Translation:1 Samuel

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1 Samuel , translated by Wikisource
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Chapter 1[edit]

1There was a certain man from Ramathayim Zofim, from the mountain of Ephraim, whose name was Elkanah, son of Yerocham[1], son of Elihu, son of Tochu, son of Zuph the Ephraimite. 2He had two wives; the name of the first was Hannah, and the second Peninnah. Peninnah had children, whereas Hannah did not.

3This man went up from his city every year to worship and to sacrifice to Yahweh of Armies in Shiloh. The two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there. 4 And when the day came that Elkanah would sacrifice, he gave portions of food[2] to Peninah his wife, and all her sons and daughters. 5 and to Hannah he gave one double[3] portion, because he loved Hannah, but Yahweh had made her unable to bear children.[4] 6 Her rival would taunt her and provoke her, because Yahweh had made her infertile. 7 And so, each year, whenever she would go to the House of Yahweh, this is how she provoked her, and she would weep and would not eat. 8 Elkanah her husband said to her, "Hannah, why are you crying? Why won't you eat? Why are you troubled? Am I not better to you than ten sons?"

9 Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat on his seat by a post of the temple of Yahweh. 10 Her soul was bitter, and she prayed to Yahweh and wept. 11 She took a vow, and said, "Yahweh of Armies, if you will look at the affliction of your servant, and remember me, and not forget your slave, and give your servant a male child,[5] then I will give him to Yahweh all the days of his life, and no razor will touch his head."

12 It happened, as she continued praying before Yahweh, that Eli watched her mouth. 13 Now Hannah was speaking in her heart, and only moving her lips without making a sound, so Eli thought she was drunk. 14 Eli said to her, "How long will you be drunk? Get rid of your wine."

15 Hannah replied, "No, my lord, I am a woman with a sorrowful heart. I have not had wine or beer, but I have poured out my soul before Yahweh. 16 Do not consider me a bad person. It is because of my frustration and grief that I have been speaking until now."

17 Eli replied, "Go in peace. May the god of Israel give you what you have asked of him."

18 She said, "May your servant find favor in your sight." The woman went on her way, and ate, and her face was no longer [sad]. 19 The rose up early in the morning and worshipped before Yahweh, and returned, and arrived at their house in Ramah. Elkanah had relations with his wife Hannah, and Yahweh remembered her. 20 And by the time the days had come around [for the next annual sacrifice], Hannah had conceived and given birth to a son, and called his name Samuel, "Because I borrowed him from Yahweh."

21 Then the man Elkanah and all his household went up to give Yahweh the yearly sacrifice, and his vow. 22 But Hannah did not go up, because she said to her husband, "[Wait] until the child is weaned, and I will bring him to appear in Yahweh's presence, and live there forever."

23 Elkanah her husband said to her, "Do what seems good to you. Stay till you have weaned him. Only may Yahweh do what he said." So the woman stayed and nursed her son until she weaned him.

24 When she had weaned him, she took him up with her, along with three young bulls and one ephah of flour and a bottle of wine, and brought him to the House of Yahweh at Shiloh. The child was young. 25 They slaughtered the bull and brought the child to Eli. 26 She said, My lord, as my soul lives, my lord, I am the woman who stood by you here, praying to Yahweh. 27 I prayed for this child, and Yahweh gave me what I requested of him. 28 And now I dedicate him to Yahweh. All the days that he lives he will be dedicated to Yahweh. And he worshipped Yahweh there.

Chapter 2[edit]

1 And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoices in Yahweh. My horn is exalted in Yahweh. My mouth is enlarged against my enemies, because I rejoice in your salvation. 2 No one is holy like Yahweh, because there is none besides him, and there is no rock like our god. 3 Do not talk so much, puffed up with pride. Arrogance comes from your mouths, but Yahweh is a god of knowledge, by whom actions are weighed. 4 The bow of the mighty is broken, and the feeble are girded with power. 5 The full hire themselves out for bread, and the hungry are sated. Even the barren gives birth to seven; the mother of many grows weak. 6 Yahweh kills and preserves life, brings down to Sheol and brings up. 7 Yahweh impoverishes and enriches, lowers and raises. 8 He raises the low from dust, lifts paupers from dunghills to sit among nobles, to inherit a dignified throne, because earth's columns are Yahweh's, and he set the world on them. 9 He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked, silenced, in darkness, for no man will prevail by strength. 10 Yahweh's foes will shatter; from heaven he thunders against them. Yahweh judges the ends of the earth, and gives strength to his king, and raises the horn of his anointed.

11 And Elkana went to the Ramah, to his house. And the lad ministered to Yahweh before Eli the priest.

12 Now the sons of Eli were sons of corruption; they did not know Yahweh. 13 The custom of the priests with the people was that when any man offered a sacrifice, the priest's lad would come while the flesh was boiling with a three-pronged flesh-hook in hand. 14 He would stick it into the pan, or kettle, or cauldron, or pot. Whatever the flesh-hook brought up the priest would take with it. This is what they would do to all the Israelites who came there to Shiloh. 15 Also, before they would burn the fat, the priest's lad would come, and would say to the man offering the sacrifice, Give meat for the priest to roast, because he will not take boiled meat from you, but rather raw.

16 And the man might say to him, Let them burn up the fat now, and then you can take whatever your soul desires.

And he would say to him, No. Now give it! And if not, I will take it by force.

17 And the sin of the lads was very great before Yahweh, because the people came to loath Yahweh's offering.

18 And Samuel ministered before Yahweh, a lad clothed in a linen ephod. 19 His mother would make a little robe and bring it up to him each year when she came up with her husband for the annual sacrifice. 20 And Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife, and would say, May Yahweh give you seed by this woman in place of the one she asked for and gave to Yahweh. And they would go back to their home.

21 When Yahweh visited Hannah, she conceived and had three sons and two daughters. And the lad Samuel grew up with Yahweh.

22 Now Eli was very old, and heard everything he sons would do to all Israel, and how they would have relations with the women who served at the entrance of the tent of meeting. 23 And he said to them, Why do you do these things? I hear about your evil deeds from all this people. 24 No, my sons. It is not a good report that I hear Yahweh's people spreading. 25 If one man sins against another, God may mediate. But if a man sins against Yahweh, who will mediate for him?

But they would not listen to the voice of their father, because Yahweh wanted to kill them.

26 And the lad Samuel continued growing, and was favored by Yahweh and men both.

27 And a man of God came to Eli, and said to him, Thus says Yahweh. Did I reveal myself to the house of your father, when they were in Egypt, belonging to Pharaoh's house? 28 And I chose him from all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to offer on my altar, to burn incense, to wear an ephod before me. And I gave to the house of your father all the offerings made by fire of the Israelites. 29 Why do you trample my sacrifice and my offering, which I commanded [for my] dwelling-place, and honor your sons above me, to fatten yourselves on the choicest of all the offerings of my people Israel? 30 Therefore -- a decree of Yahwe -- I did say that your house, and the house of your father, would walk before me forever. But now -- a decree of Yahweh -- far be it from me, because those who honor me I will honor, and those who despise me will be cursed. 31 Yes, the days are coming when I will cut off your arm and the arm of your father's house, when there will no longer be an old when in your house. 32 And you will behold enemy dwelling-place[6] wherever it goes well for Israel. And there will be no old man in your household again. 33 And the man of yours which I do not cut off from my altar will only destroy your eyes and cause your soul to perish, and all your descendants will die [by the sword] of men.[7] 34 And this will be the sign for you, which will befall your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas: on a single day the two of them will die. 35 And I will raise up for myself a faithful priest, who will do what is in my heart and my soul, and I will build him a lasting house, and he will walk before my anointed forever. 36 And then everyone who remains of your household will come and bow down to him for a piece of silver and a loaf of bread, and will say, Please, appoint me to a priestly position, so that I can have a bit of bread to eat.

