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The First Book of Samuel

also called the First Book of the Kings

(Part Four)


The 18th Chapter
     And when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, the soul of Jonathas was knit with the soul of David. Insomuch that he loved him as his own soul. And Saul took him that day and would let him go no more home to his fathers house. And Jonathas and David bound themselves the one to the other, for Jonathas loved him as his own soul. And Jonathas put off his own coat that was upon him, and gave it David, and thereto his mantle, his sword, his bow and his girdle. And David went out to all that Saul sent him, and behaved himself wisely. And when Saul had set him over his men of war, he pleased all the people, and Sauls servants thereto.
     And it happened as they went, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, that women came out of all cities of Israel singing and dancing, against Saul, with timbrels, with joy, and with fiddles. And the women that played sang thereto, and said: Saul has slain his thousand, and David his ten thousand. Then was Saul exceeding wroth and that saying displeased him, and he said: they have ascribed unto David ten thousand, and to me but a thousand. And what can he more have save the kingdom? Wherefore Saul looked on side of David from that day forward. And it happened on the morrow, that the evil spirit sent of God came upon Saul, so that he prophesied in the midst of the house. And David played on the instrument with his hand as he was daily wont And Saul had a spear in his hand, and hurled it intending to have nailed David to the wall. But David avoided out of his presence two times. For Saul was afeared of David, because the Lord was with him, and was departed from Saul. And then Saul put David from him and made him a captain over a thousand, and he went out and in before the people. And David was wise in all that he took in hand, and the Lord was with him. Wherefore when Saul saw that he was so exceeding wise, he was afraid of him. But all Israel and Juda loved David, because he went out and in before them. Then said Saul to David. Behold my eldest daughter Merob, her I will give you to wife: Only play the man and fight the Lords battles. For Saul thought mine hand shall not be upon him, but the hand of the Philistines. And David answered Saul: what am I? and what is my life or the kindred of my father in Israel, that I should be son in law to the king: How be it when the time was come that Merob Sauls daughter should have been given to David she was given unto Adziel a Neholothite, to wife. How be it Michol Sauls daughter loved David. And when it was showed Saul: the thing pleased him well. And he said: I will give him her that she may be a snare to him, to bring the hand of the Philistines upon him. And Saul said to David: you shall this day be my son in law again. And Saul commanded his servants to commune with David secretly and say: Behold the King has a favor to you, and all his servants love you, be therefore the kings son in law.
     And Sauls servants spoke those words in the ears of David. But David answered: seems it to you a light thing to be the kings son in law, when I am a poor man and of small reputation? And Sauls servants told him again saying: of this manner answered David. Then said Saul: this wise say to David: the king cares for no other dowry but for an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the kings enemies. For Saul thought to make David fall into the hands of the Philistines. Then his servants told David these words, and it pleased David well to be the kings son in law. And shortly after that David arose with his men, and went, and slew of the Philistines, two hundred men, and brought their foreskins, and satisfied the King thereof to be his son in law. And so Saul gave him Michol his daughter to wife. And when Saul saw and understood, how that the Lord was with David, and that Michol his daughter loved him, he was the more afraid of David, and became Davids enemy for ever. And when the Philistines went out to war, David behaved himself wiser than all the servants of Saul: so that his name was much set by.

