In the book of 1 Samuel
, we read of a woman named Hannah, the wife of a man named Elkanah, who struggled with prayers that seemed to go unanswered.
By Chapter 15 of 1 Samuel
, the prophet abandons his king and won't see him again before his death.
In the case of Saul's battlefield suicide, 1 Samuel
places divine agency in the background, with human agency in the foreground.
So the source began with the death of Saul (1 Sam 31:1-13//1 Chr 10:1-12) and lacked all of 1 Samuel
1-30 (the stories of Samuel, Saul's kingship, and his rivalry with David).
First Sunday after Christmas, Year C Luke 2:41-52 (1 Samuel
This prophetic record was written a century after the events took place and is featured from the beginning of 1 Samuel
through 2 Samuel 8.
 In 1 Samuel
, God calls Samuel audibly three times, but Samuel (who is possibly still just a boy at this time) doesn't recognize God's voice.
In 1 Samuel
Hannah's prophetic prayer, which she sings after Samuel's birth, encompasses a characteristic biblical reversal:
This professor is my "Samuel." When the prophet Samuel announced that King Saul would now be Israel's leader (1 Samuel
12:1), he knew he would no longer be as directly responsible for them.
In many ways, this story in 1 Samuel
is filled with contradictions.
Yet, the strengths of the book, especially its recognition of the limits of the form-critical approach in relation to Samuel, far outweigh its limitations, and I strongly recommend it to anyone interested in understanding the book of 1 Samuel
. I look forward to the publication of 2 Samuel by the same author.
I asked the Lord to give me this boy, and he has granted my request (1 Samuel