Chapter 3[edit]

1 And the lad Samuel ministered to Yahweh before Eli. And the word of Yahweh was rare in those days; prophetic vision was not common. 2 And then, at that time, as Eli was lying down at his place (now his eyes were beginning to grow dim, so that he could not see), 3 before the lamp of God went out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of God, where the ark of God was, 4 Yahweh called to Samuel. And he said, Here I am.

5 And he ran to Eli, and said, Here I am, because you called me.

And he said, I did not call. Go lie down again. And he went and laid down.

6 Yet again Yahweh called, Samuel.

And Samuel got up and went to Eli, and said, Here I am, because you called me.

And he said, I did not call, my son. Go lie down again.

7 Now Samuel did not yet know Yahweh, and no message from Yahweh had yet been revealed to him. 8 And Yahweh called again to Samuel, the third time. And he got up and went to Eli, and said, Here I am, because you called me.

And Eli realized that Yahweh was calling the lad. 9 And Eli said to Samuel, Go lie down. And if he calls you, then say, Speak, Yahweh, because your servant is listening. And Samuel went and lay down in his place.

10 And Yahweh came, and stood, and called like the other times, Samuel, Samuel.

And Samuel said, Speak, because your servant is listening.

11 And Yahweh said to Samuel, I am now about to do something in Israel, which will cause both the ears of whoever hears it to ring. 12 On that day I will carry out against Eli all that I said about his house, from beginning to end. 13 I told him that I will judge his house forever for the evil he knows, because his sons have blasphemed, and he did not restrain them. 14 And therefore I have sworn to the house of Eli that the guilt of the house of Eli will not be covered with sacrifice or offering, forever.

15 And Samuel lay there till the morning, and opened the doors of the house of Yahweh. And Samuel was afraid to tell Eli the vision.

16 And Eli called Samuel, and said, My son.

And he said, Here I am.

17 And he said, What is it that he told you? Please, do not hide it from me. May God punish you ever so severely if you conceal from me anything of all that he said to you.

18 And Samuel told him all the things he said, and concealed nothing from him.

And he said, It is Yahweh. He will do whatever he chooses.

19 And Samuel grew, and Yahweh was with him, and did not let anything he said fall to the ground. 20 And all Israel from Dan to Beer-sheba knew that Samuel was established as a prophet of Yahweh.

21 And again Yahweh appeared to him in Shiloh.

When Yahweh appeared to Samuel in Shiloh with a message of Yahweh,

Chapter 4[edit]

1 the word of Samuel came to all Israel. And Israel went out against Philistines to battle, and encamped by Eben-ezer, and Philistines encamped at Aphek. 2 And Philistines put themselves in battle array against Israel, and as the battle spread, Israel was struck down before Philistines, and they killed about four thousand men of their ranks in the field. 3 And when the people returned to the camp, the elders of Israel said, Why did Yahweh strike us down before Philistines? Let us take ourselves the ark of the covenant from Shiloh, and then, when it is brought among us, it will save us from the hand of our enemies. 4 And the people sent messengers to Shilah, and they brought from there the ark of the covenant of Yahweh of Armies, who sits between the Cherubim, and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there with the ark of the covenant of God.

5 And when the ark of the covenant of Yahweh came to the camp, all Israel shouted with a great shout, so the ground trembled. 6 And when Philistines heard the sound of the shouting, they said, What is this great shouting in the camp of the Hebrews? And they knew that the ark of Yahweh had come to the camp. 7 And the Philistines were afraid, so that they said, A god has come into the camp. And they said, Woe to us, because nothing like this happened before. 8 Woe to us! Who will rescue us from these mighty gods? These are the gods who struck Egypt with all the plagues in the wilderness. 9 Be strong, and act like men, Philistines, or else you will become slaves of the Hebrews, as they have been to you. Act like men, and fight!

10 And Philistines fought, and Israel was struck down, and they fled each to his tent, and there was a tremendous slaughter: thirty thousand Israelites footmen fell. 11 And the ark of God was captured, and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phihenas, died.

12 And a Benjamite man ran from the army and came to Shiloh on that day with his clothes torn, and dirt on his head. 13 And when he came, there was Eli sitting on his throne by the road watching, because his heart was anxious about the ark of God. And the man came and reported it in the city, and all the city cried out. 14 And when Eli heard the sound of them crying out, he said, What is the sound of his commotion?

And the man hurried in and told Eli. 15 Now Eli was ninety-eight years old, and his eyes had failed, and he could not see.

16 And the man said to Eli, I am the one who came from the army, and I fled from the army today.

And he said, What happened, my son?

17 And the messenger answered and said, Israel has fled before Philistines, and also there was a great slaughter of the people, and also your two sons Hophni and Phinehas are dead, and the ark of God was taken.

18 And then, when he mentioned the ark of God, he fell backward from his throne by the side of the gate, and he broke his neck, and he died, because he was an old man, and heavy. And he judged Israel forty years.

19 And his daughter-in-law, Phinehas' wife, was late in her pregnancy, and she heard the news about how the ark of God was taken, and that her father-in-law and her husband were dead, she bent over and went into labor, because the labor pains came upon her. 20 And as she was dying, the women standing by her said, Do not be afraid, because you have had a son.

And she did not respond or pay any attention. 21 And she named the lad Ichabod,[8] saying, The glory is in exile from Israel, because the ark of the covenant was taken, and because of her father-in-law and husband. 22 And she said, The glory is in exile from Israel, because the ark of God is captured.

Chapter 5[edit]

1 And Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Eben-ezer to Ashdod. 2 When Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it to the house of Dagon, and set it beside Dagon. 3 And when the Ashdodites got up early in the morning, they saw Dagon, fallen on his face to the ground in front of the ark of Yahweh. And they took Dagon and set him in his place again. 4 And when they got up early the next morning, they saw Dagon, fallen on his face to the ground in front of the ark of Yahweh, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were cut off on the threshold. Only Dagon was left on him. 5 This is why the priests of Dagon, and anyone who comes to the house of Dagon, does not step on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.

6 And the hand of Yahweh was heavy on the Ashdodites, and he destroyed them, and struck them with tumors,[9] Ashdod and its territory. 7 And when the men of Ashdod saw that this had happened, they said, The ark of the god of Israel must not stay among us, because his hand is severe upon us, and upon Dagon our god. 8 And they sent and gathered the Philistine sarens[10] to themselves, and said, What will we do about the ark of the god of Israel?

