1 Samuel Intro

The books of Samuel are divided into two parts, however, the earliest Hebrew manuscripts ascribe them both as just Samuel. The books were later separated by the kings Saul and David and originally called 1 and 2 Kings. A fitting title being they were Israel’s first and second kings. Those earlier writings called what we now know as 1 and 2 Kings, 3 and 4 Kings. Later, Hebrew writers changed these titles to what we now know these books by. Another possible reason for the separation of the two books of Samuel is because of authorship. It is believed that 1 Samuel was written mostly by Samuel himself, while 2 Samuel was written by the prophets Nathan and Gad. They would have been the prophets during David’s time. The true authorship is unknown, as well as the exact date.

There are two themes covered in 1 Samuel:

(1) The end of the age of Judges in Israel, Samuel being the last of the Judges in Israel’s history. And it is the last of the Theocratic form of government, where God was the supreme authority and His law the governing rule.

(2) The beginning of monarchy in Israel, where kings ruled and were the supreme authorities, with Saul being their first.

1 Samuel covers also the rise and fall of Israel’s first king, Saul. It also covers the introduction to Saul’s replacement, David.