1 Kingdoms 10:17-13:22
17 Then Samuel proclaimed to all the people in the presence of the Lord at Mizpah, 18 and to the sons of Israel he said, “Thus says the Lord God of Israel, ‘I brought the sons of Israel up from Egypt and delivered you from the hand of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and from all the kingdoms that oppressed you.’ 19 But today you rejected God, who Himself is your Savior from all your adversities and tribulations. And you said to Him, ‘No! Set a king over us!’ Therefore, now stand before the Lord according to your tribes and according to your families.” 20 Then Samuel brought near all the tribes of Israel, and by lot the tribe of Benjamin was chosen. 21 And he brought near the tribe of Benjamin by families, and by lot the family of Matri was chosen. And the men of the family of Matri came near, and by lot Saul, the son of Kish, was chosen. But when Samuel sought him, he could not be found. 22 So Samuel asked yet again of the Lord, “Has this man come here yet?” And the Lord answered, “Look! He is there, hidden among the equipment.” 23 So they ran and brought him from there. And when Saul stood among the people, he was a head taller than all the other people. 24 Then Samuel said to all the people, “Do you see him whom the Lord has chosen for Himself, that there is no one like him among all of you?”
All the people recognized and understood and said, “Long live the king!” 25 Then Samuel explained to the people the custom of the king, and he wrote it in a book and placed it before the Lord. And Samuel sent all the people away, and every man went to his place. 26 And Saul also went home to Gibeah; and with Saul, the sons of valor whose hearts the Lord inspired. 27 But perverse men said, “How shall this man save us?” So they despised him and brought him no gifts.
Saul Strikes Down the Ammonites
1 It came to be, about a month later, Nahash the Ammonite marched up and encamped against Jabesh Gilead, and all the men of Jabesh said to Nahash the Ammonite, “Make a covenant with us, and we will serve you.” 2 And Nahash the Ammonite answered them, “I will make a covenant with you on this one condition, that I should put out all your right eyes, and I will lay a reproach upon Israel.” 3 Then the men of Jabesh said to him, “Hold off seven days for us, so we may send messengers to all the territory of Israel. And if then there is no one to save us, we will come out to you.”
4 So the messengers came to Saul at Gibeah, and in the hearing of the people they told the news. And all the people lifted up their voices and wept. 5 And behold, after the early morning, Saul came forth from the field and said, “What makes the people weep?” So they explained to him in detail the words of the sons of Jabesh. 6 And as Saul heard these words, the Spirit of the Lord came upon him and his anger was greatly aroused. 7 Then he took two oxen and cut them in pieces and sent them throughout the territory of Israel by the hands of messengers, saying, “Whoever does not follow Saul and Samuel, so shall it be done to his oxen.”
And the fear of the Lord fell on the people of Israel, and they cried out as one man. 8 When Saul numbered them in Bezek on the high place, the men of Israel were six hundred thousand, and the men of Judah seventy thousand. 9 And they said to the messengers who came, “Thus you shall say to the men of Jabesh, ‘Tomorrow, by the time the sun is hot, you shall have deliverance.’ ” So the messengers came into the city and reported it to the men of Jabesh, and they were glad. 10 Therefore the men of Jabesh said to Nahash the Ammonite, “Tomorrow we will come out to you, and you may do with us whatever seems good to you.” 11 And it came about on the next day that Saul first divided the people of the army into three companies, and then in the morning watch they entered into the midst of the camp and struck the sons of Ammon until the heat of the day. And those who survived scattered, so no two of them were left together. 12 Then the people said to Samuel, “Who was saying, ‘Saul shall not reign over us’? Bring the men so we may put them to death.” 13 But Saul said, “No one shall be put to death today, for today the Lord has accomplished salvation in Israel.”
14 Then Samuel said to the people, “Let us go to Gilgal and restore the kingdom there.” 15 So all the people went to Gilgal, and there Samuel anointed Saul king before the Lord in Gilgal. And there they sacrificed the meat offering and the peace offerings before the Lord, and Samuel rejoiced, as did all Israel, exceedingly.
