Mission Harvest © 2011 William J. Brannan
"The darkest part of the night is just before the dawn. When the enemy comes in like a flood the Lord lifts up a standard against him. God never leaves Himself without a witness. Somewhere, in the most godless times, can be found those who love and serve God. Elijah may fancy that he alone is left to stand for the truth among a nation of idolaters, but God shows him that he has yet seven thousand in Israel who have not bowed the knee to Baal. And God makes this very Elijah the beginning of a second line of prophets, that holds on through Elisha and Ezekiel even to Malachi and John the Baptist. At the very time that the army of the king of Syria is stricken with blindness, supernatural vision is granted to Elisha's servant, and the young man's eyes are opened; he sees, and, behold! the mountain is full of horses and chariots of fire round about his master. So, in every dark day in the history of His people, God wakens some chosen servant of His to see what the common crowd are blind to."
- A.H. Strong
“If ever there was a child of many prayers, Samuel was he. His life was an answer to the fervent supplication of his mother, by whom he was dedicated before his birth to the holy service of Jehovah. For weal or for woe a mother's influence is infinitely great. We are not surprised to learn that Byron's mother was proud, ill-tempered, and violent; or that Nero's was a murderess. On the other hand, we need not be astonished that Sir Walter Scott's was a lover of poetry; or those of Wesley, Augustine, Chrysostom, Basil, and others, remarkable for their intelligence and goodness. Like mother, like child. This is what led the good Lord Shaftesbury to exclaim, "Give me a generation of Christian mothers, and I will undertake to change the face of society in twelve months."
- E. Morgan
“Why did God speak to a Samuel and not to an Eli? Why was there no man of maturer years to come from the outer world and speak to the priest at the temple and tell him of the judgment on his house? Why, because God seeks the susceptible heart and the open door. It is according as we live that God comes; it is as we spend our days and our hours in the holy place, and our hearts are waiting and open, that we hear the voice of God, and are conscious of the Holy One. As Samuel was prepared, so Samuel heard the voice; and as you and I live as it were in the presence of God, does God come to speak to us. "He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree."
- R.J. Campbell
“It is said that it is impossible for every one to find out what he or she is to do. It is, of course, impossible to know the whole plan. Hannah could not have guessed that Samuel was to be a judge, a founder of the School of Prophets, the greatest statesman that had been since Moses. All she could see was that he was placed where he could learn the will of God; and this she did. Samuel could not tell what office he would fill, what God would tell him to do, but he could make his life as a temple server complete as possible, and so make himself ready for the next thing. And faithfulness in little things marks out a man for great things. Consecration is neither easy nor simple. It implies continuous selection; and selection always implies trouble. But it is in the process of selection that the personality grows and is determined. It is in every choice that it takes a fuller shape. As it goes along the path determined of God, it grows into the likeness of His Son; not indeed, that full Image which reflects all the sons of men, but that particular likeness after which it was created. And whether men accomplish much or little, they accomplish that which God intended them to accomplish. So through this determined set of character, this resolute habit of doing from hour to hour that which the Lord wills, Samuel became one of the great personal forces of the world, and especially of his own nation.”
- G.H.S. Walpole
“We cannot fail to be struck with the contrast between the bright, progressive, gracious development of Samuel and the fast downward course of Eli's sons, who, madly grasping at base present gratification, lent none of their powers to God, but, forfeiting all the happiness of the future in time and eternity for the sake of short-lived sensual pleasure, went down quickly to dishonoured graves.”
- James Hastings