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Children Bible Overview 45 24/02/08

SAMUEL, THE PRIEST WHO REPLACED ELI

Teachers to read bible scripture: <1Sam 2-4>


Children to memorize bible scripture: <1Pet 2:9>

Recap
Last week, we saw that because Hannah understood God’s will to save the Israelites, God listened to
her prayer and Samuel was conceived through her. Since young, Samuel grew up hearing God’s
words. His whole life was used as the prophet of the Israelites, by God
Introduction
From young, Samuel grew up in the holy temple. At that time, Eli the priest led the Israelites. He was
a very weak priest. He could not hear God’s words and therefore did not know how to teach the
Israelites properly regarding God’s words. As a great priest, not only did he not do his job well in
praying for the Israelite people, he often oppressed them. He also allowed his sons to oppress the
Israelite people. Because of that, the Israelites could not hear God’s voice and continued to worship
idols. Eventually they continued to be weak and did not have the strength to defeat the enemies. One
day, when God’s time was ready, the enemies of the Israelites, the Philistine soldiers came to attack
the Israelites. The Israelite army did not have the power to defend and so they asked Eli’s two sons to
bring the ark of the Lord’s covenant to the battleground. They thought that God would protect them
with the ark of God. However, God was not with them and therefore the Israelites fought a losing
battle, where Eli’s two sons were killed by the enemies and the Philistines also captured the ark of
God. When Eli the great priest heard the news, he was shocked and died suddenly. God allowed that
to happen, to raise Samuel to replace Eli as the great priest of Israel.
1. The Israelite people continued to be weak because Eli the Priest could not hear
God’s words
1) When Eli became Israel’s priest, he did not have the promise of the 4 Gospelization
in his heart. He did not know that he and the Israelite people were God’s royal people
and that God’s power was with them and He loved them.
2) Because he did not love God, he could not hear God’s voice and did not know how to
teach the Israelite people properly. Because he did not love God’s people, not only
did he not do a good job in praying for the Israelites, he also allowed his two sons to
continue to sin and oppress the Israelites. Eli only loved this world, loved to eat, and
sleep and loved comfort. Therefore, he was very heavy in weight. [Are we like that?
Do we only love to eat and play but dislike God or the parents and friends whom God
has placed beside us?]
3) As a result, when God’s time was ready, Eli’s two sons were killed by the enemies.
Eli himself also fell backward off his chair and died. God therefore used a small child,
Samuel to replace Eli’s role and eventually Samuel became the Great Priest of Israel.

2. To save the Israelite people, God raised Samuel who was set apart for God (a
Nazarite who was different from the others)
1) Why did God choose Samuel to lead Israel? It was because Samuel was set apart
for God. When everybody else was worshipping idols, loving the world and loving
themselves, Samuel’s concern was in loving God and loving God’s people.
2) Because Samuel was set apart for God, the method he used to lead the Israelite
people was also different. A typical priest (like Eli) would use his own wisdom to lead.
However, Samuel loved to pray. Therefore, Samuel could often hear God’s voice and
understood God’s will to lead the Israelites.
3) Because Samuel was set apart for God, his purpose when leading the Israelite people
was different. A typical priest (like Eli) would only be concerned if the Israelites were
fighting winning battles. However, Samuel’s concern was whether the Israelites could
hear God’s words. Therefore, he went to various cities in Israel to evangelize and
asked the people to turn their hearts to the Lord, God.
* Therefore, do we have the same heart, method and purpose like Samuel? If we do, we
are Samuel!

3. Because Samuel was set apart for God, God continued to show Himself to Samuel,
and also used Samuel to be the priest of the Israelite people
1) Like Samuel, we who know and believe Jesus Christ are already different from the
people of this world. We have eternal life (normal people live for 70-80 years); we
have God to help us (normal people have to rely on themselves); we try to save
people and are given the noblest task to ask others to receive eternal life (those
people who have not known God cannot save people or give others eternal life).
2) Therefore, just like Samuel who often heard God’s voice, if we also pay attention to
what our Sunday school teachers teach about God’s words, have the heart to pray
and follow God, we can also hear God’s voice daily. God will also often show Himself
to us.
3) Therefore, just like Samuel who was used by God to become the priest of the
Israelite people who prayed for them, God also uses us today to become the priest of
our family members (parents, siblings and grandparents) and friends who will pray
for them. When we pray for them, God will also save them so that they will know
Jesus sooner, and receive eternal life and God’s help