Each week we LIVESTREAM the Lord's Day Sabbath School at 10a, Lord's Day morning public worship at 11a, and Lord's Day p.m. singing (3p) and sermon (3:45), and the Midweek Sermon and Prayer Meeting at 6:30p on Wednesday

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

2020.03.11 Hopewell @Home ▫ 1 Samuel 2:22–26

Questions from the Scripture text: In what condition was Eli (1 Samuel 2:22)? What had he heard about his sons? To whom does he speak about it (1 Samuel 2:23)? What does he say that they do (1 Samuel 2:24)? What does he warn them cannot be done for them (1 Samuel 2:25)? What does the Scripture give as the reasons that his sons did not heed the voice of their father? Who is contrasted to Eli’s sons (1 Samuel 2:26)? Of Whom does this remind us (cf. 1 Samuel 2:21, Luke 2:40Luke 2:52)?
Apart from God’s totally undeserved grace, He rightly and justly desires to kill sinners.

That is shocking to us, because we do not see sin for how wicked it is.

Up until this point in 1 Samuel 2, we might be tempted to think that it’s a minor infraction for Eli’s sons to alter tabernacle procedure in order to get some more choice meat. Our flesh doesn’t want to respond like Jesus to those who “make Yahweh’s people transgress” in their worship (1 Samuel 2:24). Jesus says that it would be better for someone who does that to have a stone weighing thousands of pounds tied to their neck, and to be thrown into the depths of the sea!

Perhaps the Lord’s grace to us is such that we are still softhearted enough toward Him to be shocked by the second half of 1 Samuel 2:22. These men were using their place of authority to molest and violate the women of God’s people right there at the door of the tabernacle!

And yet, for God, the offense of false worship makes this the minor violation, sandwiched in the narrative about how they were profaning the worship of God for the people of God. In the words of 1 Samuel 2:25, “If one man sins against another, God will judge him. But if a man sins against Yahweh, who will intercede for him?”

How shocking and vile is our wickedness before God!! Who of us have not come to worship at times with gratifying our desires as our top priority?! And yet it is God’s grace to sinners in giving Christ to intercede that was the stuff of worship under Sinai’s law, and it is even more so the stuff of worship in the age of the Gospel.

What hope is there for us? Is it that we will be like Samuel? No. Samuel was a sinner, and if Yahweh desired to kill him for that sin, surely he too would never have heeded Scriptural counsel. But there is another Child who grew in stature, and in favor both with Yahweh and with men.

The solution is to be joined to Jesus Christ by faith. By a faith through which Christ’s perfect righteousness and atoning sacrifice make us perfectly right before the Lord. By a faith through which Christ’s Spirit makes us more and more like Christ (as He did for Samuel) and less and less like the sons of Eli. Lord have mercy, and let us heed Your Word!
If it had been just for God to kill us, why did He save? How is Christ’s sacrifice and righteousness precious to you for worship? How should we respond in our worship?
Suggested Songs: ARP146 “Praise the Lord” or TPH245 “Great Is Thy Faithfulness”

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