Hannah With Samuel
Photo Credit: jesusfootprints.wordpress.com


Editor’s Note: We continue our series of blogs for those who are reading the Bible with us cover-to-cover this year. Interspersed with our thoughts on our daily reading, we want to provide some tips about reading the Bible in general.

Major Old Testament Route No. 2:
Taking A Walk Through The History Of Israel

A key to understanding any place you visit, is having a general grasp of its history. When Melodee and I traveled to Hawaii, although we were going for romance and leisure, a general understanding of this tropical paradise was helpful.

So it is with our journey through the Bible. On our second major route through the history of the Old Testament, we will see how Israel rose to power, and how it was erased from power. We also see the tender compassion of the God of the Universe through the return to their homeland of a remnant of Israel.

On this route we will explore approximately 1,000 years of the definition history for the nation of Israel. In other words, this section of the history will define the national identity of Israel in significant ways.

Our second route was written as a diary or journal of the actual travels of the people of God in the Old Testament. It will include the glory days of David and Solomon, and the disaster days of Civil War and captivity. It will end with a broken and weak Israeli remnant that is allowed to return as guests to their own country. When we complete this route, [Joshua – Esther] we will have read the entire history of the Old Testament.

As We Review: We have already seen …

• Joshua: The Invasion of the Land for Israel (about 25 years)

• Judges: The Cycles of Compromise (about 350 years)

• Ruth: The Loyalty of one Woman (about 30 years)
We now look at:

1 Samuel: The Beginnings of the Monarchy (about 95 years)

1 Samuel could actually be called the book of rejection. First, we see Eli, the judge of Israel, as he rejects God’s commandments in favor of spoiling his sons. Then, we see the nation of Israel reject God’s leadership in favor of an earthly king. And finally, we see King Saul rejecting God’s guidance in favor of following his fears. Watch as we begin this book with …

Judge Eli’s Parenting Failure Removes His From Office (1-4)

Notice that when the leader fails in his own home, the results become tragic for his house, his future and the future of the people he leads.

• Samuel, the future judge of Israel, is born in answer to the prayer promise of a faithful woman, and dedicated in faithful obedience to that vow. (1-2)

• Eli, the present judge of Israel, is failing as a result of honoring his sons by refusing to discipline them instead of being willing to honor the Lord over them. (2)

• Eli, the present judge of Israel, is removed from the service of the Lord for his failures in fathering, thus bringing God’s judgment upon him, his sons, and his nation. (2-4)

• Eli, the present judge of Israel, dies as a result of the judgment of the Lord upon his family and nation, in fulfillment of the prophecies to both him and Samuel. (4)

It is our hope that this background information helps a bit as you read on in the Bible.

For daily insights into the passage we are reading together each day, you can follow Dr. Smith on Twitter and on Facebook.

You can obtain more help from the FREE Bible reading schedule on our resource page. In His Image is a daily devotional that also follows our reading schedule and expresses the Biblical truth: “God Created You to Love You.” You can find this resource on the side bar of our website.

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