1 Samuel 2:21
And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons and two daughters. And the child Samuel grew before the LORD.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
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.See the marginal references. The words "before the" Lord have special reference to his residence at the tabernacle. 20. Eli blessed Elkanah and his wife—This blessing, like that which he had formerly pronounced, had a prophetic virtue; which, before long, appeared in the increase of Hannah's family (1Sa 2:21), and the growing qualifications of Samuel for the service of the sanctuary. Visited, to wit, in mercy, and with his blessing, as that word is used, Genesis 21:1 Exodus 13:19 Jeremiah 15:15; not in anger, as it is taken Exodus 32:34 Leviticus 26:16.

Grew; not only in age and stature, but especially in wisdom and goodness, as Luke 1:15. Or, was magnified; or grew great, famous and acceptable, as 1 Samuel 2:26.

Before the Lord; not only before men, who might be deceived, but in the presence and judgment of the all-seeing God.

And the Lord visited Hannah,.... In a way of mercy, approving and confirming the blessing of Eli; or rather granting the blessing he prayed for, by giving her power to conceive, bear, and bring forth children, as the following words explain it:

so that she conceived and bare three sons and two daughters; whereby the prophecy of Hannah was fulfilled, 1 Samuel 2:5, and was no doubt matter of great joy to her, though of these children we nowhere else read, nor even of their names. Josephus (s) says, Elkanah had other sons by Hannah, and three daughters; which agrees not with the text:

and the child Samuel grew before the Lord: in age and stature, in grace and goodness, and improved much in the worship and service of God, both in the theory and practice of it; or became great with him, high in his esteem and favour, and was blessed with much of his presence, and with large gifts of his grace.

(s) Antiqu. l. 5. c. 10. sect. 3.

And the LORD visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons and two daughters. And the child Samuel grew before the LORD.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
21. grew before the Lord] Three stages of physical, moral (1 Samuel 2:26), and spiritual (1 Samuel 3:19-21) growth are marked.

1 Samuel 2:21The particle כּי, "for" (Jehovah visited), does not mean if, as, or when, nor is it to be regarded as a copyist's error. It is only necessary to supply the thought contained in the words, "Eli blessed Elkanah," viz., that Eli's blessing was not an empty fruitless wish; and to understand the passage in some such way as this: Eli's word was fulfilled, or still more simply, they went to their home blessed; for Jehovah visited Hannah, blessed her with "three sons and two daughters; but the boy Samuel grew up with the Lord," i.e., near to Him (at the sanctuary), and under His protection and blessing.
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