Sunday, January 30: Samuel
What has been the most glorious moment of your life so far?
A game-winning touchdown? A scholarship or award? A big promotion? A wedding proposal?
Looking back on your life so far, when would you say you “peaked?”
In 1 Samuel 4, Israel loses its glory. First, it suffers military defeat at the hands of the Philistines. Then, the elders conclude that their defeat was because they didn’t bring the ark into battle. They rush off to Shiloh and come back with the ark—carried by Hophni and Phineas.
Now, if you’ve been following along in the Samuel series, you might immediately recognize a problem: God has proclaimed the impending death of these two guys for blaspheming his name. The presence of Hophni, Phineas, and the ark in Israel’s camp raises all kinds of questions. How will God respond to the behavior of the wayward priests? Is the presence of the ark enough to win the battle for Israel? What is the nature of the covenant relationship between God and Israel?
To everyone’s shock and dismay, the ark is not enough to win the battle for Israel. When Israel is defeated, Hophni and Phineas are killed, and the ark is captured, despair sets in. What does this mean for Israel? Is God still able to protect them? Is he still willing to protect them?
All these questions are summarized in one question at the end: Where is the glory? Where is Israel’s glory? Is it in the ark or somewhere else?
This question is also important to us. Where is our glory? Is the path to glory through our accomplishments, or through something else?
Join us this week as we continue our series on Samuel and ask the question: Where is the glory?
See you then!
Service times are at 9:30 & 11:00. If you can’t make it in person, you can watch live at those times.