Samuel anoints David
1 Yahweh asked Samuel, “How long will you be grieving over Saul whom I have rejected as king of Israel? Fill your horn with oil and be on your way to Jesse the Bethlehemite for I have chosen my king from among his sons.”
2 Samuel asked, “How can I go? If Saul hears of this, he will kill me!” Yahweh replied, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to Yahweh.’ 3 Invite Jesse to the sacrifice and I will let you know what to do next. You shall anoint for me the one I point out to you.”
4 Samuel did what Yahweh com-manded and left for Bethlehem. When he appeared, the elders of the city came to him asking, fearfully, “Do you bring us peace?” 5 Samuel replied, “I come in peace; I am here to sacrifice to Yahweh. Cleanse yourselves and join me in the sacrifice.” He also had Jesse and his sons cleansed and invited them to the sacrifice.
6 As they came, Samuel looked at Eliab the older and thought, “This must be Yahweh’s anointed.” 7 But Yahweh told Samuel, “Do not judge by his looks or his stature for I have rejected him. Yahweh does not judge as man judges; humans see with the eyes; Yahweh sees the heart.”
8 Jesse called his son Abinadab and presented him to Samuel who said, “Yahweh has not chosen this one either.” 9 Jesse presented Sham mah and Samuel said, “Nor has Yah weh chosen this one.” 10 Jesse presented seven of his sons to Samuel who said, “Yahweh has chosen none of them. 11 But are all your sons here?” Jesse replied, “There is still the youngest, tending the flock just now.” Samuel said to him, “Send for him and bring him to me; we shall not sit down to eat until he arrives.” 12 So Jesse sent for his youngest son and brought him to Samuel. He was a handsome lad with ruddy complexion and beautiful eyes. And Yahweh spoke, “Go, anoint him for he is the one.” 13 Samuel then took the horn of oil and anointed him in his brothers’ presence. From that day onwards, Yahweh’s Spirit took hold of David. Then Samuel left for Ramah.
14 The spirit of Yahweh had left Saul and an evil spirit sent by Yahweh tormented him. 15 Saul’s servants said to him, “We know that an evil spirit sent by God is tormenting you. 16 If you so wish, your servants who stand before you will look for someone who can play the lyre so when the evil spirit from God comes over you, he will play and you will feel better.”
17 So Saul answered them, “Get someone who can play the lyre well.” 18 One of them said, “A son of Jesse, the Bethle hemite, plays very well. He is, moreover, a courageous man, intelligent and pleasant to talk with and Yahweh is with him.”
19 So Saul sent messengers to Jesse and asked for his son David who tended the sheep. 20 Jesse loaded an ass with bread, a wineskin and a kid and had David take all these to Saul. 21 David then left and entered Saul’s service. Saul grew very fond of David and made him his armor-bearer. 22 Then he sent word to Jesse, saying, “Let David remain in my service for I am very pleased with him.”
23 So, whenever the evil spirit from God overpowered Saul, David would play on the lyre and Saul would feel better for the evil spirit would leave him.