The 19th Chapter
     Then Saul communed with Jonathas his son, and with all his servants, that they should kill David. But Jonathas Sauls son had a great favor to David, and told David saying: Saul my father goes about to slay you. Now therefore take heed to yourself betimes (quickly, soon) and abide in some secret place and hide yourself. And I will go out and stand by my father in the field where you are, and will commune with my father of you, and if I can perceive anything I will tell you. And Jonathas spoke the best of David unto Saul his father and said unto him: let not the king sin against his servant David, for he has not sinned against you, and his works are to you ward very good. For he did put his life in his hand and slew the Philistine, and the Lord gave a great victory to all Israel. And you saw it, and you rejoiced, wherefore then should you sin against innocent blood, and slay David for nought? And Saul hearkened unto the voice of Jonathas and swore: as truly as the Lord lives, he shall not die. Then Jonathas called David and showed him all those words, and brought him to Saul. And he was in his presence as in times past.
     And the war began again, and David went out and fought with the Philistines and slew a great slaughter, and put them to flight. And the evil spirit of the Lord was upon Saul as he sat in his house having a *Javelin in his hand, and David played with his hand. And Saul intended to nail David to the wall with the *Javelin: But David rid himself out of Sauls presence and he smote the spear into the wall. But David fled and saved himself that same night. Then Saul sent messengers unto Davids house, to watch him and to slay him in the morning. But Michol his wife told it him saying: If you save not yourself this night, tomorrow you are a dead man. And so Michol let David down through a window, and he went and fled and saved himself. And then she took an Image and laid it in the bed, and put a pillow stuffed with goats hair under the head of it, and covered it with a cloth. And when Saul sent messengers to fetch David, she said that he was sick. Then Saul sent the messengers to see David saying: bring him to me, bed and all, that he may be slain. And when the messengers were come in: Behold there lay an Image in the bed, with a pillow of goats hair under the head of it. Then said Saul to Michol: why have you mocked me so, and sent away mine enemy, that he is escaped? And Michol answered Saul: he said unto me, let me go, or else I will kill you. And so David fled and escaped and went to Samuel to Ramath and told him all that Saul had done to him. And he, and Samuel went and dwelt in Naioth. *J capital
     And it was told Saul saying: Behold, David is at Naioth in Ramath, then Saul sent messengers to fetch David. And when they saw a company of prophets prophesying and Samuel standing fast by them, the spirit of God fell upon the messengers of Saul, and they prophesied too. And when it was told Saul, he sent other messengers, and they prophesied likewise. And Saul sent messengers yet again the third time which prophesied also. Then went he himself to Ramath, and when he came to a great well that is in Socoh, he asked and said: where are Samuel and David? And they said: see they be at Naioth in Ramath and as he went over there to Naioth in Ramath the spirit of God came upon him also and he went prophesying, until he came to Naioth in Ramath. And he stripped off his clothes and prophesied before Samuel in like manner, and fell naked all that day and all that night, wherefore it is a common saying, is Saul also among the prophets?

The 20th Chapter
     And David fled from Naioth in Ramath and went and said before Jonathas: What have I done? wherein am I faulty? what is the sin that I have committed before your father that he seeks my life? And Jonathas answered him: God forbid, you shall not die. For see my father will do nothing either great or small, but that he will show it me. For why should my father hide this thing from me? there shall be no such thing. And David swore again and said: your father knows that I have found grace in your eyes and therefore he thinks, Jonathas shall not know it, least he be sorry. For in very deed even as truly as the Lord lives, and as truly as your soul lives, there is but a step between me and death. Then said Jonathas unto David, whatsoever your soul desires that I will do unto you. And David said unto Jonathas: Behold, tomorrow is the first day of the month, and I should sit with the king at meat. But let me go that I may hide myself in the fields unto this day three days at evening. If your father miss me, then say: David asked leave of me, that he might go to Bethlehem to his own city, for there is holden a yearly feast for all his kin. And if your father say thus: it is well done, then your servant shall have peace. But and if he be angry: then be sure that wickedness is utterly concluded of him. And then you shall show mercy unto your servant, for you have made with me your servant a bond in the Lord. Notwithstanding if there be in me any trespass, then slay me yourself, for what needs you to bring me to your father?
     And Jonathas answered: God keep that from you, that I should know, that wickedness were concluded of my father, to come upon you: and should not tell it you. Then said David, who shall tell me, if your father answer cruelly? Then said Jonathas to David, come and let us go out into the fields. And they went out both of them into the fields.
     And Jonathas said unto David: O' Lord God of Israel, when I have groped my fathers mind, one time or other within this three days, that it stand well with David: and I then send not unto you and show it you, the Lord do so and so unto Jonathas. And in like manner, if evil to you ward please my father, I will show you and send you away, that you may go in peace. And the Lord be with you as he has been with my father. And you shall perform unto me the mercy of the Lord, not only while I live but even when I am dead pluck not your mercy away from my house forever: No not when the Lord has destroyed the enemies of David every one from the face of the earth.
     And so Jonathas made a bond with the house of David, desiring that the Lord should seek out of the hands of Davids enemies their wickedness. And with other words Jonathas earnestly spoke to David, because he loved him. For as his own soul he loved him.
     Then said Jonathas to David: tomorrow shall be the first day of the moon. And you shall be missed, because the place shall appear empty. But this day three days come in any wise unto the place where you shall hide your self, when it is workday: even by the stone Esell. And I will shoot three arrows by the one side thereof, as though I shot at a mark, and will send after a lad, and bid him go seek the arrows. If I say unto the lad: see the arrows are on this side you, bring them: then come you: for it is peace and nothing to do, as sure as the Lord lives. But and if I say thus unto the young fellow, behold, the *Arrows are beyond you, then go, for the Lord has sent you away. And of this which you and I have spoke: behold the Lord is witness between you and me for ever. And so David hid himself in the field. And when the new moon was come, the king sat him down at meat, for to eat. And the king sat him down after the old manner, in his seat by the wall. And Jonathas arose, and Abner sat by Sauls side, and Davids place was empty. Nevertheless yet Saul said nothing at all that day. For he thought something had chanced him that he is not clean. But on the morrow which was the second day of the moon, when Davids place appeared empty, Saul said unto Jonathas his son: wherefore comes not the son of Isai to meat, neither yesterday nor today? And Jonathas answered unto Saul, David asked license of me to go to Bethlehem saying: let me go I pray you, for our kindred hold an offering in the city, and my brother has sent for me. Now therefore if I have found favor in your eyes let me go and see my brother. And therefore he comes not unto the table of the King. Then was Saul angry with Jonathas and said unto him: O froward and rebellious, think you I know not how you have chosen the son of Isai unto your own rebuke, and unto the rebuke and shame of your mother. For as long as the son of Isai lies upon the earth, you shall not be stablished, nor yet your kingdom, wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he is the child of death.
     But Jonathas answered Saul his father and said to him: wherefore should he
die? what has he done? Then Saul cast a spear at him to hit him, whereby Jonathas knew well, that it was utterly determined of his father, to slay David. And so Jonathas arose from the table in a great anger and did eat no meat the second day of the month, for he was sorry for David, because his father had done him shame. On the next morning Jonathas went out unto the field, at the time appointed with David, and a little lad with him. And he said unto the boy: run and find out mine arrows which I shoot. And as the boy ran, he shot an arrow beyond him. And when the lad was come to the place *whither Jonathas had shot the arrow, Jonathas cried after him and said: the arrow is beyond you. And he cried after the lad: haste, make speed and stand not still. And Jonathas lad gathered up the arrow and came to his master. But the lad knew nothing of the matter: Only Jonathas and David knew it. Then Jonathas gave his weapons unto the lad and said unto him: go and carry them to the town. And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place that was toward the south and fell on his face to the ground and bowed himself three times. And they kissed either other and wept together, but David more abundantly. And Jonathas said to David: go in peace which we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord saying: the Lord be between you and me, and between your seed and mine for ever. And he rose and departed. And Jonathas went in to the town. *whither=what ever place, result, or condition.

