Friday after the Fourth Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Scripture: 1 Samuel 1:21—2:17 (NKJV)
1:21 Now the man Elkanah and all his house went up to offer to the LORD the yearly sacrifice and his vow. 22 But Hannah did not go up, for she said to her husband, “Not until the child is weaned; then I will take him, that he may appear before the LORD and remain there forever.” 23 And Elkanah her husband said to her, “Do what seems best to you; wait until you have weaned him. Only let the LORD establish His word.” So the woman stayed and nursed her son until she had weaned him. 24 Now when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, with three bulls, one ephah of flour, and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the LORD in Shiloh. And the child was young. 25 Then they slaughtered a bull, and brought the child to Eli. 26 And she said, “O my lord! As your soul lives, my lord, I am the woman who stood by you here, praying to the LORD. 27 For this child I prayed, and the LORD has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. 28 Therefore I also have lent him to the LORD; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the LORD.” So they worshiped the LORD there.
2:1 And Hannah prayed and said: “My heart rejoices in the LORD; My horn is exalted in the LORD. I smile at my enemies, because I rejoice in Your salvation. 2 No one is holy like the LORD, for there is none besides You, nor is there any rock like our God. 3 Talk no more so very proudly; Let no arrogance come from your mouth, for the LORD is the God of knowledge; And by Him actions are weighed. 4 The bows of the mighty men are broken, and those who stumbled are girded with strength. 5 Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread, and the hungry have ceased to hunger. Even the barren has borne seven, and she who has many children has become feeble. 6 The LORD kills and makes alive; He brings down to the grave and brings up. 7 The LORD makes poor and makes rich; He brings low and lifts up. 8 He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the beggar from the ash heap, to set them among princes and make them inherit the throne of glory. For the pillars of the earth are the LORD’s, and He has set the world upon them. 9 He will guard the feet of His saints, but the wicked shall be silent in darkness. For by strength no man shall prevail. 10 The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken in pieces; From heaven He will thunder against them. The LORD will judge the ends of the earth. He will give strength to His king, and exalt the horn of His anointed.”
11 Then Elkanah went to his house at Ramah. But the child ministered to the LORD before Eli the priest. 12 Now the sons of Eli were corrupt; they did not know the LORD. 13 And the priests’ custom with the people was that when any man offered a sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come with a three-pronged fleshhook in his hand while the meat was boiling. 14 Then he would thrust it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; and the priest would take for himself all that the fleshhook brought up. So they did in Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there. 15 Also, before they burned the fat, the priest’s servant would come and say to the man who sacrificed, “Give meat for roasting to the priest, for he will not take boiled meat from you, but raw.” 16 And if the man said to him, “They should really burn the fat first; then you may take as much as your heart desires,” he would then answer him, “No, but you must give it now; and if not, I will take it by force.” 17 Therefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD, for men abhorred the offering of the LORD.
Hannah, having her prayer answered with the birth of Samuel, praises the Lord God with a Messianic prayer. Her barrenness is an image of the spiritual unfruitfulness of this world on account of sin, death, and the devil. The torment that she received is a picture of the tormenting of these unholy three upon all the faithful of God. The fruitfulness of the womb of Penninah, Hannah’s rival, is an image of the seeming triumph of our spiritual enemies who seem to bear new false children every day.
However, just like Hannah’s torment is over on account of the grace of God, so too will the world’s torment by the unholy trinity be over on account of a Son to be born—the Lord’s Anointed. On that day “the adversaries of the Lord shall be broken,” “the wicked shall be silent in darkness,” and “the Lord will judge the ends of the earth.”
On that day grace will abound. The spiritually hungry will cease to be hungry for they will have the Gospel of our Lord’s redemption to feed them. The devil, the world, and sinful mankind, who have borne many false children, will no longer bear false children. Rather, the children of mother Church will be borne through the out-pouring of the Holy Ghost through the means of grace.
This is what our Lord Jesus Christ accomplished for us on the tree of the holy Cross. He fulfilled the Law and bore our sin so that we might become sons of God, and He defeated sin, death, and the devil so that we might have forgiveness of sins, eternal life, and salvation.