And they said, Let the ark of the god of Israel be taken around to Gath. And they took the ark of the god of Israel around there. 9 And then, after they carried it around, the hand of Yahweh was against the city with a great disturbance, and he struck the men of the city, from least to greatest, and tumors broke out on them.

10 And they sent the ark of God to Ekron. And then, when the ark of God came to Ekron, the Ekronites cried out, saying, They have brought the ark of the god of Israel around to us, to kill us and our people! 11 And they sent and gathered all the Philistine sarens and said, Send away the ark of the god of Israel, and let it return to its place, so that we and our people do not die, because there was a deadly disturbance all throughout the city. The hand of God was very heavy against them. 12 And the men who did not die were struck with tumors, and the wailing from the city reached the sky.

Chapter 6[edit]

1 And the ark of Yahweh was in Philistine territory seven months. 2 And Philistines called for priests and diviners, saying, What should we do about the ark of Yahweh. 3 And they said, If you send away the ark of the god of Israel, do not send it empty, but make sure to return it with a tresspass-offering. Then you will be healed, and you will know why his hand has not released you.

4 And they said, What trespass offering should we return to him?

And they said, As many as there are Philistine sarens:[11] five gold tumors, and five gold rats, because the same plague was on you all, and on your sarens. 5 Make likenesses of your tumors, and your rats that destroy the land, and you will give honor to the god of Israel. Perhaps he will lighten his hand from you, and from your gods, and from your land. 6 And why do you harden your hearts, like Egypt and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? When he had devastated them, did they not send them on their way? 7 So make a new cart, and take two milking cows which have never worn a yoke, and tie the cows to the cart, and bring their calves home away from them. 8 And take the ark of Yahweh, and said it on the cart, and put the golden objects which you are returning to him as a trespass-offering in a chest beside it, and sent it on its way. 9 And see if it goes up to his own territory toward Beth-shemesh, in which case he has caused us this great calamity. And if not, then we will know that it was not his hand that struck us, but it happened by chance.

10 And the men did so, and took two milk cows, and tied them to the cart, and confined their calves at home. 11 And they set the ark of Yahweh on the cart, and the chest with the gold rats and the likenesses of their tumors. 12 And the cows when straight along the way to Beth-shemesh, along that road alone, lowing as they went along, and did not turn right or left, and the Philistine sarens followed them as far as the border of Beth-shemesh. 13 And [the people of] Beth shemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley, and they lifted up their eyes and saw the ark, and rejoiced to see it. 14 And the cart came to the field of Joshua, a Beth-shemeshite, and stood there, where there was a large stone, and they split up the wood of the cart, and offered the cows as a burnt offering to Yahweh. 15 And the Levites took down the ark of Yahweh, and the chest that was with it, where the golden objects were, and placed them on the large stone, and the men of Beth-shemesh offered burnt offering and made sacrifices on that day to Yahweh. 16 And the five Philistine sarens saw this, and returned to Ekron on that day.

17 And these are the gold tumors which Philistines returned as a trespass-offering to Yahweh: one for Ashdod, one for Gaza, one for Ashkelon, one for Gath, one for Ekron. 18 And the gold rats, numbering as many as all the cities of the Philistines belonging to the five sarens, of fortified cities, and of country villages, as far as the great stone of Abel, on which they set the ark of Yahweh. [It remains] to this day in the field of Joshua the Beth-shemeshite.

19 And he struck down the men of Beth-shemesh, because they looked at the ark of Yahweh, and he struck down fifty thousand and seventy men, and the people mourned, because Yahweh had struck down many of the people with great slaughter.

20 And the men of Beth-shemesh said, Who is able to stand before Yahweh, this holy god? And to whom should he go up from us?

22 And they sent messengers to the residents of Kiriath-jearim, saying, Philistines have returned the ark of Yahweh. Come down and take it up for yourselves.

Chapter 7[edit]

1 And the men of Kiriath-jearim came and brought up the ark of Yahweh, and brought it to the house of Abinadab on the hill, and consecrated Eleazar his son to watch over the ark of Yahweh.

2 Now the ark stayed in Kiriath-jearim a long while -- it was twenty years -- and all the house of Israel began to seek Yahweh.

3 And Samuel said to all the house of Israel, If you are sincere about returning to Yahweh, put away the foreign gods from among you, and the Ashtaroth, and prepare your hearts for Yahweh, and serve him only, and he will deliver you from the hand of Philistines. 4 And the Israelites put away the Baalim and the Ashtaroth, and served Yahweh alone.

5 And Samuel said, Gather all Israel to Mizpah, and I will pray for you to Yahweh. 6 And they assembled at Mizpah, and drew water and poured it out before Yahweh, and fasted on that day, and said there, We have sinned against Yahweh. And Samuel judged the Israelites at Mizpah.

7 And the Philistines heard that the Israelites were assembled at Mizpah, and the Philistine sarens went up against Israel. And the Israelites heard, and they were afraid of Philistines. 8 And the Israelites said to Samuel, Do not stop crying out to Yahweh our god for us, to save us from the hand of Philistines.

9 And Samuel took a nursing lamb and offered it as a whole burnt offering to Yahweh. And Samuel cried out to Yahweh on behalf of Israel, and Yahweh answered him. 10 As Samuel was offering the burnt offering, Philistines approached to battle with Israel, and Yahweh thunder with a loud sound that day against Philistines, and threw them into chaos, and they were struck down before Israel. 11 And the men of Israel went out from Mizpah and pursued Philistines, and struck them down until until they were below Beth-kar. 12 And Samuel took a stone, and set it between the Mizpah and the Shen, and named it Eben-ezer, and said, To this day Yahweh has helped us.

13 And the Philistines were subdued, and they never again came into Israelite territory, and the hand of Yahweh was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel. 14 And the towns which Philistines had taken from Israel were returned. From Ekron to Gath, and their borders, Israel delivered them from the hand of Philistines. And there was peace between Israel and the Amorites.

15 And Samuel judged Israel all the days of his life. 16 And each year he would go around to Bethel, and the Gilgal, and the Mizpah, and he judged Israel in all those places. 17 Then he would return to the Ramah, because his house was there, and there he judged Israel, and there he built an altar to Yahweh.

Chapter 8[edit]

1 Now, when Samuel was old, he made his sons judges of Israel. 2 And the name of his firstborn son was Joel, and the name of the second was Abijah. They were judges in Beer-sheba. 3 And his sons did not comport themselves in his manner, and turned aside after unjust gains, and accepted bribes, and corrupted justice.

4 And all the elders of Israel gathered together, and came to Samuel at the Ramah. 5 And they said to him, Now you are old, and your sons do not act like you. So appoint us a king to judge us like all the nations.

6 But the matter seemed wrong to Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed to Yahweh.

7 And Yahweh said to Samuel, Listen to the voice of the people, to everything say to you, because they have not rejected you. No, it is me that they have rejected as their king. 8 As they have always done, from the day I brought them up from Egypt to the present, as they have abandoned me and served other gods, they are doing the same to you as well. 9 So listen to their voice, but make sure to testify against them, and tell them how the king will rule over them.