The 21st Chapter
     Then came David to Nob to Ahimelech the priest. And Ahimelech was astounded at his coming and said unto him: Why comes you yourself alone, and no man with you? And David said to Ahimelech the priest: the king has commanded me to do a certain thing and said unto me, let no man know whereabout I send and what I have commanded you to do. And therefore I have appointed my servants to such and such places. And now what have you under your hand? give me five leaves of bread or what comes to hand.
     And the priest answered David and said: there is no common bread under mine hand, but there is hallowed bread, if the young men had abstained only from women. And David answered the priest and said unto him: of a truth women has been locked up from us about a three days, when I came out: and the vessels of the young men were holy. How be it this way is unpure, but it shall be hallowed in the vessel. And so the priest gave him hallowed bread, for there was none other bread there save showbreads that were taken from before the Lord, to put fresh bread there, the day that it was taken away.
     And there was there the same day a certain man of the servants of Saul abiding before the Lord named Doeg an Edomite, the chiefest of Sauls herdsmen. And David said unto Ahimelech: is not here under your hand other spear or sword? for I have neither brought my sword nor mine harness with me, because the Kings business required haste. Then the priest answered: the sword of Goliath the Philistine whom you slew in Oakdale, that is here wrapped in a cloth behind the Ephod. If you will take that, take it: for there is no other save that here. And David said: there is none to that, give it me.
     And David arose and fled the same day from the presence of Saul, and went to Achis the king of Geth. And the servants of Achis said of him: is not this David the King of the land? did they not sing unto this fellow in dances saying: Saul has slain his thousand, and David his ten thousand? And David put those words into his heart and was sore afraid of Achis the King of Geth. And he changed his countenance before them, and raved in their hands, and *scrabbled on the doors of the gate, and let his spittle fall down upon his beard. *scrabbled: to scrape and mark with the hands frantically.
     Then said Achis unto his servant. Lo you saw that this man was beside himself, wherefore then have you brought him to me? lack I madmen, that you have brought this fellow to play the madman in my presence? he shall not come into my house.

