It came to pass in the Holy Bible, King James Version, the Old Testament and in1 Samuel, Chapters 1: 1 thru 27 and 1 Samuel, Chapter 2: 1 & 2, that Elkanah had two wives; the name of one of his wives was Hannah, and the other wife’s name was Peninnah, she had given him children; but Hannah never was blessed with any children because God had shut up her womb as with other women in various other families. The reason being the Lord limited the birth of children to those who would be given up to serve him.
Elkanah went out of the city to worship and to sacrifice unto the Lord hosts in Shiloh. The two sons of Elihophni and Phinehas, the priests of the Lord, were in attendance; the time came when Elkanah makes offers; he gives a worthy portion to Hannah because he loves her; and then, he gives to Peninnah, his wife, and to their sons and daughters their portions too.
Peninnah makes Hannah sore, causing her to fret because the Lord had shut up her womb; this type provoking continues as Hannah goes up to the house of the Lord, this affects Hannah so much that she weeps and she cannot eat.
While they’re sitting around eating and drinking, Elkanah, Hannah’s husband, asks her why she is weeping and not eating; and why is she grieving; am I not better to you than ten sons? Hannah rises with bitterness in her soul, and she prays unto the Lord, and she weeps sorely. Eli, the priest, sits on a seat by a post of the temple of the Lord.
Hannah vows a vow, and she says to the Lord, “O Lord of hosts, if thou will look on the affliction of this handmaid, and remember me, and not forget this handmaid, but will you give this handmaid a man child, and I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and there’ll be no razor to come on his head.”
Hannah continues to pray unto the Lord and Eli marks her mouth. As she speaks, she speaks in her heart; only her lips are moving and her voice cannot be heard. Eli is amazed and he thinks that maybe she is drunk. He tells Hannah to put away the wine. Hannah replies and says, “No my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I’ve poured out my soul before the Lord.”
She tells Eli not to count this handmaid for a daughter of Belial: for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief I’ve spoken. Eli answers and tells Hannah to go in peace: and the God of Israel will grant you a petition of what you have asked of him. Hannah says, “Let this handmaid find grace in your sight; as she goes on her way, and as she eats and as she’s no longer sad.”
Hannah rises early the next morning, and she worships before the Lord, and she returns and comes to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the Lord had remembered her.
It comes to past that Hannah gives birth to a baby boy, and they call him Samuel, and Hannah says, “Because I’ve asked him of the lord.”
Elkanah and his entire house, goes up to offer unto the Lord their yearly sacrifice, and his vow. Hannah did not go with her husband, telling him she’ll go after she’s weaned her child, and then she’ll bring him, because she wants to appear before the Lord, and there abide forever.
Hannah gives her son suck until she can wean him; and when she weans him, she takes him with her along with three bullocks, and one ephah of flour, and a bottle of wine, and she takes her son into the house of the Lord in Shiloh. There they kill a bullock, and give the child to Eli. When Hannah delivers her son she says, “Oh my lord, as thy soul lives, my lord, I am the woman that stood by you here, praying to the Lord.”
Hannah tells the Lord, this is the child I prayed for and the Lord gave me my petition which I did ask of him; I’m now lending him to the Lord; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the Lord; and they worship the Lord.
Hannah prays and says, “My heart rejoices in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in your salvation. There is none holy as the Lord: for there is none beside you: neither is there any rock like our God.”
Conclusion: This story allows us to see that God uses people as his servants to do his work for him. Can you see throughout the story line that God had set this plan in motion many years ago? Hannah was a servant of the Lord and the story tells us this is truthful because women of families who served the Lord had their womb’s shut up to limit the birth of children to those who was servants for him.
Hannah was not being punished by God but she was in wait as a servant until God started to put his plan into motion. She did conceive and she did promise God that her child, Samuel, would be turned over to the Lord to also be a servant unto him. God has plans for her son Samuel and that’s a completely different bible story.
It’s also my belief that Hannah grew in her faith to the Lord and that she’s exhilarated by his mercy and his goodness to her and this gives her reasons to rejoice in the Lord’s salvation. She also recognizes the power of the Lord and that there is no other like he is.
Christians we need to realize that God uses each one of us for a purpose in our lives. Our births were not a mistake; there was a plan in motion the day we all were born. You may ask, “Will we ever know what the plan was in life,” and I’ll reply, “Only God knows his planned course, but I do believe we’ll know when we are accomplishing things satisfying to God and his word?”
Holy Bible, King James Version, the Old Testament, 1 Samuel Chapters 1: 1 thru 27; Chapter 2: 1 & 2