1 Samuel 16:6
And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the LORD's anointed is before him.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
(6) He looked on Eliab.—There was something in the tall and stately presence of the eldest born of Jesse which reminded the old man of the splendid youth of Saul. Eliab seemed to Samuel in all respects a fit successor to the great warrior whom the Lord rejected. But the Divine voice gave no reply back to the prophet’s mute questioning; and the other sons of Jesse, an imposing band of gallant youths, passed in review before the old seer, and were severally introduced to him; but the Divine voice only warned the seer that these external advantages of mere human beauty and strength, were no mark of true greatness.

1 Samuel 16:6. He looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord’s anointed, &c. — Struck with the gracefulness and dignity of his person, he immediately concluded that this was the person whom God designed for his anointed; wherein, however, he was mistaken, as other prophets sometimes were, when they hastily spake their own thoughts, before they had consulted God. Before him — That is, in this place, where God is now present. For it is observable, that not only the sacrifice is said to be offered, but even the feast upon the remainders of it, is said to be eaten before the Lord, Deuteronomy 12:7; that is, before, or near his altar, where God was present in a special manner.16:6-13 It was strange that Samuel, who had been so disappointed in Saul, whose countenance and stature recommended him, should judge of another man by that rule. We can tell how men look, but God can tell what they are. He judges of men by the heart. We often form a mistaken judgment of characters; but the Lord values only the faith, fear, and love, which are planted in the heart, beyond human discernment. And God does not favour our children according to our fond partiality, but often most honours and blesses those who have been least regarded. David at length was pitched upon. He was the youngest of the sons of Jesse; his name signifies Beloved; he was a type of God's beloved Son. It should seem, David was least set by of all the sons of Jesse. But the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward. His anointing was not an empty ceremony, a Divine power went with that instituted sign; he found himself advanced in wisdom and courage, with all the qualifications of a prince, though not advanced in his outward circumstances. This would satisfy him that his election was of God. The best evidence of our being predestinated to the kingdom of glory, is, our being sealed with the Spirit of promise, and experience of a work of grace in our hearts.Trembled - There was evidently something unusual in Samuel's coming to Bethlehem; and the elders, knowing that Samuel was no longer at friendship with Saul, foreboded some evil. 6-10. Samuel said, Surely the Lord's anointed is before him—Here Samuel, in consequence of taking his impressions from the external appearance, falls into the same error as formerly (1Sa 10:24). When they were come; when the most of Jesse’s sons were come, either to the place of the feast, or to some other place near it, appointed for this private discourse, whither they were to come before they went to the feast. It must also be understood that Samuel had acquainted Jesse with his design, which is easily gathered out of the context, and needed not be expressed.

Is before him, i.e. is in this place where God is now present. For it is observable, that not only the sacrifice is said to be offered, but even the feast upon the remainders of it is said to be eaten, before the Lord, Deu 12:7, i.e. before or near his altar, where God was present in a special manner. And the ground of this expression seems to be this, that Jesse brought not all his sons together, but made one after another to come to the place, and to pass before Samuel, who stood before the Lord, in some place near the altar, that this great business might be managed with more solemnity. And Eliab being the person now before Samuel, is said to be now before the Lord. But whatsoever the ground of this phrase is, this is certain and confessed, that this is his meaning, This I take to be the person whom I am sent to anoint; wherein yet he was greatly mistaken, as other prophets sometimes were, when they hastily spake their own thoughts, before they had consulted God in the case, as 2 Samuel 7:3. And it came to pass, when they were come,.... Jesse and his sons, into the house where the entertainment was; and perhaps before they sat down, went into a private apartment by the direction of Samuel, where he acquainted Jesse with the business he came upon:

that he looked on Eliab; who was Jesse's firstborn, 1 Chronicles 2:13, called Elihu, 1 Chronicles 27:18.

and said, surely the Lord's anointed is before him; or this is the person it is his pleasure should be anointed king.

And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the LORD'S {d} anointed is before him.

(d) Thinking that Eliab had been appointed by God to be made king.

6. and said] Said to himself: thought. “Eliab by his height and his countenance seemed the natural counterpart of Saul, whose successor the Prophet came to select. But the day was gone when kings were chosen because they were head and shoulders taller than the rest.” Stanley’s Lect. II. 40.

Eliab is probably the same as “Elihu one of the brethren of David” whom David appointed “ruler of the tribe of Judah” (1 Chronicles 27:18).Verses 6-10. - When they were come. I.e. to the house of Jesse, apparently in the interval between the sacrifice and the feast. The latter we learn in ver. 11 did not take place until after David had been sent for. But many hours would elapse between the sacrifice and the feast, as the victim had to be skinned and prepared for roasting, and finally cooked. This interval was spent in Jesse's house; and when he saw there Eliab, the first born, and observed his tall stature and handsome face, qualities which Samuel had admired in Saul, he said, i.e. in himself, felt sure, that the goodly youth was Jehovah's anointed (see on 1 Samuel 2:10, 35; 10:1, etc.), but is warned that these external advantages do not necessarily imply real worth of heart; and as Jehovah looketh on the heart, his judgment depends, not on appearances, but on reality. As Eliab is thus rejected, Jesse makes his other sons pass before the prophet. Next Abinadab, who has the same name as a son of Saul (1 Samuel 31:2); then Shammah, so called again in ch. 17:13, but Shimeah in 2 Samuel 13:3, and Shimma in 1 Chronicles 2:13, where, however, the Hebrew is exactly the same as in 2 Samuel 13:3. After these four other sons follow, of whom one apparently died young, as only seven are recorded in 1 Chronicles 2:13-15, whereas these with David make eight. To all these seven the Divine voice within Samuel gave no response, and he said unto Jesse, Jehovah hath not chosen these. After the prophet had thus maintained the rights of Jehovah in the presence of Saul, and carried out the ban upon Agag, he returned to his own home at Ramah; and Saul went to his house at Gibeah. From that time forward Samuel broke off all intercourse with the king whom Jehovah had rejected. "For Samuel was grieved for Saul, and it repented the Lord that he had made Saul king," i.e., because Samuel had loved Saul on account of his previous election; and yet, as Jehovah had rejected him unconditionally, he felt that he was precluded from doing anything to effect a change of heart in Saul, and his reinstatement as king.
1 Samuel 16:6 Interlinear
1 Samuel 16:6 Parallel Texts

1 Samuel 16:6 NIV
1 Samuel 16:6 NLT
1 Samuel 16:6 ESV
1 Samuel 16:6 NASB
1 Samuel 16:6 KJV

1 Samuel 16:6 Bible Apps
1 Samuel 16:6 Parallel
1 Samuel 16:6 Biblia Paralela
1 Samuel 16:6 Chinese Bible
1 Samuel 16:6 French Bible
1 Samuel 16:6 German Bible

Bible Hub

1 Samuel 16:5
Top of Page
Top of Page