1 & 2 Samuel

— Read and listen to the Bible being read at the same time; also, A. R. Wells, 1908, shares a (self-application) “tiny meditation” on each chapter.


David & Goliath (
David and Goliath Giclee Print

Click for a brief easy English summary of the book of 1 Samuel.

1) Read the “tiny meditation” before and/or after you read the Bible chapter to help make a self-appllication of the scriptures read.
2) Want to use both your eye gate and ear gate in taking in the Word? Just click the “Read” chapter to get started.


Click to Read 1 Samuel 1My Petitions

How much I ask of the Lord, that He is not able to grant! He longs to grant it, I know, but He cannot, because I am not able to receive it. His gifts must be used in His way. He will not give to my hurt, or the hurt of His world. Let me cease asking for the gift, and begin to ask for readiness for the gift.

Samuel is presented to Eli, I Samuel 1:24-28
Samuel is presented to Eli I Samuel 1:24-28

Click to Read 1 Samuel 2My Responsibilities

I have to live, not my own life alone, but the lives of all whom I may influence. Are any dependent upon me for guidance? Am I an Eli, and where are my Hophni and Phinehas? Let me see to my children and friends, my pupils and acquaintances and servants. These are in my keeping, and as I keep them the Lord will keep me.

Samuel’s mother brought him new clothes each year, I Samuel 2:19
Samuel's mother brought him new clothes each year I Samuel 2:19

Samuel Asks If Samuel Called Him, I Samuel 3:5
Samuel Asks If Samuel Called Him I Samuel 3:5


Click to Read 1 Samuel 3My Listening

Have I the hearing ear? In the night or the daytime, in solitude or the crowd, am I ready to catch the messages of Jehovah? Am I quick to say, with Samuel, “Speak; for Thy servant heareth?” Lord, quicken my spirit. Lord, make me sensitive to the least whisper from Thee.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 4My Retribution

The ark of the Lord will not remain with the unfaithful. God’s protection and love cannot enwrap the disobedient. Death is in failure to do God’s will, and the death begins with the failure. Alas, for those that are the Lord’s in name, but do not the things that He says!


The Death of Eli, I Samuel 4:17-18
The Death of Eli I Samuel 4:17-18

Click to Read 1 Samuel 5My Reverence

If I will not revere the Lord through love, He will see that I revere Him through fear. He is merciful, but He is also majestic; tender, but also terrible. He will have no false gods in my life. He will whirl them from their pedestals. Fortunate am I if I am not sent whirling after them.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 6My Guilt Offerings

When I have sinned against God, wherewith shall I return to Him? He is not in need of my gold or silver. He does not lack for my strength. What have I to fill my hands, when I return to the Lord? I need not ask that question. The guilt offering has been made, it has been laid at the foot of the throne, it has been found worthy. Oh, endless praise to Thee, Thou Sacrifice of the world!

Click to Read 1 Samuel 7My Ebenezer

If I should raise stones of help wherever the Lord has helped me, I should be walled all about with gratitude. Why should I not do this? Not in crude material, perhaps, but in thoughts and in words. For Thou are my defense, O God, forever.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 8My Kings

All my tyrants I have myself set over me. I have not only assented to their harsh sway, but I have urged them to their thrones, I have bent my neck spontaneously under their yokes. Oh, for the yoke, the one yoke, that is easy, the one burden that is light!

Click to Read 1 Samuel 9My Humble Duty

It is not only Saul that, seeking his father’s asses, has found a kingdom. Men and women innumerable, while trudging painfully along life’s common way, have lifted their foreheads to the anointing oil, have stretched out their hands to the scepter. All good things for me—let me never forget it—lie along the path of God’s will for me.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 10My Coronation

If God intends a crown for me, and I do God’s will, let me never worry about the crown! Upon all the waves of chance it will be borne to me. Amid all the apparent lotteries of the world I shall find it. There is no chance, there is only a regal certainty, to one that does God’s will.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 11My Gilgal

Who are they that reject me and despise me? Are they men? I shall laugh, if God is on my side. I shall hold my peace, and let events speak for me. I shall stay my arm, and let God’s providence be my revenge. For every Mizpah of His servants, God will make ready a Gilgal.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 12My Honor

When men turn aside from me, let me solace my honor in caring for the Lord’s. It matters not what they think of me. I shall be proud in His renown, and by His glory alone shall I be exalted. Oh, may my plea never be for myself!

