“When he was weaned, she took the boy with her, young as he was, along with a three-year old bull, and ephah of flour and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the Lord at Shiloh. They they had slaughtered the bull, they brought the boy to Eli, and she said to him, ‘As surely as you live, my lord, I am the woman who stood here beside you praying to the Lord. I prayed for this child and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.’ And he worship the Lord there.” (1st Samuel 1:24–28)
Parents are responsible for dedicating their children to the Lord. While contemporary society would not carry this out in such a drastic form ad did ancient Israel, the need is no less real. Children should grow up with the awareness of devotion by parents to the purposes of God.
Elkanah affirmed Hannah’s vow. He prayed for God to act as He said. Such a prayer is an affirmation of God’s fidelity more than a petition. And answer to prayer should call forth worship. A vow should be fulfilled.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, Hannah had prayed that You would give her a son, and You heard her prayer and answered it for her. You answered her prayer and her response, was not only to dedicated her son to You, she took steps to leave her son with Eli, to be raise up in his holy home. In answer to Your affirmation of her request, she went into worship, which is the appropriate response to an answered prayer. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Help is just a prayer away.”
“I hate, I despise your religious feasts; I cannot stand your assemblies. Even though you bring me burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them. Though you bring choice fellowship offerings, I will have not regard for them. Away with the noise of your songs! I will not listen to the music of your harps. But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” (Amos 5:21–24)
The people of God should not neglect assembling for religious activity, but such activity does not please God unless the people are involved in righteous living that produces and maintains justice in all human affairs and relationships. God’s people must live according to His standards before we can expect God to accept our gifts as proper expressions of worship. He expects righteousness to precede rites of worship. Understand?
“Prayer, Worship”: (Revelation5:8-14)
This section contains three songs of worth and praise—-first by the dignitaries of heaven after the Lamb was declared worthy to open the scroll, then by the angels who echoed the song with attributions of glory, and finally by every living celestial and earthly creature. Most of the praise through the Bible is for God as Creator, for God’s dealings with people, or for those of His attributes which are propitious toward man, such as mercy or grace. There is relatively little praise for what He is in Himself. This situation reverses in Revelation. After the great day of God’s wrath has come and after Revelation 4, the praise may be said to be celestial in nature. God is praised for His own intrinsic worth. In verse 8, the golden bowls of the elders were filled with incense, and age-long symbol of prayer. The prayers of the saints are enormously valuable in heaven. The elders are mentioned as falling down repeatedly in this book.
Second Thought of the Day:
“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are he kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John4:23-24)
The opposite of spirit is flesh. Worship is not a performance to bring pride to those performing, be they preachers, singes, or laypersons. It is not performed for he sake of the performers or participants. It is an offering to God and must be done in that which is hidden, the spirit. The opposite of truth is falsehood. Worship must be genuine. Prayer pervades true worship seeking fellowship with God.
God is spirit, not physical or material. He thus exists on a different plane from us and is not subject to the limitations of a physical body. God is deeply personal and can be worshiped only at the most intensely personal level, from our spirit to God as spirit. Worship is not offered to a physical object or in a mechanical way. True worship of God must be in a personal relationship.