New International Version
Whenever the spirit from God came on Saul, David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him.
King James Bible
And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him.
Darby Bible Translation
And it came to pass, when the [evil] spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took the harp, and played with his hand; and Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him.
World English Bible
It happened, when the [evil] spirit from God was on Saul, that David took the harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him.
Young's Literal Translation
And it hath come to pass, in the spirit of sadness from God being on Saul, that David hath taken the harp, and played with his hand, and Saul hath refreshment and gladness, and the spirit of sadness hath turned aside from off him.
1 Samuel 16:23 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
The evil spirit from God - The word evil is not in the common Hebrew text, but it is in the Vulgate, Septuagint, Targum, Syriac, and Arabic, and in eight of Kennicott's and De Rossi's MSS., which present the text thus: רוח אלהים רעה ruach Elohim raah, spiritus Domini malus, the evil spirit of God. The Septuagint leave out Θεου, of God, and have πνευμα πονηρον, the evil spirit. The Targum says, The evil spirit from before the Lord; and the Arabic has it. The evil spirit by the permission of God; this is at least the sense.
And the evil spirit departed from him - The Targum says, And the evil spirit descended up from off him. This considers the malady of Saul to be more than a natural disease.
There are several difficulties in this chapter; those of the chronology are pretty well cleared, in the opinion of some, by the observations of Bishop Warburton; but there is still something more to be done to make this point entirely satisfactory. Saul's evil spirit, and the influence of music upon it, are not easily accounted for. I have considered his malady to be of a mixed kind, natural and diabolical; there is too much of apparent nature in it to permit us to believe it was all spiritual, and there is too much of apparent supernatural influence to suffer us to believe that it was all natural.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
the evil spirit
'And the Lord said unto Samuel, How long wilt them mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel! fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Beth-lehemite: for I have provided Me a king among his sons. 2. And Samuel said, How can I go? If Saul hear it, he will kill me. And the Lord said, Take an heifer with thee, and say, I am come to sacrifice to the Lord. 3. And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show thee what thou shalt do: and thou shalt anoint …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
1 Samuel 16:14
Now the Spirit of the LORD had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD tormented him.
1 Samuel 16:22
Then Saul sent word to Jesse, saying, "Allow David to remain in my service, for I am pleased with him."
1 Samuel 18:10
The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully on Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the lyre, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand
2 Kings 3:15
But now bring me a harpist." While the harpist was playing, the hand of the LORD came on Elisha
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