Read Together: Samuel had an uncommonly fascinating beginning. Hannah was childless. In her sorrow, she prayed to God for a child, vowing that she would dedicate him to God. God heard her prayer and Samuel was born. When Samuel was weaned, his mother took him to live and serve in the tabernacle with Eli the priest. God spoke to Samuel while he was yet a child, and it became clear that God had chosen Samuel to be a prophet. After Eli’s death, Samuel judged throughout the land of Israel. When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as judges to assist him. But his sons were evil, and did not follow in his footsteps. The people revolted against Samuel, and demanded a king. This was disconcerting to Samuel after all his years of faithful service, but God reassured him. The truth was that they had rejected God – not Samuel. With God’s approval, Samuel anointed two kings of Israel—Saul and David. It was Samuel’s leadership that helped Israel transition from a theocracy that was managed by judges under God to one in which the people were subjects of a king. Samuel, the last judge of Israel, lived in very exciting times, and his story is recorded in the Scriptures, waiting to inspire you.
Read Together: 1 Samuel 1–10;16:1–13; 25:1.
- What might it have been like for Samuel to grow up serving in the tabernacle from the time he was about four years old? God can use people no matter their age if they are willing to serve. What are some ways you might be able to serve in the congregation?
- The sons of Eli and Samuel had great opportunities because of their fathers, but they threw them away. Explain to your child that they also have great opportunities as a young person in God’s Church.
- Even though Israel demanded a king, God chose who would be king. There was no voting. This may be a good opportunity to discuss different forms of human government and how they differ from God’s form of government.
- Samuel lived in very exciting times. As you read through the entire book of 1 Samuel, have your child identify their favorite scene, character, and miracle in the book.
Judges 21:25 “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”