Click to Read 1 Samuel 13My Obedience

Though God’s command seems unreasonable, it is to be obeyed, for it is not unreasonable. It is to be obeyed in the letter, for the Spirit is in the letter. It is to be obeyed in the spirit, for the letter without the spirit is dead. It is to be obeyed altogether and always, and with all my soul.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 14My Salvation

When I am in peril, let me not even reckon up the force on my side and the power of my enemy. “There is no restraint to the Lord to save by many or by few.” I am an army, with God. I outnumber all my foes, with God.

Jonathan and his armorbearer attack the Philistines, I Samuel 14:12-14

Click to Read 1 Samuel 15My Half-Obedience

God will have all or none. When He asks for a ram He will not accept a sheep; when He asks for my money He will not accept my time. When He wants my heart He will not take my hand. He has no delight in sacrifices, when they are not the sacrifices of a contrite heart.

Saul tearing the robe of Samuel I Samuel 15:27-28
Saul tearing the robe of Samuel I Samuel 15:27-28

Click to Read 1 Samuel 16My Choice

Let me learn to select as God selects, among men, and occupations, and powers, and possessions. Let me learn the wealth of the childlike soul, the strength of purity, the invincible valor of holiness. In all my choices let me set the youthful David above all the taller sons of Jesse.

David anointed by Samuel, I Samuel 16:11-12
David anointed by Samuel I Samuel 16:11-12

Click to Read 1 Samuel 17My Goliath

It may be some natural weakness or defect. It may be some sickness. It may be poverty or loneliness. It may be a terrible temptation. Whatever my Goliath is, let me remember David’s great word, that “the battle is the Lord’s.” God can make a pebble from the brook more powerful than a spearhead of six hundred shekels.

David Kills a Lion, I Samuel 17:34-36
David Kills a Lion I Samuel 17:34-36

Click to Read 1 Samuel 18My Popularity

Have I many friends? Let me enjoy them and bless God for them, but let me not rest my life in them. Woe unto me when all men speak well of me! Human praise breeds enmity in others and vanity in myself. Let me seek God’s praise alone.

Saul Attempts to Kill David, I Samuel 18:10-11

Click to Read 1 Samuel 19My Jealousy

What would it avail me to have the greatness of Saul, if I also have his littleness? And what is smaller than jealousy? What is more dwarfing? Lord, may I learn to exult in my friend’s good fortune, to rejoice in his skill, and count myself happy when he is praised. So shall I be richer in all the riches of my friends.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 20My Friendship

If I am a friend to another, let my friendship prove itself. It will find its proof not in prosperity but in adversity. If I am a friend from the heart, I shall grieve with my friend’s sorrow, and meet his enemies as if they were my own. I shall not shrink before any foe, nor fear any danger save that I prove false to friendship.

The parting of David and Jonathan, I Samuel 20:42
The parting of David and Jonathan I Samuel 20:42

Click to Read 1 Samuel 21My Privileges

All that the Father has is mine. His house is mine. His table is spread for me. No Holy Place too holy for me to enter, no shew bread too sacred for me to take, no consecrated weapon too precious for me to wield. God keeps open house and open heart for all His children.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 22My Recompense

When I do a good deed, as Ahimelech did, shall I meet Ahimelech’s fate? Perhaps; God does not guarantee worldly rewards for unworldly acts. But Ahimelech’s death was not Ahimelech’s reward. His reward was in David’s love, and the everlasting record of the Book, and the approval of the King of kings forever.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 23My Escape

If not by my arm, then by another’s; if not in my way, then in a better way I had not thought of; if not with glory to me, then with better glory to Himself; somehow, at any rate, the Lord will save me from all my foes. It is mine to do my best, and to trust, and wait. It is mine also to praise, for I am safe, and I shall be saved.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 24My Revenge

Ever be my revenge such as David’s! As persistently as my enemy shows himself a foe, so persistently let me show myself a friend. Let my warfare be of kindness, and all my weapons be forged in the fire of love.

Saul Enters a Cave During Search for David, I Samuel 24:3

Click to Read 1 Samuel 25My Anger

There is a rough handle and a smooth handle whereby to grasp each circumstance. May I seize upon the smooth handle! Be my speech gentle, my acts courteous, and let my thoughts move peacefully. So shall I be ever the stronger, and so shall my ways be prosperous.

