David Is Kind to Mephibosheth
1 S 20.15-17. One day, David thought, “I wonder if any of Saul's family are still alive. If they are, I will be kind to them, because I made a promise to Jonathan.” 2David called in Ziba, one of the servants of Saul's family. David said, “So you are Ziba.”
“Yes, Your Majesty, I am.”
2 S 4.4. David asked, “Are any of Saul's family still alive? If there are, I want to be kind to them.”
Ziba answered, “One of Jonathan's sons is still alive, but he can't walk.”
4“Where is he?” David asked.
Ziba replied, “He lives in Lo-Debar with Machir the son of Ammiel.”
5-6David sent some servants to bring Jonathan's son from Lo-Debar. His name was Mephibosheth,#9.5,6 Mephibosheth: Or “Mephibaal” (see the note at 4.4). and he was the grandson of Saul. He came to David and knelt down.
David asked, “Are you Mephibosheth?”
“Yes, I am, Your Majesty.”
7David said, “Don't be afraid. I'll be kind to you because Jonathan was your father. I'm going to give you back the land that belonged to your grandfather Saul. Besides that, you will always eat with me at my table.”
8Mephibosheth knelt down again and said, “Why should you care about me? I'm worth no more than a dead dog.”
9David called in Ziba, Saul's chief servant, and told him, “Since Mephibosheth is Saul's grandson, I've given him back everything that belonged to your master Saul and his family. 10You and your 15 sons and 20 servants will work for Mephibosheth. You will farm his land and bring in his crops, so that Saul's family and servants#9.10 Saul's family and servants: Some manuscripts of one ancient translation; Hebrew “the son of your master.” will have food. But Mephibosheth will always eat with me at my table.”
11-13Ziba replied, “Your Majesty, I will do exactly what you tell me to do.” So Ziba's family and servants worked for Mephibosheth.
Mephibosheth was lame, but he lived in Jerusalem and ate at David's#9.11-13 David's: Hebrew “my.” table, just like one of David's own sons. And he had a young son of his own, named Mica.