“Who is this young man?”

The end of 1 Samuel 17:55-58 gives us an odd, if not confusing, passage about Saul not knowing David’s identity. There are three possible explanations:

  1. Explanation #1: Perhaps the writer is making use of flashback in 1 Samuel 17:55–56. Saul is shown having conversation with Abner, his commander prior to David’s encounter with Goliath. At that time the king ordered his general to find out what family “that young man” belonged to. Then, in 1 Samuel 17:57–58 return the time and geographic location in v. 54. David was “still holding the Philistine’s head” (v. 57),
  2. Explanation #2: Perhaps David had heard about Saul’s offer to provide a tax exemption for the family of the Israelite who killed Goliath (1 Samuel 17:25). Maybe Saul asked David for his father’s name so that he could properly formulate an edict in behalf of Jesse’s family and perhaps also so that he could learn more about the family background of the one who had earned the right to become the king’s son-in-law.
  3. Explanation #3: This passage may also function to demonstrate that the Lord’s Spirit was no longer with Saul. Being devoid of the divine Spirit, Saul also was intellectually incompetent. The image presented in vv. 55–58 of a king who cannot remember details related to one of his most beloved and trusted warriors.

Regardless of the explanation, David’s life will change forever beginning with his new friend, Saul’s son Jonathan.

By | 2018-06-24T19:41:09+00:00 June 25th, 2018|Categories: All, Promises|

About the Author:

Pastor Phil, his wife Carol, and their three children, started in Bixby over 23 years ago when New Beginnings was meeting in a downtown Bixby store front. As a result of God's blessings, New Beginnings has become one of the fastest growing churches in Oklahoma. Pastor Phil graduated from Tulsa East Central High School (1978), and Tulsa University (1982). After serving for 11 years as a Student Pastor, at the age of twenty-nine Phil began to pastor his first church in Edgewater, Colorado. Phil received a Master’s Degree from Denver Theological Seminary (1994) and completed his doctorate in Missions and Evangelism at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 2012. Phil and Carol are honored to serve God in a Kingdom minded church, with joy and longevity.

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