Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 Samuel 28:9

But the woman said to him, "Behold, you know what Saul 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?"
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - En-Dor;   Familiar Spirits;   Miracles;   Necromancy;   Samuel;   Saul;   Sorcery;   Witchcraft;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Miracles through Evil Agents;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Endor;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Magic;   Samuel;   Saul, king of israel;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Descent into Hell (Hades);   Magic;   Soul;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Prayer;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Magic;   Saul;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Divination;   Saul;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Capital Punishment;   Crimes and Punishments;   Divination and Magic;   Medium;   Samuel, Books of;   Snare;   Urim and Thummim;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Death;   En-Dor;   Eschatology;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Descent into Hades;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Magic;   Saul;   Witch and wizard;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Snare;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - War;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Hebrew Monarchy, the;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Communion with Demons;   En-Dor, Witch of;   Familiar;   Intercession;   Punishments;   Samuel, Books of;   Snare;   Woman;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Endor, the Witch of;   Samuel;   Witchcraft;  

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And the woman said unto him,.... Not knowing who he was:

behold, thou knowest what Saul hath done; for by his speech and habit she perceived he was an Israelite, and so must be acquainted with what had passed in the nation, especially of a public nature, and which made a great noise, as doubtless this, lid:

how he both cut off those that have familiar spirits, and the wizards,

out of the land; as many of them as he had knowledge of, or information about; and by this it appears that he did not merely expel them his dominions, but he put them to death, according to the law of God, Exodus 22:18; so the putting them out of the land, 1 Samuel 28:3, was putting them to death, and the woman's after reasoning confirms this: one should think for Saul to be told this to his face must fill him with shame and confusion, and his conscience must accuse him of sin and folly to make this attempt; and he must stand self-convicted and self-condemned; and it was enough to have deterred him from pursuing his scheme, had not his heart been strangely hardened:

wherefore then layest thou a snare for my life, to cause me to die? she suspected that Saul and his men were persons that came to entrap her; that when they had prevailed upon her to exercise her art, would turn informers against her, to the taking away of her life, it being death to practise it.

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 28:9". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-samuel-28.html. 1999.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

1 Samuel 28:9 And the woman said unto him, Behold, thou knowest what Saul hath done, how he hath cut off those that have familiar spirits, and the wizards, out of the land: wherefore then layest thou a snare for my life, to cause me to die?

Ver. 9. Behold, thou knowest what Saul hath done.] This speech could not choose but beat hard upon Saul’s evil conscience, making it sound heavily, as a Shaulm, but to little purpose.

How he hath cut off those, &c.] The Hebrews say he cut them off because they also foretold the ruin of his family, and the succession of David in the kingdom. (a)

Wherefore then layest thou a snare for my life?] A good and seasonable answer to Satan, soliciting us to evil. We should cut him up short in such a case, as Christ doth the Pharisees, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites? and as Solomon did his mother interceding for Adoniah, Ask for him the kingdom also.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-samuel-28.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Woman said, Behold, thou knowest; for his speech and garb discovered him to be an Israelite, and therefore acquainted with these matters.

To cause me to die, by accusing me to Saul as guilty of a capital crime.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-samuel-28.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

9.Wherefore then layest thou a snare for my life — We have seen (note introductory to 1 Samuel 28:3) that according to some interpreters the witch knew Saul as soon as he came into her presence, and her words to him are but a device to deceive him and secure herself. The possibility of this cannot be denied. She might have recognised his stately form though in disguise, or possibly some secret sympathizer with her craft might have advised her of the king’s approach. But it is more in harmony with the narrative to understand that she knew him not until she entered the clairvoyant state. Her words in this verse virtually charge Saul with a purpose of convicting her of sorcery that he might bring her to capital punishment.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-samuel-28.html. 1874-1909.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

life = soul. Hebrew. nephesh. App-13.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/1-samuel-28.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And the woman said unto him, Behold, thou knowest what Saul hath done, how he hath cut off those that have familiar spirits, and the wizards, out of the land: wherefore then layest thou a snare for my life, to cause me to die?

No JFB commentary on this verse.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/1-samuel-28.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(9) What Saul hath done . . .—The law, re-enacted by Saul in earlier days, which made the practice of these dark arts a capital offence, was evidently still in force. Sorcerers and witches, like the woman of En-dor, had, no doubt, been often hunted down by means of informers. The woman possibly at first suspected that something of the kind was intended now. The old tradition, however, which represents the two companions of the king as Abner and Amasa, would preclude such a supposition. Still, in any event, the act of summoning the dead was a capital offence, and the woman would be on her guard, even in the presence of her near relatives, which the old tradition asserts Abner and Amasa to have been. She may, too, by enhancing the peril in which she stood, have thought a larger present would be extorted from the stranger who sought her aid.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/1-samuel-28.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And the woman said unto him, Behold, thou knowest what Saul hath done, how he hath cut off those that have familiar spirits, and the wizards, out of the land: wherefore then layest thou a snare for my life, to cause me to die?
how he hath
wherefore
2 Samuel 18:13; 2 Kings 5:7
Reciprocal: Exodus 22:18 - GeneralDeuteronomy 18:10 - that useth divination

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 Samuel 28:9". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-samuel-28.html.