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10
Saul among Prophets
1 Then Samuel took the flask of oil and poured it on Saul’s head, kissed him, and said, “Has the Lord not anointed you as ruler over His inheritance (Israel)?2 When you leave me today, you will meet two men beside Rachel’s tomb in the territory of Benjamin at Zelzah; they will say to you, ‘The donkeys you went to look for have been found. And your father has stopped caring about them and is worried about you, saying, “What shall I do about my son?”’3 Then you will go on further from there, and you will come to the terebinth tree of Tabor, and three men going up to [sacrifice to] God at Bethel will meet you there, one carrying three young goats, another carrying three loaves of bread, and another carrying a jug of wine.4 They will greet you and give you two loaves of bread, which you will accept from their hand.5 After that you will come to #Or Gibeath-haelohim.the hill of God where the garrison of the Philistines is; and when you come there to the city, you will meet a group of prophets coming down from the high place [of worship] with harp, tambourine, flute, and lyre before them, and they will be prophesying.6 Then the Spirit of the Lord will come upon you mightily, and you will prophesy with them, and you will be changed into another man.7 When these signs come to you, do for yourself whatever #Lit your hand finds.the situation requires, for God is with you.8 You shall go down ahead of me to Gilgal; and behold, I will be coming down to you to offer burnt offerings and to sacrifice peace offerings. You shall wait seven days until I come to you and show you what you must do.”
9 Then it happened when Saul turned his back to leave Samuel, God changed his heart; and all those signs came to pass that day.10 When they came to the hill [Gibeah], behold, a group of prophets met him; and the Spirit of God came on him mightily, and he prophesied [under divine guidance] among them.11 Now when all who knew Saul previously saw that he actually prophesied now [by inspiration] with the prophets, the people said one to another, “What has happened to [Saul, who is nobody but] the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?”12 And a man from there answered, “But who is the father of the others?” So it became a proverb, “Is Saul also among the prophets?”13 When Saul had finished prophesying, he went to the high place [of worship].
14 Saul’s uncle said to him and to his servant, “Where did you go?” And Saul said, “To look for the donkeys. And when we saw that they were nowhere to be found, we went to Samuel [for help].”15 Saul’s uncle said, “Please tell me, what did Samuel say to you?”16 And Saul said to his uncle, “He told us plainly that the donkeys had been found.” But he did not tell him about the matter of the kingdom which Samuel had mentioned.
Saul Publicly Chosen King
17 Then Samuel called the people together to the Lord at Mizpah,18 and he said to Israel, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘It was I who brought Israel up from Egypt, and I rescued you from the hand of the Egyptians and from all the kingdoms that were oppressing you.’19 But today you have rejected your God, who Himself saves you from all your disasters and distresses; yet you have said, ‘No! Set a king over us.’ Now then, present yourselves before the Lord by your tribes and by your families (clans).”
20 And when Samuel brought all the tribes of Israel near, the tribe of Benjamin was chosen by lot.21 Then he brought the tribe of Benjamin near by their families, and the family of Matri was chosen by lot. And Saul the son of Kish was chosen by lot; but when they looked for him, he could not be found.22 So they inquired further of the Lord, “Has the man come here yet?” And the Lord answered, “He is there, hiding himself by the #Lit baggage.provisions and supplies.” 23 So they ran and took him from there, and when he stood among the people, he was taller than any of the people from his shoulders upward.24 Samuel said to all the people, “Do you see him whom the Lord has chosen? For there is no one like him among all the people.” So all the people shouted and said, “Long live the king!”
25 Then Samuel told the people the #Lit legal claim, i.e. what a king would require from his subjects.requirements of the kingdom, and wrote them in a book and placed it before the Lord. And Samuel sent all the people away, each one to his home.26 Saul also went home to Gibeah; and the #Or men of wealth and influence.brave men whose hearts God had touched went with him.27 But some #Lit sons of Belial.worthless men said, “How can this man save and rescue us?” And they regarded Saul with contempt and did not bring him a gift. But he ignored the insult and kept silent.