The 22nd Chapter
     And David departed from that place and escaped, and came unto the cave Odollam. When his brethren and all his fathers house heard it, they went over there to him. And there gathered unto him all men that were in cumbrance and in debt and troubled in their hearts, and he became a captain over them. And there were with him upon a four hundred men. And David went from that place to Mazphah in the land of Moab, and said unto the King of Moab: Let my father and mother I pray you, have their abiding with you, till I know what God will do with me. And he left them with the King of Moab, and they dwelt with him all the while that David kept himself in holds. And the prophet Gad said unto David: Abide not in castles, but depart and go to the land of Juda. Then David departed and came into the forest Hareth. And Saul heard of it: for David was known and also the men that were with him. And as Saul sat in Gabaah under a grove upon a high bank with his spear in his hand and all his men about him, he said unto his servants that stood about him: Hear I pray you, you sons of Jemini: will the son of Isai also give every one of you fields and vineyards, and make you all captains over thousands and over hundreds? that you have all conspired against me, so that there is none of you that opens mine ear, insomuch that my son has made a bond with the son of Isai, neither is there any of you that mourns for me or shows it in mine ear: because my son has set up my servant to lie await against me, as it appears this day.
     Then answered Doeg the Edomite, which had the oversight of the servants of Saul and said: I saw the son of Isai, when he came to Nob, to Ahimelech the son of Ahitob, which asked counsel of the Lord for him, and gave him victuals, and the sword of Goliath the Philistine also. Then the king sent to call Ahimelech the priest the son of Ahitob, and all his fathers house: that is to say, the priests that were in Nob. And they came all to the King. And Saul said: hear you son of Ahitob. And he said: here I am my lord. Then said Saul to him: why have you conspired against me, you and the son of Isai, insomuch that you have given him victual and a sword, and have asked counsel of God for him, that he should arise against me and lie await as it is come to pass this day? And Ahimelech answered the king and said: who is so faithful among all your servants as David and thereto the kings son in law, and goes at your bidding, and is had in honor in your house? have I this day begun first to ask counsel of God for him? God forbid that from me: let not the king put such a thing unto his servant and on all the house of my father. For your servant knows nothing of all this, either less or more.
     But for all that the king said: you shall surely die Ahimelech, both you and all your fathers house. Then said the king unto his footmen that stood about him: turn and slay the priests of the Lord, both because their hand is with David and because they knew when David fled and showed it not to me. But the servants of the king would not move their hands, to run upon the priests of the Lord. Then said the King to Doeg: turn you and smite the priests. And Doeg the Edomite turned and ran upon the priests and slew that same day four score and five persons that did wear each man a linen Ephod. And Nob the city of the priests he smote with the edge of the sword, both man and woman, child and suckling, with ox, ass and sheep.
     But yet one of the sons of Ahimelech the son of Ahitob, named Abiathar, escaped and fled to David, and showed David, how that Saul had slain the Lords priests. And David said unto Abiathar: I knew it the same day, that Doeg the Edomite which was there would tell it Saul. And I am cause of the death of all the Souls of your fathers house. Abide with me and fear not: he that seeks your soul, shall seek mine, and with me you shall be in safeguard.

