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From Eternity Past

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    Samuel Becomes a Judge

    A large assembly was gathered at Mizpeh. Here a solemn fast was held. With deep humiliation the people confessed their sins, and they invested Samuel with the authority of judge.EP 429.3

    The Philistines interpreted this gathering to be a council of war and set out to disperse the Israelites before their plans could be matured. Tidings of their approach caused great terror in Israel. The people entreated Samuel, “Cease not to cry unto the Lord our God for us, that He will save us out of the hand of the Philistines.”EP 429.4

    While Samuel was in the act of presenting a lamb as a burnt offering, the Philistines drew near for battle. Then the Mighty One who had parted the Red Sea and made a way through Jordan for Israel, again manifested His power. A terrible storm burst upon the advancing host, and the earth was strewn with the bodies of mighty warriors.EP 429.5

    The Israelites had stood trembling with hope and fear. When they beheld the slaughter of their enemies, they knew that God had accepted their repentance. Though unprepared for battle, they seized the weapons of the slaughtered Philistines and pursued the fleeing host. This victory was gained upon the very field where, twenty years before, Israel had been smitten before the Philistines, the priests slain, and the ark of God taken. The Philistines were now so completely subdued that they surrendered the strongholds which had been taken from Israel and refrained from acts of hostility for many years. Other nations followed this example, and the Israelites enjoyed peace until the close of Samuel's sole administration.EP 430.1

    That the occasion might never be forgotten, Samuel set up a great stone as a memorial. He called it Ebenezer, “the stone of help,” saying to the people, “Hitherto hath Jehovah helped us.”EP 430.2

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