1 Samuel 28 New Life Version (NLV)
Saul and the Woman of Endor
28 In those days the Philistines gathered their armies for war against Israel. Achish said to David, “Understand that you and your men are to go out with me to battle.” 2 David said to Achish, “Very well, you will know what your servant can do.” And Achish said to David, “Very well, I will make you the soldier who stands by me and keeps me safe for life.”
3 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had been filled with sorrow for him. They buried him in his own city of Ramah. And Saul had put out of the land those who spoke with spirits by using their secret ways. 4 The Philistines gathered together and came and stayed at Shunem. Saul gathered all Israel together and they stayed at Gilboa. 5 When Saul saw the Philistine army, he was afraid. His heart shook with much fear. 6 Saul asked the Lord what he should do. But the Lord did not answer him, by dreams or by Urim or by those who speak for God. 7 Then Saul said to his servants, “Find a woman for me who can speak with spirits, that I may go to her and ask her what I should do.” His servants said to him, “See, there is a woman at Endor who can speak with spirits.”
8 So Saul dressed up to look like somebody else and went with two other men to the woman during the night. He said, “Use your secret ways for me, I beg you, and bring up for me whom I will name to you.” 9 But the woman said to him, “See, you know what Saul has done. He has put out of the land those who speak with spirits by using their secret ways. Why do you lay a trap for my life to cause my death?” 10 But Saul promised her by the Lord, saying, “As the Lord lives, you will not be punished for this.” 11 Then the woman said, “Whom should I bring up for you?” And he said, “Bring up Samuel for me.” 12 When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out with a loud voice. She said to Saul, “Why have you fooled me? For you are Saul!” 13 The king said to her, “Do not be afraid. What do you see?” The woman said to Saul, “I see a god coming up out of the earth.” 14 He said to her, “What does he look like?” And she said, “An old man is coming up. He is dressed in a long piece of clothing.” Saul knew that it was Samuel, and he put his face to the ground to show honor.
15 Then Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you troubled my rest by bringing me up?” Saul answered, “I am very troubled. The Philistines are making war against me. And God has left me and answers me no more, by those who speak for Him or by dreams. So I have called you to tell me what I should do.” 16 Samuel said, “Why then do you ask me, since the Lord has left you and has turned against you? 17 The Lord has done what He said He would do through me. The Lord has torn the rule of Israel out of your hand and given it to your neighbor, David. 18 You did not obey the Lord and bring His burning anger upon Amalek. So the Lord has done this to you now. 19 What is more, the Lord will give Israel and you into the hands of the Philistines. So tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will give the army of Israel to the Philistines.”
20 At once Saul fell to the ground with his whole body. He was very afraid because of Samuel’s words. And there was no strength in him, for he had eaten no food all day and all night. 21 The woman came to Saul and saw that he was filled with fear. She said to him, “See, your woman servant has obeyed you. I have put my life in danger and have listened to what you said to me. 22 So now I beg you, let me give you a piece of bread. Eat, so you may have strength when you go on your way.” 23 But he said, “I will not eat.” But his servants together with the woman begged him, and he listened to them. He got up from the ground and sat on the bed. 24 The woman had a fat calf in the house and was quick to kill it. She took flour, made it into dough, and made bread without yeast. 25 She brought it to Saul and his servants, and they ate. Then they got up and went away that night.