1 Samuel 15:9
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New International Version
But Saul and the army spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and lambs--everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.

New Living Translation
Saul and his men spared Agag's life and kept the best of the sheep and goats, the cattle, the fat calves, and the lambs--everything, in fact, that appealed to them. They destroyed only what was worthless or of poor quality.

English Standard Version
But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep and of the oxen and of the fattened calves and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them. All that was despised and worthless they devoted to destruction.

Berean Study Bible
Saul and his troops spared Agag, along with the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and lambs, and the best of everything else. They were unwilling to destroy them, but they utterly destroyed all that was despised and worthless.

New American Standard Bible
But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good, and were not willing to destroy them utterly; but everything despised and worthless, that they utterly destroyed.

King James Bible
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

Christian Standard Bible
Saul and the troops spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, goats, cattle, and choice animals, as well as the young rams and the best of everything else. They were not willing to destroy them, but they did destroy all the worthless and unwanted things.

Contemporary English Version
Saul and his army let Agag live, and they also spared the best sheep and cattle. They didn't want to destroy anything of value, so they only killed the animals that were worthless or weak.

Good News Translation
But Saul and his men spared Agag's life and did not kill the best sheep and cattle, the best calves and lambs, or anything else that was good; they destroyed only what was useless or worthless.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Saul and the troops spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, cattle, and choice animals, as well as the young rams and the best of everything else. They were not willing to destroy them, but they did destroy all the worthless and unwanted things.

International Standard Version
Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle—the fattened animals and lambs—along with all that was good. They were not willing to completely destroy them, but they did completely destroy everything that was worthless and inferior.

NET Bible
However, Saul and the army spared Agag, along with the best of the flock, the cattle, the fatlings, and the lambs, as well as everything else that was of value. They were not willing to slaughter them. But they did slaughter everything that was despised and worthless.

New Heart English Bible
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and the cattle, and the fat ones and the lambs, and all that was good, and wouldn't utterly destroy them; but everything that was despised and rejected, that they utterly destroyed.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Saul and the army spared Agag and the best sheep and cows, the fattened animals, the lambs, and all the best [property]. The army refused to claim them for God by destroying them. But everything that was worthless and weak the army did claim for God and destroy.

JPS Tanakh 1917
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, even the young of the second birth, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them; but every thing that was of no account and feeble, that they destroyed utterly.

New American Standard 1977
But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good, and were not willing to destroy them utterly; but everything despised and worthless, that they utterly destroyed.

Jubilee Bible 2000
But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep and of the oxen and of the fatlings and the lambs and all that was good and would not utterly destroy them, but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

King James 2000 Bible
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but everything that was despised and worthless, that they destroyed utterly.

American King James Version
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatted calves, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

American Standard Version
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but everything that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the flocks of sheep and of the herds, and the garments and the rams, and all that was beautiful, and would not destroy them: but every thing that was vile and good for nothing, that they destroyed.

Darby Bible Translation
And Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep and oxen, and beasts of the second bearing, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not devote them to destruction; but everything that was mean and weak, that they destroyed utterly.

English Revised Version
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

Webster's Bible Translation
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

World English Bible
But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the cattle, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and wouldn't utterly destroy them: but everything that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

Young's Literal Translation
and Saul hath pity -- also the people -- on Agag, and on the best of the flock, and of the herd, and of the seconds, and on the lambs, and on all that is good, and have not been willing to devote them; and all the work, despised and wasted -- it they devoted.
Study Bible
Saul's Disobedience
8He captured Agag king of Amalek alive, but completely destroyed all the others with the sword. 9Saul and his troops spared Agag, along with the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves and lambs, and the best of everything else. They were unwilling to destroy them, but they utterly destroyed all that was despised and worthless.
Cross References
1 Samuel 15:3
Now go and attack the Amalekites and completely destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them, but put to death men and women, children and infants, oxen and sheep, camels and donkeys.'"

