Saul Tries to Kill David
1Saul now urged his servants and his son Jonathan to assassinate David. But Jonathan, because of his strong affection for David, 2told him what his father was planning. “Tomorrow morning,” he warned him, “you must find a hiding place out in the fields. 3I’ll ask my father to go out there with me, and I’ll talk to him about you. Then I’ll tell you everything I can find out.”
4The next morning Jonathan spoke with his father about David, saying many good things about him. “The king must not sin against his servant David,” Jonathan said. “He’s never done anything to harm you. He has always helped you in any way he could. 5Have you forgotten about the time he risked his life to kill the Philistine giant and how the Lord brought a great victory to all Israel as a result? You were certainly happy about it then. Why should you murder an innocent man like David? There is no reason for it at all!”
6So Saul listened to Jonathan and vowed, “As surely as the Lord lives, David will not be killed.”
7Afterward Jonathan called David and told him what had happened. Then he brought David to Saul, and David served in the court as before.
8War broke out again after that, and David led his troops against the Philistines. He attacked them with such fury that they all ran away.
9But one day when Saul was sitting at home, with spear in hand, the tormenting spirit#19:9 Or evil spirit. from the Lord suddenly came upon him again. As David played his harp, 10Saul hurled his spear at David. But David dodged out of the way, and leaving the spear stuck in the wall, he fled and escaped into the night.
Michal Saves David’s Life
11Then Saul sent troops to watch David’s house. They were told to kill David when he came out the next morning. But Michal, David’s wife, warned him, “If you don’t escape tonight, you will be dead by morning.” 12So she helped him climb out through a window, and he fled and escaped. 13Then she took an idol#19:13 Hebrew teraphim; also in 19:16. and put it in his bed, covered it with blankets, and put a cushion of goat’s hair at its head.
14When the troops came to arrest David, she told them he was sick and couldn’t get out of bed.
15But Saul sent the troops back to get David. He ordered, “Bring him to me in his bed so I can kill him!” 16But when they came to carry David out, they discovered that it was only an idol in the bed with a cushion of goat’s hair at its head.
17“Why have you betrayed me like this and let my enemy escape?” Saul demanded of Michal.
“I had to,” Michal replied. “He threatened to kill me if I didn’t help him.”
18So David escaped and went to Ramah to see Samuel, and he told him all that Saul had done to him. Then Samuel took David with him to live at Naioth. 19When the report reached Saul that David was at Naioth in Ramah, 20he sent troops to capture him. But when they arrived and saw Samuel leading a group of prophets who were prophesying, the Spirit of God came upon Saul’s men, and they also began to prophesy. 21When Saul heard what had happened, he sent other troops, but they, too, prophesied! The same thing happened a third time. 22Finally, Saul himself went to Ramah and arrived at the great well in Secu. “Where are Samuel and David?” he demanded.
“They are at Naioth in Ramah,” someone told him.
23But on the way to Naioth in Ramah the Spirit of God came even upon Saul, and he, too, began to prophesy all the way to Naioth! 24He tore off his clothes and lay naked on the ground all day and all night, prophesying in the presence of Samuel. The people who were watching exclaimed, “What? Is even Saul a prophet?”