1 Samuel 16:14

David in Saul's Service

14 1Now the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, 2and a harmful spirit from the LORD tormented him.

1 Samuel 16:14 Meaning and Commentary

1 Samuel 16:14

But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul
As a spirit of prophecy as at first, as a spirit of wisdom and prudence in civil government, and as a spirit of fortitude and courage, as the Targum:

and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him;
the reverse of the former, which by the permission of God, and as a punishment to him for his sins, came upon him; he seemed to be a demoniac, as Josephus represents F9 him, as if possessed with the devil; by whom he was almost suffocated and strangled, as well as was distracted in his counsels, and became weak and foolish; lost all courage and greatness of mind, was timorous and fearful, and alarmed by everything, and was full of envy, suspicion, rage, and despair.


F9 Antiqu. l. 6. c. 8. sect. 2.

1 Samuel 16:14 In-Context

12 And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the LORD said, "Arise, anoint him, for this is he."
13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up and went to Ramah.
14 Now the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and a harmful spirit from the LORD tormented him.
15 And Saul's servants said to him, "Behold now, a harmful spirit from God is tormenting you.
16 Let our lord now command your servants who are before you to seek out a man who is skillful in playing the lyre, and when the harmful spirit from God is upon you, he will play it, and you will be well."

Cross References 2

  • 1. 1 Samuel 18:12; 1 Samuel 28:15, 16; [Judges 16:20]
  • 2. 1 Samuel 18:10; 1 Samuel 19:9; [Judges 9:23]