10 And Samuel told all of Yahweh's words to the people who asked him for a king. 11 And he said, This is how the king will rule over you. He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, among his chariots and horsemen, and they will run before his chariots. 12 He will set them as captains over thousands, and captains over fifties, and to plow his fields, and to reap his harvest, and to make his weapons and chariot equipment. 13 And he will take your daughters to be perfumers, and cooks, and bakers. 14 And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your olive trees, the best of them, and give them to his officials. 15 And he will tax your seeds, and your vineyards, at ten percent, and give it to his officers and officials. 16 And he will take your male and female slaves, and your best young men, and your donkeys, and use them for his work. 17 He will take a tenth of your sheep, and you will become his slaves. 18 And you will cry out on that day because of your king whom you have chosen, and Yahweh will not listen to you on that day.

19 And the people refused to listen to the voice of Samuel, and they said, No, we want a king over us, 20 so that we too can be like all the other nations, with a king to judge us, and lead us out to fight our battles.

21 And Samuel listened to all the things the people said, and repeated them to Yahweh. 22 And Yahweh said to Samuel, Listen to their voice, and appoint them a king.

And Samuel said to the men of Israel, Go back each of you to his city.

Chapter 9[edit]

1 Now there there was a man of Benjamin, and his name was Kish, the son of Abiel, the son of Zeror, the son of Bechorath, the son of Appiah, the son of a Benjamite, a mighty warrior. 2 And he had a son, and his name was Saul, a choice and fair young man, and there was no one among the Israelites fairer than him. From his shoulders up he was taller than all the people.

3 And the donkeys that belonged to Saul's father Kish were lost. And Kish said to his son Saul, Please take with you one of my young men and go looking for the donkeys. 4 And he passed through the hill-country of Ephraim, and passed through the land of Shalishah, but they did not find them. And they passed through the land of Shaalim, and they were not there. And he passed through the land of the Benjamites, and they were not found.

5 They came to the land of Zuph, and Saul said to his young man who was with him, Let us go back, or else my father will stop caring about the donkeys, and worry about us.

6 And he said to him, Look here. There is a man of God in this city, and he is a respected man. All that he says comes to pass. Now let us go there. Maybe he can tell us what way we should go.

7 And Saul said to his young man, But if we go, what will we bring the man? The bread we packed is has run out, and we have no present to bring to the man of God. What do we have?

8 And the young man replied to Saul, and said, Look. I have here in my hand a quarter-shekel of silver I can give to the man of God, to tell us which way to go.

9 In the past in Israel, when a man went to inquire of God, he would say, Let us go to the seer, because what is now called a prophet was then called a seer. 10 And Saul said to his young man, Good idea. Let us go. And they went to the city where the man of God was.

11 They went up the hill to the city, and they found your women going out to draw water. And they said to them, Is the seer here?

12 And they replied to them, and said, He is here, ahead of you. Hurry now, because he came to the city today, because there is a sacrifice today at the shrine. 13 When you get to the city, then you can find him there before he goes up to the shrine to eat, because the people will not eat until he comes, because he blesses the sacrifice, and afterward those who are invited eat. Go up, now, because this is about the time you can find him. 14 And they went up into the city, and there they saw Samuel coming toward them on his way to the shrine.

15 And Yahweh had informed Samuel a day before Saul came, saying, 16 About this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin, and you will anoint him as prince over my people Israel, to save my people from the hand of Philistines, because I have seen that the cry of my people has reached me.

17 And Samuel saw Saul, and Yahweh said, Look: the man that I told you about! This one will govern my people. 18 And Saul approach Samuel in the gate, and said, Please, tell me where the seer's house is.

19 And Samuel answered him, I am the seer. Go up ahead of me to the shrine, and you will eat with me today, and tomorrow I will send you on your way, and I will tell you all everything that is on my mind. 20 And as for the donkeys that were lost three days ago, do not worry about them, because they have been found. Whom does Israel desire? Is it not you and all your family?

21 And Saul replied and said to him, Am I not a Benjamite, from the smallest of Israel's tribes, and my clan the smallest of all the clans of the tribes of Benjamin? Why do you speak to me this way?

22 And Samuel took Saul and his servant, and brought them into the hall and seated them in better place than all the invitees, who were about thirty men. 23 And Samuel said to the cook, Bring me the portion that I gave you, of which I said, Hold on to this.

24 And the cook picked up the thigh and what was on it, and set it in front of Saul. And he said, See what is left! Set it in front of you and eat, because for this time it has been kept for you since I invited the people. And Saul ate with Samuel that day.

25 And they came down from the shrine of the city, and he spoke with Saul on the roof. 26 And they got up early, around daybreak, and Samuel called Saul to the roof, saying, Get up, and I will send you off. And Saul got up, and the two of them, he and Samuel, went outside. 27 They were going down to the edge of the city, and Samuel said to Saul, Tell the young man to go on ahead of us -- and he went on ahead -- but you stay here a while, and I will tell you a message from God.

Chapter 10[edit]

1 And Samuel took a flask of oil, and poured it on his head, and kissed him, and said, Has not Yahweh anointed you as a prince over his people? 2 When you leave me today, you will find two men by Rachel's grave in the territory of Benjamin at Zelzah, and they will say to you, The donkeys that you went looking for are found, and now your father has stopped being concerned about the donkeys, and is anxious for you, saying, What will I do about my son? 3 And you will go onwards from there, and you will come to the oak of Tabor, and come upon three men there going up to God at Bethel, one carrying three young goats, and one carrying three loaves of bread, and one carrying a skin of wine. 4 And they will greet you, and give you two [loaves] of bread, and you will accept it from them. 5 After that you will come to the hill of God, where there is a Philistine garrison.[12] And then, when you arrive there at the city, you will encounter a band of prophets coming down from the shrine, preceded by harp, and tambourine, and flute, and lyre, and they will be prophesying.[13] 6 The spirit of Yahweh will fall upon you, and you will prophesy with them, and be transformed into another man. 7 And then, when these signs come to you, do whatever your hand finds, because God is with you. 8 And you will go down ahead of me to the Gilgal, and there I will go down to you, to offer burnt offerings, to sacrifice peace-sacrifices. Wait seven days, until I come to you and announce to you what you must do.

9 And then, when he had turned away to leave Samuel, God changed his heart, and all these signs came on that day. 10 And they came there to the hill, and there a band of prophets met him, and the spirit of God fell upon him, and he prophesied among them. 11 And when all those who knew him before saw him there, prophesying with the prophets, the people said to each other, What has happened to the son of Kish? Is Saul among the prophets?

12 And a man replied from there, And who is their father? Therefore it became a saying, Is Saul among the prophets? 13 And he finished prophesying, and came to the shrine.

14 And Saul's uncle said to him and to his servant, Where did you go?

And he said, To look for the donkeys. And when we could not find them, we came to Samuel.

15 And Saul's uncle said, Please, tell me what Samuel said to you.

16 And Saul said to his uncle, He told us that the donkeys were found. But concerning the kingdom, Saul did not tell him anything.

17 And Samuel summoned the people to Yahweh at Mizpah. 18 And he said to the Israelites: This is what Yahweh, the god of Israel, says. I brought up Israel from Egypt, and rescued you from the hand of Egypt, and from the hand of all the kingdoms, who oppressed you. 19 And today you have rejected your god, who saved you from all your disasters and oppressions, and you said to him, No. Set a king over us. So present yourselves before Yahweh by your tribes and clans.

