“Samuel was a great prophet of the Old Testament. He was a bridge, a connecting link, between the patriarchs, judges and the kings. He was both the last of the judges and ‘the first of the later prophets.’ He lived at a pivotal point in the Lord's dealings with His chosen people as they demanded a king to replace the patriarch and judge governments which had been in place since the beginning. He was a witness of the first separation of church and state and of the change from a confederation of twelve tribes to a single united kingdom. He served the Lord at a time of an ever-weakening House of Israel as it started its downward spiral to eventual captivity and dispersal.
“Perhaps in our minds he is always ‘the boy Samuel’ and hardly ranks in the same category of importance as the patriarchs who preceded him. But like the others, Samuel was called by the Lord to serve an entire lifetime as His prophet. (Evelyn T. Marshall, “Samuel Became 'first of Later Prophets',” LDS Church News, 1994, 09/24/94)
1 Samuel 2:1-10 Hannah’s Psalm
Solomon is famous for his proverbs, King David for his psalms. Nephi is famous for his plainness, but he also penned the “Psalm of Nephi” (2 Ne. 4:15-35). Hannah is famous for her sacrifice, but like Nephi and Deborah the prophetess she praised the Lord in psalm (2 Ne. 4; Judg. 5). Women, filled with the spirit of prophecy testifying of the goodness of God, are more common in the Bible than any other scripture (Judg. 5; Lu. 1:46-55; 68-79; 2:36-38; Acts 21:9, et al). “Too often Hannah is remembered for bargaining with God and then giving her son Samuel to serve in the temple. Her faith and capacity for love and sacrifice deserve more of our emphasis.” (Dawn Hall Anderson and Marie Cornwall, eds., Women Steadfast in Christ: Talks Selected from the 1991 Women's Conference [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1992], 131.)
Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies…
Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised. (Prov. 31:10-30)
Bruce R. McConkie
Psalmic utterances of praise and thanksgiving had always been in the highest tradition of the Israelite people. The Psalms of David and Solomon and Moses and others, preserved in the Old Testament, are still read and sung in the churches of Christendom. Great psalmic utterances of Nephi are found in the Book of Mormon. Miriam, a prophetess, the sister of Aaron, led the women of Israel in a psalm of rejoicing after they had passed through the Red Sea. Deborah, a prophetess, who judged Israel in her day, sang a great hymn of praise when the Lord, through her instrumentality, slew Sisera and saved Israel from the king of Canaan. Hannah, the mother of Samuel, burst forth in a great accolade of praise when she delivered her son to Eli.
And… Mary, filled with the same Spirit and exhibiting a profound knowledge of Old Testament history and Hebrew idiom and concepts, gives forth one of the great psalms of praise of all time (see Lu. 1:46-55). (The Mortal Messiah: From Bethlehem to Calvary, 4 vols. [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1979-1981], 1: 325)
1 Samuel 2:3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth
Marvin J. Ashton
When I was a boy, I liked to hear about King Arthur. In the story of King Arthur, Queen Guinevere gives this advice to Lancelot, the bravest of the Knights of the Round Table: "For I would not have you declare yourself to the world until you have proved your worthiness. Wherefore do not yourself proclaim your name, but wait until the world proclaimeth it."
How much more effective it is in our day also to let the world see our good works rather than to hear us dwell on our own accomplishments or point out our impressive achievements…
Consideration for the feelings of others should always be important to worthy Latter-day Saints. Rightfully we may be happy about the number of children with which we have been blessed, the missionaries who have served, the temple marriages of our offspring, and the accomplishments of family members. However, others who are not so fortunate may have feelings of guilt or inadequacy. They may have been praying long and hard for the same blessings about which we are boasting, and they may feel that they are out of favor with God.
For this reason our appreciation should be sincerely felt, and we should express gratitude frequently to our Father in Heaven—but not too vocally to the world. We should be gratefully aware of the source of our blessings and strengths and refrain from taking undue credit for personal accomplishments. (The Measure of Our Hearts [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1991], 51, 54)
1 Samuel 2:12 the sons of Eli were sons of Belial
Remember when Hannah was praying and Eli thought she was drunk. She said, “Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial” (1 Sam. 1:16). A “child of Belial” meant worthless, evil, a menace to society (Deut. 13:13; Judg. 19:22; 20:13, et al). Eli’s sons compounded their evil by violating their priesthood. They were a menace to the priesthood, a menace to their father, a menace to all of Israel.
