Who was Eli in the Bible?

Eli was on Old Testament person who had some very modern problems. The recognition and respect he earned in public did not extend to his handling of his private affairs. He may have been an exalted priest, but he was a poor parent. His sons brought him grief and ruin. He lacked two very important qualities needed for effective parental discipline: firm resolve and corrective action.

Eli responded to situations rather than solving them. And even his responses tended to be weak. God pointed out his sons errors, but Eli did little to correct them. The contrast between God’s dealing with Eli and Eli dealing with his sons is clear. God gave warning, spelling out the consequences of disobedience, and then acted. Eli only warned. Children need to learn that their parents words and actions go together. Both love and discipline must be spoken as well as acted out.

But Eli had another problem. He was more concerned with the symbols of his religion than with the God they represented. For Eli, the ark of the covenant had become a relic to be protected rather than a reminder of the Protector. His faith had shifted from Creator to the created.

It may be easier to worship things that we can see like people, buildings or even scripture itself, but such tangible things have no power in themselves. The Bible is either merely a respectable religious relic, or it is the sharp and effective Word of God. Your attitude towards it is largely shaped by your relationship to the God from whom it comes.

What is your attitude about the Bible? Is it merely a relic that has to be stored away, or is it the Word of God? Do you know God? Do you know Jesus?

Are you certain that you are going to heaven? If the answer is no or your not really sure and there is something stirring inside you at this very moment to do this, then all you have to do is say a small prayer and you can be assured of your name being added to the Book of Life. Go to the prayer of salvation and pray the words out loud and believe in your heart and you will be saved.

Eli’s story is told in 1 Samuel 1 – 4. He is also mentioned in 1 Kings 2:26, 27

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