THE HUMILITY OF SAMUEL
by Philip North
In 1 Samuel 3, we note where God first called Samuel directly. Samuel was still a young boy at this time, and thought that it was his mentor, the prophet Eli, who called him. In fact, three times he thought that Eli called him. However, it was Eli, now his old age and experiencing dimness of eye sight, who knew that it was God who was calling Samuel. Note verses 8-10: “And the Lord called unto Samuel again the third time, And he arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And Eli perceived that the Lord had called the child. Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, Lord; for thy servant heareth. So Samuel went and lay down in his place. And the Lord came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.”
How so very wonderful it would be if a lot more of mankind had young Samuel’s attitude: “Speak; for thy servant heareth.” Of course, Samuel is just one of many examples that manifest to us the attitude of most young children. ’s account of what Jesus said on this matter reads as follows: “And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them” (Mark 10:13-16).
While there are plenty of verses in God’s Word to teach us the necessary practicing of maturity, nonetheless, one is not pleasing to God, nor is allowed entrance into Heaven by Him, without having the meek and submissive attitude of a little child. This is why many refuse to become New Testament Christians. Being submissive enough to be baptized for the remission of their sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; Romans 6:4; 1 Peter 3:21) is beneath them, to be sure. Some snub their nose down at baptism. A lot of people see not the serious need to fully obey God. In John 3, after the young Pharasaic ruler, Nicodemus, asked the Saviour how it was possible to be “born again,” we note Jesus’ reply in verse 5: “Jesus answered, Very, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” To many, baptism is just stepping into the water and getting all wet. Well, if that is the attitude, then such is right! You see, to think in such a way as this is merely getting all wet.
Baptism shows humility, acceptance, and submissiveness all combined. Reject baptism, while claiming to accept all of the other commands of God is to still “miss the boat.” This is going to be so sad for many when that “rude awakening” takes place at death and on the final Judgment of God. Paul wrote of Christ’s second coming, “In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day” (2 Thessalonians 1:8-10).
However, due to the plethora of methods utilized by Satan, many individuals, even after going far as to be baptized, do not maintain that child-like attitude. They do not grow in Christ, or else they grow in Christ only so far, then remain a spiritual stalemate. Still yet, they “pick and choose” what to obey. Such attitudes as the aforementioned are not possessing the disposition of a little child. Meekness, humility, and willingness to continually desire to please God are not there.
May we not become so set in our ways that we brush aside the proper and godly thinking of the young lad Samuel, who said, as Eli instructed him to say, “Speak; for thy servant heareth.”
I personally cannot think of any sin that will cause more precious souls to be lost than that of pride! King Solomon stated in Proverbs 11:2, “When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.” Solomon further teaches in chapter 16:18, “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” Read 1 Samuel 15-31. Pride was a major downfall of King Saul.
We need many more Samuels and a lot less Sauls. How is it with you, gentle reader? Is your attitude of being fully submissive to God like that of King Saul, or of the prophet Samuel?
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