Abigail Pleads with David, I Samuel 25:18-31
Abigail Pleads with David I Samuel 25:18-31

Click to Read 1 Samuel 26My Patience

When others persist in wronging me, what is my hurt compared with theirs? They are not slaying me, they are slaying their own soul. They are not destroying my happiness, but their own, and forever. Is not pity due them, rather than wrath?

David Refuses to Kill Saul, I Samuel 26:7-12

Click to Read 1 Samuel 27My Flight

It is not always best for me to contend against my difficulties and troubles. Sometimes God’s way is the way of flight. Sometimes it is best to go away from them altogether and forget them for a season. I shall return against them all the stronger, when God bids me return.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 28My Fate

It rises up from the earth, it rides upon the air, it breathes in every zephyr, it shouts in every thunderclap. There is no escaping God’s decree. Soon or late, the doom will fall. My sin will find me out. There is only one escape, and that is first to find out Christ.

Saul Sees Samuel While Visiting the Witch at En Dor, I Samuel 28:7-20

Click to Read 1 Samuel 29My Partisanship

God will ever preserve me from blunders, if I am His. He will bring me up to the very point, perhaps, of some great calamity, such as David’s fighting against his own, and then, in some unexpected way, He will save me from it. I need not fear, if my hand is in His to march on through the most treacherous wilderness. Thy ways, O Father, are ever kind.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 30My Victory

I will strengthen myself in the Lord my God. I will pursue my foes. I will not heed their power or my weakness. I will fall upon them, even in their hour of triumph. I will turn all my defeats into victory. For my God knows no defeat, nor need His children ever know defeat.

Click to Read 1 Samuel 31My Gilboa

If I sin, and persist in sin, the Philistines will come upon me in force, and I also shall find my Gilboa. It may be when I have forgotten my sin, and think that God has forgotten; but God does not forget. It may be when I think I am stronger than all the Philistines, but I am not at any time stronger than God.

Click for a brief summary of the book of 2 Samuel.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 1My Dirge

I would mourn over the grave even of an enemy. If he died in his enmity, so all the more let me mourn. How are the mighty fallen! How are the lovely brought to the dust! Let me mourn for all sin, and for the wages of sin, which is death.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 2My Need of Tact

Like David with the men of Jabesh-gilead, I may with a word turn an enemy into a friend. That is better than slaying him with a sword. I will learn of Thee, Thou Meek and Lowly, how kindness conquers men. Thy way is strongest, and needs most strength. Arm me with power for it, I pray.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 3My Honor

If those near me do wrong, my relatives, friends, or associates, it is not my wrong, or it is my wrong. It is not my wrong if I try to hinder it, if I protest against it and boldly deplore it. It is my wrong if I remain silent and quietly look on. Lord, quicken my conscience for my friend’s sins as well as my own!

Click to Read 2 Samuel 4My False Friends

They are not friends to me who would aid my evil ambitions and not my good ones, nor those who would do evil that good may come to me. No one is my friend except along the way of righteousness. And I am friend to no man except as I do him good, and do others good in his name. O God, keep me from involving my friends in evil!

Click to Read 2 Samuel 5My Prosperity

When I perceive my affairs doing well, let me not fail to look deeper, and perceive that it is God doing well for me. When my enemies encamp against me, let me not think to go out in my own strength, but let me await the sound of a going in the tops of the mulberry-trees. In joy or sorrow, in adversity or prosperity, Thou, O Lord, shalt be all in all.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 6My Presumption

Shall I lay hands upon the ark of the Lord, to steady it? Shall I instruct the Omniscient and aid the Omnipotent? Shall I fear for God’s success and bewail His failures? Alas, for my absurd conceit! How merciful is God, that I am not smitten like Uzzah!

Click to Read 2 Samuel 7My Plans for God

It is well for me to plan large things to do for the Kingdom of God. Jehovah will be pleased with my desires, and will reward them, though He may not accept them. What He wants is not my deeds, but the will to do them. Let me humbly and gratefully submit to His ordering of my life.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 8My Victories

I am victorious, but I will not be exalted. I conquer my foes, but I will not let myself be conquered by pride. No danger can assail me so great as pride. If I can know in my heart that it is the Lord alone that gives the victory, my victory will be safe for me.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 9My Kindnesses

Who has been kind to me? I must pass the kindness on. I am in debt for all the love bestowed upon me, all the helpfulness of my friends. I am a bankrupt unless I help others. O God, for the spirit of love,–not of necessity, but of eager free will!

