Bible Reading Plan – March 19-25

Samuel

Bible Project Reading Plan (March 19-25):
1 Samuel 1-24, Psalm 78-84


Samuel is an interesting biblical figure. The book of Judges has whet our appetite for a coming King; Ruth has provided the necessary familial background for the provision of this King. While Judges points to the kingdom as a whole, Ruth points more narrowly to the coming of the king, David. Yet, when the book of Samuel begins, we are treated to a different figure all together. Why?

Samuel has many characteristics that make him an interesting fit in the story line of Scripture. His mother was barren; a difficulty that provided tension between her and Peninnah, Elkanah’s other wife. This makes him sound like a promised son, in line with Isaac. He is minding his own business when God calls to him, prompting him to speak uncomfortable things to one who is in power. This calling makes him sound like Moses, hearing God’s voice from the burning bush. Samuel quickly earned the reputation as a priest, prophet, and eventually, a king-maker. All of this background shows off Samuel’s great importance, and heightens our awareness of the key role he must play in the biblical story line.

Yet, for all this importance, Samuel’s purpose was to point beyond himself, first to David, and through David, to our true prophet, priest, and king, Jesus. The importance of Samuel highlights the importance of David, the long-awaited king. Scripture’s momentum is always pointing forward in the OT, building steam and mass as it tumbles purposefully toward Christ. How great must our Jesus be!

While we are speaking about the character of Samuel, it is a good time to watch this video about the nature of biblical characters: