Eli and Sons

Thursday, Mar. 16                          

The author deliberately contrasts Eli’s sons and Samuel in 1 Sam 2.  In verses 12-17 there is a graphic picture of the sins of those two sons, who were treating the Lord’s offering with contempt (v. 17). This is contrasted with Samuel, who was already involved in service to the Lord (vv. 18-21).  Also, Eli blessed Elkanah and Hannah, asking God to give them more children (2:20).  The author then turned back to Eli’s two sons, who continued to sin and would not heed Eli’s rebukes.  So God determined to put them to death (2:22-25).  Again the author commended Samuel (2:26).  And again he turned back to Eli’s family, this time with a focus on Eli himself.  God sent a  prophet to rebuke Eli for not restraining his two sons and prophesied that Eli would not live a full life.  Plus his two  sons would die on the same day and all of Eli’s descendants would die in the prime of life.  Several lessons here.  1)  God is patient, and although judgment might be postponed, it is inevitable.  2) Our descendants can be blessed or cursed by decisions we make.  3) It’s impossible to out give God.  4) We will live by God’s standards or suffer the consequences.  The setting might be different, but the truths remain the same.

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