Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

To obey is better than sacrifice. This simple statement contains the secret to pleasing God. Rebellion began with the devil's asserting his own will and making his own decisions. Saul's problems started when he no longer was small in his own eyes but, in pride, began to make decisions apart from God's will.

Rebellion and arrogance tell us that we know more than God does and that our ways are above His ways. The Lord, however, doesn't need us to think for Him, but only to carry out what He commands. He found this trait in David, a young shepherd boy who possessed a heart to obey Him fully (1 Samuel 16:7). Because of David's pure heart, God took the kingdom from Saul and awarded it to David.

Jesus' life was powerful because He never once asserted His own will. In the wilderness, during His ministry, at Gethsemane, and on the cross, Jesus perfectly obeyed. So, too, does our power with God rest in our obedience to Him. We must always remember this: The important thing is not that we have done something for God, but that we have done what God wanted us to do!

1 Samuel 15:1-16:23

The Lord Rejects Saul as King

15 Samuel said to Saul, “I am the one the Lord sent to anointS 1Sa 9:16 you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the Lord.This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘I will punish the AmalekitesS Ge 14:7; S 1Sa 14:48; S 2Sa 1:8 for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt.Now go, attack the Amalekites and totallyver 9, 19; S Ge 14:23; Jos 6:17; 1Sa 22:19; 27:9; 28:18; Est 3:13; 9:5 destroyThe Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them; also in verses 8, 9, 15, 18, 20 and 21. all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.’”

So Saul summoned the men and mustered them at Telaim—two hundred thousand foot soldiers and ten thousand from Judah.Saul went to the city of Amalek and set an ambush in the ravine.Then he said to the Kenites,S Ge 15:19; Nu 24:22; Jdg 1:16; 1Sa 30:29 “Go away, leave the Amalekites so that I do not destroy you along with them; for you showed kindness to all the Israelites when they came up out of Egypt.” So the Kenites moved away from the Amalekites.

Then Saul attacked the AmalekitesS 1Sa 14:48 all the way from Havilah to Shur,S Ge 16:7 near the eastern border of Egypt.He took AgagEx 17:8-16; S Nu 24:7 king of the Amalekites alive,S Jos 8:23 and all his people he totally destroyed with the sword.But Saul and the army sparedS ver 3 Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calvesOr the grown bulls; the meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain. and lambs—everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.

10 Then the word of the Lord came to Samuel:11 “I regretS Ge 6:6; S Ex 32:14 that I have made Saul king, because he has turnedS Jos 22:16 away from me and has not carried out my instructions.”Job 21:14; 34:27; Ps 28:5; Isa 5:12; 53:6; Jer 48:10; Eze 18:24 Samuel was angry,S ver 35; S 1Sa 8:6 and he cried out to the Lord all that night.

12 Early in the morning Samuel got up and went to meet Saul, but he was told, “Saul has gone to Carmel.Jos 15:55 There he has set up a monumentS Nu 32:42 in his own honor and has turned and gone on down to Gilgal.”

13 When Samuel reached him, Saul said, “The Lord bless you! I have carried out the Lord’s instructions.”

14 But Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears? What is this lowing of cattle that I hear?”

15 Saul answered, “The soldiers brought them from the Amalekites; they spared the best of the sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the Lord your God, but we totally destroyed the rest.”

16 “Enough!” Samuel said to Saul. “Let me tell you what the Lord said to me last night.”

“Tell me,” Saul replied.

17 Samuel said, “Although you were once smallS Ex 3:11 in your own eyes, did you not become the head of the tribes of Israel? The Lord anointed you king over Israel.18 And he sent you on a mission, saying, ‘Go and completely destroy those wicked people, the Amalekites; wage war against them until you have wiped them out.’19 Why did you not obey the Lord? Why did you pounce on the plunderS Ge 14:23; S 1Sa 14:32 and do evil in the eyes of the Lord?”

20 “But I did obey1Sa 28:18 the Lord,” Saul said. “I went on the mission the Lord assigned me. I completely destroyed the Amalekites and brought back Agag their king.21 The soldiers took sheep and cattle from the plunder, the best of what was devoted to God, in order to sacrifice them to the Lord your God at Gilgal.”

