Saul Chosen King
9 1 And there is a man of Benjamin, and his name 'is' Kish, son of Abiel, son of Zeror, son of Bechorath, son of Aphiah, a Benjamite, mighty of valour, 2 and he hath a son, and his name 'is' Saul, a choice youth and goodly, and there is not a man among the sons of Israel goodlier than he—from his shoulder and upward, higher than any of the people.
3 And the asses of Kish, father of Saul, are lost, and Kish saith unto Saul his son, 'Take, I pray thee, with thee, one of the young men, and rise, go, seek the asses.' 4 And he passeth over through the hill-country of Ephraim, and passeth over through the land of Shalisha, and they have not found; and they pass over through the land of Shaalim, and they are not; and he passeth over through the land of Benjamin, and they have not found. 5 They have come in unto the land of Zuph, and Saul hath said to his young man who 'is' with him, 'Come, and we turn back, lest my father leave off from the asses, and hath been sorrowful for us.' 6 And he saith to him, 'Lo, I pray thee, a man of God 'is' in this city, and the man is honoured; all that he speaketh doth certainly come; now, we go there, it may be he doth declare to us our way on which we have gone.' 7 And Saul saith to his young man, 'And lo, we go, and what do we bring in to the man? for the bread hath gone from our vessels, and a present there is not to bring in to the man of God—what 'is' with us?' 8 And the young man addeth to answer Saul, and saith, 'Lo, there is found with me a fourth of a shekel of silver: and I have given to the man of God, and he hath declared to us our way.' 9 Formerly in Israel, thus said the man in his going to seek God, 'Come and we go unto the seer,' for the 'prophet' of to-day is called formerly 'the seer.' 10 And Saul saith to his young man, 'Thy word 'is' good; come, we go;' and they go unto the city where the man of God 'is'.
11 They are going up in the ascent of the city, and have found young women going out to draw water, and say to them, 'Is the seer in this 'place'?' 12 And they answer them and say, 'He is; lo, before thee! haste, now, for to-day he hath come in to the city, for the people hath a stated sacrifice in a high place. 13 At your going in to the city so ye do find him, before he doth go up in to the high place to eat; for the people do not eat till his coming, for he doth bless the sacrifice; afterwards they eat, who are called, and now, go up, for at this time ye find him.' 14 And they go up in to the city; they are coming in to the midst of the city, and lo, Samuel is coming out to meet them, to go up to the high place; 15 and Jehovah had uncovered the ear of Samuel one day before the coming of Saul, saying, 16 'At this time tomorrow, I send unto thee a man out of the land of Benjamin—and thou hast anointed him for leader over My people Israel, and he hath saved My people out of the hand of the Philistines; for I have seen My people, for its cry hath come in unto Me.' 17 When Samuel hath seen Saul, then hath Jehovah answered him, 'Lo, the man of whom I have spoken unto thee; this 'one' doth restrain My people.'
18 And Saul draweth nigh to Samuel in the midst of the gate, and saith, 'Declare, I pray thee, to me, where 'is' this—the seer's house?' 19 And Samuel answereth Saul and saith, 'I 'am' the seer; go up before me into the high place, and ye have eaten with me to-day, and I have sent thee away in the morning, and all that 'is' in thy heart I declare to thee. 20 As to the asses which are lost to thee this day three days, set not thy heart to them, for they have been found; and to whom 'is' all the desire of Israel?' is it not to thee and to all thy father's house?' 21 And Saul answereth and saith, 'Am not I a Benjamite—of the smallest of the tribes of Israel? and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? and why hast thou spoken unto me according to this word?' 22 And Samuel taketh Saul, and his young man, and bringeth them in to the chamber, and giveth to them a place at the head of those called; and they 'are' about thirty men. 23 And Samuel saith to the cook, 'Give the portion which I gave to thee, of which I said unto thee, 'Set it by thee?' 24 (and the cook lifteth up the leg, and that which 'is' on it, and setteth before Saul), and he saith, 'Lo, that which is left; set 'it' before thee—eat, for to this appointed season it is kept for thee, saying, The people I have called;' and Saul eateth with Samuel on that day. 25 And they come down from the high place to the city, and he speaketh with Saul on the roof. 26 And they rise early, and it cometh to pass, at the ascending of the dawn, that Samuel calleth unto Saul, on the roof, saying, 'Rise, and I send thee away;' and Saul riseth, and they go out, both of them—he and Samuel, without. 27 They are going down in the extremity of the city, and Samuel hath said unto Saul, 'Say to the young man that he pass on before us (and he passeth on), and thou, stand at this time, and I cause thee to hear the word of God.'
