Tuesday, December 07, 2010

An example of the simplicity and depth of Hebrew narrative

I began a new sermon series last Sunday morning through the book of 1 Samuel.  The first message was "The birth of Samuel" from chapter one.  I was struck again in reading the passage by the both the simplicity and depth of Hebrew narrative.  With the writers of the Old Testament, more is so often said with less.

I was struck, in particular, by one simple yet powerful line in 1 Samuel 1:2:  "Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children." `~ydIl'y> !yae hN"x;l.W ~ydIl'y> hN"nIp.li yhiy>w
 It reminded me of the story (probably apocryphal) that the author Ernest Hemingway was once asked to write a novel using only six words.  He is said to have written:  "For sale:  baby shoes, never worn."


1 comment:

Homeschool on the Croft said...

There is so much pain in these words: And Hannah had none. No children, which were God's blessing; no children, through which the promised Messiah might come. We would do well to remember what Hannah did with her pain - she took it to God, with tears. He heard.
I was reading Ps37 yesterday (again!) and the word 'Commit'...as in 'commit thy way unto the Lord'... literally means 'roll over to the Lord'.
How often I take a burden to God in prayer, and then walk away with the same burden...
Sorry - didn't mean to ramble!