NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from The Gospel Project curriculum.
Bible Passages: 1 Samuel 1:20, 24-28; 2:1-2,6-8; 3:15-21
— How has God been good to you in recent days? Be as specific as possible and worship Him as He is due.
— How can the church challenge the worldview that children are a burden and not a blessing from God?
— Why should the sovereignty of God over our circumstances lead us to joy and worship rather than bitterness and despair?
Food for Thought:
Read 1 Samuel 2:1-11. We are a curious people. We remember for years the most minor of slights against us but are amnesiacs when it comes to remembering God’s graciousness to us even five minutes ago. Perhaps it is because deep down we believe we deserve God’s goodness to us.
Notice however how Hannah began her prayer. Hannah thanked God for His gift and praised Him for His sovereignty and greatness, even as she was leaving Samuel with Eli. Surely her heart was breaking, but that doesn’t appear to be her focus. Her heart was so full of thankfulness and praise to God. Perhaps this brought comfort and courage to her for what she was about to do. Or maybe she realized that the gift of this son was about more than just her. Perhaps she understood that her life and his life were ultimately about the glory of the Lord.
After leaving her son in the care of Eli, she did not offer up a prayer of lament or a prayer seeking comfort from God. She was no amnesiac. Instead, Hannah rejoiced in the Lord because she did not take God’s goodness for granted. She had not forgotten how God had lifted her up. So now, she lifted Him up.
Yes, Hannah also boasted in the victory over her enemies, but even that was not the foundation of her praise; God’s goodness was. Hannah understood that God was just as good when she cradled Samuel in her arms as when she placed him in the care of Eli. Hannah’s heart welled up with spontaneous praise at the gift of her child.
What a gift from God a son or daughter is! Parents are given the blessing of loving and raising another image bearer of God for His glory. What an amazing joy and stewardship. We all need these reminders at times. Children are a blessing from the Lord (Psalm 127).
Sadly, this truth is lost on many people who see children as a burden, with some even advocating for abortion or infanticide — both the murder of image bearers.
The Gospel Project
The Gospel Project is a chronological, Christ-centered study for kids, students and adults. The Bible is not a collection of stories. It is one story of God’s plan to rescue His people from sin and death. It is the story of redemption, the Gospel message of Jesus Christ. More information can be found at LifeWay.com/gospelproject .