Spooky Things in the Bible: The Ghost of Samuel, the Witch of Endor, and the Death of King Saul

ghost_penguinHalloween is the holiday of witches and warlocks, ghosts and goblins, and– if we are being honest– quite a few kids dressed up as the cast of Frozen. Halloween is also the season of ghost stories and the bible has a fantastic one: the Ghost of Samuel. The “Good Book” has its share of demons (we have discussed Azazel and Lillith in previous Halloween posts), but nowhere does the bible say more explicitly that witches are real, that necromancy is real, and that you can talk to the spirits of the dead than in the story of King Saul and the Ghost of Samuel. To do necromancy is against the Law of Moses, but that does not mean– the story seems to say– it does not work.

This is the story of King Saul and the Witch of Endor. It is a ghost story. So, gather around the campfire, bring out your bibles, and let’s talk spooky. Read on for more.

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Purim in the Bible – Part 3: The End of Haman

Xerxes I, carved in relief in a palace ruin in Persepolis, Iran. (Source: Wikimedia commons)

Thanks to the bravery of Esther and Mordecai, the tide was beginning to turn against Haman and the Babylonians who stood against the Jews. Haman had been publicly shamed and paraded through the city to pronounce the greatness of a man who he desperately wanted to see dead. But Esther was not done yet– it was time for her to make her request to the king and begin the process of saving the Jews from destruction. The clock was still ticking.

This is the third part of the story of Purim. I recommend reading part one and part two first, but if you are the type of person who enjoys reading the last page first, by all means. There will be at least one more part after this one! Read on for more.

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Asaph the Psalmist, and His Son Joseph

 

The_Beatles_and_Lill-Babs_1963How difficult is it to live in the shadow of a famous parent? How do you make your mark as an individual when your father or mother is a famous musician, artist, or actor? And worse, if you go into the same field as them– can you ever really escape the comparison? Could you ever live up to that? I am not sure I could. But that was the story for the first Joseph in this series, the son of Asaph: a musician and prophet of God, overshadowed by his much more famous father.

But who was Asaph? He was a Levite, a priest of David during the period before the First Temple, when the Tabernacle still sat on the Temple Mount. But he was not just any priest, he was the John Lennon of the priests. He was the very first musician-priest to say a blessing over the Tabernacle in Jerusalem, not to mention the writer of twelve of our psalms in the Book of Psalms– second only to King David in authorship. I am sure that almost no one has heard of him today, but in biblical terms is was a Big Deal.

Asaph the Psalmist and his son, the first among the musician-prophets of Jerusalem. Read on for more.

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