June 23, 2022 - Good Morning! It's Thursday, June 23.
Yesterday afternoon, the lights went out in Center, Texas. For several hours, over a thousand homes and businesses (including First Baptist Church) had no power. At least we were able to go outside and enjoy the 100-degree breezes... yikes! But, by suppertime, order - and air conditioning - had been restored.
I Samuel Chapter 3 tells us of a time when the lights almost went out in Israel. It was a time of transition, from the era of the judges (Samson, Deborah), to the era of the kings. And the central transitional figure was a 12-year-old boy named Samuel. He would go on to be a great leader, prophet, and priest. And he would anoint another boy, the shepherd boy David, as king.
But in Samuel Chapter 3, all that still lay in the future. Little Samuel is an apprentice to the priest Eli, whose corrupt sons have damaged the Israelite nation. Eli, because of old age and ill health, has allowed the temple - and the spiritual condition of Israel - to deteriorate. And God is raising up a new leader - Samuel - to lead them back to relationship with Him.
In I Samuel 3:3, we read these words, "The lamp of God had not yet gone out". I think this statement has at least two meanings. One, it pinpoints the events of Samuel's calling by God, to the dark hours of the night, when a single "God Candle" gave light to the temple. But I believe it also, through metaphor, points to the truth that God hadn't given up on His people. He was willing to give them a second chance, a second chance to come back to Him.
The lamp of God has not yet gone out...
Meet you back here tomorrow,