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1 Samuel 28 New Century Version (NCV)

Saul and the Medium of Endor

28 Later, the Philistines gathered their armies to fight against Israel. Achish said to David, “You understand that you and your men must join my army.”

David answered, “You will see for yourself what I, your servant, can do!”

Achish said, “Fine, I’ll make you my permanent bodyguard.”

Now Samuel was dead, and all the Israelites had shown their sadness for him. They had buried Samuel in his hometown of Ramah.

And Saul had forced out the mediums and fortune-tellers from the land.

The Philistines came together and made camp at Shunem. Saul gathered all the Israelites and made camp at Gilboa. When he saw the Philistine army, he was afraid, and his heart pounded with fear. He prayed to the Lord, but the Lord did not answer him through dreams, Urim, or prophets. Then Saul said to his servants, “Find me a woman who is a medium so I may go and ask her what will happen.”

His servants answered, “There is a medium in Endor.”

Then Saul put on other clothes to disguise himself, and at night he and two of his men went to see the woman. Saul said to her, “Talk to a spirit for me. Bring up the person I name.”

But the woman said to him, “Surely you know what Saul has done. He has forced the mediums and fortune-tellers from the land. You are trying to trap me and get me killed.”

10 Saul made a promise to the woman in the name of the Lord. He said, “As surely as the Lord lives, you won’t be punished for this.”

11 The woman asked, “Whom do you want me to bring up?”

He answered, “Bring up Samuel.”

12 When the woman saw Samuel, she screamed. She said, “Why have you tricked me? You are Saul!”

13 The king said to the woman, “Don’t be afraid! What do you see?”

The woman said, “I see a spirit coming up out of the ground.”

14 Saul asked, “What does he look like?”

The woman answered, “An old man wearing a coat is coming up.”

Then Saul knew it was Samuel, and he bowed facedown on the ground.

15 Samuel asked Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?”

Saul said, “I am greatly troubled. The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has left me. He won’t answer me anymore, either by prophets or in dreams. That’s why I called for you. Tell me what to do.”

16 Samuel said, “The Lord has left you and has become your enemy. So why do you call on me? 17 He has done what he said he would do—the things he said through me. He has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors, David. 18 You did not obey the Lord; you did not show the Amalekites how angry he was with them. That’s why he has done this to you today. 19 The Lord will hand over both Israel and you to the Philistines. Tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will hand over the army of Israel to the Philistines.”

20 Saul quickly fell flat on the ground and was afraid of what Samuel had said. He was also very weak because he had eaten nothing all that day and night.

21 Then the woman came to Saul and saw that he was really frightened. She said, “Look, I, your servant, have obeyed you. I have risked my life and done what you told me to do. 22 Now please listen to me. Let me give you some food so you may eat and have enough strength to go on your way.”

23 But Saul refused, saying, “I won’t eat.”

His servants joined the woman in asking him to eat, and he listened to them. So he got up from the ground and sat on the bed.

24 At the house the woman had a fat calf, which she quickly killed. She took some flour and mixed dough with her hands. Then she baked some bread without yeast. 25 She put the food before them, and they ate. That same night they got up and left.

New Century Version (NCV)

The Holy Bible, New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

1 Samuel 28 New International Version (NIV)

28 In those days the Philistines gathered their forces to fight against Israel. Achish said to David, “You must understand that you and your men will accompany me in the army.”

David said, “Then you will see for yourself what your servant can do.”

Achish replied, “Very well, I will make you my bodyguard for life.”

Saul and the Medium at Endor

Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had mourned for him and buried him in his own town of Ramah. Saul had expelled the mediums and spiritists from the land.

The Philistines assembled and came and set up camp at Shunem, while Saul gathered all Israel and set up camp at Gilboa. When Saul saw the Philistine army, he was afraid; terror filled his heart. He inquired of the Lord, but the Lord did not answer him by dreams or Urim or prophets. Saul then said to his attendants, “Find me a woman who is a medium, so I may go and inquire of her.”

“There is one in Endor,” they said.

So Saul disguised himself, putting on other clothes, and at night he and two men went to the woman. “Consult a spirit for me,” he said, “and bring up for me the one I name.”

But the woman said to him, “Surely you know what Saul has done. He has cut off the mediums and spiritists from the land. Why have you set a trap for my life to bring about my death?”

10 Saul swore to her by the Lord, “As surely as the Lord lives, you will not be punished for this.”

11 Then the woman asked, “Whom shall I bring up for you?”

“Bring up Samuel,” he said.

12 When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out at the top of her voice and said to Saul, “Why have you deceived me? You are Saul!”

13 The king said to her, “Don’t be afraid. What do you see?”

The woman said, “I see a ghostly figure[a] coming up out of the earth.”

14 “What does he look like?” he asked.

“An old man wearing a robe is coming up,” she said.

Then Saul knew it was Samuel, and he bowed down and prostrated himself with his face to the ground.

15 Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?”

“I am in great distress,” Saul said. “The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has departed from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets or by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do.”

16 Samuel said, “Why do you consult me, now that the Lord has departed from you and become your enemy? 17 The Lord has done what he predicted through me. The Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors—to David. 18 Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today. 19 The Lord will deliver both Israel and you into the hands of the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also give the army of Israel into the hands of the Philistines.”

20 Immediately Saul fell full length on the ground, filled with fear because of Samuel’s words. His strength was gone, for he had eaten nothing all that day and all that night.

21 When the woman came to Saul and saw that he was greatly shaken, she said, “Look, your servant has obeyed you. I took my life in my hands and did what you told me to do. 22 Now please listen to your servant and let me give you some food so you may eat and have the strength to go on your way.”

23 He refused and said, “I will not eat.”

But his men joined the woman in urging him, and he listened to them. He got up from the ground and sat on the couch.

24 The woman had a fattened calf at the house, which she butchered at once. She took some flour, kneaded it and baked bread without yeast. 25 Then she set it before Saul and his men, and they ate. That same night they got up and left.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Samuel 28:13 Or see spirits; or see gods
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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