1 Samuel 22–23; Psalm 52; Psalm 57; Psalm 142; 1 Chronicles 12:8–18
David at the Cave of Adullam
22 David departed from there and escaped to hthe cave of iAdullam. And when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. 2 jAnd everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was bitter in soul,1 gathered to him. And he became commander over them. And there were with him kabout four hundred men.
3 And David went from there to Mizpeh of Moab. And he said to the king of Moab, “Please let my father and my mother stay2 with you, till I know what God will do for me.” 4 And he left them with the king of Moab, and they stayed with him all the time that David was in the stronghold. 5 Then the prophet lGad said to David, “Do not remain in the stronghold; depart, and go into the land of Judah.” So David departed and went into the forest of Hereth.
Saul Kills the Priests at Nob
6 Now Saul heard that David was discovered, and the men who were with him. Saul was sitting at Gibeah under mthe tamarisk tree on the height with his spear in his hand, and all his servants were standing about him. 7 And Saul said to his servants who stood about him, “Hear now, people of Benjamin; will the son of Jesse ngive every one of you fields and vineyards, will he make you all commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds, 8 that all of you have conspired against me? No one discloses to me owhen my son makes a covenant with the son of Jesse. None of you pis sorry for me or discloses to me that my son has stirred up my servant against me, qto lie in wait, as at this day.” 9 Then answered rDoeg the Edomite, who stood by the servants of Saul, “I saw the son of Jesse scoming to Nob, to tAhimelech the son of Ahitub, 10 uand he inquired of the Lord for him and vgave him provisions and gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine.”
11 Then the king sent to summon Ahimelech the priest, the son of Ahitub, and all his father’s house, the priests who were at Nob, and all of them came to the king. 12 And Saul said, “Hear now, son of Ahitub.” And he answered, “Here I am, my lord.” 13 And Saul said to him, “Why have you conspired against me, you and the son of Jesse, in that you have given him bread and a sword and uhave inquired of God for him, so that he has risen against me, wto lie in wait, as at this day?” 14 Then Ahimelech answered the king, “And who among all your servants is so faithful as David, who is the king’s son-in-law, and captain over3 your bodyguard, and honored in your house? 15 Is today the first time uthat I have inquired of God for him? No! Let not the king impute anything to his servant or to all the house of my father, for your servant has known nothing of all this, xmuch or little.” 16 And the king said, “You shall surely die, Ahimelech, you and all your father’s house.” 17 And the king said to ythe guard who stood about him, “Turn and kill the priests of the Lord, because their hand also is with David, and they knew that he fled and did not disclose it to me.” But the servants of the king would not put out their hand to strike the priests of the Lord. 18 Then the king said to Doeg, “You turn and strike the priests.” And Doeg the Edomite turned and struck down the priests, zand he killed on that day eighty-five persons who wore the linen ephod. 19 And Nob, the city of the priests, he put to the sword; aboth man and woman, child and infant, ox, donkey and sheep, he put to the sword.
20 But one of the sons of Ahimelech the son of Ahitub, named bAbiathar, escaped and fled after David. 21 And Abiathar told David that Saul had killed the priests of the Lord. 22 And David said to Abiathar, “I knew on that day, cwhen Doeg the Edomite was there, that he would surely tell Saul. I have occasioned the death of all the persons of your father’s house. 23 dStay with me; do not be afraid, for he who seeks my life seeks your life. With me you shall be in safekeeping.”
David Saves the City of Keilah
23 Now they told David, “Behold, the Philistines are fighting against eKeilah and are robbing the threshing floors.” 2 Therefore David finquired of the Lord, “Shall I go and attack these Philistines?” And the Lord said to David, “Go and attack the Philistines and save Keilah.” 3 But David’s men said to him, “Behold, we are afraid here in Judah; how much more then if we go to Keilah against the armies of the Philistines?” 4 Then David finquired of the Lord again. And the Lord answered him, “Arise, go down to Keilah, gfor I will give the Philistines into your hand.” 5 And David and his men went to Keilah and fought with the Philistines and brought away their livestock and struck them with a great blow. So David saved the inhabitants of Keilah.
6 hWhen Abiathar the son of Ahimelech had fled to David to Keilah, he had come down with an ephod in his hand. 7 Now it was told Saul that David had come to Keilah. And Saul said, “God has given him into my hand, for he has shut himself in by entering a town that has gates and bars.” 8 And Saul summoned all the people to war, to go down to Keilah, to besiege David and his men. 9 David knew that Saul was plotting harm against him. And he said to Abiathar the priest, i“Bring the ephod here.” 10 Then David said, “O Lord, the God of Israel, your servant has surely heard that Saul seeks to come to Keilah, to destroy the city on my account. 11 Will the men of Keilah surrender me into his hand? Will Saul come down, as your servant has heard? O Lord, the God of Israel, please tell your servant.” And the Lord said, “He will come down.” 12 Then David said, “Will the men of Keilah surrender me and my men into the hand of Saul?” And the Lord said, j“They will surrender you.” 13 Then David and his men, kwho were about six hundred, arose and departed from Keilah, and they went lwherever they could go. When Saul was told that David had escaped from Keilah, he gave up the expedition. 14 And David remained in the strongholds in the wilderness, in the hill country mof the wilderness of nZiph. And Saul sought him every day, but God did not give him into his hand.
Saul Pursues David
15 David saw that Saul had come out to seek his life. David was in the wilderness of Ziph at Horesh. 16 And Jonathan, Saul’s son, rose and went to David at Horesh, and strengthened his hand in God. 17 And he said to him, “Do not fear, for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you. You shall be king over Israel, and I shall be next to you. oSaul my father also knows this.” 18 pAnd the two of them made a covenant before the Lord. David remained at Horesh, and Jonathan went home.
