December 09, 2002 Copyright © by United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
- 1 During the time young Samuel was minister to the LORD under Eli, a revelation of the LORD was uncommon and vision infrequent.
- One day Eli was asleep in his usual place. His eyes had lately grown so weak that he could not see.
- The lamp of God was not yet extinguished, and Samuel was sleeping in the temple of the LORD where the ark of God was.
- The LORD called to Samuel, who answered, "Here I am."
- He ran to Eli and said, "Here I am. You called me." "I did not call you," Eli said. "Go back to sleep." So he went back to sleep.
- Again the LORD called Samuel, who rose and went to Eli. "Here I am," he said. "You called me." But he answered, "I did not call you, my son. Go back to sleep."
- At that time Samuel was not familiar with the LORD, because the LORD had not revealed anything to him as yet.
- The LORD called Samuel again, for the third time. Getting up and going to Eli, he said, "Here I am. You called me." Then Eli understood that the LORD was calling the youth.
- So he said to Samuel, "Go to sleep, and if you are called, reply, 'Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.'" When Samuel went to sleep in his place,
- the LORD came and revealed his presence, calling out as before, "Samuel, Samuel!" Samuel answered, "Speak, for your servant is listening."
- The LORD said to Samuel: "I am about to do something in Israel that will cause the ears of everyone who hears it to ring.
- On that day I will carry out in full against Eli everything I threatened against his family.
- I announce to him that I am condemning his family once and for all, because of this crime: though he knew his sons were blaspheming God, he did not reprove them.
- Therefore, I swear to the family of Eli that no sacrifice or offering will ever expiate its crime."
- Samuel then slept until morning, when he got up early and opened the doors of the temple of the LORD. He feared to tell Eli the vision,
- but Eli called to him, "Samuel, my son!" He replied, "Here I am."
- 2 Then Eli asked, "What did he say to you? Hide nothing from me! May God do thus and so to you if you hide a single thing he told you."
- So Samuel told him everything, and held nothing back. Eli answered, "He is the LORD. He will do what he judges best."
- Samuel grew up, and the LORD was with him, not permitting any word of his to be without effect.
- Thus all Israel from Dan to Beer-sheba came to know that Samuel was an accredited prophet of the LORD.
- The LORD continued to appear at Shiloh; he manifested himself to Samuel at Shiloh through his word,
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1  Uncommon: prophetic communications from God were almost unknown.
2  May God do thus and so to you: the Biblical writers avoid repeating for us the specific terms of a curse as the speaker would have uttered it.
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