The first three chapters of 1 Samuel provide a steep contrast between godly, young Samuel and the family of Eli, who is the high priest ministering before the Lord at the tabernacle in Shiloh. At the tip of the spear of Eli’s family are his two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, perhaps the first predatory priests mentioned in the Bible. Their actions and behavior are so immoral and evil, that they cause the people of Israel to lose faith and abhor the offering of the Lord.
Lest you think the Lord is full of compassion and mercy apart from justice when it comes to this kind of evil committed by His “servants,” the Bible makes it clear that He is determined to judge Eli’s family, and that it will give the Lord pleasure to put to death Hophni and Phinehas.
This week’s Bible study is a good point to pause and meditate upon the justice of our Lord. After all, justice is just as much a part of His character as are mercy and grace. Perhaps this will cause us to stop and think about the kind of justice that was brought against our Lord Jesus Christ who bore the wrath of God in payment for our sins. Eli asks an honest question: “if man sins against God, who can intercede for him?” We know the answer to this question. It is Jesus Christ. We are no different or better than Hophni and Phinehas, but we have a redeemer who interceded on our behalf. Praise Jesus.–Chris Eller
This Week’s Core Practice
Authenticity (John 13:33-34): I know and understand biblical truths and transfer these truths into everyday life. Who I am on the inside and outside is a pure reflection of Christ and His Word.