Life-Study of 1 & 2 Samuel, by Witness Lee

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In 1 Samuel 28:3-25 we see that Saul’s tragic end was pretold by Samuel.

A. Samuel Having Died

First Samuel 28:3a tells us that Samuel was dead and that all Israel had mourned for him and had buried him in his own city, Ramah. The death of Samuel was a great loss to Saul.

B. Saul Having the Mediums
and the Soothsayers Put Out of the Land

By the time of chapter twenty-eight Saul had the mediums and the soothsayers put out of the land (v. 3b). Since mediums and soothsayers contact evil spirits, Saul did a good thing in having them removed from the country of Israel.

C. The Philistines
Gathering Together against Israel,
and Saul Being Greatly Afraid of Them

The Philistines gathered together against Israel, and Saul was greatly afraid of them (vv. 4-5). He was afraid because his courage and boldness had been taken away by God. God is our real encouragement and boldness. Without Him, we have nothing.

D. Saul Inquiring of Jehovah,
but Jehovah Not Answering Him

Saul inquired of Jehovah, but Jehovah did not answer him, not by dreams or by the Urim or by the prophets (v. 6).

E. Saul Seeking a Medium and Inquiring of Her

Saul sought a medium and inquired of her (vv. 7-11). In chapter fifteen Samuel had warned Saul that his rebellion was like the sin of divination (v. 23). But here in chapter twenty-eight Saul practiced divination, which involves contact with evil spirits and is even worse than idol worship.

F. Samuel Coming and Speaking to Saul

Without the medium doing anything, Samuel came and spoke to Saul (vv. 12-19). Samuel told Saul that Jehovah had turned away from him and had become his adversary (v. 16). Then Samuel told Saul that Jehovah had torn the kingdom out from his hand and had given it to David, an associate of his (v. 17). Finally, Samuel told Saul that Jehovah would also give Israel with Saul into the hand of the Philistines and that the next day he and his sons would be destroyed (v. 19).

G. Saul Being Threatened

Saul was threatened and fell to the ground, and then he went away from the medium (vv. 20-25).

(Life-Study of 1 & 2 Samuel, Chapter 17, by Witness Lee)