“Their conduct was scandalous even in a decrepid age, and the unblushing frankness of their vices led ‘the people of the Lord to transgress,’ by ‘bringing into contempt’ the sacrificial services of the sanctuary. The main element of hope and the prospect of a possible revival lay in the close adherence of the people to those services. But the sons of Eli seemed determined to prove that these ordinances were mainly designed for the advantage of the priesthood, and therefore not holy, of Divine significance, and unalterably fixed. Contrary to the Divine institution, ‘the priest's right,’ as he claimed it, was to take, if necessary by force, parts of the sacrifices before these had really been offered unto the Lord (Lev. 3:3-5; comp. 7:30-34).” (Edersheim, Alfred, Old Testament Bible History, chap. 2)
1 Samuel 2:13-14 all that the fleshhook brought up the priest took for himself
The Levites payment for service in the tabernacle was a portion of the offered sacrifice. Specific rules in the Law of Moses designated the leftover portion of the sacrifice the priest could take, “the remainder thereof shall Aaron and his sons eat” (Lev. 6:16). Usually, “all the meat (grain) offering that is baken in the oven, and all that is dressed in they fryingpan, and in the pan, shall be the priest’s that offereth it” (Lev. 7:9). In this particular instance, the portion belonging to the priest was that which the fleshhook brought out of the boiling pot. In essence, Eli’s sons wanted barbecue instead of beef stew so they demanded the meat before it went into the pot. This was a violation of the manner and the order in which things were done, as the fat was supposed to be burned first and the meat prepared by boiling second. They felt free to change the order, taking whatever meat they wanted first, then burning the fat. If anyone said, “aren’t you supposed to burn the fat first before you take any for yourself?” they would get angry and take the sacrifice by force.
The sacrifice was supposed to go to the Lord first—then the leftover would go to the priest. Eli’s sons thought they were more important than the Lord. They would take their portion first. The Lord could have whatever he wanted after they were done preparing their barbecue. That’s why the “sin of the young men was very great” (v. 17).
1 Samuel 2:20 Hannah gives Samuel as a loan which is lent to the Lord
“Hannah’s tests involved progressive degrees of sacrifice. Her blessings, like ours, did not come until after her trial of faith (see D&C 58:4; Ether 12:6). Her blessing of motherhood came only when she had sufficiently proven both her righteousness in adverse circumstances and her willingness to submit to a divine decree of barrenness. She received her powerful testimony of the Savior only after she had fulfilled her vow to consecrate Samuel. And finally, the promise of additional children came only as she continued faithful without receiving further posterity.
“Like Hannah’s, each of our tests can lead to greater blessings and deeper spiritual maturity, for the Lord promises that ‘all things wherewith you have been afflicted shall work together for your good, and to my name’s glory’ (D&C 98:3). And his glory is nothing less than ‘the immortality and eternal life of man’ (Moses 1:39). Whether given in mortality or thereafter, these promised blessings, contingent upon our faithful endurance of our trials, will more than compensate for any losses. Indeed, we cannot even comprehend the reward that awaits us if we are worthy (see D&C 58:3).
“Sacrifice is an essential part of progression, determining our worthiness of the blessings of eternal life. The Lord assures us that ‘whoso layeth down his life … for my name’s sake, shall find it again, even life eternal. … I will prove you in all things, whether you will abide in my covenant, even unto death, that you may be found worthy’ (D&C 98:13–14).
“This principle was again emphasized when the Prophet Joseph Smith explained, ‘From the first existence of man, the faith necessary unto the enjoyment of life and salvation never could be obtained without the sacrifice of all earthly things’ (Lectures on Faith , 58).
