1 Samuel 14:41 – Urim and Thummim

BIBLE TEXT

1 Samuel 14:41

SUMMARY

The passage describes an unusual way to determine God’s will.

ANALYSIS

Quite often in the Bible yes/no questions were answered by the casting of lots, or, as here, by consulting the Urim and Thummim, probably differently colored stones. Saul, here, unravels a bit of the mystery that surrounds these cultic objects. Should the Urim stone appear (however that would be!), it would indicate guilt on Saul’s part as well as Jonathan’s. Should the Thummim appear, however, the guilt of the people of Israel would be indicated. While it sounds somewhat “dicey” to us, Israel was convinced that, though “the lot is cast into the lap,” “the decision is the LORD’s alone” (Proverbs 16:33).

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