Samuel Speaks at Saul’s Coronation
1 Now Samuel said to all the men of Israel, “Indeed! I heeded your voice in all the many things you said to me, and I appointed a king to reign for you. 2 Now behold, the king goes before you, and I grow old and will rest. And behold, my sons are with you. And behold, I have walked before you from my youth to this day. 3 Behold, here I am; answer against me before my Lord and before His anointed one. Whose calf have I taken, or whose donkey have I taken? Whom of you have I oppressed, or whom have I cheated? From whose hand have I taken any bribe, even a sandal? Bear witness against me, and I will pay it back to you.” 4 And they said to Samuel, “You have not wronged us or oppressed us or crushed us, nor taken anything from anyone’s hand.” 5 Then Samuel said to the people, “The Lord is witness among you, and His anointed one is witness this day, that you have not found anything in my hand.” And they answered, “He is a witness.”
6 Then Samuel said to the people, “It is the Lord who appointed Moses and Aaron as witnesses. It is the Lord who brought your fathers up from Egypt. 7 Now, therefore, stand still and I will judge you before the Lord and relate to you all the righteous acts the Lord did for you and your fathers. 8 Thus when Jacob and his sons went into Egypt and Egypt humbled them, and our fathers cried out to the Lord and the Lord sent Moses and Aaron, He brought your fathers out of Egypt and settled them in this place. 9 And they forgot the Lord their God, and He delivered them over into the hands of Sisera, commander of Jabin king of Hazor, into the hands of the Philistines, and into the hands of the king of Moab; and they waged war against them. 10 Then they cried out to the Lord and said, ‘We have sinned because we have forsaken the Lord. We served the Baals and the sacred groves; but now deliver us from the hand of our enemies and we will serve You.’ 11 And the Lord sent Jerubbaal, Barak, Jephthah, and Samuel, and delivered you out of the hand of your enemies on every side, and you then dwelt in safety. 12 And you saw Nahash king of the sons of Ammon come against you, and you said, ‘No, none but a king shall reign over us’; whereas the Lord your God is your King.
13 “Now, therefore, here is the king you have chosen, and see, the Lord has provided a king for you. 14 If you fear the Lord and serve Him and obey His voice, and do not resist the words of the Lord, then both you and the king who reigns over you will continue to follow the Lord. 15 But if you do not obey the voice of the Lord, but resist the words of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you and against your king. 16 Now, therefore, stand and see the great thing the Lord will do before your eyes. 17 Is today not the wheat harvest? I will call to the Lord, and He will send thunder and rain, that you may know and see that you have done great wickedness before the Lord in asking a king for yourselves.” 18 So Samuel called on the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day; and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel.
19 And all the people said to Samuel, “Pray for your servants to the Lord your God, so that we do not die; for we have added to all our sins in asking for ourselves a king.” 20 Then Samuel said to the people, “Do not fear. You have done all this wickedness; only do not turn away from following the Lord. Serve the Lord with all your heart. 21 And do not turn aside after empty things which cannot profit anyone or deliver them, for they are nothing. 22 For the Lord will not reject His people for the sake of His mighty name, for it pleased the Lord to accept you as His people. 23 Far be it from me to sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you; but I will serve the Lord and show you the good and the right way. 24 Only fear the Lord and serve Him in truth with all your heart, for you know what great things He has done for you. 25 But if you still do wickedly, you shall be joined together in death, both you and your king.”
Battle with the Philistines
1 Saul chose for himself three thousand men from the men of Israel. Two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and on the mountain of Bethel, and a thousand were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin. He sent the rest of the people away, each man to his dwelling.
2 And Jonathan smote Nasib the Philistine who dwelt in the hill; and the Philistines heard of it. Then Saul blew the trumpet throughout all the land, saying, “The servants have rejected us!” 3 All Israel heard it said that Saul smote Nasib the Philistine. Now Israel had been put to shame before the Philistines, and the people cried out after Saul at Gilgal.
4 Then the Philistines gathered to fight with Israel. Thirty thousand chariots and six thousand horsemen came up against Israel, and as many troops as the sand on the seashore. And they came up and encamped in Michmash opposite Beth Aven southward. 5 When the men of Israel saw they were in danger, they did not draw near. Instead the people hid in caves, in holes, in rocks, in trenches, and in pits. 6 They even crossed the River Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead.