“A crucial requirement in achieving exaltation must be our ever-deepening discipleship of broken heart and yielded will, a consecration of self resulting in the blessings of the Spirit: ‘love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance’ (Gal. 5:22–23). Only then are we worthy to unite with Hannah and other true disciples of Christ, proclaiming with them, ‘My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, … my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation’ (1 Sam. 2:1). (Linda M. Campbell, “Hannah: Devoted Handmaid of the Lord,” Ensign, Mar. 1998, 49)
1 Samuel 2:21 the Lord visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons and two daughters
“As the Lord promises all his children, once a test is fully met, the blessings are then bestowed, whether in this life or the next (see D&C 58:3–4). Hannah was likewise blessed once the commitment to her vow had been fully tested. Not only did Samuel become a great prophet, serving the Lord all his days, but also Hannah’s yearnings for more children were fulfilled. Through Eli the Lord praised Hannah’s commitment to her vow, then blessed her with the promise of more children. Hannah was eventually granted three more sons and two daughters (see 1 Sam. 2:20–21). At last her cup truly overflowed with blessings of great joy.
“Hannah’s testimony reaches across dispensations to our time, and her story is an invitation to apply the same principles of righteousness. Through doing so we, too, might rejoice in the Lord as we experience his innumerable blessings in our lives.” (Linda M. Campbell, “Hannah: Devoted Handmaid of the Lord,” Ensign, Mar. 1998, 49)
1 Samuel 2:34 thy two sons… Hophni and Phinehas; in one day they shall die both of them
“The account of the call of Samuel is followed by a crisis in Israel and a partial fulfillment of the prophecy against the house of Eli. Chapters 4-6 record the great battle with the Philistines, the death of Eli's sons, and the capture of the Ark of the Covenant on the field of battle. Eli the priest of Shiloh died as a result of a fall caused by the news—not when he heard about the deaths of his own sons, but at the news of the loss of the Ark (1 Sam. 4:22).” (Kent P. Jackson and Robert L. Millet, eds., Studies in Scripture, Vol. 3: Genesis to 2 Samuel [Salt Lake City: Randall Book, 1985], 273)
1 Samuel 3:1 the word of the Lord was precious in those days; there was no open vision
Elder Neal A. Maxwell said, “In Moses’ day, a generous God let his doctrine ‘drop as the rain.’ (Deut. 32:2.) In Eli’s day, however, ‘there was no open vision.’ (1 Sam. 3:1.) In Joseph Smith’s day, there was a ‘pouring down’ of ‘knowledge from heaven’ (D&C 121:33), a cascade of ‘plain and precious’ truths.” (Ensign, Nov. 1985, 17) Whether it is a pouring down, scattered showers, or a drought, the word of the Lord is always precious. Like the rain, God decides how much and when it is dispensed—and there is nothing man can do to stop it.
As well might man stretch forth his puny arm to stop the Missouri river in its decreed course, or to turn it up stream, as to hinder the Almighty from pouring down knowledge from heaven upon the heads of the Latter-day Saints. (D&C 121:33)
In Joseph Smith’s day, the word of the Lord was “poured down” on the Latter-day Saints. This produced a flood of knowledge that the saints weren’t ready to receive.
You have treated lightly the things you have received—
Which vanity and unbelief have brought the whole church under condemnation…
And they shall remain under this condemnation until they repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon… (D&C 88:54-57)
Compared to the days of Eli and Samuel, the church has been greatly blessed. The Restoration brought a downpour so great that there was not “room enough to receive it” (Mal. 3:10). Since then, the word has continued to “drop as the rain” from latter-day apostles and prophets. We have been promised that there will not be another drought for the word of the Lord (Amos 8:11). It will increase until all “shall be filled with the knowledge of the Lord, and shall see eye to eye” (D&C 84:98).
1 Samuel 3:4-8 The Lord called Samuel
Theodore M. Burton
The question comes to one's mind, Why didn't God, for instance, speak to Eli, for Eli was at that time the prophet and high priest in ancient Israel? But Eli could not or would not do as he was told. He had two sons, Hophni and Phinehas. They were heirs to the priesthood, but they were profligate and wicked, and Eli could not or did not control them (1 Sam. 2:12-17).
