Loading

One Samuel Nineteen

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

1 Samuel 19:1 And Saul spake to Jonathan his son, and to all his servants, that they should kill David.

1 Samuel 19:2 But Jonathan Saul's son delighted much in David: and Jonathan told David, saying, Saul my father seeketh to kill thee: now therefore, I pray thee, take heed to thyself until the morning, and abide in a secret place, and hide thyself:

1 Samuel 19:3 And I will go out and stand beside my father in the field where thou art, and I will commune with my father of thee; and what I see, that I will tell thee.

1 Samuel 19:4 And Jonathan spake good of David unto Saul his father, and said unto him, Let not the king sin against his servant, against David; because he hath not sinned against thee, and because his works have been to thee-ward very good:

1 Samuel 19:5 For he did put his life in his hand, and slew the Philistine, and the LORD wrought a great salvation for all Israel: thou sawest it, and didst rejoice: wherefore then wilt thou sin against innocent blood, to slay David without a cause?

1 Samuel 19:6 And Saul hearkened unto the voice of Jonathan: and Saul sware, As the LORD liveth, he shall not be slain.

1 Samuel 19:7 And Jonathan called David, and Jonathan showed him all those things. And Jonathan brought David to Saul, and he was in his presence, as in times past.

1 Samuel 19:8 And there was war again: and David went out, and fought with the Philistines, and slew them with a great slaughter; and they fled from him.

1 Samuel 19:9 And the evil spirit from the LORD was upon Saul, as he sat in his house with his javelin in his hand: and David played with his hand.

1 Samuel 19:10 And Saul sought to smite David even to the wall with the javelin; but he slipped away out of Saul's presence, and he smote the javelin into the wall: and David fled, and escaped that night.

1 Samuel 19:11 Saul also sent messengers unto David's house, to watch him, and to slay him in the morning: and Michal David's wife told him, saying, If thou save not thy life to night, to morrow thou shalt be slain.

to watch him. See the title to Psalm 59, apparently written to commemorate this escape.

1 Samuel 19:12 So Michal let David down through a window: and he went, and fled, and escaped.

1 Samuel 19:13 And Michal took an image, and laid it in the bed, and put a pillow of goats' hair for his bolster, and covered it with a cloth.

took an image. “Image” is the usual word for household idols (e.g., Genesis 31:19).

1 Samuel 19:14 And when Saul sent messengers to take David, she said, He is sick.

1 Samuel 19:15 And Saul sent the messengers again to see David, saying, Bring him up to me in the bed, that I may slay him.

1 Samuel 19:16 And when the messengers were come in, behold, there was an image in the bed, with a pillow of goats' hair for his bolster.

1 Samuel 19:17 And Saul said unto Michal, Why hast thou deceived me so, and sent away mine enemy, that he is escaped? And Michal answered Saul, He said unto me, Let me go; why should I kill thee?

1 Samuel 19:18 So David fled, and escaped, and came to Samuel to Ramah, and told him all that Saul had done to him. And he and Samuel went and dwelt in Naioth.

1 Samuel 19:19 And it was told Saul, saying, Behold, David is at Naioth in Ramah.

1 Samuel 19:20 And Saul sent messengers to take David: and when they saw the company of the prophets prophesying, and Samuel standing as appointed over them, the Spirit of God was upon the messengers of Saul, and they also prophesied.

company of the prophets. This “company of the prophets,” with Samuel as their leader and teacher, had apparently been organized by him to instruct and train those who had been called by God to serve in the prophetic ministry (1 Samuel 10:10). Such a “school of the prophets” apparently continued to function at least until the days of Elijah and Elisha (2 Kings 6:1-7).

1 Samuel 19:21 And when it was told Saul, he sent other messengers, and they prophesied likewise. And Saul sent messengers again the third time, and they prophesied also.

1 Samuel 19:22 Then went he also to Ramah, and came to a great well that is in Sechu: and he asked and said, Where are Samuel and David? And one said, Behold, they be at Naioth in Ramah.

1 Samuel 19:23 And he went thither to Naioth in Ramah: and the Spirit of God was upon him also, and he went on, and prophesied, until he came to Naioth in Ramah.

1 Samuel 19:24 And he stripped off his clothes also, and prophesied before Samuel in like manner, and lay down naked all that day and all that night. Wherefore they say, Is Saul also among the prophets?

lay down naked. Once before, right after Samuel anointed him as king, Saul had “prophesied” with the other prophets (1 Samuel 10:6-12), but that had been a sign from God that “God is with thee.” Now, however, the Spirit of God had left him because of his rebellion (1 Samuel 16:14). At this point, as he was seeking to slay the one whom God had chosen in his place, the Spirit of God suddenly came on him again, as he had on Saul's “messengers to take David” (1 Samuel 19:20). Evidently, God forced the messengers to prophesy in David's favor against their will. Here also, God forces Saul to humiliate himself in the sight of his followers through impelling him to prophesy naked. This should have deterred him from further rebellion, but it didn't, and it soon cost him his life.