22 But Samuel replied:

“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices

as much as in obeying the Lord?

To obey is better than sacrifice,Ps 40:6-8; 51:16; Pr 21:3; Isa 1:11-15; Jer 7:22; Hos 6:6; Am 5:25; Mic 6:6-8; S Mk 12:33

and to heed is better than the fat of rams.

23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination,Dt 18:10

and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.

Because you have rejectedS 1Sa 13:13 the word of the Lord,

he has rejected you as king.”

24 Then Saul said to Samuel, “I have sinned.S Ex 9:27; S Nu 22:34; Ps 51:4 I violatedS 1Sa 13:13 the Lord’s command and your instructions. I was afraidPr 29:25; Isa 51:12-13; Jer 42:11 of the men and so I gave in to them.25 Now I beg you, forgiveEx 10:17 my sin and come back with me, so that I may worship the Lord.”

26 But Samuel said to him, “I will not go back with you. You have rejectedS Nu 15:31; S 1Sa 13:14; S 1Ki 14:10 the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you as king over Israel!”

27 As Samuel turned to leave, Saul caught hold of the hem of his robe,1Sa 28:14 and it tore.1Ki 11:11, 31; 14:8; 2Ki 17:2128 Samuel said to him, “The Lord has torn1Sa 28:17 the kingdomS 1Sa 13:14 of Israel from you today and has given it to one of your neighbors—to one better than you.2Sa 6:21; 7:1529 He who is the Glory of Israel does not lieTit 1:2 or changeS Nu 23:19; Heb 7:21 his mind; for he is not a human being, that he should change his mind.”

30 Saul replied, “I have sinned.S Nu 22:34 But please honorIsa 29:13; Jn 12:43 me before the elders of my people and before Israel; come back with me, so that I may worship the Lord your God.”31 So Samuel went back with Saul, and Saul worshiped the Lord.

32 Then Samuel said, “Bring me Agag king of the Amalekites.”

Agag came to him in chains.The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain. And he thought, “Surely the bitterness of death is past.”

33 But Samuel said,

“As your sword has made women childless,

so will your mother be childless among women.”Est 9:7-10; Jer 18:21

And Samuel put Agag to death before the Lord at Gilgal.

34 Then Samuel left for Ramah,S 1Sa 7:17 but Saul went up to his home in GibeahS Jdg 19:14; S 1Sa 10:5 of Saul.35 Until the day Samuel1Sa 19:24 died, he did not go to see Saul again, though Samuel mournedver 11; 1Sa 16:1 for him. And the Lord regrettedS Ge 6:6 that he had made Saul king over Israel.

Samuel Anoints David

16 The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mournS 1Sa 8:6; S 15:35 for Saul, since I have rejectedS 1Sa 13:14 him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oilS 1Sa 10:1 and be on your way; I am sending you to JesseS Ru 4:17 of Bethlehem. I have chosen2Sa 5:2; 7:8; 1Ki 8:16; 1Ch 12:23; Ps 78:70; Ac 13:22 one of his sons to be king.”

But Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.”

The Lord said, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will showEx 4:15 you what to do. You are to anointS Dt 17:15 for me the one I indicate.”

Samuel did what the Lord said. When he arrived at Bethlehem,S Ge 48:7; Lk 2:4 the elders of the town trembled1Sa 21:1 when they met him. They asked, “Do you come in peace?1Ki 2:13; 2Ki 9:17

Samuel replied, “Yes, in peace; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. ConsecrateS Ex 19:10, 22 yourselves and come to the sacrifice with me.” Then he consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.

When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab1Sa 17:13; 1Ch 2:13 and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed stands here before the Lord.”

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance,Ps 147:10 but the Lord looks at the heart.”S 1Sa 2:3; 2Sa 7:20; S Ps 44:21; S 139:23; S Rev 2:23

Then Jesse called Abinadab1Sa 17:13 and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.”Jesse then had Shammah1Sa 17:13; 2Sa 13:3; 21:21 pass by, but Samuel said, “Nor has the Lord chosen this one.”10 Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, “The Lord has not chosen these.”11 So he asked Jesse, “Are these all1Sa 17:12 the sons you have?”

