Then Hannah prayed and said:1 "My heart rejoices2 in the LORD; in the LORD my horna3 is lifted high. My mouth boasts4 over my enemies,5 for I delight in your deliverance.
"There is no one holyb6 like7 the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock8 like our God.
"Do not keep talking so proudly or let your mouth speak such arrogance,9 for the LORD is a God who knows,10 and by him deeds11 are weighed.124
"The bows of the warriors are broken,13 but those who stumbled are armed with strength.145
Those who were full hire themselves out for food, but those who were hungry15 hunger no more. She who was barren16 has borne seven children, but she who has had many sons pines away.
"The LORD brings death and makes alive;17 he brings down to the gravec and raises up.187
The LORD sends poverty and wealth;19 he humbles and he exalts.208
He raises21 the poor22 from the dust23 and lifts the needy24 from the ash heap; he seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor.25 "For the foundations26 of the earth are the LORD's; upon them he has set the world.
He will guard the feet27 of his saints,28 but the wicked will be silenced in darkness.29 "It is not by strength30 that one prevails;
those who oppose the LORD will be shattered.31 He will thunder32 against them from heaven; the LORD will judge33 the ends of the earth. "He will give strength34 to his king and exalt the horn35 of his anointed."
Then Elkanah went home to Ramah,36 but the boy ministered37 before the LORD under Eli the priest.
Eli's sons were wicked men; they had no regard38 for the LORD.
Now it was the practice39 of the priests with the people that whenever anyone offered a sacrifice and while the meat40 was being boiled, the servant of the priest would come with a three-pronged fork in his hand.
He would plunge it into the pan or kettle or caldron or pot, and the priest would take for himself whatever the fork brought up. This is how they treated all the Israelites who came to Shiloh.
But even before the fat was burned, the servant of the priest would come and say to the man who was sacrificing, "Give the priest some meat to roast; he won't accept boiled meat from you, but only raw."
If the man said to him, "Let the fat41 be burned up first, and then take whatever you want," the servant would then answer, "No, hand it over now; if you don't, I'll take it by force."
This sin of the young men was very great in the LORD's sight, for theyd were treating the LORD's offering with contempt.4218
But Samuel was ministering43 before the LORD--a boy wearing a linen ephod.4419
Each year his mother made him a little robe and took it to him when she went up with her husband to offer the annual45 sacrifice.
Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife, saying, "May the LORD give you children by this woman to take the place of the one she prayed46 for and gave to the LORD." Then they would go home.
And the LORD was gracious to Hannah;47 she conceived and gave birth to three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew48 up in the presence of the LORD.
Now Eli, who was very old, heard about everything49 his sons were doing to all Israel and how they slept with the women50 who served at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting.
So he said to them, "Why do you do such things? I hear from all the people about these wicked deeds of yours.
No, my sons; it is not a good report that I hear spreading among the LORD's people.
If a man sins against another man, Gode may mediate for him; but if a man sins against the LORD, who will51 intercede52 for him?" His sons, however, did not listen to their father's rebuke, for it was the LORD's will to put them to death.
And the boy Samuel continued to grow53 in stature and in favor with the LORD and with men.54
Now a man of God55 came to Eli and said to him, "This is what the LORD says: 'Did I not clearly reveal myself to your father's house when they were in Egypt under Pharaoh?
I chose56 your father out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to go up to my altar, to burn incense,57 and to wear an ephod58 in my presence. I also gave your father's house all the offerings59 made with fire by the Israelites.
Why do youf scorn my sacrifice and offering60 that I prescribed for my dwelling?61 Why do you honor your sons more than me by fattening yourselves on the choice parts of every offering made by my people Israel?'
"Therefore the LORD, the God of Israel, declares: 'I promised that your house and your father's house would minister before me forever.62' But now the LORD declares: 'Far be it from me! Those who honor me I will honor,63 but those who despise64 me will be disdained.6531
The time is coming when I will cut short your strength and the strength of your father's house, so that there will not be an old man in your family line6632
and you will see distress67 in my dwelling. Although good will be done to Israel, in your family line there will never be an old man.6833
Every one of you that I do not cut off from my altar will be spared only to blind your eyes with tears and to grieve your heart, and all your descendants69 will die in the prime of life.
" 'And what happens to your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, will be a sign70 to you--they will both die71 on the same day.7235
I will raise up for myself a faithful priest,73 who will do according to what is in my heart and mind. I will firmly establish his house, and he will minister before my anointed74 one always.
Then everyone left in your family line will come and bow down before him for a piece of silver and a crust of bread and plead,75 "Appoint me to some priestly office so I can have food to eat.76" ' "