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David and Jonathan's Friendship
1As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to 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. 3Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul. 4And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt. 5And David went out and was successful wherever Saul sent him, so that Saul set him over the men of war. And this was good in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul's servants.
Saul's Jealousy of David
6As they were coming home, when David returned from striking down the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with songs of joy, and with musical instruments. 7And the women sang to one another as they celebrated,
"Saul has struck down his thousands,
and David his ten thousands."
8And Saul was very angry, and this saying displeased him. He said, "They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed thousands, and what more can he have but the kingdom?" 9And Saul eyed David from that day on.
10The next day a harmful spirit from God rushed upon Saul, and he raved within his house while David was playing the lyre, as he did day by day. Saul had his spear in his hand. 11And Saul hurled the spear, for he thought, "I will pin David to the wall." But David evaded him twice.
12Saul was afraid of David because the Lord was with him but had departed from Saul. 13So Saul removed him from his presence and made him a commander of a thousand. And he went out and came in before the people. 14And David had success in all his undertakings, for the Lord was with him. 15And when Saul saw that he had great success, he stood in fearful awe of him. 16But all Israel and Judah loved David, for he went out and came in before them.
David Marries Michal
17Then Saul said to David, "Here is my elder daughter Merab. I will give her to you for a wife. Only be valiant for me and fight the Lord's battles." For Saul thought, "Let not my hand be against him, but let the hand of the Philistines be against him." 18And David said to Saul, "Who am I, and who are my relatives, my father's clan in Israel, that I should be son-in-law to the king?" 19But at the time when Merab, Saul's daughter, should have been given to David, she was given to Adriel the Meholathite for a wife.
20Now Saul's daughter Michal loved David. And they told Saul, and the thing pleased him. 21Saul thought, "Let me give her to him, that she may be a snare for him and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him." Therefore Saul said to David a second time, "You shall now be my son-in-law." 22And Saul commanded his servants, "Speak to David in private and say, 'Behold, the king has delight in you, and all his servants love you. Now then become the king's son-in-law.'" 23And Saul's servants spoke those words in the ears of David. And David said, "Does it seem to you a little thing to become the king's son-in-law, since I am a poor man and have no reputation?" 24And the servants of Saul told him, "Thus and so did David speak." 25Then Saul said, "Thus shall you say to David, 'The king desires no bride-price except a hundred foreskins of the Philistines, that he may be avenged of the king's enemies.'" Now Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines. 26And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king's son-in-law. Before the time had expired, 27David arose and went, along with his men, and killed two hundred of the Philistines. And David brought their foreskins, which were given in full number to the king, that he might become the king's son-in-law. And Saul gave him his daughter Michal for a wife. 28But when Saul saw and knew that the Lord was with David, and that Michal, Saul's daughter, loved him, 29Saul was even more afraid of David. So Saul was David's enemy continually.
30Then the commanders of the Philistines came out to battle, and as often as they came out David had more success than all the servants of Saul, so that his name was highly esteemed.
Saul Becomes Jealous of David
1After David had finished talking with Saul, he met Jonathan, the king’s son. There was an immediate bond between them, for Jonathan loved David. 2From that day on Saul kept David with him and wouldn’t let him return home. 3And Jonathan made a solemn pact with David, because he loved him as he loved himself. 4Jonathan sealed the pact by taking off his robe and giving it to David, together with his tunic, sword, bow, and belt.
5Whatever Saul asked David to do, David did it successfully. So Saul made him a commander over the men of war, an appointment that was welcomed by the people and Saul’s officers alike.
6When the victorious Israelite army was returning home after David had killed the Philistine, women from all the towns of Israel came out to meet King Saul. They sang and danced for joy with tambourines and cymbals.#18:6 The type of instrument represented by the word cymbals is uncertain. 7This was their song:
“Saul has killed his thousands,
and David his ten thousands!”
8This made Saul very angry. “What’s this?” he said. “They credit David with ten thousands and me with only thousands. Next they’ll be making him their king!” 9So from that time on Saul kept a jealous eye on David.
10The very next day a tormenting spirit#18:10 Or an evil spirit. from God overwhelmed Saul, and he began to rave in his house like a madman. David was playing the harp, as he did each day. But Saul had a spear in his hand, 11and he suddenly hurled it at David, intending to pin him to the wall. But David escaped him twice.
12Saul was then afraid of David, for the Lord was with David and had turned away from Saul. 13Finally, Saul sent him away and appointed him commander over 1,000 men, and David faithfully led his troops into battle.
14David continued to succeed in everything he did, for the Lord was with him. 15When Saul recognized this, he became even more afraid of him. 16But all Israel and Judah loved David because he was so successful at leading his troops into battle.
David Marries Saul’s Daughter
17One day Saul said to David, “I am ready to give you my older daughter, Merab, as your wife. But first you must prove yourself to be a real warrior by fighting the Lord’s battles.” For Saul thought, “I’ll send him out against the Philistines and let them kill him rather than doing it myself.”
18“Who am I, and what is my family in Israel that I should be the king’s son-in-law?” David exclaimed. “My father’s family is nothing!” 19So#18:19 Or But. when the time came for Saul to give his daughter Merab in marriage to David, he gave her instead to Adriel, a man from Meholah.
20In the meantime, Saul’s daughter Michal had fallen in love with David, and Saul was delighted when he heard about it. 21“Here’s another chance to see him killed by the Philistines!” Saul said to himself. But to David he said, “Today you have a second chance to become my son-in-law!”
22Then Saul told his men to say to David, “The king really likes you, and so do we. Why don’t you accept the king’s offer and become his son-in-law?”
23When Saul’s men said these things to David, he replied, “How can a poor man from a humble family afford the bride price for the daughter of a king?”
24When Saul’s men reported this back to the king, 25he told them, “Tell David that all I want for the bride price is 100 Philistine foreskins! Vengeance on my enemies is all I really want.” But what Saul had in mind was that David would be killed in the fight.
26David was delighted to accept the offer. Before the time limit expired, 27he and his men went out and killed 200 Philistines. Then David fulfilled the king’s requirement by presenting all their foreskins to him. So Saul gave his daughter Michal to David to be his wife.
28When Saul realized that the Lord was with David and how much his daughter Michal loved him, 29Saul became even more afraid of him, and he remained David’s enemy for the rest of his life.
30Every time the commanders of the Philistines attacked, David was more successful against them than all the rest of Saul’s officers. So David’s name became very famous.