The First Book of Samuel

Chapter 10

Samuel anoints Saul, 1. He confirms him by prediction of three signs, 2-8. Saul's heart is changed and he prophesies, 9-13. He conceals the matter of the kingdom from his uncle, 14-16. Saul is chosen at Mizpeh by lot, 17-25. The different affections of his subjects, 26, 27.

1 Then Samuel took a vial of oil, poured it upon his head, and kissed him, and said, "Is it not because the LORD has anointed you to be captain over his inheritance? 2 When you have departed from me today, you shall find two men by Rachel's sepulcher in the border of Benjamin at Zelzah, and they will say to you, 'The donkeys which you went to seek are found, and behold, your father has ceased caring for the donkeys and sorrows for you, saying, "What shall I do for my son?"' 3 Then you shall go on forward from there and shall come to the plain of Tabor, and three men going up to God at Beth-el shall meet you there: one carrying three kids, another carrying three loaves of bread, and another carrying a bottle of wine. 4 And they will salute you and give you two loaves of bread, which you shall receive from their hands. 5 After that you shall come to the hill of God where the garrison of the Philistines is. And it shall come to pass, when you have come there to the city, that you shall meet a company of prophets coming down from the high place with a psaltery, a tambourine, a pipe, and a harp before them, and they will prophesy. 6 And the Spirit of the LORD will come upon you, and you shall prophesy with them and be turned into another man. 7 And let it be, when these signs have come to you, that you do as occasion serves you, for God is with you. 8 And you shall go down before me to Gilgal, and behold, I will come down to you to offer burnt-offerings and to sacrifice sacrifices of peace-offerings. Seven days you shall wait until I come to you and show you what you shall do."

9 And it was so, that when he had turned his back to go from Samuel, God gave him another heart. And all those signs came to pass that day. 10 And when they came there to the hill, behold, a company of prophets met him. And the Spirit of God came upon him, and he prophesied among them. 11 And it came to pass when all who formerly knew him saw, that behold, he prophesied among the prophets, then the people said to one another, "What is this that has come to the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?" 12 And someone of the same place answered and said, "But who is their father?" Therefore, it became a proverb: "Is Saul also among the prophets?" 13 And when he had made an end of prophesying, he came to the high place.

14 And Saul's uncle said to him and to his servant, "Where did you go?" And he said, "To seek the donkeys. And when we saw that they were nowhere, we came to Samuel." 15 And Saul's uncle said, "Tell me, I pray you, what Samuel said to you." 16 And Saul said to his uncle, "He told us plainly that the donkeys were found." But of the matter of the kingdom, of which Samuel spoke, he did not tell him.

17 And Samuel called the people together to the LORD at Mizpeh, 18 And said to the children of Israel, "Thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'I brought Israel out of Egypt and delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, out of the hand of all kingdoms, and of those who oppressed you. 19 And you have this day rejected your God who saved you himself out of all your adversities and your tribulations, and you have said to him, "No, but set a king over us." Now therefore, present yourselves before the LORD by your tribes and by your thousands.'"

20 And when Samuel had caused all the tribes of Israel to come near, the tribe of Benjamin was taken. 21 When he had caused the tribe of Benjamin to come near by their families, the family of Matri was taken, and Saul the son of Kish was taken. And when they sought him, he could not be found. 22 Therefore, they inquired of the LORD further if the man would yet come there. And the LORD answered, "Behold, he has hid himself among the vessels." 23 And they ran and brought him from there. And when he stood among the people, he was higher than any of the people from his shoulders and upward. 24 And Samuel said to all the people, "Do you see him whom the LORD has chosen, that there is no one like him among all the people?" And all the people shouted and said, "God save the king."

25 Then Samuel told the people the manner of the kingdom, wrote it in a book, and laid it up before the LORD. And Samuel sent all the people away, every man to his house. 26 And Saul also went home to Gibeah, and a band of men went with him, whose hearts God had touched. 27 But the children of Belial said, "How shall this man save us?" And they despised him and brought him no presents. But he held his peace.


Matthew Henry Commentary - 1st Samuel, Chapter 10[➚]


[v.2] - "Rachel's sepulcher" - Reference, Genesis 35:19-20.

[v.9] - "God gave him another heart" - Reference, Proverbs 10:9.

[v.19] - "No, but set a king over us" - Reference, 1st Samuel 8:5.

[v.24] - "God save the king" - This text may also be read as, "Let the king live." Reference, Matthew 21:9.