Why it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bore a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)And called his name Samuel.—The words translated “because I have asked him of the Lord,” do not explain the meaning of the name “Samuel·” they simply give the reason for his mother so calling him. The name Sh’muel (Samuel) is formed from the Hebrew words Sh’mua El (a Deo exauditus), “heard of God.”
20. called his name Samuel—doubtless with her husband's consent. The names of children were given sometimes by the fathers, and sometimes by the mothers (see Ge 4:1, 26; 5:29; 19:37; 21:3); and among the early Hebrews, they were commonly compound names, one part including the name of God.in or after the revolution, or expiration of some days, Hannah conceived, and in due time
bare a son. So the meaning is, That although her husband knew her conjugally at his return, and God was minded of her, and intended in his time to give her his blessing, yet she did not conceive at first, but after some days or time afterwards.
And called, i.e. she called, not doubting of her husband’s consent to the name. The names of children were given to them sometimes by their fathers, and sometime by the mothers. See Genesis 4:1,26 5:29 21:3 19:37,38, &c.
that she bare a son: was brought to bed of a son:
and called his name Samuel, saying, because I have asked him of the Lord; one would think rather his name should have been Saul, for the reason given; but, as Ben Gersom observes, givers of names are not always grammatically strict and critical in them, or in the etymology of them, as in the names of Reuben and Noah, in which he instances; and this may be the rather overlooked in a woman, than in a man of learning. According to Kimchi, it is as if it was Saulmeel; that is, "asked of God", and by contraction Samuel; but Hillerus (c) gives a better account of this name, and takes it to be composed of Saul-mul-el, "asked before God", "in the sight of God", "before the ark of God". This name Hannah gave her son (for sometimes the father, and sometimes the mother, gave the name) in memory of the wonderful favour and goodness of God in granting her request; and to impress her own mind with a sense of the obligation she lay under, to perform her vow, and to engage her son the more readily to give up himself to the service of God, when he reflected on his name, and the reason of it.Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)20. Wherefore] Simply And.
to Ramah] See note on Ramathaim-Zophim in 1 Samuel 1:1.
Samuel] This name, in Hebrew Shemuel, is familiar to us only in its Latin dress. It was borne by two other persons in the O. T. (Numbers 34:20; 1 Chronicles 7:2). Three explanations of it are proposed: (a) “Name of God”: (b) “Asked of God”: (c) “Heard of God”: of which the last is the most probable; compare Ishmael = “God heareth.” Hannah gives the child a name which will be a continual memorial of God’s answer to her prayer. It found a subsequent appropriateness in the fervency and efficacy of his own prayers.1 Samuel 25:37). לבּהּ על מדבּרת, lit. speaking to her heart. על is not to be confounded with אל (Genesis 24:45), but has the subordinate idea of a comforting address, as in Genesis 34:3, etc.
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