3:1 And the child Samuel ministered unto the LORD a before Eli. And the word of the LORD was b precious in those days; [there was] no open vision.
(a) The Chaldee text reads "while Eli
(b) Because there were very few prophets to
3:2 And it came to pass at that time, when Eli [was]
laid down in his c place, and his eyes
began to wax dim, [that] he could not see;
(c) In the court next to the tabernacle.
3:3 And ere the d
lamp of God went out in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God [was], and
Samuel was laid down [to sleep];
(d) That is, the lamps which burnt in the night.
3:4 That the LORD e
called Samuel: and he answered, Here [am] I.
(e) Josephus writes that Samuel was 12 years old
when the Lord appeared to him.
Now Samuel did not yet know f the LORD,
neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him.
(f) By vision.
3:8 And the LORD called Samuel again the third
time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, Here [am] I; for thou didst call
me. And Eli g perceived that the LORD
had called the child.
(g) Such was the corruption of those times that
the chief priest had become dull and negligent to understand the Lord's
And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both
the ears of every one that heareth it shall h
(h) God declares that sudden fear will come on
men when they hear that the ark is taken, and see Eli's house destroyed.
And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the iniquity of Eli's
house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for i
(i) Meaning that his posterity would never enjoy
the chief priests office.
And he said, What [is] the thing that [the LORD] hath said unto thee? I pray
thee hide [it] not from me: God k do so
to thee, and more also, if thou hide [any] thing from me of all the things that
he said unto thee.
(k) God punish you after this and that sort,
unless you tell me the truth, (Ruth
3:19 And Samuel grew, and
the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words l
fall to the ground.
(l) The Lord accomplished whatever he had said.