In 1 Samuel 10, Saul was said to be given a new heart, and the Spirit of Hashem rushed upon him, and he prophesied with a group of prophets. (Please forgive my ignorance of Hebrew.) In 1 Samuel 16:14 after Saul's disobedience, the Spirit of Hashem left Saul and an evil spirit tormented him. But in 1 Samuel 19 when Saul is pursuing David, he comes across a group of prophets, and again he prophesied, only to then continue to pursue David.

How is it that the Spirit of Hashem came upon a man in the midst of an unrighteous act and caused him to do a right thing? Was this a unique occurrence, or are there other records of this type of thing happening? Does it happen today?

1 Answer 1


The ketiv says:

Then [Saul] too stripped off his clothes and he too spoke in ecstasy before Samuel; and he lay naked all that day and all night. That is why people say, “Is Saul too among the prophets?” [1 Samuel 19:24]

Rashi says that "naked" means "insane". Saul was depressed to the point of madness and was not really prophesying. At any rate, Likutei Moharan says that when someone is a mixture of good and evil, he cannot receive truthful prophecies, even though it may seem that he does. [Likutei Moharan 54:7:3]

On the other hand, Mevo HaShearim says that when Saul approached Samuel's city, there was so much holiness there because of Samuel that Saul too began to prophesize, no matter what evil was in his mind. [Mevo HaShearim 1:38]

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