10
1Then Samuel took a jar of olive oil and poured it on Saul's head, kissed him, and said, “The Lord anoints you as ruler of his people Israel. You will rule his people and protect them from all their enemies. And this is the proof to you that the Lord has chosen you#10.1: Some ancient translations as ruler of his people … the Lord has chosen you; Hebrew does not have these words. to be the ruler of his people: 2When you leave me today, you will meet two men near Rachel's tomb at Zelzah in the territory of Benjamin. They will tell you that the donkeys you were looking for have been found, so that your father isn't worried any more about them but about you, and he keeps asking, ‘What shall I do about my son?’ 3You will go on from there until you come to the sacred tree at Tabor, where you will meet three men on their way to offer a sacrifice to God at Bethel. One of them will be leading three young goats, another one will be carrying three loaves of bread, and the third one will have a leather bag full of wine. 4They will greet you and offer you two of the loaves, which you are to accept. 5Then you will go to the Hill of God in Gibeah, where there is a Philistine camp. At the entrance to the town you will meet a group of prophets coming down from the altar on the hill, playing harps, drums, flutes, and lyres. They will be dancing and shouting. 6Suddenly the spirit of the Lord will take control of you, and you will join in their religious dancing and shouting and will become a different person. 7When these things happen, do whatever God leads you to do. 8You will go ahead of me to Gilgal, where I will meet you and offer burnt sacrifices and fellowship sacrifices. Wait there seven days until I come and tell you what to do.”
9When Saul turned to leave Samuel, God gave Saul a new nature. And everything Samuel had told him happened that day. 10When Saul and his servant arrived at Gibeah, a group of prophets met him. Suddenly the spirit of God took control of him, and he joined in their ecstatic dancing and shouting. 11People who had known him before saw him doing this and asked one another, “What has happened to the son of Kish? Has Saul become a prophet?” 12#1 S 19.23,24 A man who lived there asked, “How about these other prophets—who do you think their fathers are?” This is how the saying originated, “Has even Saul become a prophet?” 13When Saul finished his ecstatic dancing and shouting, he went to the altar on the hill.
14Saul's uncle saw him and the servant, and he asked them, “Where have you been?”
“Looking for the donkeys,” Saul answered. “When we couldn't find them, we went to see Samuel.”
15“And what did he tell you?” Saul's uncle asked.
16“He told us that the animals had been found,” Saul answered—but he did not tell his uncle what Samuel had said about his becoming king.
Saul Is Acclaimed as King
17Samuel called the people together for a religious gathering at Mizpah 18and said to them, “The Lord, the God of Israel, says, ‘I brought you out of Egypt and rescued you from the Egyptians and all the other peoples who were oppressing you. 19I am your God, the one who rescues you from all your troubles and difficulties, but today you have rejected me and have asked me to give you a king. Very well, then, gather yourselves before the Lord by tribes and by clans.’”
20Then Samuel had each tribe come forward, and the Lord picked the tribe of Benjamin. 21Then Samuel had the families of the tribe of Benjamin come forward, and the family of Matri was picked out. Then the men of the family of Matri came forward,#10.21: One ancient translation Then the men of the family of Matri came forward; Hebrew does not have these words. and Saul son of Kish was picked out. They looked for him, but when they could not find him, 22they asked the Lord, “Is there still someone else?”
The Lord answered, “Saul is over there, hiding behind the supplies.”
23So they ran and brought Saul out to the people, and they could see that he was a foot taller than anyone else. 24Samuel said to the people, “Here is the man the Lord has chosen! There is no one else among us like him.”
All the people shouted, “Long live the king!”
25Samuel explained to the people the rights and duties of a king, and then wrote them in a book, which he deposited in a holy place. Then he sent everyone home. 26Saul also went back home to Gibeah. Some powerful men,#10.26: One ancient translation Some powerful men; Hebrew The army. whose hearts God had touched, went with him. 27But some worthless people said, “How can this fellow do us any good?” They despised Saul and did not bring him any gifts.