Samuel, the prophet: Even after he had fallen asleep, he prophesied once again warning the king
Wisdom teacher Ben Sira reviews the history of the people of Israel, and dedicates a part of his book to the remarkable actions of Samuel, the prophet of God. Samuel lived during the transition from the Aristocracy, who were the judges, to the first monarchy of Israel. It corresponded to Samuel, a man devoted to God, to anoint Saul and then David as Kings of Israel:
"Honored among his people and beloved by his Creator,
pledged in a vow from his mother's womb,
and consecrated to the Lord in the prophetic office
was SAMUEL, the judge who offered sacrifice.
At God's word, he established the monarchy
and anointed rulers of his people" Ben Sira 46:13-14.
The prophet Samuel revealed the thoughts of God on many matters, and was a spiritual guide to the people of Israel, Ben Sira tells us: "By his faithfulness he was proved to be a prophet, and his words substantiated his trustworthy role as a seer" Ben Sira 46:15.
But Ben Sira also tells us about an extraordinary act of clairvoyance that occurred after the death of this prophet. It was common in times of the kings of Israel, to consult prophets about the outcome of battles, the kings should know if they had God's blessing. Saul had to fight the Philistines, but God did not answer him through prophets or dreams. Samuel was already dead, but Saul sought out a clairvoyant on Endor to evoke the soul of Samuel. Then the soul of Samuel rose from the earth and through the seer communicated with the King. The soul of the prophet Samuel prophesied the outcome of the battle, also giving him God's judgment on the problem. Saul was informed about his defeat and his death in battle.
Saul by this action commits a serious sin against the Law of Moses: "Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am the LORD your God" Leviticus 19:31.
This is how the master of wisdom Ben Sira describes the facts:
"Even after he had fallen asleep, he prophesied once again,
warning the king of this approaching death.
He raised his voice in prophecy from the depths of the earth
to put an end to the wickedness of the people" Ben Sira 46:20.