1 Samuel 3:1 – And the child Samuel ministered unto the Lord before Eli. And the word of the Lord was precious in those days; there was no open vision.
Hello readers, today we will be talking about how to speak to someone you’ve never heard before. The text will be 1 Samuel 3, I have quoted the opening verse above, but it’d be good to read the chapter for yourself! The Bible is full of the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, cover to cover, and here today we see that just as Samuel was called by God, and spoke to God, so God wants to speak to you today. You can have a conversation you’ve never had before, and for many people, they’ve never heard God’s voice, much less conversed with him.
Samuel was a child who was the result of a godly mother who was faithful to God. He was raised however in dark, evil times in Israel. His mother, Hannah, dedicated him to God… a pattern parents should follow in giving their children to God, dedicating them to the Lord. The Bible says the word of the Lord was precious in those days… and so it is today. These people were wicked, the priests were wicked, and the people were wicked. David, who would come a little later, but in the same kind of times, had a dad whom the Bible says of him that he went as a man among men in the days of Saul. The word of God is very precious today, not many people have an ear for truth, or have told the truth.
We may discuss this in another blog, but Saul got another heart from God… but he didn’t get a heart for God, he didn’t get a new heart. What do we have a heart for? Because the heart will find what it is seeking, and the truth is, many people are not seeking the Lord in their heart… but seeking their own way, something that looks good to them, something that pleases them. It is a wonderful day when we have a heart for truth, and not a heart for lies that are sweeping across this world, lies of the devil which the masses gobble up readily.
Samuel hadn’t heard God’s voice before. Perhaps you are the same. But he was in the right place to hear God’s word wasn’t he. And that’s where it starts. Where are you at in life. Samuel was a faithful child, he obeyed his parents, he had been raised in a godly home, and had a mother and a father who gave him to the Lord, because they recognized him as a gift from God. We should never hold back anything from God, because he wants our best, and he will use it, and make it something better than we ever could. God is good. But we tend to not trust God with what’s precious to us, unlike Abraham with Isaac, but because Abraham was willing to give his best, his most precious to God, look what God did with it… the whole world was blessed through the seed of Isaac in Jesus Christ. God can do above and beyond all we can ask and think.
Samuel the child was ministering to the priest in the temple of God. He was in the right place. It seems funny that God chose to talk to a child over the priest Eli. Eli had all the experience, the age, the reputation, the honour… but God would speak to a child instead. That’s what it takes to hear God. Are you willing to be as a child before God? It takes humility and godly simplicity to simply hear and obey and surrender our pride, our ideas. You see, as we get older it gets harder to hear God’s voice, because we grow up and become self sufficient, we get our own ideas, we have our own philosophies and beliefs… and they drown out God’s still small voice. Your pride will prevent you from hearing from God.
Before the lamp of God went out in the temple, God called Samuel. He called Samuel by name. God knows who you are. He is a personal God. He is a living God. Jesus Christ didn’t just die, he rose from the dead and is alive forever more. Because he is in heaven now, we can come to God the Father through him, we have access to God through Jesus Christ. He is the way. Samuel walked in the light of God’s word, in the temple there was a lamp burning. God’s word is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path. And if you’re in the right book, you’re likely to hear from God’s word. God’s word never fails, it never returns to God void. And before you die, God will have many times called you by name, but will you hear?
You see, Samuel had ears to hear. Jesus said blessed are your ears to his disciples. Why? Because they heard. Everyone heard Jesus as in physically heard him… but only a few really heard him… what he said sunk in their ears into their heart… they knew what he said was truth and it changed their lives. The start of Isaiah 53 says … who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed? You see, following that verse are a whole heap of verses about Jesus Christ, a magnificent prophecy and description of our Saviour’s life and work… but first of all… do you have ears to hear? Is God’s word revealed to you? Or is there a blockage? Is pride in the way? Sin? Unbelief? Do you have a hard heart? God could speak to Samuel because Samuel wasn’t hard hearted, in fact, God wasn’t speaking to many people in that day, he had to speak to a child, because only a child would hear his voice and be a willing servant.