19 qThen the Ziphites went up to Saul at Gibeah, saying, “Is not David hiding among us in the strongholds at Horesh, on the hill of Hachilah, which is south of rJeshimon? 20 Now come down, O king, according to all your heart’s desire to come down, sand our part shall be to surrender him into the king’s hand.” 21 And Saul said, t“May you be blessed by the Lord, ufor you have had compassion on me. 22 Go, make yet more sure. Know and see the place where his foot is, and who has seen him there, for it is told me that he is very cunning. 23 See therefore and take note of all the lurking places where he hides, and come back to me with sure information. Then I will go with you. And if he is in the land, I will search him out among all the thousands of Judah.” 24 And they arose and went to Ziph ahead of Saul.
Now David and his men were vin the wilderness of Maon, win the Arabah to the south of rJeshimon. 25 And Saul and his men went to seek him. And David was told, so he went down to the rock and lived in the wilderness of Maon. And when Saul heard that, he pursued after David in the wilderness of Maon. 26 Saul went on one side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other side of the mountain. And David was hurrying to get away from Saul. As Saul and his men were closing in on David and his men to capture them, 27 a messenger came to Saul, saying, “Hurry and come, for the Philistines have made a raid against the land.” 28 So Saul returned from pursuing after David and went against the Philistines. Therefore that place was called the Rock of Escape.4 29 5 And David went up from there and lived in the strongholds of xEngedi.
The Steadfast Love of God Endures
To the choirmaster. A Maskil1 of David, when cDoeg, the Edomite, came and told Saul, “David has come to the house of Ahimelech.”
52 Why do you boast of evil, O mighty man?
The steadfast love of God endures all the day.
2 Your dtongue plots destruction,
like ea sharp razor, you fworker of deceit.
3 You love evil more than good,
and glying more than speaking what is right. Selah
4 You love all words that devour,
O deceitful tongue.
5 But God will break you down forever;
he will snatch and htear you from your tent;
he will uproot you from ithe land of the living. Selah
6 The righteous shall jsee and fear,
and shall klaugh at him, saying,
7 “See the man who would not make
God his refuge,
but ltrusted in the abundance of his riches
and sought refuge in his own destruction!”2
8 But I am like ma green olive tree
in the house of God.
I trust in the steadfast love of God
forever and ever.
9 I will thank you forever,
because you have done it.
I will wait for your name, nfor it is good,
in the presence of the ogodly.
Let Your Glory Be over All the Earth
To the choirmaster: according to iDo Not Destroy. A jMiktam1 of David, when he fled from Saul, in kthe cave.
57 lBe merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me,
for in you my soul mtakes refuge;
in nthe shadow of your wings I will take refuge,
otill the storms of destruction pass by.
2 I cry out to God Most High,
to God who pfulfills his purpose for me.
3 qHe will send from heaven and save me;
he will put to shame rhim who tramples on me. Selah
sGod will send out this steadfast love and his faithfulness!
4 My soul is in the midst of ulions;
I lie down amid fiery beasts—
the children of man, whose vteeth are spears and arrows,
whose wtongues are sharp swords.
5 xBe exalted, O God, above the heavens!
Let your glory be over all the earth!
6 They set ya net for my steps;
my soul was zbowed down.
They adug a pit in my way,
but they have fallen into it themselves. Selah
7 bMy heart is csteadfast, O God,
my heart is steadfast!
I will sing and make melody!
Awake, fO harp and lyre!
I will awake the dawn!
9 I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing praises to you among the nations.
10 For your gsteadfast love is great to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the clouds.
11 xBe exalted, O God, above the heavens!
Let your glory be over all the earth!
You Are My Refuge
A Maskil1 of David, when he was in kthe cave. A Prayer.
142 With my voice I lcry out to the Lord;
with my voice I mplead for mercy to the Lord.
2 I npour out my complaint before him;
I tell my trouble before him.
3 When my spirit ofaints within me,
you know my way!
In the path where I walk
they have phidden a trap for me.
4 qLook to the rright and see:
sthere is none who takes notice of me;
tno refuge remains to me;
no one cares for my soul.
5 I cry to you, O Lord;
I say, “You are my urefuge,
my vportion in wthe land of the living.”
6 xAttend to my cry,
for yI am brought very low!
Deliver me from my persecutors,
zfor they are too strong for me!
7 aBring me out of prison,
that I may give thanks to your name!
The righteous will surround me,
for you will bdeal bountifully with me.
8 From the Gadites there went over to David at the stronghold in the wilderness mighty and experienced warriors, expert with shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions and who were fswift as gazelles upon the mountains: 9 Ezer the chief, Obadiah second, Eliab third, 10 Mishmannah fourth, Jeremiah fifth, 11 Attai sixth, Eliel seventh, 12 Johanan eighth, Elzabad ninth, 13 Jeremiah tenth, Machbannai eleventh. 14 These Gadites were officers of the army; the least was a gmatch for a hundred men and the greatest for a thousand. 15 These are the men who crossed the Jordan in the first month, when it was hoverflowing all its banks, and put to flight all those in the valleys, to the east and to the west.
16 And some of the men of Benjamin and Judah came to the stronghold to David. 17 David went out to meet them and said to them, “If you have come to me in friendship to help me, my heart will be joined to you; but if to betray me to my adversaries, although there is no wrong in my hands, then may the God of our fathers see and rebuke you.” 18 Then ithe Spirit clothed jAmasai, chief of the thirty, and he said,
“We are yours, O David,
and with you, O son of Jesse!
kPeace, peace to you,
and peace to your helpers!
For your God helps you.”
Then David received them and made them officers of his troops.