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Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament


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Saul the son of Kish, of the tribe of Benjamin, is mentioned in St. Paul’s address at Pisidian Antioch as the first king whom God gave to Israel. After he had reigned 40 years, God removed him, and raised up David to be king over Israel, a man after His heart (Acts 13:21-22). Saul of Tarsus could not fail to be profoundly interested in the career of the great king whose name he bore and to whose tribe he belonged. The story of the hero who was called against his will to the throne, and who lived and died fighting for the liberty of his country, has all the elements of high tragedy. By separating the later from the earlier and more authentic narrative contained in 1 Sam., historical criticism enables the reader to understand more fully and to appraise more highly the real services of this protagonist who turned the tide of Philistine conquest into defeat and paved the way for the still greater king who consolidated the Hebrew monarchy. For a fine psychological study of his character, see A. B. Davidson, The Called of God, 1902, p. 143 ff.

James Strahan.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Saul'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. 1906-1918.

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