20 And when Samuel had brought all the tribes of Israel, the tribe of Benjamin was taken. 21 And he brought up the tribe of Benjamin by their tribal divisions, and the division of Matri was taken, and Saul the son of Kish was taken. And they looked for him, but he was nowhere to be found. 22 And they inquired of Yahweh again, to know if the man would show himself.

And Yahweh said, There he is -- hidden among the baggage.

23 And they ran and took him from there, and he stood among the people, taller than all the people from his shoulders upward. 24 And Samuel said to all the people, Do you see whom Yahweh chose, how there is no one like him among all the people?

And all the people shouted, and said, Long live the king!

25 And Samuel spoke to the people about the law of the king, and wrote it in the book, and set it before Yahweh. And Samuel sent away all the people, each to his house. 26 And Samuel himself went to his house at Gibeah, and with him some warriors whose heart God touched. 27 But worthless people said, How can this one save us. And they despised him, and brought him no gift. But he held his peace.

Chapter 11[edit]

1 And Nahash the Ammonite went up and encamped against Jabesh-gilead, and all the men of Jabesh said to Nahash, Make a covenant with us, and we will serve you.

2 And Nahash the Ammonite said to them, I will only make a covenant with you if I can dig out all your right eyes, to bring shame on all Israel.

3 And the elders of Jabesh said to him, Let us have three days to send messengers through all the territory of Israel, and if there is no one to save us, then we will go out to you.

4 And the messengers of Gibeah came to Saul, and told the news in the hearing of the people, and all the people lifted up their voices and wept. 5 Then there came Saul, following the cattle from the field, and Saul said, Why are the people weeping? And they told him the news from the men of Gilead. 6 The spirit of God rushed upon Saul when he heard that news, and his anger burned very hot.

7 And he took a yoke of oxen, and cut them to pieces, and sent them through all the territory of Israel by means of the messengers, to say, Whoever does not go out after Saul and after Samuel, the same will be done to his oxen. And terror from Yahweh fell on the people, and they went out as one man. 8 And when he counted them at Bezek, the Israelites were three hundred thousand, and the people of Judah thirty thousand.

9 And they said to the messengers who came, Tell this to the men of Jabesh Gilead. Tomorrow you will be rescued by when the sun is hot. And the messengers came and reported it ot the men of Jabesh, and they were glad.

10 And the men of Jabesh said, Tomorrow we will come out to you, and you can do to us as you will.

11 And then, the next day, Saul divided the people in three groups, and they came out in the middle of the camp at the morning watch, and struck down Ammon until the heat of the day. Then the survivors scattered, until there were not left two together.

12 And the people said to Samuel, Who is it that said, Will Saul rule over us? Hand them over to us, and we will kill them.

13 And Saul said, No man will be killed this day, because today Yahweh has worked salvation in Israel.

14 And Samuel said to the people, Come, and let us go to the Gilgal, and renew the kingdom there. 15 And all the people came to the Gilgal, and made Saul king before Yahweh at the Gilgal, and sacrificed peace-sacrifices before Yahweh, and there Saul and all the men of Israel held a great celebration.

Chapter 12[edit]

1 And Samuel said to all Israel, You see, I have heeded your voice in all that you said to me, and have appointed yourselves a king. 2 And now, see, the king walks about before you, and I am old and grey, and my sons are there with you, and I have walked before you from my youth up to this day. 3 Now here I am. Speak out against me in front of Yahweh, and in front of his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? And whose donkey have I taken? And whom have I extorted? Whom have I oppressed? And from whose hand have I taken a bribe to look the other way? I will repay you.

4 And they said, You have not extorted us, or oppressed us, or taken anything from anyone's hand.

5 And he said to them, Yahweh is be a witness against you, and his anointed is a witness today, that you have not found anything in my hand.

And they answered, A witness.

6 And Samuel said to the people, It is Yahweh who appointed Moses and Aaron, and who brought up your fathers from the land of Egypt. 7 So present yourselves, and I will judge you before Yahweh with all the righteous deeds of Yahweh that he did for you and your fathers. 8 When Jacob came to Egypt, and your fathers cried out to Yahweh, then Yahweh sent Moses and Aaron, and they brought out your fathers from Egypt, and settled them in this place.

9 And they forgot Yahweh their god, and he sold them into the hand of Sisera, general of Hazor, and into the hand of Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab, and they fought against them. 10 And they cried out to Yahweh, and said, We have sinned, because we abandoned Yahweh and served Baalim and Ashtaroth, but now rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and we will serve you. 11 And Yahweh sent Jerubbaal, and Bedan, and Jephthah, and Samuel, and rescued you from the hand of your enemies surrounding you, and you lived in safety. 12 And you saw that Nahash king of the Ammonites came against you, and you said to me, No, but a king must rule over us, when Yahweh your god was your king.

13 So here is the king you chose, whom you asked for. And now Yahweh has set a king over you. 14 If you will fear Yahweh and serve him, and heed his voice, and not rebel against Yahweh's command, then both you and also the king who rules over you will follow Yahweh your god. 15 And if you will not heed the voice of Yahweh, and rebel against Yahweh's command, then Yahweh's hand will be against you, and against your fathers.

16 Now then, present yourselves and see this great thing that Yahweh is about to do before your eyes. 17 Is not the wheat harvest today? I will call to Yahweh, and he will send thunder and rain, and you will know and see that your evil is severe, that you have done in Yahweh's sight by requesting a king for yourselves.

18 And Samuel called to Yahweh, and Yahweh sent lightning and rain that day, and all the people were terrified of Yahweh and Samuel.

19 And all the people said to Samuel, Pray on behalf of your servants to Yahweh your god that we will not die, because we have added to all our sins the evil of requesting ourselves a king.

20 And Samuel said to the people, Do not be afraid. You have done all this evil, yet do not turn from following Yahweh, and serve Yahweh will all your heart, 21 and do not turn aside to follow vanity, which cannot aid or rescue, because they are vanity. 22 For Yahweh will not forsake his people, for the sake of his great name, because Yahweh decided to make you his own people. 23 And as for me, far be it from me to sin against Yahweh by ceasing to pray on your behalf. I will teach you the good and upright way. 24 Only fear Yahweh and serve him faithfully with all your heart, because consider all the great things he has done for you. 25 And if you continue doing evil, both you and your king will be wiped away.

Chapter 13[edit]

1 Saul was [...] years old,[14] and he reigned over Israel [... and] two years. 2 And Saul chose himself three thousand from Israel, and two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and in Mount Bethel, and a thousand were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin, and the rest of the people he sent each to his tent.

3 And Jonathan struck the Philistine garrison which was in Geba, and Philistines heard. And Saul blew the shofar through all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear! 4 And all Israel heard that Saul struck the Philistine garrison, and that Israel had become odious to Philistines. And the people were mustered to Saul at the Gilgal.

