1 Samuel 10
Samuel anoints Saul
1 Then Samuel took a jar of oil and he poured the oil on Saul's head. He kissed Saul. He said:
‘The Lord has anointed you as the leader of his people. You will rule over them and you will rescue them from the power of their enemies. This is how you will know that the Lord has chosen you to be the leader of the Israelite people:
10:1his people means the Israelite people.
2 After you leave me today, you will meet two men at Zelzah on the border of Benjamin's land. They will be near the grave where Rachel is buried. The men will say to you, “Someone has found the donkeys that you were looking for. Your father is no longer thinking about his donkeys. Now he is upset because he does not know where you are. He continues to ask, ‘What can I do about my son?’ ”
3 After you leave there, you will reach the big tree at Tabor. Three men will meet you there. They are going to Bethel to worship God there. One of the men will have three young goats with him. One of them will have three loaves of bread. The third man will have a bag full of wine. 4 They will say “hello” to you and they will offer you two loaves of bread. You must accept the bread. 5 Then you must go to God's special hill at Gibeah. Some Philistine soldiers have their camp there. When you reach the town, you will meet a group of prophets. They will be coming down from the hill where people worship God. They will be making music with their harps, tambourines, flutes and lyres. They will be prophesying as they go along. 6 Then the Lord's Spirit will come to you with power. You will start to prophesy too. You will change to become like a different person. 7 After you see these things happen, you must do whatever seems right to you. God will be with you.
8 You must go to Gilgal and then I will come there. I will join with you there to offer burnt offerings and peace offerings to God. You must wait for seven days until I come. When I arrive at Gilgal, I will tell you what you should do.’
9 Saul turned away to leave Samuel. At that moment, God gave Saul a new nature. Everything that Samuel had said to Saul happened that day. 10 When Saul and his servant arrived at Gibeah, a group of prophets met them. God's Spirit came on Saul with power. He started to prophesy as the prophets were doing. 11 People who already knew Saul could not understand what was happening. When they saw him prophesying along with the prophets, they asked each other, ‘What has happened to this son of Kish? Has Saul himself become a prophet?’
12 A man who lived in Gibeah asked, ‘Do you know who is the father of all these prophets?’ Because of what happened, it became a proverb to say, ‘Has Saul himself become a prophet?’ 13 When Saul had finished prophesying, he went up to the hill where people worship God.
14 When Saul's uncle saw Saul and his servant, he asked them, ‘Where have you been?’ Saul said, ‘We went to look for the donkeys. We could not find them so we went to visit Samuel.’
15 Saul's uncle said, ‘What did Samuel say to you?’
16 Saul replied, ‘He told us that someone had found the donkeys.’ But Saul did not tell his uncle that Samuel had said that he would become the king.
Saul becomes the first king of Israel
17 Samuel sent a message to all Israel's people. He told them to come to Mizpah to meet with the Lord. 18 He said to them, ‘This is a message from the Lord, Israel's God: “I led you Israelites out from Egypt. I saved you from the power of the Egyptians. I also saved you from other kingdoms that were cruel to you. 19 I am the one who saves you from all your pain and troubles. But now you have turned against me, your God. You have said, ‘No! We want a king to rule over us instead.’ So now come and stand in front of the Lord. Stand together in your tribes and in your clans.” ’
20 So each tribe came forward to Samuel, tribe by tribe. God chose Benjamin's tribe. 21 Then each family from Benjamin's tribe went forward. God chose the family of Matri. Then God chose Kish's son Saul from the family of Matri. They looked for Saul but nobody could find him. 22 So they asked the Lord, ‘Has Saul arrived here yet?’ The Lord said, ‘Yes, but he is hiding among the luggage.’
23 So they ran to find Saul. They brought him out from there. When Saul stood among the people, you could see his head above everyone else. 24 Samuel said to all the people, ‘Look! Here is the man that the Lord has chosen. There is nobody like him among all the people.’ Then the people shouted, ‘May the king live for a long time!’
25 Then Samuel explained to the people all the rules about a king. He wrote everything in a book. He put the book in a special place where they worshipped the Lord. Then Samuel told all the people to go to back to their homes. 26 Saul himself went back to his home at Gibeah. A group of brave men went with him. God had caused them to want to do that. 27 But some wicked men were complaining. They said, ‘This man will never be able to save us.’ They did not respect Saul. They did not bring him any gifts. But Saul did not say anything against them.