“There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered. “He is tending the sheep.”S Ge 37:2; 2Sa 7:8

Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives.”

12 So he1Sa 9:17 sent for him and had him brought in. He was glowing with health and had a fine appearance and handsomeS Ge 39:6 features.

Then the Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; this is the one.”

13 So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointedS 1Sa 2:35; S 2Sa 22:51 him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord1Sa 18:12 came powerfully upon David.S 1Sa 11:6 Samuel then went to Ramah.

David in Saul’s Service

14 Now the Spirit of the Lord had departedS Jdg 16:20 from Saul, and an evilOr and a harmful; similarly in verses 15, 16 and 23 spiritver 23; S Jdg 9:23; 1Sa 18:10 from the Lord tormented him.2Sa 7:15

15 Saul’s attendants said to him, “See, an evil spirit from God is tormenting you.16 Let our lord command his servants here to search for someone who can play the lyre.ver 23; S 1Sa 10:5, 6; 2Ch 29:26-27; Ps 49:4 He will play when the evil spirit from God comes on you, and you will feel better.”

17 So Saul said to his attendants, “Find someone who plays well and bring him to me.”

18 One of the servants answered, “I have seen a son of JesseS Ru 4:17 of Bethlehem who knows how to play the lyre. He is a brave man and a warrior.2Sa 17:8 He speaks well and is a fine-looking man. And the Lord is withS Ge 39:2; 1Sa 17:32-37; 20:13; 1Ch 22:11; Mt 1:23 him.”

19 Then Saul sent messengers to Jesse and said, “Send me your son David, who is with the sheep.1Sa 17:1520 So Jesse took a donkey loaded with bread,S Ge 32:13; S 1Sa 10:4 a skin of wine and a young goat and sent them with his son David to Saul.

21 David came to Saul and entered his service.S Ge 41:46 Saul liked him very much, and David became one of his armor-bearers.22 Then Saul sent word to Jesse, saying, “Allow David to remain in my service, for I am pleased with him.”

23 Whenever the spirit from God came on Saul, David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spiritS ver 14; S Jdg 9:23 would leave him.

Saul Defeats the Amalekites

15 One day Samuel said to Saul, “It was the Lord who told me to anoint you as king of his people, Israel. Now listen to this message from the Lord!This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies has declared: I have decided to settle accounts with the nation of Amalek for opposing Israel when they came from Egypt.Now go and completely destroyThe Hebrew term used here refers to the complete consecration of things or people to the Lord, either by destroying them or by giving them as an offering; also in 15:8, 9, 15, 18, 20, 21. the entire Amalekite nation—men, women, children, babies, cattle, sheep, goats, camels, and donkeys.”

So Saul mobilized his army at Telaim. There were 200,000 soldiers from Israel and 10,000 men from Judah.Then Saul and his army went to a town of the Amalekites and lay in wait in the valley.Saul sent this warning to the Kenites: “Move away from where the Amalekites live, or you will die with them. For you showed kindness to all the people of Israel when they came up from Egypt.” So the Kenites packed up and left.

Then Saul slaughtered the Amalekites from Havilah all the way to Shur, east of Egypt.He captured Agag, the Amalekite king, but completely destroyed everyone else.Saul and his men spared Agag’s life and kept the best of the sheep and goats, the cattle, the fat calves, and the lambs—everything, in fact, that appealed to them. They destroyed only what was worthless or of poor quality.

The Lord Rejects Saul

10 Then the Lord said to Samuel,11 “I am sorry that I ever made Saul king, for he has not been loyal to me and has refused to obey my command.” Samuel was so deeply moved when he heard this that he cried out to the Lord all night.

12 Early the next morning Samuel went to find Saul. Someone told him, “Saul went to the town of Carmel to set up a monument to himself; then he went on to Gilgal.”

13 When Samuel finally found him, Saul greeted him cheerfully. “May the Lord bless you,” he said. “I have carried out the Lord’s command!”

