When God calls Samuel it seems like he sleeping inside the Temple/Tabernacle were the ark of God was

1 Samuel 3:2-3 NASB

2 But it happened at that time as Eli was lying down in his place (now his eyesight had begun to be [b]poor and he could not see well), 3 and the lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the Lord where the ark of God was,

But according to the design given Moses which is described in the book of Hebrews there were only two rooms the holy place and the holy of holies which housed the vessels of God.There is no mention of anyone sleeping in those rooms.

Hebrews 9:15 NASB

9 Now even the first covenant had regulations for divine worship and the earthly sanctuary. 2 For a [a]tabernacle was equipped, the [b]outer sanctuary, in which were the lampstand, the table, and the [c]sacred bread; this is called the Holy Place. 3 Behind the second veil there was a [d]tabernacle which is called the Most Holy Place, 4 having a golden [e]altar of incense and the ark of the covenant covered on all sides with gold, in which was a golden jar holding the manna, Aaron’s staff which budded, and the tablets of the covenant; 5 and above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the [f]atoning cover; but about these things we cannot now speak in detail.

.By the time there were at Shiloh it is said Samuel was sleeping inside the Temple/Tabernacle which also housed the Ark of the covenant which somehow points to the holy of holies

Did Samuel sleep in the holy of holies at Shiloh?

  • It was forbidden for any but the High Priest, and that once a year, to enter within the veil. Hebrews 9:7.
    – Nigel J
    May 14, 2021 at 8:37

2 Answers 2


Please see if this helps.

  1. Some scholars think that Samuel was actually sleeping in the front compartment of the tent sanctuary called the Holy Place, the room where the Menorah, Table of Shewbread and the Incense Altar resided. This is very unlikely as this was still part of the Sanctury.

  2. It is more likely that Samuel was sleeping in one of the many chambers(tents) that had been erected in and around the Sanctury but within the outer courtyard. These tents were used by the priests to rest as well as be in close distance to the Sanctury where the ark of G-d was.

  • Good answer. +1.
    – Dottard
    May 14, 2021 at 9:08

Did Samuel sleep in the holy of holies at Shiloh?

No. Leviticus 16:2

And the LORD said to Moses: "Tell your brother Aaron not to enter freely into the Most Holy Place behind the veil in front of the mercy seat on the ark, or else he will die, because I appear in the cloud above the mercy seat.

Where did Samuel sleep?

1 Samuel 3:

2 And at that time Eli, whose eyesight had grown so dim that he could not see, was lying in his room.

Eli was in his room.

3 Before the lamp of God had gone out, Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was located.

Samuel might not have his own room but somewhere near the ark of God before the veil.

4Then the LORD called to Samuel, and he answered, “Here I am.”

5 He ran to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you have called me.”

Samuel was within the shouting distance of Eli.

“I did not call,” Eli replied. “Go back and lie down.”

So he went and lay down.

The night had passed.

15 Samuel lay down until morning and then opened the doors of the house of the Lord.

Eli had his own room inside the house of the Lord. Samuel was sleeping inside the house of the Lord within shouting distance of Eli, near the ark before the curtain.

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