Saul’s Unlawful Offering
Saul was still in Gilgal, and all the people standing with him were confused. 7 Then Saul waited, as Samuel had said, for seven days for a testimony. But Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and his people scattered from him. 8 So Saul said, “Bring me a sacrifice so I may offer the whole burnt offering and peace offering”; and he offered the whole burnt offering. 9 And it came to pass, when he finished presenting the burnt offering, Samuel came, and Saul went out to meet him so that Samuel might bless him. 10 Then Samuel said, “What have you done?” And Saul said, “When I saw the people scatter from me, and you did not come within the days of testimony as you arranged, and the Philistines gathered at Michmash, 11 then I said, ‘The Philistines will now come down against me at Gilgal, and I have not prayed in the presence of the Lord.’ Therefore I forced myself, and I offered a burnt offering.” 12 And Samuel said to Saul, “You have rendered it vain because you did not keep my commandments which the Lord commanded you. For now the Lord would have established your kingdom over Israel forever. 13 But now your kingdom shall not stand. The Lord will seek a man for Himself after His own heart, and the Lord will appoint him to be ruler for His people, because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you.”
14 Then Samuel arose and departed from Gilgal, and the remnant of the people followed behind Saul to join with the men of war. And when they arrived from Gilgal to Gibeah of Benjamin, Saul numbered the people with him, about six hundred men. 15 Saul, Jonathan his son, and the people with them remained in Gibeah of Benjamin and wept. But the Philistines encamped in Michmash. 16 And the troops came out of the camp of the Philistines in three companies; one company turned by way of Ophrah toward the land of Shual. 17 Another company turned by way of Beth Horon, and another company turned by way of Gibeah, overlooking the Valley of Zeboim.
18 Now there was not a blacksmith to be found throughout all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, “Lest the Hebrews make swords or spears.” 19 Thus all Israel went down to the land of the Philistines to forge each man’s ploughshare into his light armor, his tool, his ax, and his sickle. 20 It was near the time of the harvest, and three shekels is the value of a ploughshare, and the same value for the axes and the sickles. 21 And it came about in the days of the Michmash war, there was neither sword nor spear to be found in the hand of any of the troops with Saul and Jonathan. But they were found with Saul and Jonathan his son. 22 And they went out from the land of the Philistines to the place beyond Michmash.
1 A psalm for Asaph.
God stood in the assembly of gods;
He judges in the midst of gods, saying,
2 “How long will you judge unjustly,
And favor the persons of sinners?”
3 Judge an orphan and a poor man;
Justify a humble and poor man;
4 Rescue a poor and needy man;
Deliver them from a sinner’s hand.
5 They do not know nor understand;
They carry on in darkness;
All the foundations of the earth shall be shaken.
6 I said, “You are gods,
And you are all sons of the Most High.
7 But you die like men,
And like one of the rulers, you fall.”
8 Arise, O God; judge the earth,
For You shall inherit all the Gentiles.
11 A threat breaks the heart of a man with discernment,
But a man without discernment, though flogged, has no perception.
12 Every evil man stirs up controversy,
But the Lord will send him a merciless messenger.
13 Care will befall a thoughtful man,
But men without discernment devise evil things.
14 He who repays evil for good,
Evil will not be removed from his house.
15 The foundation of righteousness gives authority to words,
But discord and quarreling precede poverty.
18 And it happened, as He was alone praying, that His disciples joined Him, and He asked them, saying, “Who do the crowds say that I am?”
19 So they answered and said, “John the Baptist, but some say Elijah; and others say that one of the old prophets has risen again.”
20 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered and said, “The Christ of God.”
Jesus Predicts His Death and Resurrection
(Matt. 16:20–23; Mark 8:30–33)
21 And He strictly warned and commanded them to tell this to no one,
22 saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day.”
Take Up the Cross and Follow Him
(Matt. 16:24–27; Mark 8:34–38)
23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.
24 “For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.
25 “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?
26 “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.
27 “But I tell you truly, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the kingdom of God.”
Jesus Transfigured on the Mount
(Matt. 16:28–17:9; Mark 9:2–10; 2 Pet. 1:16–18)
28 Now it came to pass, about eight days after these sayings, that He took Peter, John, and James and went up on the mountain to pray.
29 As He prayed, the appearance of His face was altered, and His robe became white and glistening.
30 And behold, two men talked with Him, who were Moses and Elijah,
31 who appeared in glory and spoke of His decease which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.
32 But Peter and those with him were heavy with sleep; and when they were fully awake, they saw His glory and the two men who stood with Him.
33 Then it happened, as they were parting from Him, that Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good for us to be here; and let us make three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”—not knowing what he said.
34 While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were fearful as they entered the cloud.
35 And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!”
36 When the voice had ceased, Jesus was found alone. But they kept quiet, and told no one in those days any of the things they had seen.