Thus, the Lord had to choose someone else. He chose a small lad, and as God called, "Samuel," Samuel answered: "Speak, for thy servant heareth" (1 Sam. 3:10). And soon, all Israel from Dan to Beersheba, knew that Samuel was a prophet of God. (Conference Report, April 1961, pp. 126-129)
Thomas S. Monson
Remember that throughout the ages of time, our Heavenly Father has shown His confidence in those of tender years.
The boy Samuel must have appeared like any boy his age as he ministered unto the Lord before Eli. As Samuel lay down to sleep and heard the voice of the Lord calling him, Samuel mistakenly thought it was aged Eli and responded, “Here am I.” However, after Eli listened to the boy’s account and told him it was of the Lord, Samuel followed Eli’s counsel and subsequently responded to the Lord’s call with the memorable reply, “Speak; for thy servant heareth.” The record then reveals that “Samuel grew, and the Lord was with him.”
Contemplate for a moment the far-reaching effect of the prayer of a boy, born in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and five in Sharon, Windsor County, state of Vermont—even Joseph Smith, the first prophet of this dispensation. The Father and the Son appeared to him, and divine guidance was provided—all for the purpose to exalt the children of God. (“The Upward Reach,” Ensign, Nov. 1993, 48–49)
George Albert Smith
If we in our homes shall so live that the spirit of the Lord abides with us, we will always be prepared to say when the call comes, "Here, Lord, am I." (Conference Report, October 1945, pp. 115-120)
1 Samuel 3:5-8 Samuel hears the voice of the Lord but doesn’t know who is calling him
Learning to recognize the voice of the Lord is a process—even if the voice is audible! So it was with young Samuel. He was good, tender, and spiritual, but lacked experience with the workings of the Spirit and the voice of the Lord. How many times do we misinterpret the source of the voices we hear?
Dallin H. Oaks
Last summer, at a Pioneer parade in Wyoming, I saw a young colt separated from its mother. The lost youngster whinnied and trotted about, listening to a chorus of voices as it sought the voice that would guide it back to the side of the one it loved.
At other times I have seen lambs lost in a moving herd of sheep. A great chorus of voices rises from the herd, but each lamb listens for the one voice that can guide it. The Savior used this ageless example in the allegory of the Good Shepherd. “The sheep hear his voice: … and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, … for they know not the voice of strangers.” (John 10:3–5.)
From among the chorus of voices we hear in mortality, we must recognize the voice of the Good Shepherd, who calls us to follow him toward our heavenly home.
As Paul said to the Corinthians, “There are … so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification.” (1 Cor. 14:10.) (“Alternate Voices,” Ensign, May 1989, 27)
Joseph W. Mcmurrin
We have come to feel, in the testimonies of these men who stand as presiding authorities of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, that they have in very deed the word of life to give to the people. Are we prepared to receive it? Are we acquainted with the inspiration of the Spirit of the Lord? Do we recognize the voice of the Good Shepherd? Do we know, by the Spirit that is in us, that we have been taught as the Lord would have us taught, and not according to the wisdom of men alone? I believe in the doctrine, taught of the Father in one of the revelations, where He directed His servants in the preaching of the Gospel, that they should speak as they were moved upon by the power of the Holy Spirit. He promised that whatsoever they spoke when they were moved by that Holy Spirit, should be the word of the Lord, the power of the Lord, and the very doctrines of the Gospel unto salvation. If we have recognized that Spirit in the words that have been spoken and in the testimonies that have been delivered, we will not go away from this conference questioning the counsels that have been given unto us; but we will go away impressed with the feeling that with the help of our Father in Heaven, we will endeavor to put into practice the counsels that have been imparted. We should feel that, so far as in us lies, we will give to this work and to our God the best that there is in us. God requires it of us. (Conference Report, April 1908, Afternoon Session. 119 - 120)
Francis M. Lyman
We ought to become so well acquainted with the Spirit of the Lord that we could not be deceived. We should understand it, and it should dwell with us. When we hear the words of counsel that come from those who have the right to give counsel to the Church, every Latter-day Saint ought to know it in a moment, and ought to recognize the voice and counsel of the Lord through His servants. (Brian H. Stuy, ed., Collected Discourses, 5 vols. [Burbank, Calif., and Woodland Hills, Ut.: B.H.S. Publishing, 1987-1992], vol. 2, Oct. 4, 1890)
1 Samuel 3:10 Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth
Thomas S. Monson
The experience of the boy Samuel, as he responded to the Lord’s call, has ever been an inspiration to me, as it has no doubt been to each holder of the priesthood. We remember that the child Samuel ministered unto the Lord before Eli. One evening as the boy slept, the Lord called him by name: “Samuel.” And he answered, “Here am I.” Thinking that Eli had called him, Samuel ran to him and repeated the declaration, “Here am I.” He was advised to return to his sleep.