10 1 And Samuel taketh the vial of the oil, and poureth on his head, and kisseth him, and saith, 'Is it not because Jehovah hath appointed thee over His inheritance for leader? 2 In thy going to-day from me—then thou hast found two men by the grave of Rachel, in the border of Benjamin, at Zelzah, and they have said unto thee, The asses have been found which thou hast gone to seek; and lo, thy father hath left the matter of the asses, and hath sorrowed for you, saying, What do I do for my son? 3 'And thou hast passed on thence, and beyond, and hast come in unto the oak of Tabor, and found thee there have three men going up unto God to Beth-El, one bearing three kids, and one bearing three cakes of bread, and one bearing a bottle of wine, 4 and they have asked of thee of welfare, and given to thee two loaves, and thou hast received from their hand. 5 'Afterwards thou dost come unto the hill of God, where the garrison of the Philistines 'is', and it cometh to pass, at thy coming in thither to the city, that thou hast met a band of prophets coming down from the high place, and before them psaltery, and tabret, and pipe, and harp, and they are prophesying; 6 and prospered over thee hath the Spirit of Jehovah, and thou hast prophesied with them, and hast been turned to another man; 7 and it hath been, when these signs come to thee—do for thyself as thy hand findeth, for God 'is' with thee. 8 'And thou hast gone down before me to Gilgal, and lo, I am going down unto thee, to cause to ascend burnt-offerings, to sacrifice sacrifices of peace-offerings; seven days thou dost wait till my coming in unto thee, and I have made known to thee that which thou dost do.'
9 And it hath been, at his turning his shoulder to go from Samuel, that God turneth to him another heart, and all these signs come on that day, 10 and they come in thither to the height, and lo, a band of prophets—to meet him, and prosper over him doth the Spirit of God, and he prophesieth in their midst. 11 And it cometh to pass, all his acquaintance heretofore, see, and lo, with prophets he hath prophesied, and the people say one unto another, 'What 'is' this hath happened to the son of Kish? is Saul also among the prophets?' 12 And a man thence answereth and saith, 'And who 'is' their father?' therefore it hath been for a simile, 'Is Saul also among the prophets?' 13 And he ceaseth from prophesying, and cometh in to the high place, 14 and the uncle of Saul saith unto him, and unto his young man, 'Whither went ye?' and he saith, 'To seek the asses; and we see that they are not, and we come in unto Samuel.' 15 And the uncle of Saul saith, 'Declare, I pray thee, to me, what Samuel said to you?' 16 And Saul saith unto his uncle, 'He certainly declared to us that the asses were found;' and of the matter of the kingdom he hath not declared to him that which Samuel said.
17 And Samuel calleth the people unto Jehovah to Mizpeh, 18 and saith unto the sons of Israel, 'Thus said Jehovah, God of Israel, I have brought up Israel out of Egypt, and I deliver you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of all the kingdoms who are oppressing you; 19 and ye to-day have rejected your God, who 'is' Himself your saviour out of all your evils and your distresses, and ye say, 'Nay, but—a king thou dost set over us; and now, station yourselves before Jehovah, by your tribes, and by your thousands.' 20 And Samuel bringeth near the whole tribes of Israel, and the tribe of Benjamin is captured, 21 and he bringeth near the tribe of Benjamin by its families, and the family of Matri is captured, and Saul son of Kish is captured, and they seek him, and he hath not been found. 22 And they ask again at Jehovah, 'Hath the man yet come hither?' and Jehovah saith, 'Lo, he hath been hidden near the vessels.' 23 And they run and bring him thence, and he stationed himself in the midst of the people, and he is higher than any of the people from his shoulder and upward. 24 And Samuel saith unto all the people, 'Have ye seen him on whom Jehovah hath fixed, for there is none like him among all the people?' And all the people shout, and say, 'Let the king live!' 25 And Samuel speaketh unto the people the right of the kingdom, and writeth in a book, and placeth before Jehovah; and Samuel sendeth all the people away, each to his house. 26 And also Saul hath gone to his house, to Gibeah, and the force go with him whose heart God hath touched; 27 and the sons of worthlessness have said, 'What! this one doth save us!' and they despise him, and have not brought to him a present; and he is as one deaf.
Saul Defeats the Ammonites
11 1 And Nahash the Ammonite cometh up, and encampeth against Jabesh-Gilead, and all the men of Jabesh say unto Nahash, 'Make with us a covenant, and we serve thee.' 2 And Nahash the Ammonite saith unto them, 'For this I covenant with you, by picking out to you every right eye—and I have put it a reproach on all Israel.' 3 And the elders of Jabesh say to him, 'Let us alone seven days, and we send messengers into all the border of Israel: and if there is none saving us—then we have come out unto thee.' 4 And the messengers come to Gibeah of Saul, and speak the words in the ears of the people, and all the people lift up their voice and weep;
5 and lo, Saul hath come after the herd out of the field, and Saul saith, 'What—to the people, that they weep?' and they recount to him the words of the men of Jabesh. 6 And the Spirit of God doth prosper over Saul, in his hearing these words, and his anger burneth greatly, 7 and he taketh a couple of oxen, and cutteth them in pieces, and sendeth through all the border of Israel, by the hand of the messengers, saying, 'He who is not coming out after Saul and after Samuel—thus it is done to his oxen;' and the fear of Jehovah falleth on the people, and they come out as one man. 8 And he inspecteth them in Bezek, and the sons of Israel are three hundred thousand, and the men of Judah thirty thousand. 9 And they say to the messengers who are coming, 'Thus do ye say to the men of Jabesh-Gilead: To-morrow ye have safety—by the heat of the sun;' and the messengers come and declare to the men of Jabesh, and they rejoice; 10 and the men of Jabesh say 'to the Ammonites', 'To-morrow we come out unto you, and ye have done to us according to all that 'is' good in your eyes.' 11 And it cometh to pass, on the morrow, that Saul putteth the people in three detachments, and they come into the midst of the camp in the morning-watch, and smite Ammon till the heat of the day; and it cometh to pass that those left are scattered, and there have not been left of them two together.