14 “Then what is all the bleating of sheep and goats and the lowing of cattle I hear?” Samuel demanded.

15 “It’s true that the army spared the best of the sheep, goats, and cattle,” Saul admitted. “But they are going to sacrifice them to the Lord your God. We have destroyed everything else.”

16 Then Samuel said to Saul, “Stop! Listen to what the Lord told me last night!”

“What did he tell you?” Saul asked.

17 And Samuel told him, “Although you may think little of yourself, are you not the leader of the tribes of Israel? The Lord has anointed you king of Israel.18 And the Lord sent you on a mission and told you, ‘Go and completely destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, until they are all dead.’19 Why haven’t you obeyed the Lord? Why did you rush for the plunder and do what was evil in the Lord’s sight?”

20 “But I did obey the Lord,” Saul insisted. “I carried out the mission he gave me. I brought back King Agag, but I destroyed everyone else.21 Then my troops brought in the best of the sheep, goats, cattle, and plunder to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal.”

22 But Samuel replied,

“What is more pleasing to the Lord:

your burnt offerings and sacrifices

or your obedience to his voice?

Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice,

and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.

23 Rebellion is as sinful as witchcraft,

and stubbornness as bad as worshiping idols.

So because you have rejected the command of the Lord,

he has rejected you as king.”

Saul Pleads for Forgiveness

24 Then Saul admitted to Samuel, “Yes, I have sinned. I have disobeyed your instructions and the Lord’s command, for I was afraid of the people and did what they demanded.25 But now, please forgive my sin and come back with me so that I may worship the Lord.”

26 But Samuel replied, “I will not go back with you! Since you have rejected the Lord’s command, he has rejected you as king of Israel.”

27 As Samuel turned to go, Saul tried to hold him back and tore the hem of his robe.28 And Samuel said to him, “The Lord has torn the kingdom of Israel from you today and has given it to someone else—one who is better than you.29 And he who is the Glory of Israel will not lie, nor will he change his mind, for he is not human that he should change his mind!”

30 Then Saul pleaded again, “I know I have sinned. But please, at least honor me before the elders of my people and before Israel by coming back with me so that I may worship the Lord your God.”31 So Samuel finally agreed and went back with him, and Saul worshiped the Lord.

Samuel Executes King Agag

32 Then Samuel said, “Bring King Agag to me.” Agag arrived full of hope, for he thought, “Surely the worst is over, and I have been spared!”Dead Sea Scrolls and Greek version read Agag arrived hesitantly, for he thought, “Surely this is the bitterness of death.”33 But Samuel said, “As your sword has killed the sons of many mothers, now your mother will be childless.” And Samuel cut Agag to pieces before the Lord at Gilgal.

34 Then Samuel went home to Ramah, and Saul returned to his house at Gibeah of Saul.35 Samuel never went to meet with Saul again, but he mourned constantly for him. And the Lord was sorry he had ever made Saul king of Israel.

Samuel Anoints David as King

16 Now the Lord said to Samuel, “You have mourned long enough for Saul. I have rejected him as king of Israel, so fill your flask with olive oil and go to Bethlehem. Find a man named Jesse who lives there, for I have selected one of his sons to be my king.”

But Samuel asked, “How can I do that? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.”

“Take a heifer with you,” the Lord replied, “and say that you have come to make a sacrifice to the Lord.Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you which of his sons to anoint for me.”

So Samuel did as the Lord instructed. When he arrived at Bethlehem, the elders of the town came trembling to meet him. “What’s wrong?” they asked. “Do you come in peace?”

“Yes,” Samuel replied. “I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Purify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” Then Samuel performed the purification rite for Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice, too.

When they arrived, Samuel took one look at Eliab and thought, “Surely this is the Lord’s anointed!”

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

Then Jesse told his son Abinadab to step forward and walk in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “This is not the one the Lord has chosen.”Next Jesse summoned Shimea,Hebrew Shammah, a variant spelling of Shimea; compare 1 Chr 2:13; 20:7. but Samuel said, “Neither is this the one the Lord has chosen.”10 In the same way all seven of Jesse’s sons were presented to Samuel. But Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen any of these.”11 Then Samuel asked, “Are these all the sons you have?”

