David Hears of Saul’s Death
1After the death of Saul, when David had returned #See 1 Sam. 30:17-20from striking down the Amalekites, David remained two days in Ziklag. 2And on the third day, behold, #ch. 4:10 a man came from Saul’s camp, #See Josh. 7:6 with his clothes torn and dirt on his head. And when he came to David, #ch. 14:4he fell to the ground and paid homage. 3David said to him, “Where do you come from?” And he said to him, “I have escaped from the camp of Israel.” 4And David said to him, #[1 Sam. 4:16]“How did it go? Tell me.” And he answered, “The people fled from the battle, and also many of the people have fallen and are dead, and Saul and his son Jonathan are also dead.” 5Then David said to the young man who told him, “How do you know that Saul and his son Jonathan are dead?” 6And the young man who told him said, #For ver. 6-10, see 1 Sam. 31:1-4; 1 Chr. 10:1-6“By chance I happened to be on Mount Gilboa, and there was Saul leaning on his spear, and behold, the chariots and the horsemen were close upon him. 7And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called to me. And I answered, ‘Here I am.’ 8And he said to me, ‘Who are you?’ I answered him, ‘I am an Amalekite.’ 9And he said to me, #[Judg. 9:54]‘Stand beside me and kill me, for anguish has seized me, and yet my life still lingers.’ 10So I stood beside him and killed him, because I was sure that he could not live after he had fallen. #[2 Kgs. 11:12]And I took the crown that was on his head and the armlet that was on his arm, and I have brought them here to my lord.”
11Then David took hold of his clothes and #ch. 13:31; [ch. 3:31]; See Josh. 7:6tore them, and so did all the men who were with him. 12And they mourned and wept #[ch. 3:35]and fasted until evening for Saul and for Jonathan his son and for the people of the Lord and for the house of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword. 13And David said to the young man who told him, “Where do you come from?” And he answered, “I am the son of a sojourner, an Amalekite.” 14David said to him, “How is it you were not #[1 Sam. 24:6, 10; 26:9; 31:4] afraid to put out your hand to destroy #See 1 Sam. 12:3the Lord’s anointed?” 15Then #ch. 4:10David called one of the young men and said, “Go, execute him.” And he struck him down so that he died. 16And David said to him, #[ch. 3:29; Josh. 2:19; 1 Kgs. 2:32, 37; Matt. 27:25] “Your blood be on your head, for your own mouth has testified against you, saying, ‘I have killed #See 1 Sam. 12:3the Lord’s anointed.’”
David’s Lament for Saul and Jonathan
17And David #[ch. 3:33; 2 Chr. 35:25]lamented with this lamentation over Saul and Jonathan his son, 18and he said it#1:18 Septuagint; Hebrew the Bow, which may be the name of the lament’s tune should be taught to the people of Judah; behold, it is written in #Josh. 10:13the Book of Jashar.#1:18 Or of the upright He said:
19“Your glory, O Israel, is slain on your high places!
# ver. 25, 27 How the mighty have fallen!
Mic. 1:10 Tell it not in Gath,
# [1 Sam. 31:9; Amos 3:9] publish it not in the streets of Ashkelon,
# [Ex. 15:20; Judg. 11:34] lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice,
lest the daughters of #See Judg. 14:3the uncircumcised exult.
1 Sam. 31:1 “You mountains of Gilboa,
let there be no dew or rain upon you,
nor fields of offerings!#1:21 Septuagint firstfruits
For there the shield of the mighty was defiled,
the shield of Saul, not #[1 Sam. 10:1]anointed with oil.
22“From the blood of the slain,
from the fat of the mighty,
# [1 Sam. 18:4] the bow of Jonathan turned not back,
and the sword of Saul returned not empty.
23“Saul and Jonathan, beloved and lovely!
In life and in death they were not divided;
they were #[Jer. 4:13; Hab. 1:8] swifter than eagles;
they were #[Judg. 14:18]stronger than lions.
24“You daughters of Israel, weep over Saul,
who clothed you luxuriously in scarlet,
# [Ezek. 16:11] who put ornaments of gold on your apparel.
25 # ver. 19 “How the mighty have fallen
in the midst of the battle!
“Jonathan lies slain on your high places.
26I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan;
very pleasant have you been to me;
# See 1 Sam. 18:1, 3 your love to me was extraordinary,
surpassing the love of women.
27 # [See ver. 25 above] “How the mighty have fallen,
and the weapons of war perished!”