The Witch of Endor
The Story . . .
1 Samuel 28:3-25
King Saul was at his wit's end and trembling with fear. The entire Philistine army had gathered to attack Israel's smaller and weaker troops. Saul moaned, "If only Samuel were here, he would tell me what to do." But the great prophet of Israel had died a few years earlier.
The aged monarch tried desperately to find some advice or guidance from other prophets or priests, but the Lord would not speak to him. As a young man, Saul had been close to God.
But after ascending the throne, he became cruel and rebelled against God's Word.
Once he even had a whole village of priests murdered. King Saul had persistently
refused to listen to the Lord, and now in his distress, God would not answer him.
"Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and inquire of her." 1 Samuel 28:7. God had clearly commanded His people never to consult
a witch or medium (Leviticus 19:31; 20:27), but Saul now had little regard for God's implicit instruction. Upon finding a woman in Endor who claimed to consult with the dead, the king disguised himself and went to see her. He said to the medium, "Bring me up Samuel." The
witch went through her spells and enchantments until an apparition claiming to be Samuel the prophet appeared and gave the king an utterly hopeless message. It predicted that Saul
and his three sons would die in battle the next day.
The following day Saul's sons were slain by the Philistines, and afterward the wounded and discouraged king fell on his sword and took his own life (1 Samuel 31:2-4). Who spoke to
Saul through the witch-a resurrected prophet of God, or a devil in disguise?
Fill in the blanks after reading each Bible text.
1.Was the form that Saul saw actually Samuel the prophet?
1 Kings 22:22 And he said, I will go forth, and I will be a
_______________ _______________ in the mouth of all his prophets.
Revelation 16:14 For they are the _______________ of
_______________, working miracles.
2. Do the dead come back to converse with or to haunt
Job 14:21 His sons come to honour, and he _______________ it
_______________; and they are brought low, but he perceiveth it not
Ecclesiastes 9:5, 6, 10 The dead _______________ _______________
any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is
forgotten. Also their _______________, and their _______________, and
their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in
any thing that is done under the sun [in this life]. ... For there is no work, nor
device, nor _______________, nor wisdom, in the grave.
NOTE: No! The Bible is clear. A dead person does nothing and knows nothing
about what is happening on earth.
Psalm 115:17 The dead praise not the Lord.
Psalm 6:5 In death there is no remembrance of thee.
Job 7:10 He shall return no more to his house.
Isaiah 38:18 Death can not celebrate thee.
Psalm 146:4 His thoughts perish.
3. According to the book of Revelation, who has the keys
Revelation 1:18 I am _______________ that _______________, and
was _______________; and, behold, I am alive for evermore ...; and have
the keys of hell and of death.
NOTE: The Bible is clear. Only Jesus has the keys of death. We should go to His
Word for answers to our questions about death.
4.How did God make man in the beginning?
Genesis 2:7 And the Lord God formed man of the _______________
of the ground, and _______________ into his nostrils the breath of
_______________; and man became a living soul.
NOTE: Two things happened at Creation: (1) God formed man from the dust, or
earth, and (2) He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. Thus man became a
5. What happens at death?
Ecclesiastes 12:7 Then shall the _______________ return to the earth
as it was: and the _______________ shall return unto God who gave it.
NOTE: What takes place at death is the opposite from what happened during
Creation. The body returns to dust and the spirit, or breath, returns to God
who gave it. The Bible clearly teaches that the "spirit" that returns to God is
simply the breath of life, which God breathed into man in the beginning (James
2:26, margin; Job 27:3, margin; Job 33:4). Psalm 104:29, 30 states: "Thou
takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Thou sendest forth
thy spirit [breath], they are created."
6. Where do the dead go when they die?
Job 21:32 Yet shall he be brought to the _______________, and shall
remain in the tomb.
John 5:28, 29 All that are _______________ the _______________
shall hear his voice, And shall come forth.
NOTE: The dead, both righteous and unrighteous, are in their graves and will
hear Jesus' voice calling them forth from the grave to reward or punishment.
7. The Bible makes it plain that King David is saved. Is he
in heaven now?
Acts 2:29 Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the
patriarch David, that he is both _______________ and
_______________, and his sepulchre [tomb] is with us unto this day.
Acts 2:34 For David is _______________ _______________ into
NOTE: No! The apostle Peter plainly stated that David is dead and buried-
not alive in heaven. Furthermore, Hebrews 11:32-40 makes it clear that all the
faithful of the ages have not yet been rewarded, but rather, will all be rewarded
together (verses 39, 40).
8. But isn't it true that the soul is immortal and that only
the body dies?
Ezekiel 18:4 The _______________ that sinneth, it shall
Job 4:17 Shall _______________ man be more just than God?
1 Timothy 6:15, 16 The King of kings, and _______________ of
lords; Who _______________ hath immortality.
NOTE: We are souls, and souls do die. Man is mortal. Only God is immortal.
The widely believed teaching of the undying, immortal soul is not found in the
Bible. The teaching is man-made.
9. When will the righteous be given immortality?
1 Corinthians 15:51-53 We shall all be _______________, In a
moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last _______________: for
the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be _______________
incorruptible, ... and this mortal must put on immortality.
1 Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven
with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:
and the ______________ in Christ shall ______________ first.
NOTE: Yes, the righteous will be given immortality at the resurrection. The
wicked never receive it.
10. How does the Bible repeatedly refer to death?
John 11:11, 14 Our friend Lazarus _______________; ... Lazarus
Matthew 27:52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the
saints which _______________ arose.
2 Samuel 7:12 Thou shalt _______________ with thy fathers.
1 Thessalonians 4:14 Them also which _______________ in Jesus
will God bring with him.
