1 Samuel 1-2; Psalm 120; Acts 5
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The following text is from the English Standard Version.
1 Samuel 1-2
There was a certain man of Ramathaim-zophim of the hill country of Ephraim whose name was Elkanah the son of Jeroham, son of Elihu, son of Tohu, son of Zuph, an Ephrathite.
He had two wives. The name of the one was Hannah, and the name of the other, Peninnah. And Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children.
Now this man used to go up year by year from his city to worship and to sacrifice to the LORD of hosts at Shiloh, where the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were priests of the LORD.
On the day when Elkanah sacrificed, he would give portions to Peninnah his wife and to all her sons and daughters.
But to Hannah he gave a double portion, because he loved her, though the LORD had closed her womb.
And her rival used to provoke her grievously to irritate her, because the LORD had closed her womb.
So it went on year by year. As often as she went up to the house of the LORD, she used to provoke her. Therefore Hannah wept and would not eat.
And Elkanah, her husband, said to her, ”Hannah, why do you weep? And why do you not eat? And why is your heart sad? Am I not more to you than ten sons?”
After they had eaten and drunk in Shiloh, Hannah rose. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat beside the doorpost of the temple of the LORD.
She was deeply distressed and prayed to the LORD and wept bitterly.
And she vowed a vow and said, ”O LORD of hosts, if you will indeed look on the affliction of your servant and remember me and not forget your servant, but will give to your servant a son, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall touch his head.”
As she continued praying before the LORD, Eli observed her mouth.
Hannah was speaking in her heart; only her lips moved, and her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli took her to be a drunken woman.
And Eli said to her, ”How long will you go on being drunk? Put away your wine from you.”
But Hannah answered, ”No, my lord, I am a woman troubled in spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the LORD.
Do not regard your servant as a worthless woman, for all along I have been speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.”
Then Eli answered, ”Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition that you have made to him.”
And she said, ”Let your servant find favor in your eyes.” Then the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad.
They rose early in the morning and worshiped before the LORD; then they went back to their house at Ramah. And Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the LORD remembered her.
And in due time Hannah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Samuel, for she said, ”I have asked for him from the LORD.”
The man Elkanah and all his house went up to offer to the LORD the yearly sacrifice and to pay his vow.
But Hannah did not go up, for she said to her husband, ”As soon as the child is weaned, I will bring him, so that he may appear in the presence of the LORD and dwell there forever.”
Elkanah her husband said to her, ”Do what seems best to you; wait until you have weaned him; only, may the LORD establish his word.” So the woman remained and nursed her son until she weaned him.
And when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, along with a three-year-old bull, an ephah of flour, and a skin of wine, and she brought him to the house of the LORD at Shiloh. And the child was young.
Then they slaughtered the bull, and they brought the child to Eli.
And she said, ”Oh, my lord! As you live, my lord, I am the woman who was standing here in your presence, praying to the LORD.
For this child I prayed, and the LORD has granted me my petition that I made to him.
Therefore I have lent him to the LORD. As long as he lives, he is lent to the LORD.”And he worshiped the LORD there.
And Hannah prayed and said, ”My heart exults in the LORD; my strength is exalted in the LORD. My mouth derides my enemies, because I rejoice in your salvation.
‘There is none holy like the LORD; there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God.
Talk no more so very proudly, let not arrogance come from your mouth; for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.
The bows of the mighty are broken, but the feeble bind on strength.
Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread, but those who were hungry have ceased to hunger. The barren has borne seven, but she who has many children is forlorn.
The LORD kills and brings to life; he brings down to Sheol and raises up.
The LORD makes poor and makes rich; he brings low and he exalts.
He raises up the poor from the dust; he lifts the needy from the ash heap to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth are the LORD’s, and on them he has set the world.
‘He will guard the feet of his faithful ones, but the wicked shall be cut off in darkness, for not by might shall a man prevail.
The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; against them he will thunder in heaven. The LORD will judge the ends of the earth; he will give strength to his king and exalt the power of his anointed.”
Then Elkanah went home to Ramah. And the boy ministered to the LORD in the presence of Eli the priest.
Now the sons of Eli were worthless men. They did not know the LORD.
The custom of the priests with the people was that when any man offered sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come, while the meat was boiling, with a three-pronged fork in his hand,
and he would thrust it into the pan or kettle or cauldron or pot. All that the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. This is what they did at Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there.
Moreover, before the fat was burned, the priest’s servant would come and say to the man who was sacrificing, ”Give meat for the priest to roast, for he will not accept boiled meat from you but only raw.”
And if the man said to him, ”Let them burn the fat first, and then take as much as you wish,” he would say, ”No, you must give it now, and if not, I will take it by force.”
Thus the sin of the young men was very great in the sight of the LORD, for the men treated the offering of the LORD with contempt.
Samuel was ministering before the LORD, a boy clothed with a linen ephod.
And his mother used to make for him a little robe and take it to him each year when she went up with her husband to offer the yearly sacrifice.