Three times the voice of the Lord came to him, with the same response. Then the Lord called a fourth time, repeating the boy’s name twice: “Samuel, Samuel.”
The lad’s answer, as before, is a classic example for you and me. He responded,
Speak; for thy servant heareth.
And the Lord said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle. (See 1 Sam. 3:1–11.)
Most of you young men will one day receive a call to serve a mission. How I pray that your response will be as was Samuel’s: “Here am I. … Speak; for thy servant heareth.” Then will heavenly help be yours. (“The Priesthood in Action,” Ensign, Nov. 1992, 47)
Cecil O. Samuelson
I hope that you young men of the Aaronic Priesthood today understand that, as Samuel, you also have a sacred duty to God. Samuel had a sainted mother, Hannah, and a great priesthood leader, Eli. Most of you young men, likewise, have wonderful parents and inspired priesthood leaders who care for you and stand ready to assist both you and your parents in your quest to fulfill your duty to God.
President Gordon B. Hinckley has said this of you and your generation of young people: “I have … great love for the young men and young women of this Church. … How we love you and pray constantly for the genius to help you. Your lives are filled with difficult decisions and with dreams and hopes and longings to find that which will bring you peace and happiness. …
“I make you a promise that God will not forsake you if you will walk in His paths with the guidance of His commandments.” [“A Prophet’s Counsel and Prayer for Youth,” New Era, Jan. 2001, 4, 6]
1 Samuel 3:12-13 his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not
In the church, there is a lot of emphasis on parenting with love. We speak of kindness to others. We want to be nice. But when it comes to our children, sometimes we have to be like the Savior cleansing the temple. This was Eli’s great mistake. He knew what his sons were doing but didn’t stop them. While we try not to exercise unrighteous dominion, being a permissive parent is just as dangerous.
“Authoritarian parents value obedience as a virtue in itself. They work at keeping the child subordinate, preserving order as an end in itself, rather than as a means of accomplishing other purposes. Their method is rigorous discipline, either physical or emotional (shaming, for example).
“Permissive parents, on the contrary, view themselves as a resource for the child. They do not try to control the child or get him to obey. Rather, they keep the child free from restraint and let him grow as he wants.
“Dr. Baumrind explained that the type of parenting she has found most effective lies somewhere between these two extremes in what she calls authoritative parenting. To authoritative parents, obedience is a means of promoting learning. Authoritative parents reason with their children, explaining why a certain rule is necessary, why a certain punishment must be imposed. At the same time, the child’s wishes and desires are respected. Standards for behavior are set, but the child is free within those standards to choose what he wants, and the rules are never arbitrarily or whimsically chosen.
“Children of parents in these categories tend to view the world differently from one another. Children of authoritarian parents (who demand obedience first) learn very young that they may be punished no matter what they do. They begin to believe, consciously or not, that they don’t have any control over their environment. Children of permissive parents, however, learn very early that they will be rewarded no matter what they do. They begin to believe that good things will be given them without reason, and they, too, feel they have no control over their environment.
“Children of authoritative parents, however, realize very young that they do have control over their environment. Because the reasons for rules and punishments are explained to them, they begin to see their own actions as the cause of the good and bad things that happen to them.
