I Samuel Chapter
Memory verses for this week:
Acts 9:16 For I will show him how great things he must suffer for
my name's sake.
Introduction: We continue
our study on Samuel this week. In last weekís lesson, we studied
about David returning a second time to seek asylum in the land of
the Philistines. He has more success this time and King Achish gives
David and his men the city of Ziklag to live in. They were able to
stay there 18 months before having to leave. At the end of the
chapter, we saw David telling Achish that he was attacking the
southern tribes of Kenites and Jerahmeelites which were allies of
Israel, when in fact he was attacking the allies of the Philistines
to obtain the plunder he was sharing with the king. He and his men
attacked and destroyed the tribes of the Geshurites, Gezrites, and
Living among Israelís Enemy
28:1 And it came to pass in those days, that the Philistines
gathered their armies together for warfare, to fight with Israel.
And Achish said unto David, Know thou assuredly, that thou shalt go
out with me to battle, thou and thy men.
28:2 And David said to Achish, Surely thou shalt know what thy
servant can do. And Achish said to David, Therefore will I make thee
keeper of mine head for ever.
Philistines gathered their armies together to plan war against
Israel. King Achish indicates to David that he expects him to go to
war with them and to fight against his home nation of Israel. Just
the thought of David going against his own people was a sad thing.
He was to be Israelís next king, and he certainly should not go out
and fight against the very people God had chosen him to be king
over. David answers the king and says that he would surely know what
David could do. Achish thought he already knew what David could do,
and tells David that if he would do this, that he would make him
keeper of his head for ever. In reality, this might be more factual
that Achish realized. David might own King Achishís head like he did
Goliath, the great warrior of the Philistines. Achish of course
meant that David would be his bodyguard. David most surely would not
fight against his own people since he was doing all he could at this
time to help the allies of Israel and fight against their enemies.
Those tribes bordering Philistia that were allies to Israel had been
protected by David, not attacked as he had indicated to King Achish.
28:3 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had lamented him, and
buried him in Ramah, even in his own city. And Saul had put away
those that had familiar spirits, and the wizards, out of the land.
28:4 And the Philistines gathered themselves together, and came and
pitched in Shunem: and Saul gathered all Israel together, and they
pitched in Gilboa.
28:5 And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines, he was afraid,
and his heart greatly trembled.
28:6 And when Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not,
neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.
great prophet of the Lord had died as we read in our earlier study.
He was buried in Ramah, his home city. At this time, Saul had put
away all that had familiar spirits and wizards from the land. God
has an opinion about wizards and witches and those that deal with
Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after
wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.
And the soul that turneth after such as have familiar spirits, and
after wizards, to go a whoring after them, I will even set my face
against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people.
Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD
A man also or woman that hath a familiar spirit, or that is a
wizard, shall surely be put to death: they shall stone them with
stones: their blood shall be upon them.
In verse 4,
it says the Philistines gathered in Shunem for war. This was the old
battle field of the upper Kishon valley of northern Israel. They
setup their camp on the east side of the valley while Israel pitched
on Mount Gilboa overlooking the camp of the Philistines in the
valley west of them. When Saul viewed the sheer number of the
Philistines, he was terribly afraid and his heart trembled. Saul was
at a point in his life when he desperately need the Lord, but could
no longer reach him. His continual disobedience had long since cut
him off from the Lord. We as Christians need to be tenderhearted and
always let the Holy Spirit guide us in all matters. If we do that,
we wonít have our fellowship with God severed due to sin.
11:31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
11:32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we
should not be condemned with the world.
13:5 Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own
selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in
you, except ye be reprobates?
13:6 But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.
commanded to examine and judge ourselves. These last verses are in
regards to proving that we are truly saved and know Christ as Lord
praying to the Lord, but without repentance, God did not hear him.
Saul hoped for a dream that might reveal Godís will but no dream
came. He tried to inquire by the Urim of the priest and got no
results. Those who were serving as priests had been slain at Saulís
command, and Abiathar had carried the ephod down to David. He also
could not inquire by prophet, for Samuel had rejected him and was
now dead. The only other prophet that he knew was Gad, and he had
joined with David. It is a terrible thing to be so far from the Lord
that you are rejected and can no longer reach God in prayer. It all
starts with a little sin, and builds up from there. Continual
rejection of Godís designs and guidance will keep you out of Godís
perfect will for your life, and perhaps lead you to the point that
it seems your prayers bounce back off the ceiling.
and the Witch of En-Dor
28:7 Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a
familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and inquire of her. And his
servants said to him, Behold, there is a woman that hath a familiar
spirit at Endor.
28:8 And Saul disguised himself, and put on other raiment, and he
went, and two men with him, and they came to the woman by night: and
he said, I pray thee, divine unto me by the familiar spirit, and
bring me him up, whom I shall name unto thee.
When a man
gets desperate, he will do desperate things. Saul decides to seek
for some cultist that might have escaped his slaughter of those who
had familiar spirits. He turns to seek help from the powers of
darkness. Saul had a servant who knew of a woman who had a familiar
spirit that lived in Endor. This place was not far from Mt. Gilboa
where Israel was camped. Saul removed his royal garment and
disguised himself to go to her by night. He requests that she divine
for him and bring up whomever he asks. The witch states that Saul
had put to death all those who had familiar spirits and for her to
divine for him would cause her to endanger her life.
28:9 And the woman said unto him, Behold, thou knowest what Saul
hath done, how he hath cut off those that have familiar spirits, and
the wizards, out of the land: wherefore then layest thou a snare for
my life, to cause me to die?
28:10 And Saul sware to her by the LORD, saying, As the LORD liveth,
there shall no punishment happen to thee for this thing.
