Did the witch of Endor bring up the ghost of Samuel to talk to Saul?

Hello E,

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The Bible is clear that what appeared to king Saul was not really the ghost of Samuel raised from the death. Prior to this story, we learned that “Saul inquired of the Lord,” but “the Lord did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by the prophets” (1 Samuel 28:6). Because of Saul’s disobedience and evil conduct, the Lord refused to communicate with him through any means, including His prophets. Even if Samuel was alive, he would have had nothing to tell King Saul. So, in desperation, Saul decided to seek the witch to obtain advise.

Further, that entity was not the ghost of Samuel because the Bible teaches that the dead are in a state of unconsciousness till the Resurrection Day and are not aware of anything “the living know that they will die; but the dead know nothing…for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going” (Ecclesiastes 9:5, 10).

The Bible Says, after death a person: returns to dust (Psalms 104:29), knows nothing (Ecclesiastes 9:5), possesses no mental powers (Psalms 146:4), has nothing to do with anything on earth (Ecclesiastes 9:6), does not live (2 Kings 20:1), waits in the grave (Job 17:13), and continues not (Job 14:1, 2). When we die, we enter a state the Bible likens to “sleep” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14), remaining unconscious till the resurrection.

The “Samuel” conjured up by the witch of Endor was a demonic spirit appearing as God’s prophet “And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15).

The demon posing as Samuel was able to depress Saul to the point where Saul was no longer able to stand up (1 Samuel 28:20). That demon gave a message of utter hopelessness which led Saul to suicide the next day. To protect people from demons, the Lord commanded that wizards, witches and others with “familiar spirits” (who claimed to be able to contact the dead) should be put to death (Leviticus 20:27).

In His service,

BibleAsk Team

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