“There is still the youngest,” Jesse replied. “But he’s out in the fields watching the sheep and goats.”

“Send for him at once,” Samuel said. “We will not sit down to eat until he arrives.”

12 So Jesse sent for him. He was dark and handsome, with beautiful eyes.

And the Lord said, “This is the one; anoint him.”

13 So as David stood there among his brothers, Samuel took the flask of olive oil he had brought and anointed David with the oil. And the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David from that day on. Then Samuel returned to Ramah.

David Serves in Saul’s Court

14 Now the Spirit of the Lord had left Saul, and the Lord sent a tormenting spiritOr an evil spirit; also in 16:15, 16, 23. that filled him with depression and fear.

15 Some of Saul’s servants said to him, “A tormenting spirit from God is troubling you.16 Let us find a good musician to play the harp whenever the tormenting spirit troubles you. He will play soothing music, and you will soon be well again.”

17 “All right,” Saul said. “Find me someone who plays well, and bring him here.”

18 One of the servants said to Saul, “One of Jesse’s sons from Bethlehem is a talented harp player. Not only that—he is a brave warrior, a man of war, and has good judgment. He is also a fine-looking young man, and the Lord is with him.”

19 So Saul sent messengers to Jesse to say, “Send me your son David, the shepherd.”20 Jesse responded by sending David to Saul, along with a young goat, a donkey loaded with bread, and a wineskin full of wine.

21 So David went to Saul and began serving him. Saul loved David very much, and David became his armor bearer.

22 Then Saul sent word to Jesse asking, “Please let David remain in my service, for I am very pleased with him.”

23 And whenever the tormenting spirit from God troubled Saul, David would play the harp. Then Saul would feel better, and the tormenting spirit would go away.

15 Samuel also said unto Saul, The Lord sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the Lord.

Thus saith the Lord of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt.

Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

And Saul gathered the people together, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah.

And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley.

And Saul said unto the Kenites, Go, depart, get you down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them: for ye shewed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.

And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt.

And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword.

But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

10 Then came the word of the Lord unto Samuel, saying,

11 It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the Lord all night.

12 And when Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning, it was told Samuel, saying, Saul came to Carmel, and, behold, he set him up a place, and is gone about, and passed on, and gone down to Gilgal.

13 And Samuel came to Saul: and Saul said unto him, Blessed be thou of the Lord: I have performed the commandment of the Lord.

14 And Samuel said, What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?

15 And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the Lord thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.

16 Then Samuel said unto Saul, Stay, and I will tell thee what the Lord hath said to me this night. And he said unto him, Say on.

17 And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the Lord anointed thee king over Israel?

18 And the Lord sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed.

19 Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the Lord, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the Lord?

20 And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the Lord, and have gone the way which the Lord sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites.

21 But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the Lord thy God in Gilgal.

22 And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

24 And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the Lord, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.

25 Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the Lord.

26 And Samuel said unto Saul, I will not return with thee: for thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord hath rejected thee from being king over Israel.

27 And as Samuel turned about to go away, he laid hold upon the skirt of his mantle, and it rent.

28 And Samuel said unto him, The Lord hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou.

29 And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.

30 Then he said, I have sinned: yet honour me now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and before Israel, and turn again with me, that I may worship the Lord thy God.

31 So Samuel turned again after Saul; and Saul worshipped the Lord.

32 Then said Samuel, Bring ye hither to me Agag the king of the Amalekites. And Agag came unto him delicately. And Agag said, Surely the bitterness of death is past.

33 And Samuel said, As thy sword hath made women childless, so shall thy mother be childless among women. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the Lord in Gilgal.

34 Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul.

35 And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the Lord repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.

16 And the Lord said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons.

And Samuel said, How can I go? if Saul hear it, he will kill me. And the Lord said, Take an heifer with thee, and say, I am come to sacrifice to the Lord.

And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will shew thee what thou shalt do: and thou shalt anoint unto me him whom I name unto thee.

And Samuel did that which the Lord spake, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably?

And he said, Peaceably: I am come to sacrifice unto the Lord: sanctify yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he sanctified Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice.