Click to Read 2 Samuel 10My Kindnesses

Shall I cease to be kind because others are unkind? Shall I do no more good deeds because others misinterpret them? No! For my Father sends His rain upon the just and the unjust. Upon me, in my sins, He sends the sunshine of His grace. I shall not put it in the power of any man to make me a misanthrope.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 11My Sin

When I learn of the evil in any man, let me never boast myself, “This is not in me.” Let me rather say, “In that mirror see yourself, O my heart!” There is no sin, anywhere, to which I am not akin. There is no man needing God’s mercy, if I do not need it.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 12My Woe

What is my punishment? Is it not, in whatever penalty, the same as David’s, that the Lord is become against me and not for me? That dear ones are sick of my sin, that dear ones die of my sin, that the sword enters my own soul, all this is only the exterior of my woe; its heart is this, that God is against me.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 13My Present Moment

There is a life in the present that slays the future, and there is a life that enriches and vivifies it. There is a pleasure that ends in satiety and death, a love that ends in hatred; and there is a pleasure that is fruitful of living joy, and a love that is stronger than death. Which shall be mine?

Click to Read 2 Samuel 14My Reconciliation

I must not show to others a sternness I would not have God show to me….Absalom had sinned. Ah, but so had David!

Click to Read 2 Samuel 15My Ambition

What harm has come to my soul, except through greed and selfishness? Is there not room on the earth for all men with me? Is there not work for all, and wealth and honor for all? Let me receive with gratitude the lot the Lord allows me, and let me not look at the fortune of others except to increase it for them.

Click to ,Read 2 Samuel 16My Dark Days

I may not think to sit upon a throne all my days, and to dwell in a palace. I have provided an exile for myself. Out of my own life has sprung my punishment. There is no need for God to undo me, when I am so busy with undoing myself. Alas for David, and for us all! Why do we not let God guide us?

Read 2 Samuel 17My Counselors

I have two counselors. One of them advises wisely, and one foolishly. One of them counsels according to my carnal nature, and the other according to my spiritual nature. One of them would have me seek pomp and show in the eyes of men; the other would have me seek the reality, the substance. To which shall I listen, to Hushai or Ahithophel?

Click to Read 2 Samuel 18My Self-Seeking

May I ride my selfishness under an oak, and may it be caught by the head and swung up to heaven! May it be thrust through the heart till it is dead! For if I do not slay my selfishness, it will surely slay me.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 19My Friends

Some day I shall come to my own. Some day the Lord will cause me to triumph over my enemies. Some day I shall reign in my palace. Let me not reign there alone. Let me prepare for myself now a goodly host of friends, who will rejoice with me in that glad day.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 20My Loyalty

Whether my friend is friendly or not, I will be a friend to him. Though he reject me, I will not reject him. Though he put another in my place, I will set no one else in his place. If he is my David, he shall be my David forever, though he prefer Amasa before me.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 21My Famine

How often the days of hunger come, the days of fainting and fear, the days when God is far away, and joy is far away, and the very memory of happiness is no more! In those days let me not be ignorant of the reason. The cause is my sin. The remedy is my repentance, and the fruits of repentance that I may bring forth. There is no other.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 22My Rock

When I seek other upholding than Thine, O God, let me fall to the earth! When I would be protected except with Thee, let the arrows find me! To rely on any other safety than Thy favor is to lean on a bubble.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 23My Mighty Men

I cannot fight my battles alone. If I try, they will become defeats. Where are my strong helpers? Where are my mighty men? Where are my friends? I would be wise, and surround me with a cordon of them, for my enemies are many, and my wars are difficult.

Click to Read 2 Samuel 24My Payment

I will not ever as David did not, offer sacrifices that cost me nothing. They would not then be sacrifices. My gifts to the Lord shall cost me money, and time, and thought, and strength. Yes, they may cost me health, and ease, and popularity, and other good things; for they are to obtain the highest good.

David Orders Israel Numbered, II Samuel 24:1-4


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