Song of Hannah
The faithfulness of Hannah as a wife, mother, and servant of God is one that should be imitated by every Christian woman. Hannah understood the pressure of being barren, while watching her rival have children. She had for many years perceived her unanswered prayer for a child as an example of God’s silence. Hannah dealt with depression and its effect upon her heart, but she never stopped trusting in the faithfulness of God. Hannah continued to pray and trust in God!
Eventually the Lord answered Hannah’s prayer and she gave birth to a son, Samuel. She had promised the Lord, if she was given a son, then she would return him to the Lord all the days of his life. When Samuel was weaned from Hannah, she returned to Shiloh with the child and fulfilled her promise to the Lord. The pain of this separation must have been great, but Hannah’s faithfulness and trust in the providence of God continued to shine throughout her life. The conclusion of her giving Samuel to the Lord was not further depression, but rather a song of praise to her great and almighty God.
The song of Hannah is similar to many others given in the Old Testament. When the Israelites crossed the Red Sea, Moses praised God in song for His great deliverance of Israel from their bondage in Egypt (Exodus 15). In the aftermath of Sisera’s defeat, Deborah and Barak sang a song of praise to God for His deliverance from the Canaanites (Judges 5). When Hannah returned her only son to serve the Lord, she sang a song of praise to her powerful and mighty God (1 Samuel 2:1-10).
The song of Hannah did not contain empty words spoken from rote memory, but rather words sprang forth from her mouth and heart, the source of her strength, which could not be contained. Hannah sang about the incomparable God of Israel. Only God is holy! Only God is our rock and there is no one besides Him! Hannah warned those who approach God not to come with pride or strength, but rather with humility toward the One who will judge all of our actions. Hannah reminded those who have been left, deserted, or neglected by this world will not be overlooked by God. Hannah stood as the prime example of one who was barren, but by God’s power would now have multiple children (1 Samuel 2:21).
Hannah spoke concerning the power of God regarding life and death. We are powerless in regard to changing the outcome of death in our physical lives, but through the power of God and faith in Jesus, death no longer has this control over the Christian (Hebrews 2:14). Hannah spoke with confidence concerning this type of resurrection hundreds of years prior the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. The idea of resurrection was not as common in the Old Testament, but that does not mean it was completely foreign. Job wrote - “25 “As for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, And at the last He will take His stand on the earth. 26 “Even after my skin is destroyed, Yet from my flesh I shall see God;” (19:25-26). Hannah understood in her faith that this life was only in preparation for the one to come. She like so many others in the Old Testament lived in preparation for a better country that would be found only through faith in God!
As Hannah began to conclude her song, she returned to those who have been discarded and overlooked in this world. The poor and needy are not ignored by God, but rather He cares for everyone. We may never have what others may in this life, but if we are found faithful in the sight of God, then He will exalt us according to His grace and power. Finally, Hannah contrasts the actions and outcomes of those who draw near to God versus those in rebellion against Him. The wicked will be silenced and those who contend with the Lord will be shattered, but the godly will be kept by the Lord. At the conclusion of Hannah’s song, we find the earliest Old Testament prophecy connecting Israel’s future King and Messiah. What a tremendous conclusion to a beautiful and awesome song in praise toward God!
The beauty of Hannah’s song is found in nearly every verse as she proclaims God’s strength, power, and authority. She found hope in the God of Israel despite her barrenness. She trusted in the God of Israel as she was separated from her son, Samuel. She was blessed by the God of Israel for her faithfulness in fulfilling her vow to the Lord. Hannah is a godly woman who trusted in the providence and will of God. If only we would manifest a similar faith and trust in God like Hannah. May God bless our efforts to imitate those who remained faithful to God despite the difficult situations of their lives.