28:11 Then said the woman, Whom shall I bring up unto thee? And he
said, Bring me up Samuel.
to the woman by the Lord that nothing bad would happen to her. After
Saul swore this, the woman consents to help him and asks who she
should bring up. Saul requests that she bring up Samuel.
Samuel is Brought Up to Saul
28:12 And when the woman saw Samuel, she cried with a loud voice:
and the woman spake to Saul, saying, Why hast thou deceived me? for
thou art Saul.
28:13 And the king said unto her, Be not afraid: for what sawest
thou? And the woman said unto Saul, I saw gods ascending out of the
28:14 And he said unto her, What form is he of? And she said, An old
man cometh up; and he is covered with a mantle. And Saul perceived
that it was Samuel, and he stooped with his face to the ground, and
witch saw Samuel, she became very afraid and somehow knew that it
was Saul who was in her presence. Apparently the woman had ability
to deal with the dead via demon spirits. I think we should never
doubt that evil powers are present about us and those that deal with
them or not to be ignored or considered of no consequence.
the church at Ephesus to be aware of what they (and we) face each
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his
Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against
the wiles of the devil.
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against
principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness
of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able
to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
appears to be surprised by what happened. Her cry may have been
occasioned partly by the fear of Saul. What she saw was not an
ordinary thing in her experience, and it greatly alarmed her. While
evil spirits have powers, none are as great as God. And in this
case, no doubt God allowed something to shock this woman which He
would use to get the message of doom over to Saul. When the woman
questions Saul as to why he had deceived her, she was reassured by
Saul that she had nothing to fear and should tell him what she had
seen. Her answer was that she saw gods ascending out of the earth.
Saul questions the witch as to what form she had seen, and when she
said she saw an old man covered with a mantle, he was sure it was
Samuel. Saul did not see this form, so the witch might have lied
about calling up Samuel. From the description making Saul sure it
was Samuel, we can conclude that probably he dressed in this manner
when he was alive.
28:15 And Samuel said to Saul, Why hast thou disquieted me, to bring
me up? And Saul answered, I am sore distressed; for the Philistines
make war against me, and God is departed from me, and answereth me
no more, neither by prophets, nor by dreams: therefore I have called
thee, that thou mayest make known unto me what I shall do.
28:16 Then said Samuel, Wherefore then dost thou ask of me, seeing
the LORD is departed from thee, and is become thine enemy?
verse 15 says that ďSamuel said to SaulĒ, I tend to believe that
Samuel really was the one speaking at this time. Others do not all
agree on whether it was him or some spirit that sounded like him. He
says in verse 15 ďWhy hast thou disquieted me to bring me up?Ē Saul
gives him several reasons:
1. Saul was
Philistines were making war against him.
3. God had
departed from his life.
could not get answers from God either by dream or by prophet.
Saul that the Lord had departed from him and was now his enemy.
instructions from Samuel as to what he should do. God wants man to
walk humbly before God and to do right and love mercy.
Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten
thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my
transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD
require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk
humbly with thy God?
1 Tim 2:2
For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a
quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
1 Tim 2:3
For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
1 Tim 2:4
Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of
is for all men to be saved.
when his name was Saul, wanted to know what God would have him to do
after he was saved.
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me
to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and
it shall be told thee what thou must do.
28:17 And the LORD hath done to him, as he spake by me: for the LORD
hath rent the kingdom out of thine hand, and given it to thy
neighbour, even to David:
28:18 Because thou obeyedst not the voice of the LORD, nor
executedst his fierce wrath upon Amalek, therefore hath the LORD
done this thing unto thee this day.
28:19 Moreover the LORD will also deliver Israel with thee into the
hand of the Philistines: and to morrow shalt thou and thy sons be
with me: the LORD also shall deliver the host of Israel into the
hand of the Philistines.
Saul that the Lord had rent the kingdom out of his hand and given it
to David. All of this happened because Saul did not obey the voice
of the Lord. Because of this and Saulís failure to execute Godís
fierce wrath upon Amalek, God had taken the kingdom out of Saul's
hands. Samuel goes on to tell him that God would deliver Israel and
Saul into the hands of the Philistines. And that on the following
day, both Saul and his sons would be killed.
Effect of the Message on Saul
28:20 Then Saul fell straightway all along on the earth, and was
sore afraid, because of the words of Samuel: and there was no
strength in him; for he had eaten no bread all the day, nor all the
28:21 And the woman came unto Saul, and saw that he was sore
troubled, and said unto him, Behold, thine handmaid hath obeyed thy
voice, and I have put my life in my hand, and have hearkened unto
thy words which thou spakest unto me.
28:22 Now therefore, I pray thee, hearken thou also unto the voice
of thine handmaid, and let me set a morsel of bread before thee; and
eat, that thou mayest have strength, when thou goest on thy way.
says Saul fell straightway to the earth and was sore afraid. He
stayed in that position for some time and became weak. Once God has
pronounced judgment, it is going to happen and we canít stop that.
The witch makes a request that because she had obeyed Saulís voice
and done what he had asked, that she might give him a morsel of
bread for him that he might eat and regain his strength and go his
28:23 But he refused, and said, I will not eat. But his servants,
together with the woman, compelled him; and he hearkened unto their
voice. So he arose from the earth, and sat upon the bed.
28:24 And the woman had a fat calf in the house; and she hasted, and
killed it, and took flour, and kneaded it, and did bake unleavened
28:25 And she brought it before Saul, and before his servants; and
they did eat. Then they rose up, and went away that night.
the witches offer, and his servants and the woman compelled him to
listen to her voice. The witch kills a calf she has in the house and
baked it for Saul, and he did rise up and eat the meal. After that,
they rose up and went their way that night.
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But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more
and more unto the perfect day.
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