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.6
David Spares Saul’s Life
24 yWhen Saul returned from following the Philistines, he was told, “Behold, David is in the wilderness of Engedi.” 2 Then Saul took zthree thousand chosen men out of all Israel and went to seek David and his men in front of the Wildgoats’ Rocks. 3 And he came to the sheepfolds by the way, where there was a cave, and Saul went in ato relieve himself.7 Now David and his men were sitting in the innermost parts bof the cave. 4 And the men of David said to him, c“Here is the day of which the Lord said to you, ‘Behold, I will give your enemy into your hand, and you shall do to him as it shall seem good to you.’” Then David arose and stealthily cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. 5 And afterward dDavid’s heart struck him, because he had cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. 6 He said to his men, e“The Lord forbid that I should do this thing to my lord, the Lord’s anointed, to put out my hand against him, seeing he is fthe Lord’s anointed.” 7 So David persuaded his men with these words gand did not permit them to attack Saul. And Saul rose up and left the cave and went on his way.
8 Afterward David also arose and went out of the cave, and called after Saul, “My lord the king!” And when Saul looked behind him, David bowed with his face to the earth and paid homage. 9 And David said to Saul, “Why do you listen to the words of men who say, ‘Behold, David seeks your harm’? 10 Behold, this day your eyes have seen how the Lord gave you today into my hand in the cave. hAnd some told me to kill you, but I spared you.8 I said, ‘I will not put out my hand against my lord, ffor he is the Lord’s anointed.’ 11 See, my father, see the corner of your robe in my hand. For by the fact that I cut off the corner of your robe and did not kill you, you may know and see that ithere is no wrong or treason in my hands. I have not sinned against you, though jyou hunt my life to take it. 12 kMay the Lord judge between me and you, may the Lord avenge me against you, but my hand shall not be against you. 13 As the proverb of the ancients says, ‘Out of the wicked comes wickedness.’ But my hand shall not be against you. 14 After whom has the king of Israel come out? After whom do you pursue? lAfter a dead dog! mAfter a flea! 15 kMay the Lord therefore be judge and give sentence between me and you, and see to it and nplead my cause and deliver me from your hand.”
16 As soon as David had finished speaking these words to Saul, Saul said, o“Is this your voice, my son David?” And Saul lifted up his voice and wept. 17 He said to David, “You are more righteous than I, pfor you have repaid me good, whereas I have repaid you evil. 18 And you have declared this day how you have dealt well with me, in that you did not kill me when the Lord put me into your hands. 19 For if a man finds his enemy, will he let him go away safe? So may the Lord reward you with good for what you have done to me this day. 20 And now, behold, qI know that you shall surely be king, and that the kingdom of Israel shall be established in your hand. 21 rSwear to me therefore by the Lord that you will not cut off my offspring after me, and sthat you will not destroy my name out of my father’s house.” 22 And David swore this to Saul. Then Saul went home, but David and his men went up tto the stronghold.
I Will Sing of the Steadfast Love of the Lord
with my mouth I will make known your kfaithfulness to all generations.
2 For I said, j“Steadfast love will be built up forever;
I have osworn to David my servant:
4 ‘I will establish your poffspring forever,
and build your qthrone for all generations.’” Selah
your faithfulness in the assembly of tthe holy ones!
6 For uwho in the skies can be compared to the Lord?
and awesome above all wwho are around him?
8 O Lord God of hosts,
with your faithfulness all around you?
9 You rule the raging of the sea;
when its waves rise, you zstill them.
you cscattered your enemies with your mighty arm.
11 dThe heavens are yours; the earth also is yours;
12 gThe north and the south, you have created them;
13 You have a mighty arm;
strong is your hand, high your right hand.
14 kRighteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne;
lsteadfast love and faithfulness go before you.
15 Blessed are the people who know mthe festal shout,
who walk, O Lord, in nthe light of your face,
16 who exult in your oname all the day
and in your righteousness are pexalted.
17 For you are qthe glory of their strength;
by your favor our rhorn is exalted.
18 For our sshield belongs to the Lord,
our king to tthe Holy One of Israel.
I have exalted one xchosen from the people.
20 yI have found David, my servant;
with my holy oil I have zanointed him,
21 so that my ahand shall be established with him;
my arm also shall strengthen him.
22 The enemy shall not outwit him;
bthe wicked shall not humble him.
23 I will ccrush his foes before him
and strike down those who hate him.
and in my name shall his ehorn be exalted.
25 I will set his hand on fthe sea
and his right hand on fthe rivers.
26 He shall cry to me, ‘You are my gFather,
my God, and hthe Rock of my salvation.’
27 And I will make him the ifirstborn,
jthe highest of the kings of the earth.
28 My steadfast love I will keep for him forever,
29 I will establish his loffspring forever
30 nIf his children forsake my law
and do not walk according to my rules,5
31 if they violate my statutes
and do not keep my commandments,
32 then I will punish their transgression with othe rod
and their iniquity with stripes,
33 but I will not remove from him my steadfast love
or be false to my faithfulness.
34 I will not violate my kcovenant
or alter the word that went forth from my lips.
35 Once for all I have sworn pby my holiness;
I will not qlie to David.
36 His loffspring shall endure forever,
37 Like sthe moon it shall be established forever,
ta faithful witness in the skies.” Selah
38 But now you have ucast off and rejected;
you are full of wrath against your vanointed.
40 You have abreached all his walls;
you have laid his strongholds in ruins.
41 aAll who pass by plunder him;
he has become bthe scorn of his neighbors.
42 You have exalted the right hand of his foes;
you have made all his enemies rejoice.
43 You have also turned back the edge of his sword,
and you have not made him stand in battle.
44 You have made his splendor to cease
and cast his throne to the ground.
45 You have cut short cthe days of his youth;
you have dcovered him with shame. Selah
46 eHow long, O Lord? Will you hide yourself forever?
How long will your wrath fburn like fire?
For what vanity you have created all the children of man!
Who can deliver his soul from the power of lSheol? Selah
49 Lord, where is your msteadfast love of old,
which by your mfaithfulness you swore to David?
50 nRemember, O Lord, how your servants are mocked,
51 with which your enemies mock, O Lord,
52 rBlessed be the Lord forever!
Amen and Amen.