1 Samuel 2:18
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New International Version
But Samuel was ministering before the LORD--a boy wearing a linen ephod.

New Living Translation
But Samuel, though he was only a boy, served the LORD. He wore a linen garment like that of a priest.

English Standard Version
Samuel was ministering before the LORD, a boy clothed with a linen ephod.

New American Standard Bible
Now Samuel was ministering before the LORD, as a boy wearing a linen ephod.

King James Bible
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The boy Samuel served in the LORD's presence and wore a linen ephod.

International Standard Version
Now Samuel was ministering in the LORD's presence, as a boy wearing a linen ephod.

NET Bible
Now Samuel was ministering before the LORD. The boy was dressed in a linen ephod.

New Heart English Bible
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, clothed with a linen ephod.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Meanwhile, Samuel continued to serve in front of the LORD. As a boy he was [already] wearing a linen ephod.

JPS Tanakh 1917
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

New American Standard 1977
Now Samuel was ministering before the LORD, as a boy wearing a linen ephod.

Jubilee Bible 2000
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

King James 2000 Bible
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

American King James Version
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

American Standard Version
But Samuel ministered before Jehovah, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But Samuel ministered before the face of the Lord: being a child girded with a linen ephod.

Darby Bible Translation
And Samuel ministered before Jehovah, a boy girded with a linen ephod.

English Revised Version
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

Webster's Bible Translation
But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

World English Bible
But Samuel ministered before Yahweh, being a child, clothed with a linen ephod.

Young's Literal Translation
And Samuel is ministering in the presence of Jehovah, a youth girt with an ephod of linen;
Study Bible
The Sins of Eli's Sons
17Thus the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD, for the men despised the offering of the LORD. 18Now Samuel was ministering before the LORD, as a boy wearing a linen ephod. 19And his mother would make him a little robe and bring it to him from year to year when she would come up with her husband to offer the yearly sacrifice.…
Cross References
1 Samuel 2:11
Then Elkanah went to his home at Ramah. But the boy ministered to the LORD before Eli the priest.

1 Samuel 2:28
Did I not choose them from all the tribes of Israel to be My priests, to go up to My altar, to burn incense, to carry an ephod before Me; and did I not give to the house of your father all the fire offerings of the sons of Israel?

1 Samuel 3:1
Now the boy Samuel was ministering to the LORD before Eli. And word from the LORD was rare in those days, visions were infrequent.

1 Samuel 22:18
Then the king said to Doeg, "You turn around and attack the priests." And Doeg the Edomite turned around and attacked the priests, and he killed that day eighty-five men who wore the linen ephod.

2 Samuel 6:14
And David was dancing before the LORD with all his might, and David was wearing a linen ephod.

1 Chronicles 15:27
Now David was clothed with a robe of fine linen with all the Levites who were carrying the ark, and the singers and Chenaniah the leader of the singing with the singers. David also wore an ephod of linen.
Treasury of Scripture

But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

ministered

1 Samuel 2:11 And Elkanah went to Ramah to his house. And the child did minister …

1 Samuel 3:1 And the child Samuel ministered to the LORD before Eli. And the word …

a line ephod

1 Samuel 22:18 And the king said to Doeg, Turn you, and fall on the priests. And …

Exodus 28:4 And these are the garments which they shall make; a breastplate, …

Leviticus 8:7 And he put on him the coat, and girded him with the girdle, and clothed …

2 Samuel 6:14 And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was …

(18) Ministered . . . being a child.--A striking contrast is intended to be drawn here between the covetous, self-seeking ministrations of the worldly priests and the quiet service of the boy devoted by his pious mother and father to the sanctuary service.

Girded with a linen ephod.--The ephod was a priestly dress, which Samuel received in very early youth, because he had, with the high priest's formal sanction, been set apart for a life-long service before the Lord. This ephod was an official garment, and consisted of two pieces, which rested on the shoulders in front and behind, and were joined at the top, and fastened about the body with a girdle.

Verse 18. - But Samuel ministered. While the misconduct of Eli's sons was thus bringing religion into contempt, and sapping the nation's morals, Samuel was advancing in years and piety, and was gaining that education which made him fit to retrieve the evil of their doings. He is still styled na'ar, a boy; for the word, according to the Rabbins, may be used up to fifteen years (1 Samuel 1:24). In the sense of servant there is no limit of age; and as it is the word translated "young men" in ver. 17, it probably means there not Eli's sons, but the servants by whose instrumentality their orders were actually carried out. Samuel's dress, an ephod of white linen, was probably that worn by the Levites in their ordinary ministrations; for the ephod of the priests was richer both in material and colour (Exodus 28:6-8). As being thus the simplest ministerial garment, it was apparently worn also by laymen when taking part in any religious service, as by David when he danced before the ark (2 Samuel 6:14). But Samuel ministered before the Lord,.... The ministration of Samuel, though a child, is observed both before and after the account of the ill behaviour and wickedness of Eli's sons; partly to the shame and disgrace of them, and as serving to aggravate their sin, and make it appear the more black and heinous; and partly to his honour and reputation, that he was not corrupted and turned aside from God by their evil practices. The phrase here used is different from that in 1 Samuel 2:11 there he is said to minister before Eli, under his direction and guidance, but here before the Lord; being now engaged in higher services, and which he could perform without the assistance of Eli, as in the presence of God more immediately; it seems to have respect to him when more grown in age, stature, knowledge, and experience, though here related: yet still being "a child"; not got out of his childhood, or arrived to manhood:

girded with a linen ephod; such as priests used to wear, but not Levites in common, nor extraordinary persons on extraordinary occasions, see 1 Samuel 22:18. This seems to be a peculiar favour, and a special honour which Eli granted to Samuel when so very young, on account of the grace of God bestowed on him in a wonderful manner; and because brought up in the tabernacle as a holy person, and a Nazarite; and because his birth was foretold, and he asked of God, as his name signified, as Procopius Gazaeus observes. 1Sa 2:18-26. Samuel's Ministry.

18. But Samuel ministered before the Lord, being a child—This notice of his early services in the outer courts of the tabernacle was made to pave the way for the remarkable prophecy regarding the high priest's family.

girded with a linen ephod—A small shoulder-garment or apron, used in the sacred service by the inferior priests and Levites; sometimes also by judges or eminent persons, and hence allowed to Samuel, who, though not a Levite, was devoted to God from his birth.2:11-26 Samuel, being devoted to the Lord in a special manner, was from a child employed about the sanctuary in the services he was capable of. As he did this with a pious disposition of mind, it was called ministering unto the Lord. He received a blessing from the Lord. Those young people who serve God as well as they can, he will enable to improve, that they may serve him better. Eli shunned trouble and exertion. This led him to indulge his children, without using parental authority to restrain and correct them when young. He winked at the abuses in the service of the sanctuary till they became customs, and led to abominations; and his sons, who should have taught those that engaged in the service of the sanctuary what was good, solicited them to wickedness. Their offence was committed even in offering the sacrifices for sins, which typified the atonement of the Saviour! Sins against the remedy, the atonement itself, are most dangerous, they tread under foot the blood of the covenant. Eli's reproof was far too mild and gentle. In general, none are more abandoned than the degenerate children of godly persons, when they break through restraints.
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