1 Samuel 7:12
Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying…
I. WHAT THE MEMORIAL COMMEMORATED. It was erected on a battle field where they had been twice defeated. Thus it reminded them of their own
1. Helplessness. But it was also erected on a spot where they had witnessed a great victory, won by God's help. It therefore also reminded them
2. God was their Helper. The stone also commemorated —
3. The extent of their victory. "Hitherto hath the Lord helped them," as far as this place. It was a kind of border stone marking their advance on a former position.
II. HOW IT HELPED THEM. They called it "Help Stone." In commemorating past help it proved a present help.
1. By keeping them from self-trust.
2. By stimulating their activity. The sight of this stone aroused their patriotism and religious fervour. It was like the flag which stirs the soldier's martial spirit.
3. It deepened their sense of obligation. To retreat from the position marked by this memorial would have been as disgraceful as for an army to lose its standard.
III. THE PLACE OF MEMORIAL IS A CHRISTIAN LIFE. A written pledge or a spoken vow is for us what "Help Stone" was for Israel. By that act we warn the enemy that he has no more claim upon the territory of our hearts. And each subsequent communion is a gazing afresh upon the memorial of victory won by Christ.
(R. C. Ford, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us.