And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” Then Eli perceived that the LORD was calling the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down, and if he calls you, you shall say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant hears.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
And the LORD came and stood, calling as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant hears.” Then the LORD said to Samuel, “Behold, I am about to do a thing in Israel at which the two ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. On that day I will fulfill against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. And I declare to him that I am about to punish his house forever, for the iniquity that he knew, because his sons were blaspheming God, and he did not restrain them. Therefore I swear to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be atoned for by sacrifice or offering forever.”
Comment: Eventually Eli on his third awakening by the young Samuel realizes that God is calling his protege. He tells the boy how to answer if God calls him again. And God does call again. (God had spoken to Eli previously)
Samuel surely couldn’t have liked what God said to him. Surely he had developed a dependence upon and some sort of, maybe even a deep, love for the old man Eli. This ‘ear tingling’ message spelt doom for Eli and his family. What if Eli asked what God had said to him? I wonder if he slept well after that!
Prayer: Your message isn’t always easy to accept, O God. Nevertheless help us to hear and carry out Your orders.