NOTE: The Bible often refers to death as sleep. Death is a state of total unconsciousness,
during which 15 minutes or a thousand years seem the same. The dead
simply "sleep" in their graves until the resurrection, when all will be raised by Jesus.
The teaching that the spirits of the dead are heavenly angels, or some righteous
ghostlike entity that can be contacted, is without scriptural foundation.
11. Since wizards, witches, and psychics cannot contact the
dead, whom are they contacting?
Revelation 16:14 They are the spirits of devils, working
NOTE: Heaven's angels are called "ministering spirits" (Hebrews 1:14) who
help people on earth. The angels who were cast out of heaven with Satan
(Revelation 12:7-9) are also spirits-evil spirits who deceive people by working
miracles (Revelation 16:13, 14). They use "all power and signs and lying
wonders" (2 Thessalonians 2:9), and can even make "fire come down from
heaven on the earth in the sight of men" (Revelation 13:13). When psychics
claim to be contacting spirits of the dead, they are really in touch with Satan's
fallen angels (Isaiah 8:19, 20).
12. Why does Satan want us to believe that the spirits of
the dead are really alive?
Matthew 24:24, 25 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets,
and shall shew _______________ _______________ and wonders;
insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall ______________ the very
_______________. Behold, I have told you before.
NOTE: Satan's first lie to mankind was "Ye shall not surely die." Genesis 3:4.
He wants people to believe that the spirits of the dead are alive so his angels can
pose as saints, prophets, and righteous leaders who have died and so that he can
pose as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:13-15). Thus, he can deceive people
by the millions. Utilizing these evil spirits is called "spiritism." It is based on a
two-part belief: (1) the dead are alive, and (2) they can contact you, or you can
contact them. This is one of Satan's most damaging teachings. Yet almost the
whole world believes it today. The witch of Endor did not call up Samuel. Rather,
she saw an evil angel who posed as Samuel.
13. How effective will Satan's use of these evil spirits be in
the last days?
Revelation 18:23 By thy sorceries were _______________ nations
Revelation 18:2 Babylon the great is fallen, ... and is become
the habitation of devils, and the hold of _______________
Revelation 12:9 That old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which
deceiveth the _______________ world.
NOTE: By Satan's miracles (sorceries) through his evil angels, he will deceive
virtually the entire world.
14. How does God regard these miracles by evil angels?
Leviticus 20:27 A man also or woman ... that is a _______________,
shall surely be put to _______________.
1 Timothy 4:1 Some shall _______________ from the
_______________, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.
Ephesians 5:11 Have no fellowship with the _______________ works of
Galatians 5:19-21 The works of the flesh are manifest, which are these;
Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolotry,
_______________, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions,
heresies, Envying, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like.
Revelation 21:8 Sorcerers ... shall have their part in the
_______________ which burneth with _______________ and
brimstone: which is the second death.
NOTE: In Moses' day, God commanded that all psychics be put to death. Today
He insists that sorcery is a work of the flesh, for which people will be destroyed.
He warns that when you dabble with psychics you leave the faith, and He tells us
that all sorcerers will die the second death in the lake of fire.
15. What glorious power does God offer His people?
Philippians 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his
NOTE: Jesus offers us the same power to live right that raised Him from the dead.
Fantastic! How can we fail with such incredible power given us-and that with no
cost to us? Jesus, because He loves us, solemnly warns us away from the power and
miracles of evil angels and offers to work the divine miracles needed to prepare us
for His kingdom (Philippians 1:6).
Recognizing that God is in full control of earthly events, are you willing to let Him
have full control of your life?
This section provides additional information for further study.
The Thief on the Cross
Did Jesus promise the thief on the cross immediate access to heaven when
He said, "To day shalt thou be with me in paradise"? The meaning of Christ's
statement in Luke 23:43 is determined by a scriptural answer to one very
important question: Did Jesus Himself go to heaven on that day?
Not according to Scripture. On the day of the resurrection, when He met
Mary at the garden tomb, His words were: "Touch me not; for I am not yet
ascended to my Father." John 20:17. Jesus could not have gone to paradise on
Friday if He hadn't yet ascended to the Father by Sunday!
Why then did Jesus say, "To day shalt thou be with me in paradise"? The
apparent problem vanishes when you consider that the original Greek
manuscripts had no punctuation. The commas and periods were introduced
into the text of Scripture by translators, who inserted them where they
thought they should be. And believe it or not, a single comma can change the
meaning of an entire sentence! The Lord's statement in Luke 23:43 should
read: "Verily I say unto thee today, Thou shalt be with me in paradise." This
is what Jesus was really saying. Today, when all seems lost; today, when I do
not look like a Lord or King, and after even My disciples have fled; today,
although My hands are nailed to a cross, I can still save you!
Someday that thief, along with all others who have accepted Christ, will
claim the promise of the resurrection and be with Jesus in paradise.
What Do the Words "Spirit" and "Breath" Mean in the Bible?
Job 27:3 points out that a person's "spirit" and "breath" are the same. Job
further states that this spirit, or breath, is in his nostrils. Please remember that
God placed the "breath" in Adam's nostrils at Creation (Genesis 2:7). So the spirit
that returns to God when a person dies is the breath of life-not a disembodied
soul. Never in the Bible is a disembodied soul said to return to God at death.
Where Does the "Soul" Go When a Person Dies?
At Creation, two things combine to make a soul-body and breath.
Until these two things combine, a soul does not exist. At death, these two
components separate. The body returns to dust, and the breath returns to
God. The soul goes nowhere; it simply ceases to exist.