Ark of the Covenant - Bible History Online
Bible History Online
Picture Study Bible with Maps and Background Information

1 Samuel 18

1 - When he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.

2 - Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house.

3 - Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.

4 - Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him, and gave it to David, and his clothing, even including his sword, his bow, and his sash.

5 - David went out wherever Saul sent him, and behaved himself wisely; and Saul set him over the men of war. It was good in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul's servants.

6 - As they came, when David returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet king Saul, with tambourines, with joy, and with instruments of music.

7 - The women sang to one another as they played, and said,"Saul has slain his thousands,and David his ten thousands."

8 - Saul was very angry, and this saying displeased him. He said, "They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed only thousands. What can he have more but the kingdom?"

9 - Saul watched David from that day and forward.

10 - On the next day, an evil spirit from God came mightily on Saul, and he prophesied in the middle of the house. David played with his hand, as he did day by day. Saul had his spear in his hand;

11 - and Saul threw the spear, for he said, "I will pin David even to the wall!" David escaped from his presence twice.

12 - Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him, and had departed from Saul.

13 - Therefore Saul removed him from his presence, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people.

14 - David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the LORD was with him.

15 - When Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he stood in awe of him.

16 - But all Israel and Judah loved David; for he went out and came in before them.

17 - Saul said to David, "Behold, my elderdaughter Merab, I will give her to you as wife. Only be valiant for me, and fight The LORD's battles." For Saul said, "Don't let my hand be on him, but let the hand of the Philistines be on him."

18 - David said to Saul, "Who am I, and what is my life, or my father's family in Israel, that I should be son-in-law to the king?"

19 - But at the time when Merab, Saul's daughter, should have been given to David, she was given to Adriel the Meholathite as wife.

20 - Michal, Saul's daughter, loved David; and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.

21 - Saul said, I will give her to him, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Therefore Saul said to David, "You shall today be my son-in-law a second time."

22 - Saul commanded his servants, "Talk with David secretly, and say, 'Behold, the king has delight in you, and all his servants love you. Now therefore be the king's son-in-law.'"

23 - Saul's servants spoke those words in the ears of David. David said, "Does it seem to you a light thing to be the king's son-in-law, since I am a poor man, and lightly esteemed?"

24 - The servants of Saul told him, saying, "David spoke like this."

25 - Saul said, "Tell David, 'The king desires no dowry except one hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies.'" Now Saul thought he would make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.

26 - When his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king's son-in-law. Before the deadline,

27 - David arose and went, he and his men, and killed two hundred men of the Philistines. Then David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full number to the king, that he might be the king's son-in-law. Then Saul gave him Michal his daughter as wife.

28 - Saul saw and knew that the LORD was with David; and Michal, Saul's daughter, loved him.

29 - Saul was even more afraid of David; and Saul was David's enemy continually.

30 - Then the princes of the Philistines went out; and as often as they went out, David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul, so that his name was highly esteemed.

1 Samuel Images and Notes

The Books of Samuel

1 Samuel 8:19 - Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;
1 Samuel 8:20 - That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.
1 Samuel 8:21 - And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.
1 Samuel 8:22 - And the LORD said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king.

The Old Testament - A Brief Overview

Bible Survery - Samuel
Hebrew Name - Shemuel "asked of God"
Greek Name - Samoeul (Greek form of the Hebrew)
Author - Samuel (According to Tradition)
Date - From 1171-1015 BC Approximately
Theme of 1 Samuel - The beginning of the kingdom
Theme of 2 Samuel - David, God's chosen king
Types and Shadows - In Samuel Jesus is God's anointed King

Quick Reference Map
Map of the Kingdom of Saul
Map of the Kingdom of Saul (Click to Enlarge)

Summary of The Books of Samuel

The original ancient Hebrew manuscripts recorded the books of Samuel as only one book. The first time these books were divided was in the Septuagint, the Greek version of the Hebrew Scriptures, and they were referred to as the First and Second Books of Kingdoms. 1 and 2 Kings were referred to as the Third and  Fourth Books of Kingdoms. When looking closely at the King James version of the Bible the titles are still arranged in this way.

Samuel is the name of the books in the ancient Hebrew text, because he was the author and the main character in the early portions in the first book, and because of his role as a prophet of God known from Dan to Beersheba, who had anointed and had the biggest influence on the lives of  King Saul and King David. The Lord raised up the prophet Samuel at a time in the history of Israel when they were disunited as a people and very determined to have a king reign over them. God made Samuel a great man, he was a Judge (1 Samuel 7:6, 15-17), and a Prophet (1 Samuel 3:20) and became  God's chosen link between the periods of the Judges and the United Kingdom.