5 And Philistines gathered for war with Israel thirty thousand chariots, and six thousand horsemen, and an army like the sand on the seashore in number, and they went up and encamped in Michmash, east of Beth Aven. 6 And the men of Israel saw that they were in dire straits, because the people were hard-pressed, and the people hid themselves in caves, and in thickets,[15] and in craigs, and in holes,[16] and in pits. 7 And some Hebrews crossed the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead, and Saul was still in the Gilgal, and all the people followed him trembling. 8 And he waited seven days, for the time that Samuel had set, but Samuel did not come to the Gilgal, and the people dispersed away from him. 9 And Saul said, Bring me a burnt offering here, and peace offerings. And he offered the burnt offering. 10 And when he finished offering the burnt offering, there came Samuel, and Saul came out to meet him and bless him.

11 And Samuel said, What have you done?

And Saul said, Because I saw that the people dispersed away from me, and you did not come at after the set days, and Philistines gathered at Michmash. 12 And I said, Now Philistines will come down to me at the Gilgal, and I have not entreated favor from Yahweh. So I forced myself to offer the burnt offering.

13 And Samuel said to Saul, You have been reckless. You have not kept the command of Yahweh your god, which he commanded you, because now Yahweh would have established your kingship over Israel forever. 14 And now your kingdom will not endure. Yahweh has sought a man with a heart like his own, and Yahweh has commanded him to be prince of his people, because you have not kept Yahweh's command.

15 And Samuel rose and went up from the Gilgal to Gibeah of Benjamin. And Saul numbered the people who were present with him, about six hundred men.

16 And Saul, and Jonathan his son, and the people who were present with him, were staying in Gibeah of Benjamin, and the Philistines were encamped at Michmash. 17 And raiders went out from the Philistine camp in three groups. One of the groups went along the way to Ophrah, to the land of Saul; 18 and one of the groups went along the way to Beth Horon, and one groups went along to the way to the border by the valley of Zeboim toward the wilderness.

19 And no metalworker could be found in all the land of Israel, because the Philistines said, Or else the Hebrew might make swords or spears. 20 So all Israel would go down to the Philistines for each to sharpen his plowshare, and his mattock, and his axe, and his sickle. 21 And the charge[17] was a pim[18] for plows, mattocks, three-pronged forks,[19] and axes, and to set goads.[20] 22 And so, when it came time for battle, no sword or spear could be found in the hand of any of the people who were with Saul and Jonathan, but there were swords for Saul and Jonathan his son.

23 And the Philistine garrison went out to the passage at Michmash.

Chapter 14[edit]

1 Now, on that day, Jonathan son of Saul said to the lad who carried his things, Come, and we will cross over to the Philistine garrison on the other side. And he did not tell his father. 2 And Saul was sitting at the outskirts of the Gibeah under the pomegranate tree which was in Migron, and the people who were with him were about six hundred men. 3 And Ahiah son of Ahitub, the brother of Ichabod son of Phinehas, son of Eli, a priest of Yahweh at Shiloh, was wearing an ephod. And the people did not realize that Jonathan had gone. 4 And between the passes, by which Jonathan was looking to cross over to the Philistine garrison, was a sharp cliff on this side, and a sharp cliff on that side, and the name of the one was Bozez, and the name of the other Seneh. 5 The one cliff faced north toward Michmash, and the other south toward Geba.

6 And Jonathan said to the lad who carried his things, Come, and we will cross over to the garrison of these uncircumcised. Perhaps Yahweh will give them to us, because it is no difficulty for Yahweh to grant deliverance by many or few.

7 And his porter said to him, Do whatever you intend. Do it: I am with you, whatever you wish.

8 And Jonathan said, Then let us cross over to the men, and we will show ourselves to them. 9 If they say to us, Stay until we come to you, then we will stand where we are, and we will not go up to them. 10 And if they say, Come up to us, then we will come up, because Yahweh has delivered them into our hand. This will be a sign to us.

11 And they both showed themselves to the Philistine garrison, and Philistines said, Look -- Hebrews, coming out of the holes where they were hiding. 12 And the men of the garrison replied to Jonathan and his porter, and said, Come up to us, and we will show you something.

And Jonathan said to his porter, Follow me up, because Yahweh has given them into the hand of Israel. 13 And Jonathan climbed up on his hands and feet, and his porter followed him, and they fell before Jonathan, with his porter killing behind him. 14 And that first assault which Jonathan and his porter carried out was about twenty men on about a half acre of land.[21]

15 Terror fell upon the camp in the field and among all the army. The garrison and the raiders trembled as well, and the land trembled with terror from God. 16 And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked, and they saw the crowd scatter, running in all directions. 17 And Saul said to the people who were with him, Take a roll now, and see who is missing. And when they had taken roll, they realized that Jonathan and his porter were gone.

18 And Saul said to Ahiah, Bring the ark of God here. Now the ark of God was at that time with the Israelites. 19 And then, as Saul was talking to the priest, the commotion in the Philistine camp kept on increasing. And Saul said to the priest, Never mind. Leave the ark.[22] 20 And Saul and all the people with him assembled and came to the battle, and there each man's sword was against his comrade, a very great confusion. 21 And the Hebrews who had been previously with the Philistines, who went up with them in the camp, turned to be with the Israelites who were with Saul and Jonathan. 22 And all the men of Israel who had been hiding in the hills of Ephraim heard that Philistines fled, and they pursued them hard in the battle. 23 And Yahweh delivered Israel that day, and the battle reached as far as Beth Aven.

24 And the men of Israel were distressed that day, because Saul had enjoined the people, saying, Cursed is the man who eats food[23] before evening, so that I can take vengeance against my enemies. So none of the people tasted food. 25 And all the land came to a forest, and there was honey on the ground. 26 And the people came to the forest, and there was honey dropping, and no one put his hand to his mouth, because the people were afraid of the oath. 27 And Jonathan did not hear when his father placed the oath on the people, and he reached out the end of rod that was in his hand, and dipped it in the honeycomb, and set his hand to his mouth, and his eyes lit up.

28 And one of the people saw this and said, You father placed us under oath, saying, Cursed is the man who eats any food today. And the people were faint.

29 And Jonathan said, My father has troubled the land. Look at how my eyes have lit up, because I tasted a little of this honey. 30 If only the people today had eaten freely of the spoil of their enemies which they found, would there not have been an even greater slaughter among the Philistines?

31 And on that day they killed the Philistines from Michmash to Ayalon, and the people were very faint. 32 And the people dashed upon the spoil, and took sheep, and oxen, and calves, and slaughtered them on the ground, and the people ate them with the blood. 33 And it was reported to Saul, Look: the people are sinning against Yahweh, eating with the blood.

And he said, You have done wrong. Roll to me a great stone today.

34 And Saul said, Go out among the people, and say to them, Bring me here every man's ox, and every man's sheep, and slaughter them here, and eat them, and do not sin against Yahweh by eating the blood. All all the people brought each man's ox with him that night, and slaughtered them there. 35 And Saul built an altar to Yahweh. It was the first altar that he built to Yahweh.

36 And Saul said, We will go down after Philistines by night and despoil them until morning light, and we will not leave a man of them.

And they said, Do whatever seems good to you.

And the priest said, Let us draw near to God here.

37 And Saul inquired of God, Should I go down after Philistines? Will you deliver them into my hand?

But he did not reply that day.

38 And Saul said, Draw near here, all the leaders of the people, and know and see what sort of sin has been committed today. 39 Because, by Yahweh's life, the savior of Israel, even if it is Jonathan my son, yet he will surely die.

