View 1st Samuel 28 in the note window.
The conference between Achish and David, ver. 1 - 2.
The preparation of the Philistines, and the distress of Saul,
ver. 3 - 6.
He applies to a woman which had a familiar spirit, to raise Samuel,
ver. 7 - 11.
Samuel appears, and foretells his defeat and death, ver. 12 - 19.
Saul faints, and is with difficulty persuaded to take any sustenance,
ver. 20 - 25.
2: Can do - He speaks ambiguously, as he did before.
5: He trembled - Had he kept close to God, he needed not fear all
the armies of the Philistines.
7: That hath, &c. - One that converseth with the devil, or dead
men's ghosts, and by them can discover future things. See (Isa 8:19).
8: Disguised - Both because he was ashamed to be known, or thought
guilty of this practice; and because he suspected, the woman, had she known
him, would not practice her art before him.
11: Samuel - Whose kindness and compassion as he had formerly
experienced, so now he expected it in his deep distress. This practice
of divination by the dead, or the souls of dead persons, was very usual
among all nations.
12: Saw Samuel - The words are express, the woman saw Samuel,
instead of the spirit whom she expected to see, God ordering it so for his
own glory. She cried with a loud voice - Terrified and astonished, and
thence easily conjectured, whom she had been talking with.
13: Gods - That is, a god, and divine person, glorious, and full of
majesty and splendor, exceeding not only mortal men, but common ghosts.
She used the plural number, gods, either after the manner of the
Hebrew language, which commonly uses that word of one person: or,
after the language and custom of the heathens.
14: A mantle - The usual habit of prophets, and particularly of
Samuel, (1Sa 15:27).
If it was not Samuel, but an other spirit in his shape, it is not true,
that Saul perceived it was Samuel. It seems Saul did not see him,
so soon as the woman, which occasioned his asking those questions.
15: Called Samuel - Happy had it been, if he had called Samuel
sooner, or rather the God of Samuel! It was now too late: destruction
was at hand and God had determined, it should not be stayed.
17: To him - To David.
19: Tomorrow shalt thou and thy sons be with me:
"What do these solemn words portend?
A gleam of hope when life shall end.
Thou and thy sons, tho' slain shall be
To-morrow in repose with me.
Not in a state of health or pain
If Saul with Samuel doth remain;
Not in a state of damn'd despair,
If loving Jonathan is there."
Tho' these words may only mean, ye shall surely die, without any reference
to the state of their souls after death. See note on "1Sa 31:8"
20: Fell - As if the Archers of the Philistines had already hit
him, and there was no strength in him, to bear up against these heavy
tidings: especially, as we cannot doubt, but all his past sins were now
brought to his remembrance and what authority has any man to affirm, that
he felt no contrition all this time? Altho' it did not seem good to the
holy ghost, to leave it upon record?
21: Came to Saul - From whom she departed, when she had brought him
and Samuel together, that they might more freely converse together.
24: Unleavened - Not having time to leaven it.