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1 Samuel - Chapter 28

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1 It then happened that the Philistines mustered their forces for war, to fight Israel, and Achish said to David, 'It is understood that you and your men go into battle with me.'

2 David said to Achish, 'In that case, you will soon see what your servant can do.' Achish replied to David, 'Right, I shall appoint you as my permanent bodyguard.'

3 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had mourned him and buried him at Ramah, his own town. Saul had expelled the necromancers and wizards from the country.

4 Meanwhile the Philistines had mustered and had come and pitched camp at Shunem. Saul mustered all Israel and they encamped at Gilboa.

5 When Saul saw the Philistine camp, he was afraid and his heart trembled violently.

6 Saul consulted Yahweh, but Yahweh gave him no answer, either by dream, divination or prophet.

7 Saul then said to his servants, 'Find a necromancer for me, so that I can go and consult her.' His servants replied, 'There is a necromancer at En-Dor.'

8 And so Saul, disguising himself and changing his clothes, set out accompanied by two men; their visit to the woman took place at night. 'Disclose the future to me', he said, 'by means of a ghost. Conjure up the one I shall name to you.'

9 The woman replied, 'Look, you know what Saul has done, how he has outlawed necromancers and wizards from the country; why are you setting a trap for my life, then, to have me killed?'

10 But Saul swore to her by Yahweh, 'As Yahweh lives,' he said, 'no blame shall attach to you for this business.'

11 The woman asked, 'Whom shall I conjure up for you?' He replied, 'Conjure up Samuel.'

12 The woman then saw Samuel and, giving a great cry, she said to Saul, 'Why have you deceived me? You are Saul!'

13 The king said, 'Do not be afraid! What do you see?' The woman replied to Saul, 'I see a ghost rising from the earth.'

14 'What is he like?' he asked. She replied, 'It is an old man coming up; he is wrapped in a cloak.' Saul then knew that it was Samuel and, bowing to the ground, prostrated himself.

15 Samuel said to Saul, 'Why have you disturbed my rest by conjuring me up?' Saul replied, 'I am in great distress; the Philistines are waging war on me, and God has abandoned me and no longer answers me either by prophet or by dream; and so I have summoned you to tell me what I ought to do.'

16 Samuel said, 'Why consult me, when Yahweh has abandoned you and has become your enemy?

17 Yahweh has treated you as he foretold through me; he has snatched the sovereignty from your hand and given it to your neighbour, David,

18 because you disobeyed Yahweh's voice and did not execute his fierce anger against Amalek. That is why Yahweh is treating you like this today.

19 What is more, Yahweh will deliver Israel and you too, into the power of the Philistines. Tomorrow you and your sons will be with me; and Yahweh will hand over the army of Israel into the power of the Philistines.'

20 Immediately Saul fell full length on the ground. He was terrified by what Samuel had said and was also weak from having eaten nothing all that day and night.

21 The woman went to Saul and, seeing his terror, said, 'Look, your servant has obeyed your order; I have taken my life in my hands and obeyed the command which you gave me.

22 Now please, you in your turn listen to what your servant has to say. Let me offer you a piece of bread. Eat something and get some strength for your journey.'

23 But he refused. 'I will not eat,' he said. His servants however pressed him, and so did the woman. Allowing himself to be persuaded by them, he got up from the ground and sat on the bed.

24 The woman owned a fattened calf which she quickly slaughtered, and she took some flour and kneaded it and with it baked some unleavened cakes

25 which she served to Saul and his servants; they ate, and then set off and left the same night.


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Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

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