Summary: When grandchildren are pushed into ministry.


“Now it came to pass when Samuel was old that he made his sons judges over Israel. The name of his firstborn was Joel, and the name of his second, Abijah; they were judges in Beersheba. But his sons did not walk in his ways; they turned aside after dishonest gain, took bribes, and perverted justice. Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah, and said to him, “Look, you are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now make us a king to judge us like all the nations” (I Sam. 8:1-5).

1. Three generations: Hannah ? Samuel ? Joel and Abijah.

2. God raised up judges. “The Lord raised up judges which delivered them” (Judges 2:16). Samuel made his sons judges.


3. Joel and Abijah were not raised up by God. “When Samuel was old (age 60) he made his sons judges over Israel” (I Sam. 8:1).

4. Why Samuel may be right to appoint sons.

a. No crisis. It was not a time of war.

b. God uses human means. God used fathers in the past to put their sons into office.

c. Mother’s example. Samuel did for sons what his mother Hannah did for him.

5. Why Samuel may have been wrong.

a. Premature. Samuel missed God’s leading, he would live 38 more years.

b. Samuel forgot the poor example of Eli. The high priest before Samuel did not properly correct his sons. “I (God) have warned him (Eli) continually . . . because his sons are blaspheming God; and he has not disciplined them” (I Sam. 3:13, NLB).

c. Their weak character. The sons were in ministry for the wrong reasons. “His (Samuel) sons walked not in his ways” (I Sam. 8:3).

d. People rejected sons. “The elders . . . said unto him (Samuel) . . . thy sons walk not in thy ways” (I Sam. 8:4-5).

e. Father reacted. “The thing displeased Samuel when they said give us a king to judge us” (I Sam. 8:6).

f. Political results. Prematurely instituted a (wrong) king, i.e., Saul. “The elders said . . . make us a king to judge us all the nations” (I Sam. 8:4, 6).


1. Grandmother Hannah’s godly walk.

a. Believed in prayer and fasting. “She (Hannah) wept and did not eat . . . prayed unto the Lord, and wept” (I Sam. 1:7, 10).

b. Was singled focused. “Out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto” (I Sam. 1:16).

c. Dedicated her child to God. “Now I am giving him (Samuel) to the Lord, and he will belong to the Lord his whole life” (I Sam. 1:28, NLB).

d. Worshiped God. “Then Hannah prayed, my heart rejoices in the Lord” (I Sam. 2:1).

2. Samuel faithfully served.

a. Served faithfully. “The child Samuel ministered unto the Lord” (I Sam.3:1).

b. Talked with God. “The Lord said to Samuel” (I Sam. 3:11).

c. Did not quit. “Samuel judged Israel all the days of his life” (I Sam. 7:15).

3. What the sons did wrong.

a. Rejected Samuel’s attitudes and actions. “His (Samuel) sons walked not in his ways” (I Sam. 8:3).

b. Served for money. The sons “turned aside for lucre” (v.3).

c. Sold out to money. The sons “took bribes” (v.3).

d. Violated the law. The sons “perverted judgment” (v.3).

When money is your primary goal,

You will eventually break some law.


1. Teach them stewardship. Stewardship is the proper management of time, talent and treasure for the glory of God. “Moreover, stewards must faithfully manage every thing for God” (I Cor. 4:2, ELT).

2. Teach them that money gain is not godliness. “False teachers think . . . financial gain is godliness” (I Tim. 6:3, 5, ELT). “Godliness that is satisfied with what God gives is great gain” (I Tim. 6:6, ELT).

3. Teach them that lust for money will destroy them. “The love of money is at the root of all kinds of evil, and some people craving money have wandered from the faith, and pierced themselves with many sorrows” (I Tim. 6:10).

4. Teach them Christian convictions. “But thou O man of God, flee these things (lust of money), and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience and meekness” (I Tim. 6:11).

5. Teach them to use money properly. “He that had received one (talent), went and digged in the earth and hid his lord’s money” (Matthew 25:18).

If you have never really accepted Jesus as your personal Savior, would you do it right now? Do not delay or put it off. If you would like to receive Christ by faith, pray this simple prayer in your heart:

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