The Meaning of 1 Samuel 28:6 Explained

1 Samuel 28:6

KJV: And when Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.

YLT: and Saul asketh at Jehovah, and Jehovah hath not answered him, either by dreams, or by Urim, or by prophets.

Darby: And Saul inquired of Jehovah; but Jehovah did not answer him, either by dreams, or by Urim, or by prophets.

ASV: And when Saul inquired of Jehovah, Jehovah answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.

What does 1 Samuel 28:6 Mean?

Study Notes

Urim
.
Urim and Thummim
Urim and Thummim, meaning "lights and perfections." Some make these to be simply a collective name for the stones of the breastplate, so that the total effect of the twelve stones is to manifest the "lights and perfections" of Him who is the antitype of the Aaronic high priest. Per contra, Leviticus 8:8 . This would seem to be conclusive that "the Urim and Thummim" are additional to the stones of the breastplate. In use the Urim and Thummim were connected, in some way not clearly expressed, with the ascertainment of the divine will in particular cases; Numbers 27:21 ; Deuteronomy 33:8 ; 1 Samuel 28:6 ; Ezra 2:63 .

Context Summary

1 Samuel 28:1-14 - Resorting To A Familiar Spirit
This chapter records the climax to which Saul's sins led, and which sealed his fate. See 1 Chronicles 10:13-14. He went back to that which he had put away and sought counsel of a familiar spirit, 2 Peter 2:20-22.
The soul cannot live apart from the unseen world. It is its native element. Divorce it from God, and it will fill the empty space with demons. When the king could get no answer to his questions by the usual means, he sent his servants, in desperation, to seek for a medium. Had he been right with God, there would have been no need for this. It is the decay of the old religious spirit that nowadays gives occasion for the rise of crystal-gazing, palmistry and spirit-rapping. What a tragedy was presented that night in the witch's hut, and how terrible must have been Saul's long tramp to and fro, between his own encampment and Endor, which lay in the rear of the Philistine host! It is an evil thing and a bitter to forsake the fountain of living waters, and hew out "broken cisterns that can hold no water," Jeremiah 2:13; Jeremiah 2:19. [source]

Chapter Summary: 1 Samuel 28

1  Achish puts confidence in David
3  Saul having destroyed the witches
4  and now in his fear forsaken of God
7  has recourse to a witch
8  who, encouraged by Saul, raises up Samuel
15  Saul hearing his ruin, faints
21  The woman and his servants refresh him with meat

What do the individual words in 1 Samuel 28:6 mean?

And when inquired Saul of Yahweh and not did answer him Yahweh either by dreams or by Urim by the prophets
וַיִּשְׁאַ֤ל שָׁאוּל֙ בַּֽיהוָ֔ה וְלֹ֥א עָנָ֖הוּ יְהוָ֑ה גַּ֧ם בַּחֲלֹמ֛וֹת גַּ֥ם בָּאוּרִ֖ים בַּנְּבִיאִֽם

וַיִּשְׁאַ֤ל  And  when  inquired 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Verb, Qal, Consecutive imperfect, third person masculine singular
Root: שָׁאַל 
Sense: to ask, enquire, borrow, beg.
שָׁאוּל֙  Saul 
Parse: Proper Noun, masculine singular
Root: שָׁאוּל  
Sense: a Benjamite, son of Kish, and the st king of Israel.
בַּֽיהוָ֔ה  of  Yahweh 
Parse: Preposition-b, Proper Noun, masculine singular
Root: יהוה 
Sense: the proper name of the one true God.
וְלֹ֥א  and  not 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Adverb, Negative particle
Root: הֲלֹא 
Sense: not, no.
עָנָ֖הוּ  did  answer  him 
Parse: Verb, Qal, Perfect, third person masculine singular, third person masculine singular
Root: לְעַנּׄות 
Sense: to answer, respond, testify, speak, shout.
יְהוָ֑ה  Yahweh 
Parse: Proper Noun, masculine singular
Root: יהוה 
Sense: the proper name of the one true God.
גַּ֧ם  either 
Parse: Conjunction
Root: גַּם  
Sense: also, even, indeed, moreover, yea.
בַּחֲלֹמ֛וֹת  by  dreams 
Parse: Preposition-b, Article, Noun, masculine plural
Root: חֲלֹום  
Sense: dream.
בָּאוּרִ֖ים  by  Urim 
Parse: Preposition-b, Article, Noun, masculine plural
Root: אוּר 
Sense: stones kept in a pouch on the high-priest’s breastplate, used in determining God’s decision in certain questions and issues.
בַּנְּבִיאִֽם  by  the  prophets 
Parse: Preposition-b, Article, Noun, masculine plural
Root: נָבִיא  
Sense: spokesman, speaker, prophet.