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16
David Chosen to Be King
1 The Lord asked Samuel, “How long are you going to mourn for Saul now that I have rejected him as king of Israel? Fill a flask with olive oil and go. I’m sending you to Jesse in Bethlehem because I’ve selected one of his sons to be king.”
2 “How can I go?” Samuel asked. “When Saul hears about it, he’ll kill me.”
The Lord said, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I’ve come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ 3 Invite Jesse to the sacrifice. I will reveal to you what you should do, and you will anoint for me the one I point out to you.”
4 Samuel did what the Lord told him. When he came to Bethlehem, the leaders of the city, trembling with fear, greeted him and said, “May peace be with you.”
5 “Greetings,” he replied, “I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Perform the ceremonies to make yourselves holy, and come with me to the sacrifice.” He performed the ceremonies for Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice. 6 When they came, he saw Eliab and thought, “Certainly, here in the Lord’s presence is his anointed king.”
7 But the Lord told Samuel, “Don’t look at his appearance or how tall he is, because I have rejected him. God does not see as humans see.#Greek; Masoretic Text “Not that which humans see.” Humans look at outward appearances, but the Lord looks into the heart.”
8 Then Jesse called Abinadab and brought him to Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.”
9 Then Jesse had Shammah come to Samuel. “The Lord has not chosen this one either,” Samuel said. 10 So Jesse brought seven ⌊more⌋ of his sons to Samuel, but Samuel told Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen ⌊any of⌋ these. 11 Are these all the sons you have?”
“There’s still the youngest one,” Jesse answered. “He’s tending the sheep.”
Samuel told Jesse, “Send someone to get him. We won’t continue until he gets here.”
12 So Jesse sent for him. He had a healthy complexion, attractive eyes, and a handsome appearance. The Lord said, “Go ahead, anoint him. He is the one.” 13 Samuel took the flask of olive oil and anointed David in the presence of his brothers. The Lord’s Spirit came over David and stayed with him from that day on. Then Samuel left for Ramah.
David Plays the Lyre for Saul
14 Now, the Lord’s Spirit had left Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord tormented him. 15 Saul’s officials told him, “An evil spirit from God is tormenting you. 16 Your Majesty, why don’t you command us to look for a man who can play the lyre well? When the evil spirit from God comes to you, he’ll strum a tune, and you’ll feel better.”
17 Saul told his officials, “Please find me a man who can play well and bring him to me.”
18 One of the officials said, “I know one of Jesse’s sons from Bethlehem who can play well. He’s a courageous man and a warrior. He has a way with words, he is handsome, and the Lord is with him.”
19 Saul sent messengers to Jesse to say, “Send me your son David, who is with the sheep.”
20 Jesse took six bushels of bread, a full wineskin, and a young goat and sent them with his son David to Saul. 21 David came to Saul and served him. Saul loved him very much and made David his armorbearer. 22 Saul sent ⌊this message⌋ to Jesse, “Please let David stay with me because I have grown fond of him.”
23 Whenever God’s spirit came to Saul, David took the lyre and strummed a tune. Saul got relief ⌊from his terror⌋ and felt better, and the evil spirit left him.
16
David Is Anointed King
1The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you go on grieving over Saul? I have rejected him as king of Israel. But now get some olive oil and go to Bethlehem, to a man named Jesse, because I have chosen one of his sons to be king.”
2“How can I do that?” Samuel asked. “If Saul hears about it, he will kill me!”
The Lord answered, “Take a calf with you and say that you are there to offer a sacrifice to the Lord. 3Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will tell you what to do. You will anoint as king the man I tell you to.”
4Samuel did what the Lord told him to do and went to Bethlehem, where the city leaders came trembling to meet him and asked, “Is this a peaceful visit, seer?”
5“Yes,” he answered. “I have come to offer a sacrifice to the Lord. Purify yourselves and come with me.” He also told Jesse and his sons to purify themselves, and he invited them to the sacrifice.
6When they arrived, Samuel saw Jesse's son Eliab and said to himself, “This man standing here in the Lord's presence is surely the one he has chosen.” 7But the Lord said to him, “Pay no attention to how tall and handsome he is. I have rejected him, because I do not judge as people judge. They look at the outward appearance, but I look at the heart.”
8Then Jesse called his son Abinadab and brought him to Samuel. But Samuel said, “No, the Lord hasn't chosen him either.” 9Jesse then brought Shammah. “No, the Lord hasn't chosen him either,” Samuel said. 10In this way Jesse brought seven of his sons to Samuel. And Samuel said to him, “No, the Lord hasn't chosen any of these.” 11Then he asked him, “Do you have any more sons?”
Jesse answered, “There is still the youngest, but he is out taking care of the sheep.”
“Tell him to come here,” Samuel said. “We won't offer the sacrifice until he comes.” 12So Jesse sent for him. He was a handsome, healthy young man, and his eyes sparkled. The Lord said to Samuel, “This is the one—anoint him!” 13Samuel took the olive oil and anointed David in front of his brothers. Immediately the spirit of the Lord took control of David and was with him from that day on. Then Samuel returned to Ramah.
David in Saul's Court
14The Lord's spirit left Saul, and an evil spirit sent by the Lord tormented him. 15His servants said to him, “We know that an evil spirit sent by God is tormenting you. 16So give us the order, sir, and we will look for a man who knows how to play the harp. Then when the evil spirit comes on you, the man can play his harp, and you will be all right again.”
17Saul ordered them, “Find me a man who plays well and bring him to me.”
18One of his attendants said, “Jesse of the town of Bethlehem has a son who is a good musician. He is also a brave and handsome man, a good soldier, and an able speaker. The Lord is with him.”
19So Saul sent messengers to Jesse to say, “Send me your son David, the one who takes care of the sheep.” 20Jesse sent David to Saul with a young goat, a donkey loaded with bread, and a leather bag full of wine. 21David came to Saul and entered his service. Saul liked him very much and chose him as the man to carry his weapons. 22Then Saul sent a message to Jesse: “I like David. Let him stay here in my service.” 23From then on, whenever the evil spirit sent by God came on Saul, David would get his harp and play it. The evil spirit would leave, and Saul would feel better and be all right again.