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David and Jonathan.
1By the time David finished speaking with Saul, Jonathan’s life became bound up with David’s life; he loved him as his very self.#a. [18:1] 1 Sm 19:1–7; 20:17; 23:16; 2 Sm 1:26; 9:1. 2Saul retained David on that day and did not allow him to return to his father’s house.#b. [18:2] 1 Sm 16:21; 17:15. 3Jonathan and David made a covenant, because Jonathan loved him as his very self. 4Jonathan took off#Jonathan took off: with the details in this verse, the narrator identifies David as Jonathan’s replacement and Saul’s heir to the throne. Cf. 23:17 and Gn 41:39–43. the cloak he was wearing and handed it over to David, along with his military dress, even his sword, bow, and belt.#c. [18:4] 2 Sm 1:22. 5David then carried out successfully every mission on which Saul sent him. So Saul put him in charge of his soldiers; this met with the approval of the whole army, even Saul’s officers.
Saul’s Jealousy.
6At the approach of Saul and David, on David’s return after striking down the Philistine, women came out from all the cities of Israel to meet Saul the king, singing and dancing, with tambourines, joyful songs, and stringed instruments.#Stringed instruments: perhaps a lute-like instrument with three strings; the Hebrew word, shalshim, perhaps related to the root shlsh (“three”), occurs only here in the Old Testament. #d. [18:6] Ex 15:20–21; Jgs 11:34; Jdt 15:12. 7The women played and sang:
“Saul has slain his thousands,
David his tens of thousands.”#e. [18:7] 1 Sm 21:12; 29:5; Ps 91:7; Sir 47:6–7.
8Saul was very angry and resentful of the song, for he thought: “They give David tens of thousands, but only thousands to me. All that remains for him is the kingship.” 9From that day on, Saul kept a jealous eye on David.
10#f. [18:10–11] 1 Sm 16:14; 19:9–10; 20:33; 22:6; 26:8. The next day an evil spirit from God rushed upon Saul, and he raged in his house. David was in attendance, playing the harp as at other times, while Saul was holding his spear. 11Saul poised the spear, thinking, “I will nail David to the wall!” But twice David escaped him. 12Saul then began to fear David because the Lord was with him but had turned away from Saul. 13Saul sent him out of his presence and appointed him a field officer. So David led the people on their military expeditions 14and prospered in all his ways, for the Lord was with him. 15Seeing how he prospered, Saul feared David. 16But all Israel and Judah loved David, since he led them on their expeditions.#Led them on their expeditions: lit., “go out and come in,” i.e., through the city gates; an idiom for military victory. #g. [18:16] 2 Sm 5:2.
Saul Plots Against David.
17Saul said to David, “Look, I will give you my older daughter, Merob, in marriage if you become my warrior and fight the battles of the Lord.” Saul thought, “I will not lay a hand on him. Let the hand of the Philistines strike him.”#h. [18:17] 1 Sm 14:49; 17:25. 18But David answered Saul: “Who am I? And who are my kindred or my father’s clan in Israel that I should become the king’s son-in-law?” 19But when the time came for Saul’s daughter Merob to be given to David, she was given as wife to Adriel the Meholathite instead.#i. [18:19] 1 Sm 21:8; 24:16.
20Now Saul’s daughter Michal loved David. When this was reported to Saul, he was pleased.#j. [18:20] 1 Sm 14:49; 25:44; 26:23; 2 Sm 3:13. 21He thought, “I will offer her to him as a trap, so that the hand of the Philistines may strike him.” So for the second time Saul said to David, “You shall become my son-in-law today.” 22Saul then ordered his servants, “Speak to David privately and say: The king favors you, and all his officers love you. You should become son-in-law to the king.” 23But when Saul’s servants mentioned this to David, he said: “Is becoming the king’s son-in-law a trivial matter in your eyes? I am poor and insignificant.” 24When his servants reported David’s answer to him, 25Saul commanded them, “Say this to David: The king desires no other price for the bride than the foreskins of one hundred Philistines, that he may thus take vengeance on his enemies.” Saul intended to have David fall into the hands of the Philistines.#k. [18:25] 1 Sm 17:26; Gn 34:12. 26When the servants reported this offer to David, he was pleased with the prospect of becoming the king’s son-in-law. Before the year was up, 27David arose and went with his men and slew two hundred Philistines. He brought back their foreskins and counted them out before the king that he might become the king’s son-in-law. So Saul gave him his daughter Michal as wife. 28Then Saul realized that the Lord was with David and that his own daughter Michal loved David. 29So Saul feared David all the more and was his enemy ever after.
