1 Samuel 2:1

1 Hannah prayed: I'm bursting with God-news! I'm walking on air. I'm laughing at my rivals. I'm dancing my salvation.

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1 Samuel 2:1 Meaning and Commentary

1 Samuel 2:1

And Hannah prayed and said
She had prayed before, but that was mental, this vocal; she had prayed and was answered, and had what she prayed for, and now she gives thanks for it; and thanksgiving is one kind of prayer, or a part of it; see ( 1 Timothy 2:1 ) ( Philippians 4:6 ) , wherefore though what follows is a song, it was expressed in prayer; and therefore it is said she prayed, and that by a spirit of prophecy, as the Targum; hence she is by the Jews F8 reckoned one of the seven prophetesses; and indeed in this song she not only relates the gracious experiences of divine goodness she had been favoured with, and celebrates the divine perfections, and treats of the dealings of God with men, both in a way of providence and grace; but prophesies of things that should be done hereafter in Israel, and particularly of the Messiah and of his kingdom. There is a great likeness in this song to the song of the Virgin Mary; compare ( 1 Samuel 2:1 ) with ( Luke 1:46 Luke 1:47 ) and ( 1 Samuel 2:2 ) with ( Luke 1:49 ) and ( 1 Samuel 2:4 1 Samuel 2:8 ) with ( Luke 1:51 Luke 1:53 ) ,

my heart rejoiceth in the Lord:
not in her son the Lord had given her, but in the goodness and kindness of the Lord in bestowing him on her, as an answer of prayer; which showed great condescension to her, the notice he took of her, the love he had to her, and his well pleasedness in her, and his acceptance of her prayer through Christ; she rejoiced not in her husband, nor in the wealth and riches they were possessed of, nor in any creature enjoyments, but in the Lord, the giver of all; nor in her religious services and sacrifices, but in the Lord Christ, through whom her duties were acceptable to God, and who was the antitype of the sacrifices offered; and it is in the person, offices, and grace of Christ, that we should alone rejoice: see ( Philippians 4:4 ) ( 3:3 ) this joy of Hannah's was not worldly, but spiritual; not outward, but inward; not hypocritical, but real and hearty:

mine horn is exalted in the Lord:
which supposes that she had been in a low estate, was crest fallen, and her horn was defiled in the dust, as Job says was his case, ( Job 16:15 ) , when God had shut up her womb, and her adversary upbraided her with it, and provoked and fretted her; and when she was so full of grief, that she could not eat her food, and prayed in the bitterness of her soul; but now she could lift up her horn and her head, as horned creatures, to whom the allusion is, do, when they are lively and strong; now she could look pleasant and cheerful, and even triumph, being raised to an high estate, and greatly favoured of the Lord, to whom she ascribes this change of her state and circumstances: it was owing to his power and grace that she was thus strengthened and exalted; as it is owing to the same, that the people of God, who are in a low estate by nature, are raised out of it in conversion, and brought into an open state of grace and favour with God, and put into the possession of rich blessings and mercies, and have hope of eternal glory, on account of which they can exult and triumph:

my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies;
meaning Peninnah, and those that provoked her, and upbraided her with her barrenness, to whom she was not able to make any reply; but now her mouth was opened, and she could speak largely, and did; not in a way of reproach and reviling, in retaliation for what she had met with from others; but in prayer to God, to whom she could come with open mouth, and use freedom and boldness, and plead with importunity, fervency, and in faith, and in praise and thanksgiving to him for the great and good things he had done for her, and would now freely and largely speak of them to others; to some, her friends, to their joy and pleasure; and to others, her enemies, to their grief and confusion:

because I rejoice in thy salvation;
not only in temporal salvation wrought by the Lord for her, whereby she was delivered from the reproach of barrenness, through a son being given unto her; but in spiritual and eternal salvation, through the Messiah, she had knowledge of, and faith in, as appears from ( 1 Samuel 2:10 ) , as all believers in him do, as it is contrived by the wisdom of God, wrought out by Christ, and applied by his Spirit; it being so great, so suitable, so perfect and complete, entirely free, and of an everlasting duration; see ( Psalms 20:5 ) ( Isaiah 25:9 ) .


F8 T. Megillah, fol. 14. 1.

1 Samuel 2:1 In-Context

1 Hannah prayed: I'm bursting with God-news! I'm walking on air. I'm laughing at my rivals. I'm dancing my salvation.
2 Nothing and no one is holy like God, no rock mountain like our God.
3 Don't dare talk pretentiously - not a word of boasting, ever! For God knows what's going on. He takes the measure of everything that happens.
4 The weapons of the strong are smashed to pieces, while the weak are infused with fresh strength.
5 The well-fed are out begging in the streets for crusts, while the hungry are getting second helpings. The barren woman has a houseful of children, while the mother of many is bereft.
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved.