Respecting God’s Judgment
One of the most poignant episodes of the judgment of God occurred in the Old Testament case of Eli. Eli was a judge and priest over Israel. He was, for the most part, a godly man. But his sons were wicked and profaned the house of God. Eli rebuked them but did not fully restrain them. God revealed to Samuel that He would judge the house of Eli:
“Behold, I will do something in Israel at which both ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them.” (1 Sam. 3:11–13)
When Eli persisted in asking Samuel what God had said, Samuel finally told him. When Eli heard the words, he said: “It is the Lord. Let Him do what seems good to Him” (v. 18).
What seemed good to God was to punish the house of Eli. Eli recognized the Word of God when he heard it because he understood the character of Him whose word it was. A God before whom we need to have no fear is not God but an idol made by our own hands.
Eli said: “It is the Lord. Let Him do what seems good to Him.” Can you make this affirmation from the depths of your heart in difficult times as well as good times?
Passages for Further Study
1 Samuel 3:10
1 Samuel 3:18