The 23rd Chapter
     Then men told David saying: Behold, the Philistines fight against Keilah, and spoil the barns. Then David asked the Lords advice saying: shall I go and smite the Philistines? And the Lord said unto David: go and smite the Philistines and save Keilah. Then said Davids men unto him: see we be afraid here in Juda. What shall we then be, when we come to Keilah, to the host of the Philistines? Then David asked the Lord again. And the Lord answered him and said: up and go to Keilah, for I will deliver the Philistines into your hands.
     And so David and his men went to Keilah and fought with the Philistines, and drove away their cattle and slew a great slaughter of them. And so David saved the inhabiters of Keilah. And it chanced when Abiathar the son of Ahimelech fled to David to Keilah that he brought an Ephod in his hand.
     And it was told Saul, that David was come to Keilah. Then said Saul: God has delivered him into mine hand. For he is shut in, that he is come into a town with gates and bars. And Saul called all the people to war, for to go to Keilah to besiege David and his men. But David had knowledge that Saul imagined mischief against him, and said therefore to Abiathar the priest: Bring the Ephod. Then said David, O' Lord God of Israel, your servant hears that Saul is about to come to Keilah to destroy the city for my sake: will the men of Keilah deliver me into his hand? or will Saul come as your servant hears say? Lord God of Israel tell your servant. And the Lord said: he will come. Then said David: will the men of Keilah deliver me and my men into the hand of Saul? and the Lord said they will deliver you.
     Then David and his men which were upon a six hundred, arose and departed out of Keilah and went *whither chance drove them. And when it was told Saul, that David was fled from Keilah, he let the journey alone. And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him all his life, but God delivered him not into his hand. And David saw that Saul was come out, to seek his life, while David was in the wilderness of Ziph in a thicket. And Jonathas Sauls son arose and went to David to the thicket, and strengthened him in God, and said unto him: fear not, for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you, and you shall be king over Israel, and I must be next unto you: And Saul my father thereto knows that it shall be so. And they made a bond both of them together before the Lord. And David tarried still in the thicket, and Jonathas went to his house. *whither=what ever place, result, or condition.
     Then came the Ziphites to Saul, to Gabaah saying: David hides himself fast by us in strong holds that are in a thicket in the hill of Hachilah right side of the wilderness. Now therefore sir king, come down with lust that your soul has to come. And our part shall be to deliver him into the hands of the king. Then said Saul: Blessed are you in the Lord: for you have compassion on me. Go I pray you and mark more diligently, and know and see his haunt, where his foot has been, and who has seen him there: for it is told me that he is very subtle. See therefore and know all the lurking where he lurks, and come again to me with the certainty, and I will go with you. And then if he be in the land, I will hunt him out with all the thousands of Juda.
     And they arose and went to Ziph before Saul. But David and his men in the wilderness of Maon, in the wild field, on the right hand wilderness. For when Saul was gone with his men to seek, it was told David. And therefore he went unto a *Rock and dwelt in the wilderness of Maon. And when Saul heard that, he followed after David into the wilderness of Moan. And Saul and his men went on the one side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other. And David as a man amazed, made haste to get from Saul. For Saul and his men had compassed David and his men round to take them. *Rock exactly as recorded
     But there came a messenger to Saul saying: Haste you and come, Philistines are come in and rove the land. Wherefore Saul returned from persecuting David, and went against the Philistines. And therefore the called *Selah Mahelecoth. And then David went from that place and dwelt in holds at Engadi. *Selah Mahelecoth: that is the Rock of division.

The 24th Chapter
     When Saul was come again from the Philistines, there were that told him saying: behold, David is in the wilderness of Engadi. Then Saul took three thousand men out of all Israel, and went to seek David and his men in the *Rocks, where no thing haunted but wild goats. And he came to the flocks of sheep by a ways side where was a cave. And Saul went in to *cover his feet. And David and his men sat a long by the sides of the cave. And the of David said unto him: see the day is come, of which the Lord said unto you: Behold, I will deliver your enemy into your hand, and you shall do with him what it pleases you. Then David arose and cut off a lap of Sauls coat privily. And immediately Davids heart smote him, because he had cut off a lap of Sauls coat. And he said unto his men: the Lord keep me from doing that thing unto my master that is the Lords anointed, to lay mine hand upon him, seeing he is the Lords anointed. And so David kept of his servants with words, and allowed them not to go upon Saul. * to cover his feet; is to rest, as Boaz was doing when Ruth came to him, book of Ruth
     And when Saul was up out of the cave and gone away, David arose and went out of the cave and cried after Saul saying: My lord king. And Saul looked behind him. And David stooped to the earth and bowed himself, and said to Saul: wherefore gives you an ear to mens words, that say, David seeks you evil? Behold this day your eyes have seen, how that the Lord had delivered you this day, into mine hand in the cave. When they bade kill you, mine eye had compassion on you: and I said: I will not lay my hands on my master, for he is the Lords anointed. And moreover my father, see yet the lap of your coat in my hand. And in as much as I killed you not too, when I cut off the lap of your coat, understand and see, that there is neither evil nor rebelliousness in me, and that I have not sinned against you. And yet you hunt after my soul to take it. The Lord be judge between you and me, and the Lord avenge me of you. But mine hand be not upon you. According to the old proverb, wickedness shall proceed out of the wicked: But mine hand be not upon you. After whom are you come out, you king of Israel? After whom chase you, even after a dead dog, and after a flea. The Lord be judge and judge between you and me, and see and *pleate my cause, and judge me free out of your hand. When David had made an end of speaking all these words to Saul, Saul said: is this your voice my son David? and he lifted up his voice and wept, and said to David: you are righteouser than I, for you have rewarded me with good, and I have rewarded you with evil. And you have showed this day how that you have dealt lovingly with me, for as much as when the Lord had locked me in your hands, you slew me not. For who shall find his enemy, and let him depart a good way. Wherefore the Lord reward you with good, for that you have done unto me this day. And now I know well that you shall be King, and that the kingdom of Israel shall be stablished in your hand. Swear therefore unto me by the Lord, that you shall not destroy my seed after me, and that you shall not destroy my name out of my fathers house. And David swore unto Saul, and Saul went home. But David and his men got up unto an hold.*pleate: plead

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