And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord's anointed is before him.

But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, Neither hath the Lord chosen this.

Then Jesse made Shammah to pass by. And he said, Neither hath the Lord chosen this.

10 Again, Jesse made seven of his sons to pass before Samuel. And Samuel said unto Jesse, The Lord hath not chosen these.

11 And Samuel said unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the youngest, and, behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he come hither.

12 And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to. And the Lord said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he.

13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.

14 But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him.

15 And Saul's servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.

16 Let our lord now command thy servants, which are before thee, to seek out a man, who is a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the evil spirit from God is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shalt be well.

17 And Saul said unto his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring him to me.

18 Then answered one of the servants, and said, Behold, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, that is cunning in playing, and a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a comely person, and the Lord is with him.

19 Wherefore Saul sent messengers unto Jesse, and said, Send me David thy son, which is with the sheep.

20 And Jesse took an ass laden with bread, and a bottle of wine, and a kid, and sent them by David his son unto Saul.

21 And David came to Saul, and stood before him: and he loved him greatly; and he became his armourbearer.

22 And Saul sent to Jesse, saying, Let David, I pray thee, stand before me; for he hath found favour in my sight.

23 And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him.

John 8:1-20

but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.S Mt 21:1

At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them.ver 20; S Mt 26:55The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the groupand said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery.In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women.Lev 20:10; Dt 22:22; Job 31:11 Now what do you say?”They were using this question as a trap,Mt 22:15, 18 in order to have a basis for accusing him.S Mt 12:10

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger.When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stoneDt 17:7; Eze 16:40 at her.”Ro 2:1, 22Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there.10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”

11 “No one, sir,” she said.

“Then neither do I condemn you,”Jn 3:17 Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”Jn 5:14


Dispute Over Jesus’ Testimony

12 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I amS Jn 6:35 the light of the world.S Jn 1:4 Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”Pr 4:18; Mt 5:14

13 The Pharisees challenged him, “Here you are, appearing as your own witness; your testimony is not valid.”Jn 5:31

14 Jesus answered, “Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid, for I know where I came from and where I am going.Jn 13:3; 16:28 But you have no idea where I come fromJn 7:28; 9:29 or where I am going.15 You judge by human standards;S Jn 7:24 I pass judgment on no one.Jn 3:1716 But if I do judge, my decisions are true, because I am not alone. I stand with the Father, who sent me.Jn 5:3017 In your own Law it is written that the testimony of two witnesses is true.S Mt 18:1618 I am one who testifies for myself; my other witness is the Father, who sent me.”Jn 5:37

19 Then they asked him, “Where is your father?”

“You do not know me or my Father,”Jn 16:3 Jesus replied. “If you knew me, you would know my Father also.”S 1Jn 2:2320 He spoke these words while teachingS Mt 26:55 in the temple courts near the place where the offerings were put.Mk 12:41 Yet no one seized him, because his hour had not yet come.S Mt 26:18

A Woman Caught in Adultery

Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives,but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them.As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd.

“Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery.The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”

They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger.They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!”Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.

When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman.10 Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”

11 “No, Lord,” she said.

And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”


Jesus, the Light of the World

12 Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”

13 The Pharisees replied, “You are making those claims about yourself! Such testimony is not valid.”

14 Jesus told them, “These claims are valid even though I make them about myself. For I know where I came from and where I am going, but you don’t know this about me.15 You judge me by human standards, but I do not judge anyone.16 And if I did, my judgment would be correct in every respect because I am not alone. The FatherSome manuscripts read The One. who sent me is with me.17 Your own law says that if two people agree about something, their witness is accepted as fact.See Deut 19:15.18 I am one witness, and my Father who sent me is the other.”

19 “Where is your father?” they asked.

Jesus answered, “Since you don’t know who I am, you don’t know who my Father is. If you knew me, you would also know my Father.”20 Jesus made these statements while he was teaching in the section of the Temple known as the Treasury. But he was not arrested, because his timeGreek his hour. had not yet come.

Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.

And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.

And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,

They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.

Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?

This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.

So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.

And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.

And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?

11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.