And not of the people replied to him.

40 And he said to all Israel, You stay on one side, and I and Jonathan my son will stay on the other side.

And the people said to Saul, Do whatever seems good to you.

41 And Saul said to Yahweh, the god of Israel, Give the truth. And Saul and Jonathan were selected, and the people were not.

42 And Saul said, Cast lots between me and Jonathan my son. And Jonathan was selected.

43 And Saul said to Jonathan, Tell me what you did.

And Jonathan told him, and said, I only tasted a little honey with the end of the staff that was in my hand. And now I will die.

44 And Saul said, May God punish me ever so severely if you are not surely put to death, Jonathan.

45 And the people said to Saul, Must Jonathan die, who brought this great deliverance to Israel? No so! As Yahweh lives, not one hair will fall from his head to the ground, because he has done this with Yahweh today. And the people rescued Jonathan, and he did not die.

46 And Saul went up from following Philistines, and Philistines went to their own place.

47 And Saul took the kingship over Israel, and fought against all its surrounding enemies: against Moab, and against the Ammonites, and against Edom, and against the kings of Zobah, and against the Philistines, and wherever he turned, he ruined them. 48 And he raised an army, and struck Amalek, and snatched Israel from the hand of those who plundered them.

49 And the sons of Saul were Jonathan, and Ishvi, and Malchishua, and the names of his two daughters were Merab, the firstborn, and Michal, and younger. 50 And the name of Saul's wife was Ahinoam, daughter of Ahimaaz, and the name of his army general was Abiner, the son of Ner, Saul's uncle. 51 And Kish was the father of Saul, and Ner the father of Abner was the son of Abiel.

52 And there was heavy warfare against Philistines all the days of Saul, and when Saul saw any powerful or valiant man, he took him for himself.

Chapter 15[edit]

1 And Samuel said to Saul, Yahweh sent me to anoint you as king over my people, over Israel. Now, listen to the voice of Yahweh's words. 2 Thus says Yahweh of Armies. I remember what Amalek did to Israel, how he waylaid him as he came up from Egypt. 3 So go and attack Amalek, and utterly exterminate all that they have, and do not pity them, but kill both man and woman, both babes and infants, oxen and sheep, camels and donkeys.

4 And Saul summoned the people, and counted them in Telaim, two hundred thousand foot soldiers, and ten thousand men of Judah. 5 And Saul came to the city of Amalek, and lay in wait in the valley.

6 And Saul said to the Kenites, Go away, get down from among the Amalekites, or else I will treat you like them, although you treated all the Israelites well when they came up from Egypt. So the Kenites left from Amalek. 7 And Saul struck down Amalek from Havilah as you go toward Shur, which is opposite Egypt. 8 And he captured Agag king of Amalek alive, and utterly exterminated all the people with the edge of the sword. 9 But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and oxen, the fattened animals,[24] and the lambs, and all that was good, and they were not willing to utterly exterminate them, but whatever was worthless and of no value they utterly exterminated.

10 Then a message from Yahweh came to Samuel, saying, 11 I repent that I made Saul king, because he turned away from following me, and has not upheld my words. And Samuel was furious, and cried out to Yahweh all that night.

12 And Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning, and it was reported to Samuel, Saul has come to the Carmel, and there he set up a pillar for himself, and went around, and crossed over, and went down to the Gilgal. 14 And Samuel came to Saul, and Saul said to him, Blessed are you by Yahweh. I have upheld the word of Yahweh.

15 And Samuel said, And what is this sound of sheep in my ears, and the sound of oxen that I hear?

16 And Saul said, I brought them from the Amalekites, because the people spared the best of the sheep and the cattle in order to sacrifice to Yahweh your god, and the rest we utterly exterminated.

17 And Samuel said, When you were small in your own eyes, were you not leader over the tribes of Israel? And Yahweh anointed you king over Israel. 18 And Yahweh sent you on a journey, and said, Go and utterly exterminate the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are finished off. 19 And why did you not heed the voice of Yahweh, but dashed upon the spoil, and did evil in the eyes of Yahweh.

20 And Saul said to Samuel, But I have obeyed the voice of Yahweh, and have gone on the journey where Yahweh sent me, and I have brought Agag king of Amalek, and I have utterly exterminated the Amalekites. 21 And the people took of the spoil sheep and oxen, the best of what should have been utterly exterminated, to sacrifice to Yahweh your god at the Gilgal.

22 And Samuel said, Does Yahweh delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as he does in obey the voice of Yahweh? No! Obedience is better than sacrifice, and heeding than the fat of rams. 23 But rebellion is the sin of divination, and idolatry and evil are stubbornness. Because you rejected the message of Yahweh, he has rejected your kingship.

24 And Saul said to Samuel, I have sinned, because I have trespassed against the mouth of Yahweh, and your words, because I was afraid of the people, and obeyed their voice. 25 And so, please forgive my sin, and return with me, and I will worship Yahweh.

26 And Samuel said to Saul, I will not return with you, because you rejected the word of Yahweh, and Yahweh has rejected you from being king over Israel.

27 And Samuel turned to go, and grabbed the corner of his tunic, and it tore.

28 And Samuel said to him, Yahweh has torn the kingdom of Israel off you today, and has given it to a companion of yours who is better than you. 29 Yes, the eternal one of Israel will not lie or repent, because he is not a man, that he would repent.

30 And he said, I have sinned, but do me the this honor before the elders of my people, and before Israel, by going back with me to worship Yahweh your god. 31 So Samuel went and followed Saul, and Saul worshipped Yahweh.

32 And Samuel said, Bring me Agag king of Amalek. And Agag came to him cheerfully, and Agag thought, Surely the bitterness of death has passed.

33 And Samuel said, As your sword has made women childless, so may your mother be childless among women. And Samuel executed[25] Agag before Yahweh there at the Gilgal.

34 And Samuel went to the Ramah, and Saul went up to his house at Gibeah of Saul. 35 And never again did Samuel see Saul until the day he died, but Samuel mourned for Saul, and Yahweh repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.

Chapter 16[edit]

1 And Yahweh said to Samuel, How long will you mourn for Saul? I have rejected his kingship over Israel. Fill your horn with oil, and go, and I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, because I have seen a king for me among his sons.

2 And Samuel said, How can I go? Saul will hear and kill me.

And Yahweh said, Take a heifer with you, and say, I have come to sacrifice to Yahweh. 3 And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you will do, and you will annoint for me the one whose name I tell you.

4 And Samuel did what Yahweh said, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town were afraid to meet him, and said, Do you come in peace?

5 And he said, In peace. I have come to sacrifice to Yahweh. Consecrate yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he consecrated Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice.

6 Then, when they had come, he saw Eliab, and said, Surely Yahweh's anointed stands before him.

7 And Yahweh said to Samuel, Do not look at his appearance, and how tall he stands, because I have rejected him, because it is not as a human sees. The human sees with the eyes, but Yahweh sees into the heart.

8 And Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass in front of Samuel. And he said, Yahweh has not chosen this one either.

