THE GRIEVED HEART OF HANNAH
September 6, 2015
Third sermon in the series: A SPIRITUAL EKG
Scripture Text: 1 Samuel 1:1-20
In Old Testament times there was a belief that if a woman could not have children she was not right with God. This was not written anywhere in the Word of God, but was more of an oral belief or tradition.
Elkanah had two wives. “The name of one was Hannah and the name of the other was Peninnah; and Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children (vs.3).” Once each year Elkanah would go up to Shilo to offer sacrifice to the Lord of Host. Two of Peninnah’s sons were priest to the Lord there. “When the day came that Elkanah sacrificed he would offer up to Peninnah and all of her son’s and daughter’s; but to Hannah he would give a double portion, for he loved Hannah, but the Lord had closed her womb.” (vs.5)
So each year Peninnah would torment, and tease, and ridicule, and provoke Hannah to tears. Hannah wept and would not eat for she was without a child.
Hannah rose up and being greatly distressed she prayed and wept bitterly. She didn’t run and hide and have a pity party; no, she made a vow and said, “If Thou wilt indeed look upon the affliction of thy maidservant and remember me and not forget thy maidservant, but will give thy maidservant a son, then I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life…”(vs.11)
While she was praying she encountered Eli, one of Peninnah’s son’s, who was a priest in Shilo. He considered her a drunkard and asked Hannah, “ How long will you make yourself drunk? Put your wind away from you. But Hannah answered and said, “no my lord, I am a woman oppressed of spirit: I have not drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have poured out my heart before the Lord. Do not consider your maidservant as a worthless woman; for I have spoken until now out of great concern and provocation.” Eli responded as any good man of God would. “Go in peace and may the God of Israel grant your petition that you have asked of Him.” Hannah replied. “ Let your maidservant find favor in your sight” so she left and went and ate and she was no longer sad. (vs.12-18)
When the day after sacrifice was made they got up early and returned to their home in Ramah. After returning home Elkanah “had relations with Hannah and the Lord remembered her. And it came about in due time, after Hannah had conceived, that she gave birth to a son; and she named him Samuel, saying, ‘Because I have asked him of the Lord.’ ”(vs.19-20)
After Samuel was weaned Hannah took him up to Shilo. She took a three-year-old bull and one ephah of flour. The bull was slaughtered and Hannah brought Samuel before Eli and said, “Oh, my lord! As your soul lives my lord, I am the woman who stood here beside you praying to the Lord. For this boy I prayed and the Lord has given me my petition, which I asked of Him. So I have also dedicated him to the Lord, as long as he lives, he is dedicated to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there. (vs. 24-28)
How Hannah’s grief turned to glory.
- We see a perplexed or Puzzled Hannah (vs. 2-6). A heavy cloud darkened her home and spiritual life.
- There was a problem that troubled her; she could not conceive.
- There was a person who taunted her; Peninnah. (1 Peter 5:8)
- We see a praying Hannah (vs. 10-112).
- She prayed earnestly (vs. 10). (James 5:16)
- She prayed specifically. (vs. 11) (Philippians 4:6)
- She Prayed continually (vs. 12). (Luke 18:1-8; 1 Corinthians 10:13)
- She Prayed expectantly (Matthew 13:58; Mark 6:6; James 1:6-7) When pour hearts are grieving it is so that we will grow closer to God.
- We see a Praising Hannah (vs. 15-20)
- The assurance she received (vs. 15-17)
- The answer she received (vs.20)
The Lord closed Hannah’s womb. Not because of sin, rather to allow for the timing of God to bring her a son who was blessed. Hannah did not quit praying until she received her petition. So it is with all God’s children. When we experience perplexing times in our lives, it is time to go to our knees and pray. Our prayers should be like Hannah’s, earnest, specific, continuous, and expectant.
Hannah’s grief turned to Glory in Samuel, a great man of God. Samuel means asked of the Lord.
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