|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
19:11-24 Michal's stratagem to gain time till David got to a distance was allowable, but her falsehood had not even the plea of necessity to excuse it, and manifests that she was not influenced by the same spirit of piety which had dictated Jonathan's language to Saul. In flying to Samuel, David made God his refuge. Samuel, as a prophet, was best able to advise him what to do in this day of distress. He met with little rest or satisfaction in Saul's court, therefore went to seek it in Samuel's church. What little pleasure is to be had in this world, those have who live a life of communion with God; to that David returned in the time of trouble. So impatient was Saul after David's blood, so restless against him, that although baffled by one providence after another, he could not see that David was under the special protection of God. And when God will take this way to protect David, even Saul prophesies. Many have great gifts, yet no grace; they may prophesy in Christ's name, yet are disowned by him. Let us daily seek for renewing grace, which shall be in us as a well of water springing up into everlasting life. Let us cleave to truth and holiness with full purpose of heart. In every danger and trouble, let us seek protection, comfort, and direction in God's ordinances.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And he stripped off his clothes also,.... Not all his clothes, but his upper garments, as men in such circumstances used to do, as the prophets sometimes did, and as it seems his messengers had done; according to Jarchi, R. Isaiah, and others (n), he stripped himself of his royal robes, and put on the habit of the scholars, the disciples, and sons of the prophets:
and prophesied before Samuel in like manner, as the messengers had done, singing such like songs, or foretelling such like things as they did; he and they speaking not of themselves, but as they were moved by the Holy Spirit of prophecy; for such gifts have sometimes been bestowed on men that were destitute of the grace of God, as Balaam, Caiaphas, and others:
and lay down: or "fell down" (o), as persons in an ecstasy or trance: and lay
naked all that day, and all that night; not entirely naked, both without his upper garment or royal robes, or else his armour; so an unarmed man is said to be naked, though otherwise he has his clothes on: thus Gelon having conquered the Carthaginians, and made himself master of all Sicily, went into the forum "naked" (i.e. unarmed), and declared he would restore the government to the citizens, wherefore a naked statue for him was erected in the temple of Juno (p); so Quinctius Cincinnatus was found ploughing naked (q), who cannot be supposed to be without any clothes on him. Jarchi, from Menachem, reports, that he had heard from an Arabian, that the word the Targum makes use of for "naked", signifies, in the Arabic language, one that is furious or mad, as persons in an ecstasy, or under a prophetic spirit, sometimes seemed to be; now Saul was kept and held in such circumstances a whole day and night, that David might have an opportunity of making his escape, and getting at such a distance from him that he could not overtake him:
wherefore they say, is Saul also among the prophets? this became a common saying, a proverbial expression, at least was now revived and observed with admiration; that Saul, who had behaved himself in so ill a manner, as an enemy to so good a man, should be found among the prophets of the Lord, and prophesying as they did.
(n) Vid. Hieron. Trad. Heb. in lib. Reg. fol. 76. G. (o) "et cecidit", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, "et corruit", Vatablus. (p) Aelian. Var. Hist. l. 6. c. 11. (q) Aurel. Victor. de Vir. Illustr. c. 20.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
1Sa 19:24. Saul Prophesies.
24. lay down naked—that is, divested of his armor and outer robes—in a state of trance. Thus God, in making the wrath of man to praise Him, preserved the lives of all the prophets, frustrated all the purposes of Saul, and preserved the life of His servant.
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