1 Samuel 7)
1: And the men of Kirjath-jearim came, and fetched up the ark of the Lord, and brought it into the house of Abinadab which is in the hill, and sanctified Eleazar his son to keep the ark of the Lord.
1040 to 1020 B.C.
2: And it came to pass, while the ark abode in Kirjath-jearim, that the time was long (Ark remained with Philistines seven months [6:1]; sent from Ekron to Kirjath-jearim in 1040, and remained the 20 years [chapter 7]. From the capture in 1040 B.C. to its entry into Zion in 950 B.C. was 89 years [2 Sam. 2:17]); for it was twenty years:
A i -2-6-. Israel. Repentance. k -6. Government of Samuel. Place. B i 7-14. Israel. Recovery. k 15-17. Government of Samuel. Time.
and all the house of Israel lamented after the Lord.
3: And Samuel spoke to all the house of Israel, saying, “If you all do return to the Lord with all your hearts (minds), then put away the strange gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your minds to the Lord, and serve Him only: and He will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.”
4: Then the sons of Israel did put away Baalim and Ashtaroth, and served the Lord only.
5: And Samuel said, “Gather all Israel to Mizpeh, and I will pray for you to the Lord.”
6: And they gathered together to Mizpeh, and drew water, and poured it out before the Lord, and fasted on that day, and said there, “We have sinned against the Lord.” (Notice the difference. This is doing it the right way. God's way. Discipline)
And Samuel ruled the sons of Israel in Mizpeh.
7: And when the Philistines heard that the sons of Israel were gathered together to Mizpeh, the princes of the Philistines (see Josh. 13:3) went up against Israel. And when the children of Israel heard it, they were afraid of the Philistines.
8: And the sons of Israel said to Samuel, “Cease not to cry to the Lord our God for us, that He will save us out of the hand of the Philistines.” (Ask God for help)
9: And Samuel took a sucking lamb, and offered it up for a burnt offering wholly to the Lord (Samuel was a Levite, and according to 1 Chron. 23:27-32 could do this; though according to Num.18:3 he could not have acted in the holy place): and Samuel cried to the Lord for Israel; and the Lord heard him.
10: And as Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to battle against Israel: but the Lord thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel. (It makes a big difference when God is involved)
11: And the men of Israel went out of Mizpeh (= watchtower), and pursued the Philistines, and smote them, until they came under Beth-car (=house of the lamb).
12: Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen (= tooth), and called the name of it Eben-ezer (= stone of help), saying, “Up to this time has the Lord helped us.”
13: So the Philistines were subdued, and they came no more into the borders of Israel: and the hand of the Lord was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel.
14: And the cities which the Philistines had taken from Israel were restored to Israel, from Ekron even to Gath; and the coasts thereof did Israel deliver out of the hands of the Philistines. And there was peace between Israel and the Amorites (= people of highlands).
15: And Samuel ruled Israel all the days of his life.
16: And he went from year to year in circuit to Bethel, and Gilgal, and Mizpeh, and ruled Israel in all those places.
17: And his return was to Ramah; for there was his house (cp. 1:19, &c.); and there he ruled Israel; and there he built an altar (Shiloh forsaken, and Ark separated from Tabernacle. There was no chosen "place") to the Lord. (Always set aside time to meditate and talk to God.)