“What is the result of these different world views that children are unconsciously taught? According to Dr. Baumrind’s research, children of permissive parents, who get adult approval no matter how they behave, tend to be irresponsible. They depend on other people to make decisions. They learn no concept of right and wrong.” (Orson Scott Card, “Who’s Minding the Children?” Ensign, Aug. 1977, 11)
Spencer W. Kimball
The scriptures condemn fathers and mothers when they fail to do their duty. Eli, the high priest, was charged with the serious sins of his sons. The Lord whispered through Samuel,
I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house…
Because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not. (1 Sam. 3:12–13.)
In modern times the Lord said, “Now, I, the Lord, am not well pleased with the inhabitants of Zion, for there are idlers among them; and their children are also growing up in wickedness.” (D&C 68:31.) We do not rear children just to please our vanity. We bring children into the world to become kings and queens, priests and priestesses for our Lord.
To Frederick G. Williams, the Lord said,
You have continued under this condemnation;
You have not taught your children light and truth, … and that wicked one hath power, as yet, over you, and this is the cause of your affliction…
If you will be delivered you shall set in order your own house, for there are many things that are not right in your house. (D&C 93:41–43.)
Turning to Sidney Rigdon, the Lord charged, “Verily, I say unto my servant Sidney Rigdon, that in some things he hath not kept the commandments concerning his children; therefore, first set in order thy house.” (D&C 93:44.)
And then the Lord said, “What I say unto one I say unto all; pray always lest that wicked one have power in you, and remove you out of your place.” (D&C 93:49.)
How sad if the Lord should charge any of us parents with having failed to teach our children. Truly a tremendous responsibility falls upon a couple when they bring children into the world. Not only food, clothes, and shelter are required of them, but loving, kindly disciplining, teaching, and training.
Of course, there are a few disobedient souls regardless of training and teaching, but the great majority of children respond to such parental guidance. The scripture says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (Prov. 22:6.) And if he departs, he will probably return if he has been brought up in the right way. (“Train Up a Child,” Ensign, Apr. 1978, 4-5)
John H. Vandenberg
As a result of their evil acts, they were not privileged to administer the ordinances of the Lesser Priesthood. It would have been their right to continue in offering the outward ordinances of the Lesser Priesthood after their father's death. Instead, they lost not only the privileges of priesthood service but also eternal life.
The Lord condemned Eli, and he was no longer among the chosen because as a father he did not discipline and control his sons. ". . . I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth;" said the Lord, "because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not" (1 Sam. 3:13).
Someone has said: "There is no need of searching out your genealogy if you did not know where your children were last night." There is no calling in this Church that supersedes that of being a father. No assignment in the Church should ever be considered as an excuse to neglect the home. The home is the basic unit of the Church. Teach your sons by example to be loyal and faithful to the law, to the officers, to the priesthood, and to the authority of God. (Conference Report, April 1964, pp. 46-50)
1 Samuel 3:20 all Israel… knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the Lord
“Just as Samuel is known as the ‘first prophet,’ he is also the last of the great judges in the Bible. The office of judge is well known from the book of Judges as a special leader called of God and imbued with the Spirit to call the people to repentance and to deliver them, usually in battle, from their enemies. In addition to his (or her) military leadership, these judges also apparently had judicial responsibilities—presumably judging cases and dispensing the appropriate justice or mercy; Samuel is said to have done this at Mizpeh, Bethel, and Gilgal, all of which he visited on an annual circuit (1 Sam. 7:16).
“1 Sam. 7:6 records that Samuel then ‘judged the children of Israel.’ This statement probably simply indicates that Samuel was functioning at Mizpeh in the same tradition known from the book of the Judges… the people cried out to Samuel to take up their cause with the Lord that he might be merciful to them in the conflict with the approaching Philistines.
“Functioning as a priest, as he must have learned from his years of service in the temple, Samuel sacrificed to the Lord and cried out on behalf of his people—and the Lord heard his voice. As the smoke of the burnt offering rose to the heavens, the Philistines drew near to do battle with the Israelites. The Lord responded and intervened to preserve his penitent people with a divinely dispatched storm: ‘The Lord thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel’ (1 Sam. 7:10).” (Kent P. Jackson and Robert L. Millet, eds., Studies in Scripture, Vol. 3: Genesis to 2 Samuel [Salt Lake City: Randall Book, 1985], 274-275)