The Meaning of 1 Samuel 2:22 Explained

1 Samuel 2:22

KJV: Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.

YLT: And Eli is very old, and hath heard all that his sons do to all Israel, and how that they lie with the women who are assembling at the opening of the tent of meeting,

Darby: And Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons were doing to all Israel, and that they lay with the women that served at the entrance of the tent of meeting.

ASV: Now Eli was very old; and he heard all that his sons did unto all Israel, and how that they lay with the women that did service at the door of the tent of meeting.

What does 1 Samuel 2:22 Mean?

Context Summary

1 Samuel 2:22-36 - The Penalty Of Dishonoring God
Eli was held responsible for the excesses of his sons. He was a mild and gentle old man. But there are times when mildness and gentleness are out of place. We must be stern and strong when the occasion demands. It is always necessary to be on the alert, lest flabbiness and weakness should pass under the designation of Christian graces. Moreover, severer measures might have restrained his sons, 1 Samuel 3:13. Therefore in the message of judgment Eli was included, 1 Samuel 2:27-36. He is classed with his sons and reckoned as an accomplice with them in their sin against God, 1 Samuel 2:29-30.
Notice that prediction of the "faithful priests," 1 Samuel 2:35-36. In its first reference Samuel may be seen, but beyond him rises the figure of Another who ever lives to intercede, and is expressly designated as "faithful." Eli and his sons lived in the Temple, where the burning holiness of God was reflected in every service; but they seem never to have heard the chant of the seraphim, nor to have cried, "Woe is me, for I am undone," nor to have felt the burning coal on their lips. Do not trifle with the sacred privileges of God's house! They will condemn where they do not uplift. [source]

Chapter Summary: 1 Samuel 2

1  Hannah's song in thankfulness
12  The sin of Eli's sons
18  Samuel's ministry
20  by Eli's blessing Hannah is more fruitful
22  Eli reproves his sons
27  A prophecy against Eli's house

What do the individual words in 1 Samuel 2:22 mean?

Now Eli was old very and he heard - all everything did his sons to all Israel and how they lay with the women who assembled at the door of the tabernacle of meeting
וְעֵלִ֖י זָקֵ֣ן מְאֹ֑ד וְשָׁמַ֗ע אֵת֩ כָּל־ אֲשֶׁ֨ר יַעֲשׂ֤וּן בָּנָיו֙ לְכָל־ יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל וְאֵ֤ת אֲשֶֽׁר־ יִשְׁכְּבוּן֙ אֶת־ הַנָּשִׁ֔ים הַצֹּ֣בְא֔וֹת פֶּ֖תַח אֹ֥הֶל מוֹעֵֽד

וְעֵלִ֖י  Now  Eli 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Proper Noun, masculine singular
Root: עֵלִי  
Sense: descendant of Aaron through Ithamar and high priest and judge of Israel when Samuel entered service as a child.
זָקֵ֣ן  was  old 
Parse: Verb, Qal, Perfect, third person masculine singular
Root: זָקֵן  
Sense: to be old, become old.
מְאֹ֑ד  very 
Parse: Adverb
Root: מְאֹד  
Sense: exceedingly, much subst.
וְשָׁמַ֗ע  and  he  heard 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Verb, Qal, Conjunctive perfect, third person masculine singular
Root: שָׁמַע 
Sense: to hear, listen to, obey.
אֵת֩  - 
Parse: Direct object marker
Root: אֹות 
Sense: sign of the definite direct object, not translated in English but generally preceding and indicating the accusative.
אֲשֶׁ֨ר  everything 
Parse: Pronoun, relative
Root: אֲשֶׁר 
Sense: (relative part.).
בָּנָיו֙  his  sons 
Parse: Noun, masculine plural construct, third person masculine singular
Root: בֵּן 
Sense: son, grandson, child, member of a group.
לְכָל־  to  all 
Parse: Preposition-l, Noun, masculine singular construct
Root: כֹּל  
Sense: all, the whole.
יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל  Israel 
Parse: Proper Noun, masculine singular
Root: יִשְׂרָאֵל  
Sense: the second name for Jacob given to him by God after his wrestling with the angel at Peniel.
אֲשֶֽׁר־  how 
Parse: Pronoun, relative
Root: אֲשֶׁר 
Sense: (relative part.).
יִשְׁכְּבוּן֙  they  lay 
Parse: Verb, Qal, Imperfect, third person masculine plural, Paragogic nun
Root: שָׁכַב  
Sense: to lie down.
הַנָּשִׁ֔ים  the  women 
Parse: Article, Noun, feminine plural
Root: אִשָּׁה  
Sense: woman, wife, female.
הַצֹּ֣בְא֔וֹת  who  assembled 
Parse: Article, Verb, Qal, Participle, feminine plural
Root: צָבָא  
Sense: to go forth, wage war, fight, serve.
פֶּ֖תַח  at  the  door 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular construct
Root: פֶּתַח  
Sense: opening, doorway, entrance.
אֹ֥הֶל  of  the  tabernacle 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular construct
Root: אֹהֶל  
Sense: tent.
מוֹעֵֽד  of  meeting 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular
Root: מֹועֵד  
Sense: appointed place, appointed time, meeting.