Then Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife, and say, ”May the LORD give you children by this woman for the petition she asked of the LORD.” So then they would return to their home.
Indeed the LORD visited Hannah, and she conceived and bore three sons and two daughters. And the young man Samuel grew in the presence of the LORD.
Now Eli was very old, and he kept hearing all that his sons were doing to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who were serving at the entrance to the tent of meeting.
And he said to them, ”Why do you do such things? For I hear of your evil dealings from all the people.
No, my sons; it is no good report that I hear the people of the LORD spreading abroad.
If someone sins against a man, God will mediate for him, but if someone sins against the LORD, who can intercede for him?” But they would not listen to the voice of their father, for it was the will of the LORD to put them to death.
Now the young man Samuel continued to grow both in stature and in favor with the LORD and also with man.
And there came a man of God to Eli and said to him, ”Thus the LORD has said, ‘Did I indeed reveal myself to the house of your father when they were in Egypt subject to the house of Pharaoh?
Did I choose him out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to go up to my altar, to burn incense, to wear an ephod before me? I gave to the house of your father all my offerings by fire from the people of Israel.
Why then do you scorn my sacrifices and my offerings that I commanded, and honor your sons above me by fattening yourselves on the choicest parts of every offering of my people Israel?’
Therefore the LORD the God of Israel declares: ‘I promised that your house and the house of your father should go in and out before me forever,’ but now the LORD declares: ‘Far be it from me, for those who honor me I will honor, and those who despise me shall be lightly esteemed.
Behold, the days are coming when I will cut off your strength and the strength of your father’s house, so that there will not be an old man in your house.
Then in distress you will look with envious eye on all the prosperity that shall be bestowed on Israel, and there shall not be an old man in your house forever.
The only one of you whom I shall not cut off from my altar shall be spared to weep his eyes out to grieve his heart, and all the descendants of your house shall die by the sword of men.
And this that shall come upon your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, shall be the sign to you: both of them shall die on the same day.
And I will raise up for myself a faithful priest, who shall do according to what is in my heart and in my mind. And I will build him a sure house, and he shall go in and out before my anointed forever.
And everyone who is left in your house shall come to implore him for a piece of silver or a loaf of bread and shall say, ”Please put me in one of the priests’ places, that I may eat a morsel of bread.””’
In my distress I called to the LORD, and he answered me.
Deliver me, O LORD, from lying lips, from a deceitful tongue.
What shall be given to you, and what more shall be done to you, you deceitful tongue?
A warrior’s sharp arrows, with glowing coals of the broom tree!
Woe to me, that I sojourn in Meshech, that I dwell among the tents of Kedar!
Too long have I had my dwelling among those who hate peace.
I am for peace, but when I speak, they are for war!
But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property,
and with his wife’s knowledge he kept back for himself some of the proceeds and brought only a part of it and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
But Peter said, ”Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land?
While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.”
When Ananias heard these words, he fell down and breathed his last. And great fear came upon all who heard of it.
The young men rose and wrapped him up and carried him out and buried him.
After an interval of about three hours his wife came in, not knowing what had happened.
And Peter said to her, ”Tell me whether you sold the land for so much.” And she said, ”Yes, for so much.”
But Peter said to her, ”How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.”
Immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. When the young men came in they found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband.
And great fear came upon the whole church and upon all who heard of these things.
Now many signs and wonders were regularly done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon’s Portico.
None of the rest dared join them, but the people held them in high esteem.
And more than ever believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women,
so that they even carried out the sick into the streets and laid them on cots and mats, that as Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on some of them.
The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all healed.
But the high priest rose up, and all who were with him (that is, the party of the Sadducees), and filled with jealousy
they arrested the apostles and put them in the public prison.
But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said,
‘Go and stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this Life.”
And when they heard this, they entered the temple at daybreak and began to teach.Now when the high priest came, and those who were with him, they called together the council and all the senate of Israel and sent to the prison to have them brought.
But when the officers came, they did not find them in the prison, so they returned and reported,
‘We found the prison securely locked and the guards standing at the doors, but when we opened them we found no one inside.”
Now when the captain of the temple and the chief priests heard these words, they were greatly perplexed about them, wondering what this would come to.
And someone came and told them, ”Look! The men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and teaching the people.”
Then the captain with the officers went and brought them, but not by force, for they were afraid of being stoned by the people.
And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest questioned them,
saying, ”We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.”
But Peter and the apostles answered, ”We must obey God rather than men.
The God of our fathers raised Jesus, whom you killed by hanging him on a tree.
God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.
And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.”
When they heard this, they were enraged and wanted to kill them.
But a Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law held in honor by all the people, stood up and gave orders to put the men outside for a little while.
And he said to them, ”Men of Israel, take care what you are about to do with these men.
For before these days Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him. He was killed, and all who followed him were dispersed and came to nothing.
After him Judas the Galilean rose up in the days of the census and drew away some of the people after him. He too perished, and all who followed him were scattered.
So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail;
but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice,
and when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.
Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.
And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.