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The Witch of Endor And King Saul

Cheryl enjoys writing articles related to Biblical history and has written many stories about the characters in scripture.

The witch of Endor

The witch of Endor

Saul's fateful decision.

In I Samuel 28 we learn that the Lord was no longer talking to King Saul. Israel's leader had tried everything to no avail. Verse 6 tells us: And when Saul inquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets. Saul became frustrated and did something that he knew he should not have. The king had banished all the witches, warlocks, and workers of magic from the land, but now he desired one to tell him the future. He asked his servants to find for him a woman with a familiar spirit so he could inquire of her. This lets us known that it was the women in the land who were seeking answers from spirits other than the Spirit of the Living God.

Endor

Endor is mentioned in Psalms 83. The Psalmist is asking the Lord to do to Israel's enemies as He had other nations and Endor is included.

9 Do unto them as unto the Midianites; as to Sisera, as to Jabin, at the brook of Kison:

10 Which perished at Endor: they became as dung for the earth.

There is disagreement as to where Endor was located but Wikipedia suggests that the village was located on the south of the Jezreel Valley. The following map gives a location but no one knows for sure if this is accurate.

It's not known the witch was alone in Endor or if others dabbling in magic had hidden there was well. The fact that Saul's servants knew her location indicates that there were people in Israel still in contact with her and possibly using her services.


Possible location of the village of Endor

Possible location of the village of Endor

The meeting and the warning

Saul disguised himself and went to meet with the witch and asked her to bring up the prophet Samuel. The witch cries out and when the king asks what she sees she says gods(plural coming from the earth. There is much debate regarding this within the theological community. Some believe that the Creator allowed the prophet to address the king. Others believe the witch spoke to a familiar spirit who was pretending to be Saul. Some think she cried out because she was a charlatan and had never truly called up a spirit before. There are also those who say she screamed because she recognized Saul, who had put the witches out of Israel. This seems logical as the king assured her that no harm would come to her. The spirit answers in a manner that suggests he was Samuel as he asked the king why he had disturbed him. He then goes on to tell Saul what will take place.

16 Then said Samuel, Wherefore then dost thou ask of me, seeing the Lord is departed from thee, and is become thine enemy?

17 And the Lord hath done to him, as he spake by me: for the Lord hath rent the kingdom out of thine hand, and given it to thy neighbour, even to David:

18 Because thou obeyedst not the voice of the Lord, nor executedst his fierce wrath upon Amalek, therefore hath the Lord done this thing unto thee this day.

19 Moreover the Lord will also deliver Israel with thee into the hand of the Philistines: and to morrow shalt thou and thy sons be with me: the Lord also shall deliver the host of Israel into the hand of the Philistines.

The end

The witch sees how distraught the king is and offers him some food but he refuses. eventually, his servants convince him to eat, but he is completely shaken by the desire words of the spirit. The next day the prophecy comes to pass. I Samuel chapter 31tells us that Israelites are defeated, Saul's sons die in battle and he is wounded, The king begs his servant to finish him off but he refuses, so Saul kills himself by falling on his own sword. In time David obtains his kingdom. Nothing more is mentioned regarding the Witch of Endor. Here are the revelations to ponder from this tragic story.

1. You can mess up with the Lord as Saul did and He will no longer speak.

2. You should not consult evil spirits because this can bring tragedy. Saul, his sons, and his army paid a high price for his behavior.

3.The Lord had commanded all the witches to be put out of the land because he desires His children to only consult His Holy Spirit.

4. Saul specifically sought out a woman which suggests that females were heavily into familiar spirits.

5. Don't be like Saul, stay humble before the Lord so that He will be there when you call.

6. Obey the Lord's instructions. When the Israelites left Egypt, the Amalekites refused to let them cross through their land. 400 years went by but the Lord honored His promise to punish them. He commanded Saul to kill the Amalekites and not leave anything living. Saul disobeyed and kept the king alive along with some of the animals.

7. Your actions may cause others to suffer. All of Israel was affected because Saul refused to obey the Lord.

© 2020 Cheryl E Preston

Comments

OLUSEGUN from NIGERIA on October 27, 2020:

This is good for bible studies.

Cheryl E Preston (author) from Roanoke on October 26, 2020:

Thank you for reading it.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on October 24, 2020:

This is such an interesting Bible story, Cheryl. Thanks for writing this.