Samuel hear God’s calling his name. But he went running to Eli the priest. So often instead of talking to God we run to man. And sure, we may need someone else to help facilitate that relationship. A true man of God will direct you to Jesus Christ, not himself. The Bible said Samuel did not yet know the Lord, neither was the word of the Lord yet revealed to him. You see, until you get saved you don’t know the Lord. At all. Until the Holy Spirit ministers the word of God to your heart, you won’t hear it or receive it. Often it does come through another human that we learn about God, and a faithful Christian directs us to his word. Eli knew God’s voice, and although he had grown in apathy and indifference and compromise, he knew that God was calling Samuel. He directed Samuel how to talk to God.
Eli told Samuel if he called him again, say speak Lord, for thy servant heareth. What a wise attitude to have towards God. He wants to talk to all of us. It’s not mysticism, it’s not magic, it’s his still small, yet unmistakable voice. Sometimes it will only come when are still, when we are silent. God called Samuel when he was laying down to sleep. When there were no distractions. We need to get to a place where God can speak to us, if that means cutting off bad friendships, not going to wrong places, not filling our life up with garbage and stuff that forces God out. Satan wants to load you up with so many cares and distractions that you’ll never have time to hear and respond to his voice. Yet his voice is the only voice that matters. The same voice that created the heaven and the earth wants to talk to you. Pharaoh loaded up the burdens on Israel in Egypt, and when they were thinking of leaving, he said make them work even harder. You see Satan wants you to stay a slave in Egypt, he don’t want you being free.
Speak Lord, for thy servant heareth. If you say that to God with a true heart, he will talk to you. You will know his voice, his will. You don’t need someone else to beat you down the path of Christianity, you just need a heart turned towards God. Odds are, you already know what he requires of you in your personal life. You already know right and wrong, because God has put a preacher in you, the preacher of conscience, the preacher of the Holy Spirit moving upon the deep of your heart. Speak Lord. Well that means you want to hear God speak, while you shut up. It takes a willing heart to listen. So many people want to do the talking, not the listening. They want their opinions voiced, not to submit to what God says. It’s a sign of humility. For thy servant heareth. God’s word was precious in those days, and it’s precious today, don’t take his word for granted. You never know when it will be the final time the Holy Spirit convicts you of sin, and moves in your life bringing you to Jesus Christ.
Maybe you’ve never heard God before, maybe you’ve never had the conversation that Samuel had. God is calling your name today just as he called Samuel. God knows who you are, he knows where you are at, he doesn’t just want to save you, but he wants to give you new life, a life that matters. Look at the way Samuel’s life impacted Israel. He knew God’s word, he had wisdom, he could give direction, people listened to him, he gave people God’s word, he was a leader, he was a pillar, he was a man of faith, he lived a life that counted. And we go back to his childhood. Faithful parents. Maybe you have, maybe you haven’t, but most kids have parents who do care for them. Samuel honored his parents. And we all should honor our parents, it takes grace to do that. We go back to a child who lived in the temple… he was in the right place to hear God’s word. He was seeking the right things, he had the right focus. Moses turned aside to see the burning bush, but it was only when he turned aside that God called him. You see, although it takes God drawing us to himself, we also have a part to play, he ain’t going to force you to believe him, he will see if we actually have a heart for truth, a heart for him.
You won’t hear from God until you want to hear from him. No other voice will satisfy either. God’s call on your life won’t be answered in going to another human, it will only be answered in going to God. God wants to have a real relationship with you. You won’t hear from God until you’re in the place to hear God, until the time that God deals with you. You can’t make God call you, and that’s why when God does call you, you shouldn’t dismiss it. When conviction comes into your life, when his Spirit ministers to your heart, you should clear the schedule and listen to him. Where can you find the voice of God today? In his word. He’s given us his word, that’s the voice of God. The Holy Spirit will honor the word of God, so if you read his word, God will speak to you out of it and through it. He will take the words and minister them to your heart in a personal way relevant and alive to you. God works through, not around his word, not in spite of his word. Satan always wants to disconnect you from God’s word, because in so doing, he unhooks you from the certainty, the authority, the power of God’s word.
The Bible says further on that Samuel let none of God’s words fall to the ground. He laid what God said to heart. He listened, he wanted to hear, he wanted to soak in God’s word. Look at the impact it had… everyone knew that he was established to be a prophet of the Lord. If you get saved, and you follow Jesus Christ, people will know if you are the real deal. They’ll know if you have the Spirit of God. They may not like you for it, but they will know that there is something different about you. There is a power and authority that comes from having God’s word in your life. The Bible says God revealed himself to Samuel by the word of the Lord. That’s how God reveals himself to you, by his word. You won’t get a revelation from God to you outside of his word. We live in a generation of people who don’t want God’s word, the Bible gathers dust, while they seek God in miracles, signs, wonders, events, places, circumstances, fun, pleasure, emotions, senses, feelings… God’s word doesn’t get it done for them. Yet Samuel, a great prophet of God, only knew God by the word of God. You won’t know him any other way.
