Sh’mu’el Alef (1 Samuel) Chapter 28

The corresponding letter to this chapter is Vav – hook; redemption and transformation. Stands for man created on the sixth day, etc.

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:1-2 Now it came about in those days that the Plishtim (Philistines) gathered their armed camps for war, to fight against Israel. And Akhish said to David, "Know assuredly that you will go out with me in the camp, you and your men." And David said to Akhish, "Very well, you shall know what your servant can do." So Akhish said to David, "Very well, I will make you my bodyguard for life."

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:3 Now Sh’mu’el was dead, and all Israel had lamented him and buried him in Ramah his own city. And Sha’ul had removed from the land those who were mediums and spiritists.

So far. so good…Sha’ul sounds like he is trying to run the kingdom the way G-d would want it run.

D’varim (Deuteronomy) 18:10-13 There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For whoever does these things is detestable to the L-RD; and because of these detestable things the L-RD your G-d will drive them out before you. You shall be blameless before the L-RD your God.

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:4-10 So the Plishtim (Philistines) gathered together and came and camped in Shunem; and Sha’ul gathered all Israel together and they camped in Gilboa. When Sha’ul saw the camp of the Plishtim, he was afraid and his heart trembled greatly. When Sha’ul inquired of the L-RD, the L-RD did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by prophets. Then Sha’ul said to his servants, "Seek for me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her." And his servants said to him, "Look, there is a woman who is a medium at Ein-dor." Then Sha’ul disguised himself by putting on other clothes, and went, he and two men with him, and they came to the woman by night; and he said, "Conjure up for me, please, and bring up for me whom I shall name to you." But the woman said to him, "Look, you know what Sha’ul has done, how he has cut off those who are mediums and spiritists from the land. Why are you then laying a snare for my life to bring about my death?" And Sha’ul vowed to her by the L-RD, saying, "As the L-RD lives, there shall no punishment come upon you for this thing."

Sha’ul first tried to get G-d to respond to him and when G-d did not he sinned against G-d. HaShem forbade turning to mediums or spiritists. Sha’ul told the witch that she would not be punished. He was only speaking for himself. As the king, that she would not be punished. However, she would still have to answer to G-d for her actions. He was not worried about her spiritual well being. He only cared about what was going to happen to him.

Vayikra (Leviticus) 19:31 'Do not turn to mediums or spiritists; do not seek them out to be defiled by them. I am the L-RD your G-d.

Vayikra (Leviticus) 20:6 'As for the person who turns to mediums and to spiritists, to play the harlot after them, I will also set My face against that person and will cut him off from among his people.

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:11-12 Then the woman said, "Whom shall I bring up for you?" And he said, "Bring up Sh’mu’el for me." When the woman saw Sh’mu’el, she cried out with a loud voice; and the woman spoke to Sha’ul, saying, "Why have you deceived me? For you are Sha’ul."

G-d allowed Sh’mu’el to be brought up. It is obvious that the medium was NOT used to having the dead appear. She was frightened when she saw Sh’mu’el and KNEW that G-d must have been involved.

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:13-15 And the king said to her, "Do not be afraid; but what do you see?" And the woman said to Sha’ul, "I see a divine (elohiym) being coming up out of the earth." And he said to her, "What is his form?" And she said, "An old man is coming up, and he is wrapped with a robe." And Sha’ul knew that it was Sh’mu’el, and he bowed with his face to the ground and did homage. Then Sh’mu’el said to Sha’ul, "Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?" And Sha’ul answered, "I am greatly distressed; for the Plishtim are waging war against me, and G-d has departed from me and answers me no more, either through prophets or by dreams; therefore I have called you, that you may make known to me what I should do."

This is a unique case. Normally when one attempts to contact the dead, they contact a demon that impersonates the dead person. G-d uses Sh’mu’el to pronounce judgment on Sh’aul.

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:16-19 And Sh’mu’el said, "Why then do you ask me, since the L-RD has departed from you and has become your adversary? "And the L-RD has done accordingly as He spoke through me; for the L-RD has torn the kingdom out of your hand and given it to your neighbor, to David. As you did not obey the L-RD and did not execute His fierce wrath on Amalek, so the L-RD has done this thing to you this day. Moreover the L-RD will also give over Israel along with you into the hands of the Plishtim, therefore tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. Indeed the L-RD will give over the army of Israel into the hands of the Plishtim!"

Tomorrow you and your sons will be with me – This is a pretty clear message. You will die tomorrow. All of your sons will die tomorrow. David will rule instead.

Sh’mu’el Alef 28:20-25 Then Sha’ul immediately fell full length upon the ground and was very afraid because of the words of Sh’mu’el; also there was no strength in him, for he had eaten no food all day and all night. And the woman came to Sha’ul and saw that he was terrified, and said to him, "Look, your maidservant has obeyed you, and I have taken my life in my hand, and have listened to your words which you spoke to me. So now also, please listen to the voice of your maidservant, and let me set a piece of bread before you that you may eat and have strength when you go on your way." But he refused and said, "I will not eat." However, his servants together with the woman urged him, and he listened to them. So he arose from the ground and sat on the bed. And the woman had a fattened calf in the house, and she quickly slaughtered it; and she took flour, kneaded it, and baked unleavened bread from it. And she brought it before Sha’ul and his servants, and they ate. Then they arose and went away that night.

Sha’ul is terrified. He will die tomorrow and he does not have strength in his body. The witch is able to get him and his men to eat before they leave and go into battle and to their deaths.