9 And Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, Yahweh has not chosen this one either.

10 And Jesse made seven of his sons pass in front of Samuel. And Samuel said to Jesse, Yahweh has not chosen these.

11 And Samuel said to Jesse, Are those all your children?

And he said, There is still the youngest, who is out there tending the flock.

And Samuel said to Jesse, Send for him, because we will not go back until he comes here.

12 And he sent and brought him. And he was ruddy, of beautiful appearance, and handsome to see.

And Yahweh said, Get up and anoint him, because this is the one. 13 And Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the middle of his brothers, and the spirit of Yahweh came upon David from that day onward. And Samuel rose up and went to the Ramah.

14 And the spirit of Yahweh turned away from Saul, and an evil spirit from Yahweh tormented him. 15 And Saul's servants said to him, We see that an evil spirit of God is tormenting you. 16 Let our lord command his servants before you to look for a man who knows how to play the harp, and then when the evil spirit of God is upon you, he will play on it, and you will be well.

17 And Saul said to his servants, Get me a man who plays well, and bring him to me.

18 And one of his attendants replied, and said, Now, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite who knows how to play, and is a mighty and valiant warrior, a person of understanding, and a handsome man, and Yahweh is with him.

19 And Saul sent messengers to Jesse, and said, Send me David your son, who is with the flock. 20 And Jesse took a donkey loaded with bread, and a skin of wine, and one young goat, and sent them with David his son to Saul. 21 And David came to Saul, and waited on him. And he loved him very much, and he became his porter.

22 And Saul sent word to Jesse: Please let David wait on me, because I he has found favor in my eyes. 23 And it came to pass, when the spirit of God was on Saul, that David would take the harp and play on it, and Saul would be refreshed, and well, and the evil spirit would leave him.

Chapter 17[edit]

1 And Philistines gathered their encampments for battle, and were gathered at Socoh, belonging to Judah, and encamped between Socoh and Azekah in Ephes Dammim. 2 And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered, and encamped in the valley of the Elah, and set themselves in battle array to meet Philistines. 3 And Philistines stood by a mountain on this side, and Israel stood on a mountain on the other, with a valley between them.

4 And a champion went out from the Philistine camp, Goliath his name, from Gath, his height four cubits and a span.[26] 5 And he had a bronze helmet on his head, and he wore scale body armor, and the weight of the armor was five thousand shekels[27] of bronze. 6 And shin-guards of bronze were on his legs, and a bronze javelin[28] between his shoulders. 7 And the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam, and the head of his spear was six hundred shekels of iron, and a man went ahead of him carrying a shield. 8 And he stood and called out to the armies of Israel, and said to them, Why have you come out arrayed for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and you servants of Saul? Choose yourselves a man to come down to me. 9 If you are able to defeat me, then we will become your servants, but if I am able to defeat him, then you will become our servants, and serve us.

10 And the Philistine said, I defy the armies of Israel this day. Give me a man, and we will fight together. 11 And Saul and all Israel head the words of these words of the Philistine, they were shattered, and very afraid.

12 Now David was the son of that Ephrathite from Bethlehem of Judah whose name was Jesse, and he had eight sons, and the man was old among men in the days of Saul. 13 And the three oldest sons of Jesse went to follow Saul to the battle, and the names of the three sons who went to battle were Eliab, the firstborn; and the second was Abinadab; and the third Shammah. 14 And David was the youngest, and the three oldest followed Saul. 15 And David went and returned from Saul to tend his father's flock at Bethlehem.

16 And the Philistine approached morning and evening, and would stand there, forty days. 17 And Jesse said to David his son, Please, take your brothers an ephah of this parched grain, and these ten loaves, and run to your brothers in the camp. 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58


  1. Names have been transliterated when uncommon, but traditional names of common people have been used.
  2. When animals were sacrificed in the Bible, it was customary for the priest and the worshippers to eat portions of the sacrificed animal.
  3. Here the Hebrew appaim is translated as "double," but it is not clear what, if anything, the word really means. It may be the result of a copying mistake of some kind.
  4. literally, Yahweh closed her womb.
  5. male child: literally, a seed of men
  6. (2:32) enemy dwelling-place. The Hebrew text appears unintelligible here, and the translation simply reflects how it appears.
  7. (2:33) by the sword does not appear in the Masoretic Text, but is found in the Septuagint.
  8. (4:21) Ichabod. Meaning, Where is the glory?
  9. (5:6) tumors. The Hebrew word translated here, and throughout this story, as tumors is of uncertain meaning.
  10. (5:8) sarens. A word used only for Philistine leaders.
  11. (6:4) sarens. A word used only of Philistine leaders.
  12. garrison. The word is unusual in Hebrew, and plural. The New English Translation reads "officials."
  13. (10:5) prophesying. Unlike the English term "prophesy," the Hebrew term is sometimes used for the production of liturgical music, and sometimes for a sort of religiously-related ecstatic behavior.
  14. (13:1) [...] years old. It is generally agreed that a number has dropped out of the Masoretic Text here that once indicated how old Saul was when he became king, and for how long he was king.
  15. (13:6) thickets. This Hebrew word occurs only here, so its exact meaning is uncertain.
  16. (13:6) holes. This Hebrew word is infrequent, and its exact meaning is not certain.
  17. (13:21) charge. The Hebrew word petsirah appears only here, and thus there is some uncertainty about its meaning.
  18. (13:21) pim. An ancient unit weight (presumably referring to silver in a monetary context) which was equal to about two-thirds of a shekel.
  19. (13:21) three-pronged forks. The Hebrew phrase translated three-pronged forks occurs only here, and its meaning is uncertain. The word that is taken as indicating a "three-pronged" implement is sometimes interpreted as referring to a monetary unit of a third of one shekel, charged for forks, axes, and goads.
  20. (13:21) goads. The word in Hebrew is rare, found only here and Ecclesiastes 12:11, where the context indicates, like the present context, that it refers to some sharp implement. Beyond that it is not possible to be certain of its exact meaning.
  21. (!4:14) a half acre of land. The Hebrew expression is difficult to understand with certainty.
  22. Never mind. Leave the ark. Literally, Withdraw your hand.
  23. (14:24) food (both instances in this verse, and in verse 28). Literally, "bread," but as the story makes clear, the meaning is food in general.
  24. (15:9) the fattened animals. Reading ha-shmenim "the fattened [animals]" instead of we-ha-mishnim, which would seem to mean, "and the second ones."
  25. (15:33) executed. This Hebrew word occurs only here, and its meaning is uncertain. It is often translated hacked to pieces.
  26. (17:4) four cubits and a span. Following the some manuscripts of the Septuagint and the Qumran manuscript 4QSama, along with the Jewish chronicler Josephus (Antiquities, 6.171). A cubit was about seventeen or eighteen inches, and a span half that, placing Goliath at about 6 feet 5 inches to 6 feet 9 inches. The Masoretic Text and some Greek manuscripts read six cubits and a span, making Goliath in excess of nine feet tall.
  27. (17:5) five thousand shekels. A shekel was an ancient unit of weight equal to about eleven grams, so the body armor mentioned here would weigh about 55 kilograms.
  28. (17:6) javelin. Hebrew kidon, a term of uncertain meaning. It may refer to a kind of sword.


  • Source Text: Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia, fifth edition
  • Consulted King James Version.