New European Version: Old Testament

Deeper commentary on this chapter

Audio talks on this chapter:


Video presentations on this chapter:


Other material relevant to this chapter:


Hear this chapter read:



About | PDFs | Mobile formats | Word formats | Other languages | Contact Us | What is the Gospel? | Support the work | Carelinks Ministries | | The Real Christ | The Real Devil | "Bible Companion" Daily Bible reading plan

CHAPTER 16 Jul. 4 
David Anointed by Samuel
Yahweh said to Samuel, How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and go. I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided a king for Myself from among his sons. 2Samuel said, How can I go? If Saul hears it he will kill me. Yahweh said, Take a heifer with you and say, I have come to sacrifice to Yahweh. 3Call Jesse to the sacrifice and I will show you what you must do. You are to anoint for Me the one whom I name to you. 4Samuel did what Yahweh said and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, Do you come peaceably? 5He said, Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to Yahweh. Consecrate yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice. He consecrated Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice. 6When they had come he looked at Eliab and said, Surely Yahweh’s anointed is before Him. 7But Yahweh said to Samuel, Don’t look at his appearance or height, because I have rejected him. I do not look at the things man looks at; man looks at the outward appearance but Yahweh looks at the heart. 8Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, Neither has Yahweh chosen this one. 9Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. He said, Neither has Yahweh chosen this one. 10Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. Samuel said to Jesse, Yahweh has not chosen these. 11Samuel said to Jesse, Are all your children here? He said, There is still the youngest; he is keeping the sheep. Samuel said to Jesse, Send and get him, for we will not sit down until he comes here. 12He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, with a beautiful face and handsome appearance. Yahweh said, Arise, anoint him, for this is the one. 13Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and the spirit of Yahweh came mightily on David from that day on. So Samuel arose and went to Ramah.

David Plays the Harp for Saul
14Now the spirit of Yahweh had departed from Saul and an evil spirit from Yahweh troubled him. 15Saul’s servants said to him, See now, an evil spirit from God troubles you. 16Let our lord now command your servants who are before you to seek out a man who is a skilful player on the harp. When the evil spirit from God comes on you, he can play and you will feel better. 17Saul said to his servants, Find me someone who can play well and bring him to me. 18Then one of the young men said, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite who is skilful in playing, a mighty man of valour, a man of war, who speaks well and is good-looking, and Yahweh is with him. 19Therefore Saul sent messengers to Jesse and said, Send me David your son, who is with the sheep. 20Jesse took a donkey loaded with bread, a bottle of wine and a young goat and sent them by David his son to Saul. 21David came to Saul and stood before him. Saul loved him greatly and he became his armour bearer. 22Saul sent to Jesse saying, Please let David stay with me, for I am pleased with him. 23When the spirit from God was on Saul, David took the harp and played, and Saul was refreshed and felt better and the evil spirit departed from him.


16:14 The “spirit” often refers to an attitude of mind (e.g. Dt. 2:30; Prov. 25:28; Is. 54:6; 61:3; Ez. 18:31; Mk.14:38; Lk. 2:40; 2 Cor. 2:13; 12:18; Eph. 4:23). The “evil spirit” refers to Saul’s state of mind here; just as a “holy spirit” refers to a sanctified state of mind. The idea that ‘evil spirits’ refer to invisible cosmic beings isn’t Biblical; they would hardly flee just because of how a man plays a harp. Notice that here the “evil spirit” was “from Yahweh”-  this is emphasized (:14,15,16; 18:10); this attitude of the mind was sent by God, not a super-human evil being acting in radical opposition to God.