According to Jewish tradition the books were written by Samuel himself. They deal with the period in Jewish history from the time of  Othniel the Judge through the reign of King David in the 11th and 10th centuries BC. This is of course one of the most important and significant times in the history of Israel, because their government changed from a system of tribes and judges to a kingdom by which the king would rule according to God's laws.

ARCHAEOLOGY

Ark Relief at Capernaum Synagogue

Close up of the Sculptured Block of the Ark at Capernaum

The ancient Ark of the covenant of Israel is one the most famous items in all of antiquity. There is no trace of the Ark of the covenant, yet it is memorialized by this Scripture block at the synagogue of Capernaum, created in Greco-Roman style. In the Bible the Ark of the Covenant was captured by the Philistines, and later returned because of sudden plagues that happened upon their lands. Through the valley of sorek it was taken back to Israel to Beth-shemesh.

Although there are a few repetitive content and accounts a clear outline is difficult, the contents of the two books may be outlined as follows:

Outline of the Books of Samuel

I. The Life of Samuel (1 Samuel 1-15)

1) The prayer of Hannah for a son, the granting of the request and the subsequent dedication of the child Samuel to the service of the Lord (1 Samuel 1:1-2: 10).
2) The sin of the sons of Eli which resulted in their death and the loss of the priesthood to the descendants of Eli (1 Samuel 2:12-36).
3) Samuel's vision concerning the house of Eli (1 Samuel 3).
4) The defeat of the Israelites and capture of the Ark by the Philistines and the death of Eli (1 Samuel 4).
5) The Ark in Philistine territory (1 Samuel 5:1-7 :4).
6) The return of the Ark and the establishment of Samuel as a judge over Israel (1 Samuel 7).
7) The appointment of Samuel's sons as judges and the consequent request for a king. Samuel warns the Israelites of the perils of being ruled over by a king (1 Samuel 8).
8) Saul's meeting with Samuel (1 Samuel 9).
9) The anointing and election of Saul as king (1 Samuel 10-11).
10) Samuel's address to the people, in which he defends his own record and exhorts them to walk in the way of the Lord (1 Samuel 12). From this time forward, he serves as an adviser to the king.

II. The Reign of Saul (1 Samuel 13 - 2 Samuel 1)

1) The offering of sacrifice by Saul in Samuel's absence. This constituted disobedience and resulted in God's disfavor toward Saul (1 Samuel 13).
2) Jonathan's rout of the Philistine army and his innocent breaking of Saul's foolish vow (1 Samuel 14).
3) Saul's disobedience in sparing some of the Amalekites and their cattle (1 Samuel 15). Samuel's reply to Saul's feeble excuse was the familiar "to obey is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fat of rams" (1 Samuel 15:22 ).
4) The anointing of David to be Saul's successor (1 Samuel 16).
5) David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17).
6) The love of Jonathan and David and the marriage of the latter to the daughter of Saul (1 Samuel 18). Also included in this chapter is the first attempt of the jealous Saul to kill David.
7) Saul's second attempt on David's life (1 Samuel 19).
8) The parting of Jonathan and David (1 Samuel 20).
9) David's exile (1 Samuel 20-24).
10) The death of Samuel and the marriage of David to Abigail after the death of her churlish husband, Nabal (1 Samuel 25).
11) The gradual eclipse of Saul's power as he futilely sought to destroy David and protect his kingdom at the same time (1 Samuel 26-30).

III. The Reign of David (2 Samuel 2-25)

1) The proclamation of David as king at Hebron and his reign over Judah from that place.
2) The removal of the capital to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 5).
3) The bringing of the ark to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6).
4) David's victories (2 Samuel 7-11:1).
5) David's sin with Bathsheba and the rebuke by Nathan the prophet (2 Samuel 11-12).
6) The rape of Tamar by Amnon, the revenge of Absalom and Amnon's murder; the flight of Absalom (2 Samuel 13).
7) Absalom's return, his efforts to usurp the throne of David and his death (2 Samuel 14-18).
8) David's return and Sheba's revolt (2 Samuel 19-20 ).
9) The famine and the victory over the Philistines (2 Samuel 21).
10) David's thanksgiving and last words (2 Samuel 22-23:7).
11) The names and exploits of David's "mighty men" (2 Samuel 23:8-39).
12) The census and the resultant plague (2 Samuel 24).

Quick Reference Maps - 1 Samuel

The Kingdom of Saul

Shiloh

Kirjath Jearim

Jabesh Gilead

Michmash

Judah in the Time of David

The City of Nob and David's Flight

Mount Gilboa

The Kingdom of David and Solomon

 

The First Day. Light.

1 Samuel Resources

The Judges
Samuel the Prophet
Saul, Israel's First King
King David

More About the Book of 1 Samuel
More About the Book of 2 Samuel
1 Samuel in the Picture Study Bible
2 Samuel in the Picture Study Bible
Timeline of the Ancient World
Back to the Old Testament
Back to Bible History Online