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Samuel

How did Samuel show his godly life even before he was born? What did he do to guide Israel in the fear of the Lord? Samuel was known as not only the judge but also the prophet and military leader of the country.

Samuel did many things as judge, prophet, and military leader, and showed that he was godly through all of those jobs. He proved throughout events in his life, even his childhood, that he loved the Lord and obeyed Him. We can use his godly life as an example.

Samuel did godly things when he was ruling the people. He turned many hearts to the Lord. He brought the word of the Lord to Israel and anointed two kings—one unbelieving and one godly. He didn’t want Israel to have a king because they wanted to be like other wicked nations. Yet, he gave them Saul, and eventually David.  Anointing David was very important for the future of Israel, as he expanded the borders of Israel and brought prosperity to the country. He brought Israel to repentance many times. He corrected Saul multiple times, including when Saul didn’t kill all of the Amalekites as God had commanded. He also brought God’s message of judgement to Eli for not punishing his wicked sons. He kept the religion of Israel when Israel was oppressed by the Philistines. He was also the last of the judges, as Israel now had a king while he was still living. We can see with these examples just a few of the many times throughout Samuel’s life that displayed how he served God, even when he was young.

Even before he was born, Samuel was assigned to the work of God. His childless mother, Hannah, was being mocked by her husband Elkanah’s other wife, Peninnah. Hannah was distressed and prayed to God for a son whom she would consecrate, or dedicate, to the Lord. God gave her that son, and she kept her vow, giving him to Eli so he could serve before the Lord. She also vowed that he would be a Nazarite, which means that he wouldn’t cut his hair, have strong drink, or defile himself by touching dead bodies. His name also shows his godly character. It means “God has heard”. Growing up, he showed us that he was a God-fearing child. God called to him at night once, and after thinking it was Eli, he eventually told God to speak, because he was listening. He also said that he was God’s servant when he was responding to God, which shows that he knew his duty at a young age. He was very godly, and growing up in the tabernacle would definitely help, especially because his father was living in sin by having two wives, which would be a bad example. He did get to see his mother, but not very often, and that would have to be a very hard trial growing up. Through Eli’s instruction and God’s grace, he grew up to be a God-fearing leader in Israel and was known throughout the land. It is interesting to note that there are not any times where we read of Samuel sinning, which shows that he was close to his Lord. When we look at his life, we realize that we can use it as an example to us and how we should live.

How can we take his life and faith and learn from it? We see that he led a close, holy life with God. God spoke in person to him as a child and used him as a messenger. We can do the same thing. Since God doesn’t speak that way to his people anymore, we can use the Bible to know his way and can learn from it that we also have to witness to others. We have to lovingly correct others when they are wrong, and, like Samuel, need to have a humble attitude about it. He had outward examples, too, that we can use as our guide. It is important through this that we do not revere him as a god, but as a humble servant of God. He was brave enough to rebuke King Saul. He showed that he had a strong faith in God, just as we need to. He was not afraid to keep the word of God when the Philistines were in Israel, and if we are in a wicked dominated place, we need to continue to witness to others as he did.  We need to show both our inward and outward love and faith in God in a humble way.

God used Samuel to bring the word to Israel even from a young age, and we can use his life as an example to us. He witnessed to others of his beliefs, and we should do that too.