Summary: This sermon exams the life of Hannah and the process she went through in giving birth to Samuel. There are three spiritual principles for fruitfulness.
FRUIT FROM THE WOMB
1 Samuel Chapter 1
This is the story of Hannah and her desire for children. Every Hebrew woman longed to give birth to a male child, for since the time when Eve was given the promise of a Seed who would come from woman, there was a possibility that every son born could be the Messiah or in His line.
The son therefore represents the promise that is contained within each one of us lying dormant until conceived and birthed by the Holy Spirit. This sermon examines the story of this woman and the birth of Samuel, a prophet from whom not one word he spoke “dropped to the ground”.
Conceiving and giving birth is usually a picture of the process of the believer coming into their promise. It’s interesting to note that 9 months is symbolic of the pregnancy period e.g. Job’s trial was 9 months.
Hannah – Hebrew woman who was barren – no promise, no blessings, no inheritance to the messianic line. Barrenness was assumed to be the result of curse - Deuteronomy 28:18 “Cursed shall be the fruit of your body …”
Yet notice the cause of her barrenness - 1 Samuel 1:5-6 But to Hannah he would give a double portion, for he loved Hannah, although the LORD had closed her womb.6 And her rival also provoked her severely, to make her miserable, because the LORD had closed her womb.
Her situation had been caused by God here is a principle –
Deuteronomy 8:1-5,16 “Every commandment which I command you today you must be careful to observe, that you may live and multiply, and go in and possess the land of which the LORD swore to your fathers.2 “And you shall remember that the LORD your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not.3 “So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD.4 “Your garments did not wear out on you, nor did your foot swell these forty years.5 “You should know in your heart that as a man chastens his son, so the LORD your God chastens you.16 “who fed you in the wilderness with manna, which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do you good in the end—
God is constantly testing us – to see what is in our hearts – to refine our faith – to produce fruit that will be lasting – to do us good in the end.
THE TESTING GROUND
• From the country of Ephraim - Genesis 41:52 and the name of the second he called Ephraim: “For God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.”
• The Feast of Tabernacles - Deuteronomy 16:13-15 “You shall observe the Feast of Tabernacles seven days, when you have gathered from your threshing floor and from your winepress.14 “And you shall rejoice in your feast, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and your female servant and the Levite, the stranger and the fatherless and the widow, who are within your gates.15 “Seven days you shall keep a sacred feast to the LORD your God in the place which the LORD chooses, because the LORD your God will bless you in all your produce and in all the work of your hands, so that you surely rejoice.
• The Place Shiloh - Joshua 18:1 Now the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of meeting there. And the land was subdued before them.
Hannah came from Ephraim a constant reminder of fruitfulness, yet she was barren. She was celebrating the Feast of Tabernacles at Shiloh, a festival celebrating the produce that God had given in the place of His Presence. Again what was she producing she felt deserted by God’s Presence. This is the testing ground of our lives. God gives us promises, the evidence of His word, the testimonies of others lead us to believe these things are possible but what do we do when they don’t happen? This is the test of the heart do we trust the God of Promise or do we look for the promise?
In the midst of testing there comes the attack of the enemy, and the opinion of others.
THE TESTINGS OF ATTACK
• The Attack of Provocation - 1 Samuel 1:7 So it was, year by year, when she went up to the house of the LORD, that she provoked her; therefore she wept and did not eat. This is the attack of others who are of the opinion that nothing will happen. They are tools in the Devils hands who try to shatter our dreams.