12 And the people say unto Samuel, 'Who is he that saith, Saul doth reign over us! give ye up the men, and we put them to death.' 13 And Saul saith, 'There is no man put to death on this day, for to-day hath Jehovah wrought salvation in Israel.' 14 And Samuel saith unto the people, 'Come and we go to Gilgal, and renew the kingdom there;' 15 and all the people go to Gilgal, and cause Saul to reign there before Jehovah in Gilgal, and sacrifice there sacrifices of peace-offerings before Jehovah, and there Saul rejoiceth—and all the men of Israel—very greatly.
Samuel's Address to the People
12 1 And Samuel saith unto all Israel, 'Lo, I have hearkened to your voice, to all that ye said to me, and I cause to reign over you a king, 2 and now, lo, the king is walking habitually before you, and I have become aged and gray-headed, and my sons, lo, they 'are' with you, and I have walked habitually before you from my youth till this day. 3 'Lo, here 'am' I; testify against me, over-against Jehovah, and over-against His anointed; whose ox have I taken, and whose ass have I taken, and whom have I oppressed; whom have I bruised, and of whose hand have I taken a ransom, and hide mine eyes with it?—and I restore to you.' 4 And they say, 'Thou hast not oppressed us, nor hast thou crushed us, nor hast thou taken from the hand of any one anything.' 5 And he saith unto them, 'A witness 'is' Jehovah against you: and a witness 'is' His anointed this day, that ye have not found anything in my hand;' and they say, 'A witness.'
6 And Samuel saith unto the people, 'Jehovah—He who made Moses and Aaron, and who brought up your fathers out of the land of Egypt! 7 and, now, station yourselves, and I judge you before Jehovah, with all the righteous acts of Jehovah, which He did with you, and with your fathers. 8 'When Jacob hath come in to Egypt, and your fathers cry unto Jehovah, then Jehovah sendeth Moses and Aaron, and they bring out your fathers from Egypt, and cause them to dwell in this place, 9 and they forget Jehovah their God, and He selleth them into the hand of Sisera, head of the host of Hazor, and into the hand of the Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab, and they fight against them, 10 and they cry unto Jehovah, and say, We have sinned, because we have forsaken Jehovah, and serve the Baalim, and Ashtaroth, and now, deliver us out of the hand of our enemies, and we serve Thee. 11 'And Jehovah sendeth Jerubbaal, and Bedan, and Jephthah, and Samuel, and delivereth you out of the hand of your enemies round about, and ye dwell confidently. 12 'And ye see that Nahash king of the Bene-Ammon hath come against you, and ye say to me, Nay, but a king doth reign over us; and Jehovah your God 'is' your king! 13 And, now, lo, the king whom ye have chosen—whom ye have asked! and lo, Jehovah hath placed over you a king. 14 'If ye fear Jehovah, and have served Him, and hearkened to His voice, then ye do not provoke the mouth of Jehovah, and ye have been—both ye and the king who hath reigned over you—after Jehovah your God. 15 'And if ye do not hearken to the voice of Jehovah—then ye have provoked the mouth of Jehovah, and the hand of Jehovah hath been against you, and against your fathers.
16 'Also now, station yourselves and see this great thing which Jehovah is doing before your eyes; 17 is it not wheat-harvest to-day? I call unto Jehovah, and He doth give voices and rain; and know ye and see that your evil is great which ye have done in the eyes of Jehovah, to ask for you a king.' 18 And Samuel calleth unto Jehovah, and Jehovah giveth voices and rain, on that day, and all the people greatly fear Jehovah and Samuel; 19 and all the people say unto Samuel, 'Pray for thy servants unto Jehovah thy God, and we do not die, for we have added to all our sins evil to ask for us a king.' 20 And Samuel saith unto the people, 'Fear not; ye have done all this evil; only, turn not aside from after Jehovah—and ye have served Jehovah with all your heart, 21 and ye do not turn aside after the vain things which do not profit nor deliver, for they 'are' vain, 22 for Jehovah doth not leave His people, on account of His great name; for Jehovah hath been pleased to make you to Him for a people. 23 'I, also, far be it from me to sin against Jehovah, by ceasing to pray for you, and I have directed you in the good and upright way; 24 only, fear ye Jehovah, and ye have served Him in truth with all your heart, for see that which He hath made great with you; 25 and if ye really do evil, both ye and your king are consumed.'