Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 Samuel 18:8

Then Saul became very angry, for this saying displeased him; and he said, "They have ascribed to David ten thousands, but to me they have ascribed thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?"
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - David;   Envy;   Jealousy;   Malice;   Prudence;   Thompson Chain Reference - Jealousy;   Man;   Man's;   Saul, King of Israel;   Wrath;   Wrath-Anger;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Envy;   Hatred;  
Dictionaries:
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - David;   Jealousy;   Philistia, philistines;   Saul, king of israel;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Prayer;   Easton Bible Dictionary - David;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Samuel, Books of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Saul;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - David;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - David;   Merab;   Samuel, Books of;   Saul;  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

What can he have … - Rather, “There is only the kingdom left for him.” Compare for the same sentiment, 1 Kings 2:22. “A kingdom (says Camden) brooketh no companion, and majesty more heavily taketh injuries to heart.”

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/1-samuel-18.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him,.... Partly because they called him plain Saul, and not King Saul; did not give him his royal title, which might serve to strengthen his suspicion, after suggested; and chiefly because they attributed a greater number of slain to David than to him, as follows:

and he said, they have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they ascribed but thousands; and so had given more honour to an inferior officer than to the commander-in-chief, more to a subject than to a sovereign:

and what can he have more but the kingdom? there is nothing left out of their song, and nothing remains to be given him but that; some think that Saul knew, by the prudent behaviour of David, and the favour he was in with God and men, and by these commendations of the women, that the kingdom would be his; and that the words of Samuel were true, and would be confirmed, that the kingdom would be rent from him, and given to his neighbour better than he. This clause, with 1 Samuel 18:9, is left out of the Greek version, according to the Vatican copy.

Copyright Statement
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-samuel-18.html. 1999.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

1 Samuel 18:8 And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed [but] thousands: and [what] can he have more but the kingdom?

Ver. 8. And Saul was very wroth.] But without cause: for, as Chrysostom observeth, (a) the women ascribed to Saul more than he deserved, - for he suffered the Philistine to vaunt himself forty days together, and yet cowardly sat still, - and to David less than was his due: but that they ascribed anything to him, was not his doing, or desire; as Saul might very well gather by his modest behaving himself all along.

And the saying displeased him.] He gave way to that devilish vice of envy, which was henceforth as a fire in his bosom, as a worm continually gnawing upon his entrails.

Invidia Siculi non invenere tyranni

Maius tormentum. ” - Horat.

Caligula, Nero, and Valentinian, the emperors, are infamous in history (b) for their envy; the property whereof is virtutem eminentem odisse, et odio melioris favere deteriori. Tiberius, that tiger, laid hold with his teeth on all the excellent spirits of his times, that he alone might seem to excel.

And what can he have more but the kingdom?] He now begins to suspect, belike, that David was the man that should be king in his room. Now kings love not co-rivals.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-samuel-18.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

What greater honour can they give him but that of the kingdom? Or thus, And moreover. this will not rest here, they will certainly give him the kingdom; they will translate the crown from me to him. Or thus, And moreover, the kingdom certainly belongs to him, i.e. I now perceive that this is the favourite of God, and of the people; this is that man after God’s own heart, to whom Samuel told me that God would transfer my kingdom.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-samuel-18.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

8.Saul was very wroth — His passionate nature could not brook such insinuations without yielding to foul thoughts and deepest envy,

What can he have more but the kingdom — Immediately there flashes upon him the suspicion that this son of Jesse is that neighbour of whom Samuel had spoken, (1 Samuel 15:28,) who was destined to supersede him on the throne.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-samuel-18.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

A thousand. These women were guilty of an indiscretion, through excess of zeal, as it is always displeasing for the sovereign to hear any of his subjects preferred before him. (St. Chrysostom, hom. i. de Saul.) --- The jealousy of Saul was the more excited, as he had been threatened with the loss of his kingdom, and perceived in David all the qualifications of a king. A malo principe tanquam successor timetur quisquis est dignior. (Pliny in Traj.) --- But was David responsible for what was spoken in his praise? (Calmet) --- The Vatican Septuagint omit what follows till ver. 12. "And Saul feared David, (13) and he removed," &c. The Alexandrian copy agrees with the Vulgate. (Haydock) --- Those who are proud, cannot bear the praises of others. (Worthington)

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/1-samuel-18.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

the = this.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/1-samuel-18.html. 1909-1922.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(8) What can he have more but the kingdom?—In this foreboding utterance of Saul there was involved not only a conjecture which the result confirmed, but a deep inward truth: if the king stood powerless before the subjugators of his kingdom at so decisive a period as this, and a shepherd boy came and decided the victory, this was an additional mark of his rejection.—V. Gerlach, quoted in Keil.

Some years had passed since he first heard from the lips of his old prophet-friend the Divine sentence of his rejection from the kingdom. In that sad period he had doubtless been on the look-out for the one destined by the Invisible King to be his successor. This dread expectation of ruin and dethronement had been a powerful factor in the causes which had led to the unhingement of Saul’s mind. Was not this gifted shepherd boy—now the idol of the people—the future hope of Israel?

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/1-samuel-18.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?
the saying
Esther 3:5; Proverbs 13:10; 27:4; Ecclesiastes 4:4; James 4:5
displeased him
Heb. was evil in his eyes.
Numbers 11:1; 22:34; *margins
and what
13:14; 15:28; 16:13; 20:31; 1 Kings 2:22
Reciprocal: Exodus 21:8 - please not;  1 Samuel 19:1 - And Saul;  1 Samuel 21:11 - the king;  Job 5:2 - envy;  Proverbs 27:21 - so;  Matthew 5:22 - That;  Mark 7:22 - an evil;  Mark 15:10 - for envy;  Luke 15:28 - he;  1 Peter 2:1 - envies

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 18:8". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-samuel-18.html.