jearim for 20 years Samuel addressed the Israelites (v. 3). In other words, the ark was in Kiriath Jearim for 20 years before Samuel undertook his first recorded public ministry. In actual fact the ark remained at Kiriath Jearim for about 100 years. It was taken there just after the battle of Aphek (1104 b.c.) and remained until David brought it from there to Jerusalem in his first year as king over all Israel (1003 b.c.; 2 Sam. 5:5; 6:1-11). *7:2 it was there twenty years: Most likely, it was twenty years before Samuel called the assembly at Mizpah (v. 5). The ark remained at Kirjath Jearim for about 100 yrs. It was taken there just after the battle of Aphek around 1104 b.c. and remained there until David brought it to Jerusalem in his first year as king over all Israel, around 1003 b.c. (2 Sam. 5:5; 6:1–18). 7:3 If you return to the Lord: Repentance from sin and expressions of loyalty to God were prerequisites for the restoration of divine blessing (Deut. 30:1–10; 2 Chr. 7:14). The expression foreign gods is a general term for the idols of Canaan. Ashtoreths is the plural form of the name of the Canaanite goddess of fertility, sexuality, and war. The rites connected with her worship usually involved sacred prostitution. Sexual rituals in the Canaanite temples were designed to prompt the gods to make the earth fertile. 7:3-4. After these 20 long years with the ark at Kiriath Jearim, Samuel challenged the people of Israel to prove their loyalty to the Lord by abandoning their foreign gods and turning to the Lord . . . only. The plural Baals and Ashtoreths describe the many local shrines of those Canaanite nature deities. Baal, variously identified as son of El (chief of the Canaanite pantheon) or as son of Dagan (the Mesopotamian deity), was particularly recognized as the god of thunder and rain whose task was to make the earth fertile annually. Ashtoreth (or Astarte) was goddess of both love and war, as were her Babylonian and Greek counterparts Ishtar and Aphrodite respectively. She apparently functioned with Baal as a fertility deity and by their sexual union in some magical way the earth and all its life supposedly experienced annual rejuvenation and fruitfulness.

8:1-6. Shortly before 1051 b.c., the year Saul became king (when Samuel was 65-70 years old), the people of Israel, aware of Samuel’s advanced age and of the wickedness of his sons (vv. 3, 5) demanded of the prophet that he select a king to rule over them. Samuel’s sons, who had been serving as judges at Beersheba in Judah, no doubt reminded Israel of the sons of Eli (2:12, 22).  Samuel’s sons, Joel and Abijah were dishonest judges, accepting bribes and perverting, rather than upholding, justice. Samuel, of course, was grieved that they should seek a king, for God, who had redeemed them from Egypt to be His people, was their King. 8:1 Samuel was old. Samuel was about 60 years of age (1043 b.c.). He appointed his two sons to serve as judges in Beersheba, a city about 57 mi. S of Ramah. 8:2 Joel. The name means “the Lord is God.” Abijah. The name means “my Father is the Lord.” 8:3 his sons did not walk in his ways. The perverted desire for riches led Samuel’s sons to take bribes and thereby pervert justice. These actions were strictly forbidden for judges in Deut. 16:19. The sins of Samuel’s sons became the pretext for Israel’s demand for a king (vv. 4, 5). 8:5 Now make us a king … like all the nations. When Israel entered the land, they encountered Canaanite city-states that were led by kings (Josh. 12:7–24). during the period of the judges, Israel was enslaved by nations that were led by kings (Judg. 3:8, 12; 4:2; 8:5; 11:12). However, at the time of the judges there was no king in Israel (Judg. 17:6; 18:1; 19:1; 21:25). As Israel lived in the land surrounded by nations that had kings, the desire arose for a king in Israel also. According to Deut. 17:14, God knew this would be their desire and He would allow it to occur. However, 8:20 revealed a motive which was definitely counter to the Lord’s will. [8:20 Then we will be like all the other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles.”] 8:7 Heed the voice of the people. The Lord had predicted that there would be kings over Israel (Gen. 35:11; 36:31; 49:10; Num. 24:7–9, 17; Deut. 17:14; 28:36). Here, the Lord told Samuel to obey the request of the people and give them a king. they have not rejected you, but … Me. The nature of this rejection of the Lord by Israel is explained in vv. 19, 20.

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