12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

13 The Pharisees therefore said unto him, Thou bearest record of thyself; thy record is not true.

14 Jesus answered and said unto them, Though I bear record of myself, yet my record is true: for I know whence I came, and whither I go; but ye cannot tell whence I come, and whither I go.

15 Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man.

16 And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me.

17 It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true.

18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me.

19 Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.

20 These words spake Jesus in the treasury, as he taught in the temple: and no man laid hands on him; for his hour was not yet come.

Psalm 110:1-7

Psalm 110

Of David. A psalm.

The Lord saysMt 22:44*; Mk 12:36*; Lk 20:42*; Ac 2:34* to my lord:Or Lord

“Sit at my right handS Mk 16:19; Heb 1:13*; 12:2

until I make your enemies

a footstool for your feet.”S Jos 10:24; S 1Ki 5:3; 1Co 15:25

The Lord will extend your mighty scepterS Ge 49:10; Ps 45:6; Isa 14:5; Jer 48:17 from Zion,S Ps 2:6 saying,

“RulePs 72:8 in the midst of your enemies!”

Your troops will be willing

on your day of battle.

Arrayed in holy splendor,S Ex 15:11

your young men will come to you

like dew from the morning’s womb.The meaning of the Hebrew for this sentence is uncertain.Mic 5:7

The Lord has sworn

and will not change his mind:S Nu 23:19

“You are a priest forever,Zec 6:13; Heb 5:6*; 7:21*

in the order of Melchizedek.S Ge 14:18; Heb 5:10; 7:15-17*

The Lord is at your right handOr My lord is at your right hand, Lord;Ps 16:8

he will crush kingsS Dt 7:24; Ps 2:12; 68:21; 76:12; Isa 60:12; Da 2:44 on the day of his wrath.S Ps 2:5; Ro 2:5; Rev 6:17; 11:18

He will judge the nations,S Ps 9:19 heaping up the deadIsa 5:25; 34:3; 66:24

and crushing the rulersS Ps 18:38 of the whole earth.

He will drink from a brook along the way,The meaning of the Hebrew for this clause is uncertain.

and so he will lift his head high.Ps 3:3; 27:6

Psalm 110

A psalm of David.

The Lord said to my Lord,Or my lord.

“Sit in the place of honor at my right hand

until I humble your enemies,

making them a footstool under your feet.”

The Lord will extend your powerful kingdom from JerusalemHebrew Zion.;

you will rule over your enemies.

When you go to war,

your people will serve you willingly.

You are arrayed in holy garments,

and your strength will be renewed each day like the morning dew.

The Lord has taken an oath and will not break his vow:

“You are a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek.”

The Lord stands at your right hand to protect you.

He will strike down many kings when his anger erupts.

He will punish the nations

and fill their lands with corpses;

he will shatter heads over the whole earth.

But he himself will be refreshed from brooks along the way.

He will be victorious.

110 The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.

The Lord shall send the rod of thy strength out of Zion: rule thou in the midst of thine enemies.

Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: thou hast the dew of thy youth.

The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.

The Lord at thy right hand shall strike through kings in the day of his wrath.

He shall judge among the heathen, he shall fill the places with the dead bodies; he shall wound the heads over many countries.

He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall he lift up the head.

Proverbs 15:8-10

The Lord detests the sacrificeS Ps 51:17; S Isa 1:13 of the wicked,S Pr 6:16; 21:27

but the prayer of the upright pleases him.ver 29; Job 35:13; Pr 28:9; S Jn 9:31

The Lord detests the way of the wicked,S Pr 6:16

but he loves those who pursue righteousness.S Dt 7:13; S Pr 11:20

10 Stern discipline awaits anyone who leaves the path;

the one who hates correction will die.S Pr 1:31-32; S 12:1

The Lord detests the sacrifice of the wicked,

but he delights in the prayers of the upright.

The Lord detests the way of the wicked,

but he loves those who pursue godliness.

10 Whoever abandons the right path will be severely disciplined;

whoever hates correction will die.

The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.

The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the Lord: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.

10 Correction is grievous unto him that forsaketh the way: and he that hateth reproof shall die.

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