Eighth Day of Great Lent
I Samuel 1:1-23
I Samuel 1:1-23
 There was a certain man of Ramatha’im-zo’phim of the hill country of E’phraim, whose name was Elka’nah the son of Jero’ham, son of Eli’hu, son of Tohu, son of Zuph, an E’phraimite.
 He had two wives; the name of the one was Hannah, and the name of the other Penin’nah. And Penin’nah had children, but Hannah had no children.
 Now this man used to go up year by year from his city to worship and to sacrifice to the LORD of hosts at Shiloh, where the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phin’ehas, were priests of the LORD.
 On the day when Elka’nah sacrificed, he would give portions to Penin’nah his wife and to all her sons and daughters;
 and, although he loved Hannah, he would give Hannah only one portion, because the LORD had closed her womb.
 And her rival used to provoke her sorely, to irritate her, because the LORD had closed her womb.
 So it went on year by year; as often as she went up to the house of the LORD, she used to provoke her. Therefore Hannah wept and would not eat.
 And Elka’nah, her husband, said to her, “Hannah, why do you weep? And why do you not eat? And why is your heart sad? Am I not more to you than ten sons?”
 After they had eaten and drunk in Shiloh, Hannah rose. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat beside the doorpost of the temple of the LORD.
 She was deeply distressed and prayed to the LORD, and wept bitterly.
 And she vowed a vow and said, “O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thy maidservant, and remember me, and not forget thy maidservant, but wilt give to thy maidservant a son, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of his life, and no razor shall touch his head.”
 As she continued praying before the LORD, Eli observed her mouth.
 Hannah was speaking in her heart; only her lips moved, and her voice was not heard; therefore Eli took her to be a drunken woman.
 And Eli said to her, “How long will you be drunken? Put away your wine from you.”
 But Hannah answered, “No, my lord, I am a woman sorely troubled; I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the LORD.
 Do not regard your maidservant as a base woman, for all along I have been speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.”
 Then Eli answered, “Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition which you have made to him.”
 And she said, “Let your maidservant find favor in your eyes.” Then the woman went her way and ate, and her countenance was no longer sad.
 They rose early in the morning and worshiped before the LORD; then they went back to their house at Ramah. And Elka’nah knew Hannah his wife, and the LORD remembered her;
 and in due time Hannah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Samuel, for she said, “I have asked him of the LORD.”
 And the man Elka’nah and all his house went up to offer to the LORD the yearly sacrifice, and to pay his vow.
 But Hannah did not go up, for she said to her husband, “As soon as the child is weaned, I will bring him, that he may appear in the presence of the LORD, and abide there for ever.”
 Elka’nah her husband said to her, “Do what seems best to you, wait until you have weaned him; only, may the LORD establish his word.” So the woman remained and nursed her son, until she weaned him.
 That men may know wisdom and instruction,
understand words of insight,
 receive instruction in wise dealing,
righteousness, justice, and equity;
 that prudence may be given to the simple,
knowledge and discretion to the youth —
 the wise man also may hear and increase in learning,
and the man of understanding acquire skill,
 to understand a proverb and a figure,
the words of the wise and their riddles.
 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge;
fools despise wisdom and instruction.
 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction,
and reject not your mother’s teaching;
 for they are a fair garland for your head,
and pendants for your neck.
 My son, if sinners entice you,
do not consent.
 If they say, “Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood,
let us wantonly ambush the innocent;
 like Sheol let us swallow them alive
and whole, like those who go down to the Pit;
 we shall find all precious goods,
we shall fill our houses with spoil;
 throw in your lot among us,
we will all have one purse” —
 my son, do not walk in the way with them,
hold back your foot from their paths;
 for their feet run to evil,
and they make haste to shed blood.
 For in vain is a net spread
in the sight of any bird;
 but these men lie in wait for their own blood,
they set an ambush for their own lives.
 Such are the ways of all who get gain by violence;
it takes away the life of its possessors.
 Wisdom cries aloud in the street;
in the markets she raises her voice;
 on the top of the walls she cries out;
at the entrance of the city gates she speaks:
 “How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple?
How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing
and fools hate knowledge?
 Give heed to my reproof;
behold, I will pour out my thoughts to you;
I will make my words known to you.
 Because I have called and you refused to listen,
have stretched out my hand and no one has heeded,
 and you have ignored all my counsel
and would have none of my reproof,
 I also will laugh at your calamity;
I will mock when panic strikes you,
 when panic strikes you like a storm,
and your calamity comes like a whirlwind,
when distress and anguish come upon you.
 Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer;
they will seek me diligently but will not find me.
 Because they hated knowledge
and did not choose the fear of the LORD,
 would have none of my counsel,
and despised all my reproof,
 therefore they shall eat the fruit of their way
and be sated with their own devices.
 For the simple are killed by their turning away,
and the complacence of fools destroys them;
 but he who listens to me will dwell secure
and will be at ease, without dread of evil.”
 The words of Jeremiah, the son of Hilki’ah, of the priests who were in An’athoth in the land of Benjamin,
 to whom the word of the LORD came in the days of Josi’ah the son of Amon, king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign.
 It came also in the days of Jehoi’akim the son of Josi’ah, king of Judah, and until the end of the eleventh year of Zedeki’ah, the son of Josi’ah, king of Judah, until the captivity of Jerusalem in the fifth month.
 Now the word of the LORD came to me saying,
 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
and before you were born I consecrated you;
I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
 Then I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.”
 But the LORD said to me, “Do not say, `I am only a youth’;
for to all to whom I send you you shall go,
and whatever I command you you shall speak.
 Be not afraid of them,
for I am with you to deliver you, says the LORD.”
 Then the LORD put forth his hand and touched my mouth; and the LORD said to me, “Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.
 See, I have set you this day over nations and over kingdoms,
to pluck up and to break down,
to destroy and to overthrow,
to build and to plant.”
The Revised Standard Version of the Bible is copyright © National Council of Churches of Christ in America