January 28 – Eli – I Samuel 2:27 thru 4:22
Our story picks up today as God is handing down judgment to Eli and his generations to follow. The judgment seems harsh, but to understand the reason you must look back at the transgression. Eli had put his sons above God. His sons should not have been in leadership in the temple as they were using their leadership to their own benefit and their own prestige. It is sad, but we see, too often, pastors who put their children in positions of leadership that should not be there. Eli had kept his sons in a position of honor when they should have been firmly corrected or removed.
Even though Eli made mistakes, he was still sensitive to God, and was used in a great way to train up Samuel. As we continue the story in chapter 3, Samuel is confused, and is having difficulty recognizing the voice of God. Eli, although just receiving devastating judgment, led Samuel into his own personal relationship to God. We learn in this passage the importance of each of us discerning God’s leading in our lives. A key part of a relationship with God is Listening to Him. Too often we get it set in our own heads what God’s will is in our life, and shut out any further instruction that God may be giving. As a pastor, it is my job to lead those around me into a listening relationship with God. The voice of God will always lead you to please God. It is exciting to see folks in our church discerning the voice of God in their own lives. How about you today? Are you talking more than you are listening? Do you desire your own honor above the honor of God?