1When David had finished speaking with Saul, Jonathan was bound to David in close friendship,#18:1 Lit the life of Jonathan was bound to the life of David and loved him as much as he loved himself.#1Sm 20:17; 2Sm 1:26 2Saul kept David with him from that day on and did not let him return to his father’s house.
3Jonathan made a covenant with David#1Sm 20:8,16; 23:18 because he loved him as much as himself. 4Then Jonathan removed the robe he was wearing and gave it to David,#Gn 41:42 along with his military tunic, his sword, his bow, and his belt.
5David marched out with the army and was successful in everything Saul sent him to do. Saul put him in command of the fighting men, which pleased all the people and Saul’s servants as well.
6As the troops were coming back, when David was returning from killing the Philistine, the women came out from all the cities of Israel to meet King Saul,#Ex 15:20-21; Jdg 11:34 singing and dancing with tambourines, with shouts of joy, and with three-stringed instruments. 7As they danced, the women sang:
Saul has killed his thousands,
but David his tens of thousands.#1Sm 21:11; 29:5
8Saul was furious and resented this song.#18:8 Lit furious; this saying was evil in his eyes “They credited tens of thousands to David,” he complained, “but they only credited me with thousands. What more can he have but the kingdom?” #1Sm 15:28; 24:20 9So Saul watched David jealously from that day forward.
Saul Attempts to Kill David
10The next day an evil spirit sent from God came powerfully on Saul,#1Sm 16:14; 19:9 and he began to rave#18:10 Or prophesy inside the palace. David was playing the lyre as usual,#1Sm 16:23 but Saul was holding a spear,#1Sm 19:9 11and he threw it, thinking, “I’ll pin David to the wall.”#1Sm 19:10; 20:33 But David got away from him twice.
12Saul was afraid of David,#1Sm 18:15,29 because the Lord was with David#1Sm 16:13,18 but had left Saul.#1Sm 16:14; 17:36,47; 2Sm 5:2 13Therefore, Saul sent David away from him and made him commander over a thousand men. David led the troops#2Sm 5:2 14and continued to be successful in all his activities because the Lord was with him.#1Sm 3:19; 16:18 15When Saul observed that David was very successful, he dreaded him. 16But all Israel and Judah loved David#1Sm 18:5 because he was leading their troops. 17Saul told David, “Here is my oldest daughter Merab. I’ll give her to you as a wife,#1Sm 17:25 if you will be a warrior for me and fight the Lord’s battles.”#Nm 21:14; 1Sm 17:36-37; 25:28 But Saul was thinking, “I don’t need to raise a hand against him; let the hand of the Philistines be against him.”#1Sm 18:21,25
18Then David responded, “Who am I,#1Sm 9:21; 18:23; 2Sm 7:18 and what is my family or my father’s clan in Israel that I should become the king’s son-in-law?” 19When it was time to give Saul’s daughter Merab to David, she was given to Adriel the Meholathite as a wife.#Jdg 7:22; 2Sm 21:8; 1Kg 19:16
David’s Marriage to Michal
20Now Saul’s daughter Michal#1Sm 18:28 loved David, and when it was reported to Saul, it pleased him.#18:20 Lit Saul, the thing was right in his eyes 21“I’ll give her to him,” Saul thought. “She’ll be a trap for him, and the hand of the Philistines will be against him.”#1Sm 18:17 So Saul said to David a second time, “You can now be my son-in-law.”#1Sm 18:20
22Saul then ordered his servants, “Speak to David in private and tell him, ‘Look, the king is pleased with you, and all his servants love you. Therefore, you should become the king’s son-in-law.’”
23Saul’s servants reported these words directly to David,#18:23 Lit words in David’s ears but he replied, “Is it trivial in your sight to become the king’s son-in-law? I am a poor commoner.”#Gn 29:20; 34:12
24The servants reported back to Saul, “These are the words David spoke.”
25Then Saul replied, “Say this to David: ‘The king desires no other bride-price#Gn 34:12; Ex 22:17 except a hundred Philistine foreskins, to take revenge on his enemies.’”#1Sm 14:24 Actually, Saul intended to cause David’s death at the hands of the Philistines.#1Sm 18:17
26When the servants reported these terms to David, he was pleased#18:26 Lit David, it was right in David’s eyes to become the king’s son-in-law. Before the wedding day arrived,#18:26 Lit And the days were not full 27David and his men went out and killed two hundred#18:27 LXX reads 100 Philistines. He brought their foreskins and presented them as full payment to the king to become his son-in-law. Then Saul gave his daughter Michal to David as his wife.#2Sm 3:14 28Saul realized#18:28 Lit saw and knew that the Lord was with David and that his daughter Michal loved him, 29and he became even more afraid of David. As a result, Saul was David’s enemy from then on.
30Every time the Philistine commanders came out to fight,#2Sm 11:1 David was more successful than all of Saul’s officers.#1Sm 18:5 So his name became well known.