In today’s text, Samuel is going to be confronted with the sight of a united army of Philistine soldiers that stretches across the Jezreel Valley as far as the eye can see, and he is going to fear for his life. In desperation, he will seek a word from the LORD, but he will get no answer. He had spent his whole time as king doing his own thing, living as if he had no need of God, and so the Lord won’t answer his inquiry, “not by dreams, not by the Urim, nor by the prophets.” So Saul will seek the guidance of a medium: the witch of Endor.
How did the king of the LORD’s people reach such a sad state of affairs that he would stoop to dealing in the occult? F.B. Meyer answers that question as follows in his commentary on 1 Samuel: “The soul cannot live apart from the unseen world. Divorce it from the unseen God, and it will fill the empty space with demons. The decay of the religious spirit gives occasion for the rise of the crystal-gazing, palmistry, and spiritualism.”
Today’s lesson should serve as a warning to all of us to make our walk with the LORD a daily priority. God forbid the day could come when we would inquire of the LORD and he would not answer!