30The Philistine chiefs continued to make forays, but each time they took the field, David was more successful against them than any of Saul’s other officers, and his name was held in great esteem.
1And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
2And Saul took him that day, and would not let him return to his father's house.
3And David and Jonathan made a covenant, for be loved him as his own soul.
4And Jonathan stripped himself of the coat with which he was clothed, and gave it to David, and the rest of his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
5And David went out to whatsoever business Saul sent him, and he behaved himself prudently: and Saul set him over the soldiers, and he was acceptable in the eyes of all the people, and especially in the eyes of Saul's servants.
6Now when David returned, after be slew the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet king Saul, with timbrels of joy, and cornets.
7And the women sung as they played, and they said: Saul slew his thousands, and David his ten thousands.
8And Saul was exceeding angry, and this word was displeasing in his eyes, and he said: They have given David ten thousands, and to me they have given but a thousand; what can he have more but the kingdom?
9And Saul did not look on David with a good eye from that day and forward.
10And the day after the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of his house. And David played with his hand as at other times. And Saul held a spear in his hand,
11And threw it, thinking to nail David to the wall: and David stept aside out of his presence twice.
12And Saul feared David, because the Lord was with him, and was departed from himself.
13Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him a captain over a thousand men, and he went out and came in before the people.
14And David behaved wisely in all his ways, and the Lord was with him.
15And Saul saw that he was exceeding prudent, and began to beware of him.
16But all Israel and Juda loved David, for he came in and went out before them.
17And Saul said to David: Behold my elder daughter Merob, her will I give thee to wife: only be a valiant man, and fight the battles of the Lord. Now Saul said within himself: Let not my hand be upon him, but let the hands of the Philistines be upon him.
18And David said to Saul: Who am I, or what is my life, or my father's family in Israel, that I should be son in law of the king?
19And it came to pass at the time when Merob the daughter of Saul should have been given to David, that she was given to Hadriel the Molathite to wife.
20But Michol the other daughter of Saul loved David. And it was told Saul, and it pleased him.
21And Saul said: I will give her to him, that she may be a stumblingblock to him, and that the band of the Philistines may be upon him. And Saul said to David: In two things thou shalt be my son in law this day.
22And Saul commanded his servants to speak to David privately, saying: Behold thou pleasest the king, and all his servants love thee. Now therefore be the king's son in law.
23And the servants of Saul spoke all these words in the ears of David. And David said: Doth it seem to you a small matter to be the king's son in law? But I am a poor man, and of small ability.
24And the servants of Saul told him, saying: Such words as these hath David spoken.
25And Saul said: Speak thus to David: The king desireth not any dowry, but only a hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies. Now Saul thought to deliver David into the hands of the Philistines.
26And when his servants had told David the words that Saul had said, the word was pleasing in the eyes of David to be the king's son in law.
27And after a few days David rose up, and went with the men that were under him, and he slew of the Philistines two hundred men, and brought their foreskins and numbered them out to the king, that he might be his son in law. Saul therefore gave him Michol his daughter to wife.
28And Saul saw, and understood that the Lord was with David. And Michol the daughter of Saul loved him.
29And Saul began to fear David more: and Saul became David's enemy continually.
30And the princes of the Philistines went forth: and from the beginning of their going forth, David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul, and his name became very famous.