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Search Unit 11 - Respect for Things Holy

TEXT: Deuteronomy 23:21-23; 1 Samuel 1:9-18,24-28; Ecclesiastes 5:2,4

A vow is a specific promise made to God, a voluntary covenant sometimes made in a time of trouble. A vow may be to give a gift, to do something to honor God, to do something in His service, or perhaps to abstain from doing a certain thing. Our service to God does not necessarily demand vows of us, but when a vow is made, God requires that it be paid. Therefore a vow should not be made rashly.


  1. There is a difference between a vow and a consecration. A vow is a special promise that a person pledges to God, that which would not necessarily be included in his consecrations. God requires consecrations of our lives, our talents, and our time. Of what value, then, is a vow? When are vows often made?
  2. In Hannah’s vow, she spoke in her heart; her lips moved but her voice was not heard. She was misunderstood by Eli, the priest, but how do we know that God received her vow?
  3. How soon did Hannah pay her vow? Why should we be quick to pay our vows?
  4. In our text the Bible speaks about being rash with our mouth in connection with making vows. In other words, the writer would admonish us to proceed with caution or deliberation when making vows to God. Vows are sacred to God and binding upon the person who makes them. Under what circumstances might a vow be considered a sin?
  5. The Bible says that the man who does not pay his vow is a fool. What circumstances might cause a person to not want to pay his vow?
  6. In his vow Jacob asked for God to keep him, for raiment to wear, for bread to eat, and for a return to father’s house in peace. If God would do these things for him, then Jacob would do certain things for God. What advantage would Jacob gain by making this vow—a voluntary promise to God?
  7. In his vow, Jacob promised that the Lord would be his God, the pillar would become God’s house, and that he would pay tithes of all that God gave him. What evidence do we have that Jacob paid his vow? See Genesis 32:24-30; 35:6-15.