Beginning today, we shall take a study on the lessons on the lives of Eli and Samuel.
During my personal study, I had a strong impression in my heart to do this.
I trust God for grace and wisdom to accurately communicate His mind on the subject in Jesus name amen.
To lay a foundation for this study we need to point out some important facts on the lives of the Israelites at this time.
- God through Moses and subsequently Joshua had led Israel from bondage in Egypt to the promised land.
- Israel had acquired much of the culture of Egypt including their idolatrous practices hence despite receiving God’s laws from Moses they always went back to practices God told them to avoid.
This began to happen while Moses was still leading them and took a very bad dimension after Joshua and the Elders who saw God’s miraculous acts in Egypt and in the wilderness had died (Ex. 32, Judges 2:6-13)
- Due to Israel’s continued disobedience right from the wilderness to when they had entered the promised land, God decided not to drive out all the inhabitants of the land of Canaan as He earlier promised them (Ex. 23:27-33, Numbers 33:55-56, Judges 2:1-3).
God instructed Israel to drive out all the idolatrous Nations in the promised land but Israel chose to put them under tribute after Israel became strong thus defying God’s instruction.
They didn’t drive out all the inhabitants of the land and they became a snare to Israel as God had warned them (Judges chapter 1)
- God would use the Nations in Canaan to prove and judge Israel whenever they went into disobedience (Judges 3:1-8).
Whenever Israel went into disobedience, God gave them over as slaves to Nations around them and each time they cried out to God in repentance, God raised someone (a Judge) to deliver them from their enemies oppressing them.
- Israel usually followed God as long as the Judge God used to deliver them was alive.
Afterwards they returned to idolatry and other practices which God hates and warned them to avoid.
- A major reason for the lack of continuity of successive generations in following God was a lack of continuity of the fathers to diligently and accurately teach the children the way of the Lord.
God specifically instructed Israel to teach their children the way of the Lord (Deut 11:19-23)
After they entered the promised land we are told everyone did what was right in his own eyes (Judges 17:6).
That’s definitely far from what God had instructed Israel.
They were to be governed by the rules God gave them.
Due to the lack of proper training of successive generations in the way of God, once those who had encounters with God through His mighty deliverance were dead, the children turned away from the Lord (Judges 3:6-13).
- Eli, a Levite was both the High Priest and a Judge over Israel during His time.
- Samuel was not a Levite. He was of the tribe of Ephraim (1Sam 1:1-2).
However we see later that Samuel became a Judge over Israel and functioned both as Priest and a Prophet.
This looks abnormal because only Levites were to take up the office of the Priests as God commanded Moses.
We shall show later in this teaching series from scriptures why this happened.
In the next module, we shall proceed by looking at the circumstances surrounding Samuel’s conception and birth as found in the book of 1Samuel.
However, I encourage everyone going through this teaching series with me to read through the book of 1Samuel.
This will be useful to help everyone easily follow as we continue.
To be Continued.