:: Notes on 1 Samuel 18 & 19 ::

I have provided these notes to hopefully help answer any questions you have on these chapters. If you have more comment below 🙂

1 Samuel 18 :

v. 3 Jonathan and David become BFFS! This could be the first known bromance. They make a covenant of friendship together, which is a promise to one another. 

v. 4 Jonathan gives David his robe, tunic, sword, his bow and belt. This is a big deal. Jonathan would have been traditionally the next in line to be king since his dad is Saul. But because of Saul’s disobedience the throne would be taken away from their family. 

>>The giving of these items not only signified Jonathan’s self-giving loyalty to David but also implied that he recognized David as God’s chosen king. 

v. 10 the infamous evil spirit. 

>> the Hebrew word doesn’t always mean morally “evil”, but could be describing a spirit that is annoying, troubling, or harmful. Jealousy was literally consuming Saul. (you’ll see this spirit again in chapter 19). 

Because of the evil that was in Saul we see his first attempt to kill David. 

v. 12 compares Saul and David. Saul is neurotic and cares only about saving his kingdom, while David rises in popularity with the people and is obedient to God. 


** In the following verses, Saul demotes David, but once again David prospers and the people grow to love him. 

v. 17-30 Saul had promised his daughter to the person who killed Goliath. So obviously even though he now hated David he had to follow through with the promise since now the entire country was loving David. People were watching. 

v. 21 Saul’s intention was to make his daughter Michal a trap for David. In chapter 19 you’ll see that she actually helps David out in a huge way. She does the first “person in a bed” trick. She puts a god, must be a large one, and puts goat hair on top to make it look like David is sleeping in the bed. I’ll explain the god in the notes for the next chapter. 

v. 22 – 27 Now Saul agrees that David and Michal can be married but puts a price on it. Technically, the price should have already been paid because David killed Goliath. But Saul can’t let him win that easily. 

In v. 23 we see David honestly tell the men to then tell Saul that he can’t pay the dowry price for the bride.

>>> In ancient times when a man wanted to marry a woman he had to pay the woman’s father for her hand. They could pay with money, animals, or labor. 

Saul sets the bar high for David. His intention is shown at the end of v.25. 

v. 26 “before the allotted time passed” – or before Saul could play another trick on David

v. 27 David brings back double of what Saul asked for. He ensures that Saul cannot go back on his word. 


Chapter 19 :

v. 13 “household” or “image” – this was an idol that was life size and made in human form

>> This could have furthered Saul’s thinking that she could be a snare or a trap to David. Michal clearly worships idols other than God. Saul probably thought if the Philistines don’t kill him, Michal can convince him to worship idols and in so doing he would deny the Lord. 

v. 9 Again an evil spirit from the Lord is mentioned. This same spirit also came upon Saul’s troops and then Saul so that they couldn’t kill David. God was protecting him. 

v. 21 prophesying situation. It’s completely confusing, I understand. Let me explain…

Prophesying in the Old Testament can mean different things. Prophets were God’s messengers. In other contexts of this word it can also be meant to describe strange behavior. At other times it can also be associated with music, similar to 1 Sam. 18: 10. 


This was done by God to not only temporarily change the motives and thoughts of the messengers and Saul from capturing and killing David so that he could escape. It also reveals that God holds the hearts of men in his hands, and by his power he turns and moves them at HIS will…not ours. 


The fact that even after this experience Saul’s heart remains hardened reveals the degree to which Saul has abandoned God, and further intensifies why the people (Israel) need David, a “man after God’s own heart”. And keep in mind that David will intensify the people’s need for a perfect king who will conquer all.


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