So the title of this blog is how to speak to someone you’ve never spoken to before – the Lord God Almighty. Well firstly you need to be willing to hear, to listen… is that possible? You firstly need to be in a place where you can actually hear… is that at all possible? You need to clear your schedule, Samuel had nothing more important to do. He didn’t even know God yet, but he was well on the way. And then God called him by name. You can’t speak to God until he speaks to you, you can’t know him unless he reveals himself first to you. God has revealed himself to us through his word. You can pick up a Bible and read what he’s saying to you. When we pray, it is talking to God. If you know God is dealing with your heart, there is a conversation you can have, perhaps one you’ve never had time to have, or bothered to have, or been to busy to have. Speak Lord. How to have the conversation is by submitting yourself to God, it takes humility, a repentant heart. We are all sinners, God is God, we are but dust. We are fallen creatures. Be ready to hear, because that is what a conversation with God is like. Be ready and willing to hear God, want to hear truth. If you have a heart for truth, God will give you the truth. God requires us all to repent of our sin and believe on Jesus Christ. Our conversation with God is based on that fact… that’s how to converse with God. He’s not pleased in anyone bar his Son, his precious only Son, who died for our sins and rose from the dead. If we don’t want to believe him, there is nothing to discuss. How to have the conversation? Have it based on the truth of God’s word. Do it on God’s terms. Have you been willing to hear? Have you been willing to submit to what God says.
Because the real question really is not how to have the conversation, but do you want to have the conversation. Because most people don’t. Jesus said the condemnation is that light is come into the world but men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. It’s not you can’t know God, it’s most people don’t want to know God. Because unlike Samuel, they try coming to God outside of his word and his way. The Lord Jesus Christ is the way to God. You are not acceptable to God outside of him. He is the way to God after all… there is no way to God your own way, or by any other way. Jesus made that clear. He is the door. He is Jacob’s ladder. Maybe you are ready to have that conversation, you’re finally in a place you want to believe God’s word, you want to respond to Jesus knocking on the door of your heart. Speak Lord, for thy servant heareth. God’s word will minister to you, and truth pouring in… it will make a difference. You will know God through his word, and your conversation based on God’s word, based on truth, based on humility, based on trust… will be a life changer.
This changed Samuel’s life… it wasn’t second hand Christianity… he knew God for himself based on God’s word. God called Samuel, and he calls you today by name… but will you hear, will you listen, will you respond? There is a conversation that every human being can have with God, a conversation that is based on an agreement of guilt of sin, a confession of sin, an acknowledgement of the Lord Jesus Christ, a repenting of sin and casting ourselves at the foot of the cross believing in him dying on the cross for our sin personally. And the conversations thereafter are always based on the truth of God’s word. You see, God told Samuel some things after Samuel said speak, and God told him the truth. God’s word is truth. What he said, happened. Eli no longer heard God’s word… and many people in Israel didn’t… do you want truth? Because really how to have a conversation depends on do you really want to have the conversation to begin with. Do you really want truth? Do you have a heart for God. Because really that’s what it is, it was a simple response from Samuel, it’s not going to take a phd, a life time of theology, it’s just going to take a child’s simplicity and a heart for God and his truth. I hope you have that conversation with God today.
Hi, my name is Joseph Zadow. I am a 30 y/o Bible Blogger. I was new to blogging once! God's word is the best thing that we can be given, and once we have it and know it for ourselves it is both a privilege and responsibility to bring it to others! We are blessed to be a blessing! I am a sinner (for sure!) saved by God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ and I am a Lord Jesus Christ follower. He is faithful even though I rarely am to him. I believe the Bible is the word of God, and stake my life on it. My destination is heaven. As they say, I'm just a passin' through this world... although most of the time it's more like hangin' by a thread in Jericho! I love playing sports - particularly cricket... I currently work on an orchard and a side hobby business of mine is growing vegetables etc - they are good for you! I love writing. Always happy to talk, so feel free to contact me (email@example.com) or comment on my blog, whatever suits. You can read more about me and my blog here - kjvbibletruth.com/about. :)