1 Samuel 3:10
And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for your servant hears.
The call of Samuel is very different in its circumstances from the call of St. Paul; yet it resembles it in this particular, that the circumstance of his obedience to it is brought out prominently even in the words put into his mouth by Eli in the text. The characteristic of all Divine calls in Scripture is:(1) to require instant obedience, and(2) to call us we know not to what; to call us on in the darkness. Faith alone can obey them.
I. Those who are living religiously have from time to time truths they did not know before, or had no need to consider, BROUGHT BEFORE THEM FORCIBLY, truths which involve duties, which are in fact precepts and claim obedience. In this and similar ways Christ calls us now He works through cur natural faculties and circumstances in life.
II. These Divine calls ARE COMMONLY SUDDEN AND AS INDEFINITE AND OBSCURE IN THEIR CONSEQUENCES AS IN FORMER TIMES. The call may come to us:(1) through the death of a friend or relative;
(2) through some act of sacrifice, suddenly resolved on and executed, which opens as it were a gate into the second or third heaven — an entrance into a higher state of holiness.
(3) The call may come through the hearing or reading of Scripture, or through an unusual gift of Divine grace poured into our hearts.
III. NOTHING IS MORE CERTAIN THAN THAT SOME MEN DO FEEL THEMSELVES CALLED TO HIGH DUTIES AND WORKS TO WHICH OTHERS ARE NOT CALLED. No one has any leave to take another's lower standard of holiness for his own. We need not fear spiritual pride if we follow Christ's call as men in earnest. Earnestness has no time to compare itself with the state of other men; earnestness has too vivid a feeling of its own infirmities to be elated at itself. It simply says, "Speak, Lord; for Thy servant heareth." "Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?"
(J. H. Newman.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.