By Keith Bodner
This great observation provides 1 Samuel as a cosmopolitan paintings of literature, the place the reader is challenged with a story that's fraught with interpretative probabilities. In his specified literary interpreting Bodner lays unique emphasis at the fascinating array of characters that populate the narrative, and at the plot, in its layout and its configurations. therefore, a number of exciting episodes and personalities are handed in evaluation: from the symbolically charged closed womb of Hannah to the backwards fall and the damaged neck of Eli, to the unusual travel of the Ark of God throughout the menacing Philistine pentapolis, wreaking havoc. Then there's the complicated portrayal of Samuel the prophet, the emergence of the fugitive David as a pacesetter, and the eventual decline, insanity, and necromancy of King Saul. merely via a literary examine of its many ironies and ambiguities, Bodner amply exhibits, can the richness of this vintage royal drama be totally favored.
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Additional resources for 1 Samuel: A Narrative Commentary
1 Samuel 1 21 verb ‘ask’, yet Eli supplies them, and Eli has not even heard that Hannah wants a son because she was speaking ‘in her heart’ and no sound was heard. As Birch (1998: 975) notes, ‘Eli’s language in this speech introduces the ﬁrst two of seven uses of the verb “to ask” (ODY) in this chapter. ’ The occurrence of ‘ask’ is a signiﬁcant moment in the story, since this is the root that forms the name ‘Saul’. P. Fokkelman (1993: 51) intones, Shortly the root (ODY) is to become the most important key word in the whole section.
The catalogue of transgressions is summarized in one action: laying with the hostesses who serve ‘at the doorway of the tent of meeting’. In general terms, Walter Brueggemann (1990: 22) refers to the crimes and misdemeanors of Hophni and Phinehas as a ‘cynical use of priestly power’. In speciﬁc terms, it is notable that particular wrongdoing of laying with the hostesses is targeted. P. 11: The choice of the word [hostess, WZDEF] is incriminating as well because it engages in a play on words with the famous title ‘Lord of hosts’ (KZK\ WZDEF) which was mentioned, a short while ago, for the ﬁrst time in the Bible.
He arose and went to Eli, and said, ‘I’m here, for you called me’. Then Eli understood that the LORD was calling to the lad. Eli said to Samuel, ‘Go, lay down, and if it should happen that he calls to you, then you should say, “Speak, LORD, for your servant is hearing” ’. So Samuel went and lay down in his place. And the LORD came, and was standing, and called as previously, ‘Samuel! ’ And Samuel said, ‘Speak, for your servant is hearing’. American baseball has a well-known rule: three strikes, and batter is out.