1 Samuel 15:10
Then the word of the LORD came to Samuel, saying,

1 Samuel 15:15
Saul answered, "The troops brought them from the Amalekites; they spared the best sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the LORD your God, but the rest we utterly destroyed."

Treasury of Scripture

But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatted calves, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

the best

1 Samuel 15:3,15,19 Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, …

Joshua 7:21 When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two …

the fatlings. or, the second sort

2 Samuel 6:13 And it was so, that when they that bore the ark of the LORD had gone …







(9) And he took Agag . . . alive.--Agag seems to have been for the sovereigns of Amalek the official title, like Pharaoh in the case of the kings of Egypt, and Abimelech among certain of the Philistine peoples. The meaning of the term Agag is unknown.

Utterly destroyed all the people.--That is to say, Ir-Amalek was sacked, and the nation generally broken up; but many, no doubt, escaped into the desert, for we hear of the people again on several occasions in this book. In 1Chronicles 4:43 their complete, and probably final, annihilation is recorded.

(9) Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen.--It would seem that Saul carried out the awful curse to the letter (with the exception that he spared the king) in the case of the human beings and the less valuable of their beasts. But covetousness seems to have suggested the preservation of the choicest cattle, and pride probably induced the Hebrew king to save Agag alive, that he might show the people his royal captive.

Verse 9. - The fatlings. So the Syriac and Chaldee render the word, but the Hebrew literally means "the second best." Kimchi and Tanchum give perhaps a preferable rendering, "the second born," such animals being considered superior to the first born, as the dams had by that time arrived at their full strength. REJECTION OF SAUL AND HIS DYNASTY (vers. 10-23). And Saul and all the people spared Agag,.... Perhaps Saul made the motion to spare him, and the people agreed to it; it may be, out of respect to him as a king; or because of the comeliness of his person, the height of his stature, and the largeness of his body, as Josephus (y) notes; or to carry him in triumph in a public show, see 1 Samuel 15:12.

and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings; or "of the second sort", as in the margin, the second best; or rather which shed their two long teeth, as sheep at two years old did when reckoned at their full strength, and fittest for sacrifice (z):

and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them; as they were commanded, but kept them for their own private use and advantage, and this not only the best and fattest of the flocks and herds, but of their household goods:

but everything that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly: such of the cattle that were poor and lean, lame or blind, or had any defect in them, and household goods that were mere rubbish and lumber; such they entirely destroyed, killed the creatures, and burnt the goods; in doing which they thought they fulfilled the will of God.

(y) Ut supra, (Antiqu. l. 6. c. 7.) sect. 2.((z) Bidentes, Virgil. Aeneid. l. 6. ver. 39. Vid. Servium in ib. 15:1-9 The sentence of condemnation against the Amalekites had gone forth long before, Ex 17:14; De 25:19, but they had been spared till they filled up the measure of their sins. We are sure that the righteous Lord does no injustice to any. The remembering the kindness of the ancestors of the Kenites, in favour to them, at the time God was punishing the injuries done by the ancestors of the Amalekites, tended to clear the righteousness of God in this dispensation. It is dangerous to be found in the company of God's enemies, and it is our duty and interest to come out from among them, lest we share in their sins and plagues, Re 18:4. As the commandment had been express, and a test of Saul's obedience, his conduct evidently was the effect of a proud, rebellious spirit. He destroyed only the refuse, that was good for little. That which was now destroyed was sacrificed to the justice of God.
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Account Agag Best Birth Calves Cattle Completely Curse Death Desiring Despised Destroy Destroyed Kept Lambs Oxen Refuse Saul Second Sheep Spared Unwilling Utterly Vile Weak Wouldn't Young
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Alphabetical: Agag all and army best But calves cattle completely despised destroy destroyed everything fat fatlings good lambs not of oxen people Saul sheep spared that the them These they to totally unwilling utterly was weak were willing worthless

OT History: 1 Samuel 15:9 But Saul and the people spared Agag (1Sa iSam 1 Sam i sa) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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