January 3, 1996Subject: The Prophet Samuel
As I tell you these stories, your faith should be increasing. You should have a feeling inside of youcalled faith, which is a feeling that you
these things are true. I'm not just saying these stories to entertainyou. You are learning about what Heavenly Father is like. We want to do the same things the prophets did.Samuel was the last of the judges. Eli was the judge before him, for forty years. Eli's sons were verywicked. When the people wanted a blessing from the Lord, they would bring their animals to sacrifice, to a priest. He would offer up the animal and pray for that
Hannah's husband had two wives. The other wife and others, made fun of Hannah because she had been married so long and the Lord had cursed her because she had no children. She was alone by the temple crying and praying. Eli, the priest was on the front porch and thought she was drunk and got after her for drinking wine. She said she was not, but was praying tothe Lord. Eli prayed for her. She was blessed with a son. When Samuel was old enough, she gave her son toEli to-raise. Eli's own sons were the most wicked men. They would take brides and money in exchange, as bribes. They were immoral. Right in the temple with Eli, a prophet (Samuel) was growing up. He walked andtalked with God. He performed a great work.While Samuel was growing up,
being a good and obedient boy,
serving Eli in the temple, a prophetcame to Eli and cursed him and his household because Eli did not stop his two sons in their evil as judges.Again, the lesson is a parent and his household is cursed if they do not correct their children. The Lord willcurse the father and mother, even their whole household and descendants. Eli grew old and was blind. Samuelhelped Eli take care of the temple, where that sacred box that Moses had built (Ark of the Covenant) was kept.The Lord actually came down into the temple and talked with Samuel, telling him that He would destroynearly all of Eli's household because Eli did evil in not correcting his sons. From that time on, Samuel becamea prophet. He had greater power than the priests. Every prophet was ordained to the high priesthood by GodHimself.During a battle with the Philistines, four thousand Israelites were killed. The Ark of the Covenant was brought to the battle by Eli's two wicked sons. There was another great battle, but the Lord did not bless Israel.Over thirty thousand Israelites were killed. The Ark of the Covenant was taken by the Philistines andsuddenly, they were struck with a disease and many died. The box was taken to other cities and thousandswere stricken and died. The Philistines sent it back to the Israelites and the disease and destruction stopped.Fifty thousand Israelite men were struck with the same disease and many died because someone tried to openthe Ark of the Covenant.Still, Israel was under bondage to the Philistines, Samuel called upon the people and told them hewould pray for them only if they put away their idols. When the prophet had the people obedient, then he prayed and the Lord promised they would win their battle. The Philistines were driven out all the days of Samuel. When he grew old, something had happened to his sons. They were disobedient. The people thendemanded that a king rule them and not the Lord (through a prophet). Now here's the lesson, young people When people reject the prophets, they reject the Lord.
Wherever the prophet rules, that is the Lord leading the people because the prophet only does what the Lord directs him.You must believe this. To treat that prophet lightly is to treat the Lord lightly, and to want it different from what the prophet wants, we reject God. That is how you actually reject Heavenly Father, by rejecting His prophet.
The Lord told Samuel to gather the tribes of Israel. From the tribes of Israel, he chose the tribe of Benjamin. The spirit of God was guiding Samuel. He chose a certain family and among this family was a son2