1 Samuel 19:16
And when the messengers were come in, behold, there was an image in the bed, with a pillow of goats' hair for his bolster.
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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.An image - "Teraphim" (see the margin), an image, or bust in human form, and as large as life, of a kind of household god, to the worship of which the Israelites, and especially women, were much addicted.

A pillow - It was probably a quilt or blanket of goats' hair and of common use as a bed-covering. Whether Michal drew it over the head of the teraphim, as if for warmth, and so covered it, or whether she disposed it about the head so as to look like hair, is not clear.

15. Bring him to me in the bed—a portable couch or mattress. No text from Poole on this verse.

And when the messengers were come in,.... To David's house, and into the room where he was supposed to lie:

behold, there was an image in the bed to their great surprise; they expected to see David, but instead of him the teraphim, as in 1 Samuel 19:13; if they had been in the room before, and thought they had seen David in the bed, they might be the more surprised to find that it was only an image they saw:

with a pillow of goats' hair for his bolster; See Gill on 1 Samuel 19:13.

And when the messengers were come in, behold, there was an image in the bed, with a pillow of goats' hair for his bolster.
16. There was an image, &c.] The teraphim was in the bed, and the quilt of goat’s hair at its head.

17 He said unto me, &c.] Michal adds another lie to screen herself from Saul’s anger. In this she was but following her father’s example (1 Samuel 19:6), and with more excuse. Compare the deceit practised by Rahab (Joshua 2:4 ff.); by the woman at Bahurim (2 Samuel 17:20); and in modern times, by Grotius’ wife, who to save her husband represented the box in which he was concealed as a box of theological books. Scripture affirms the universal duty of Truth without any exception (Leviticus 19:11), nor can it he understood to sanction breaches of this general law by recording them without disapproval. It is left to the casuist to discuss whether any necessity is sufficient to justify a falsehood or an act of deception. See Whewell’s Elements of Morality, Chaps. 15, 16.

1 Samuel 19:16But when Saul sent the messengers again to see David, and that with the command, "Bring him up to me in the bed," and when they only found the teraphim in the bed, and Saul charged Michal with this act of deceit, she replied, "He (David) said to me, Let me go; why should I kill thee?" - "Behold, teraphim were (laid) in the bed." The verb can be naturally supplied from 1 Samuel 19:13. In the words "Why should I kill thee?" Michael intimates that she did not mean to let David escape, but was obliged to yield to his threat that he would kill her if she continued to refuse. This prevarication she seems to have considered perfectly justifiable.
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