1 Samuel 13 Bible Commentary

The Geneva Study Bible

(Read all of 1 Samuel 13)
13:1 Saul reigned a one year; and when he had reigned b two years over Israel,

(a) While these things were done.
(b) Before he took upon himself the state of a king.

13:3 And Jonathan smote the garrison of the Philistines that [was] in c Geba, and the Philistines heard [of it]. And Saul blew the d trumpet throughout all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear.

(c) Of Kirjath-jearim, where the ark was, (
1 Samuel 10:5).
(d) That everyone should prepare themselves to fight.

13:5 And the Philistines gathered themselves together to fight with Israel, thirty thousand chariots, and six thousand horsemen, and people as the sand which [is] on the sea shore in multitude: and they came up, and pitched in Michmash, eastward from e Bethaven.

(e) Which was also called Beth-el, in the tribe of Benjamin.

13:7 And [some of] the Hebrews went over Jordan to the land of f Gad and Gilead. As for Saul, he [was] yet in Gilgal, and all the people followed him trembling.

(f) Where the two tribes and the half remained.

13:8 And he tarried seven days, according to the set time that Samuel [had appointed]: but Samuel came not to Gilgal; and the people were g scattered from him.

(g) Thinking that the absence of the prophet was a sign, that they would lose the victory.

13:11 And Samuel said, What hast thou done? And Saul said, Because I saw that the people were h scattered from me, and [that] thou camest not within the days appointed, and [that] the Philistines gathered themselves together at Michmash;

(h) Though these causes seem sufficient in man's judgment: yet because they had not the word of God, they turned to his destruction.

13:13 And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the LORD thy i God, which he commanded thee: for now would the LORD have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever.

(i) Who willed you to obey him, and rest on the words spoken by his prophet.

13:14 But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the LORD hath sought him a k man after his own heart, and the LORD hath commanded him [to be] captain over his people, because thou hast not kept [that] which the LORD commanded thee.

(k) That is, David.

13:15 And Samuel arose, and gat him up from Gilgal unto l Gibeah of Benjamin. And Saul numbered the people [that were] present with him, about six hundred men.

(l) And went to his city Ramah.

13:18 And another company turned the way [to] Bethhoron: and m another company turned [to] the way of the border that looketh to the valley of Zeboim toward the wilderness.

(m) So that to man's judgment these three armies would have overrun the whole country.

13:22 So it came to pass in the day of battle, that there was neither n sword nor spear found in the hand of any of the people that [were] with Saul and Jonathan: but with Saul and with Jonathan his son was there found.

(n) To declare that the victory only came from God, and not by their force.