Saul was [forty] years old when he began to reign; and when he had reigned two years over Israel, 2 Saul chose three thousand men of Israel, of which two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and in the mount of Beth-el, and a thousand were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin: and the rest of the people he sent every man to his tent. 3 And Jonathan attacked the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba; and the Philistines heard of it. And Saul blew the trumpet throughout all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear. 4 And all Israel heard say that Saul had attacked the garrison of the Philistines, and also that Israel was had in abomination with the Philistines. And the people were gathered together after Saul to Gilgal.
5 And the Philistines assembled themselves together to fight with Israel, thirty thousand chariots, and six thousand horsemen, and people as the sand which is on the seashore in multitude: and they came up, and encamped in Michmash, eastward of Beth-aven. 6 When the men of Israel saw that they were in a critical situation, (for the people were distressed,) then the people hid themselves in caves, and in thickets, and in rocks, and in coverts, and in pits. 7 Now some of the Hebrews had gone over the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead; but as for Saul, he was still in Gilgal, and all the people followed him trembling.
8 And he waited seven days, according to the set time that Samuel had appointed: but Samuel did not come to Gilgal; and the people scattered from him. 9 And Saul said, Bring here the burnt-offering to me, and the peace-offerings. And he offered the burnt-offering. 10 And it came to pass that, as soon as he had made an end of offering the burnt-offering, behold, Samuel came; and Saul went out to meet him, that he might salute him. 11 And Samuel said, What have you done? And Saul said, Because I saw that the people were scattering from me, and that you came not within the days appointed, and that the Philistines assembled themselves together at Michmash; 12 therefore I said, Now will the Philistines come down upon me to Gilgal, and I have not sought the favor of Yahweh: I forced myself therefore, and offered the burnt-offering. 13 And Samuel said to Saul, You have done foolishly; you have not kept the commandment of Yahweh your Elohim, which he commanded you: for now would Yahweh have established your kingdom upon Israel forever. 14 But now your kingdom shall not continue: Yahweh has sought for himself a man after his own heart, and Yahweh has appointed him to be prince over his people, because you have not kept that which Yahweh commanded you. 15 And Samuel arose, and went up from Gilgal to Gibeah of Benjamin.
And Saul numbered the people that were present with him, about six hundred men. 16 And Saul, and Jonathan his son, and the people that were present with them, remained in Geba of Benjamin: but the Philistines encamped in Michmash. 17 And the plunderers came out of the camp of the Philistines in three companies: one company turned to the way that leads to Ophrah, to the land of Shual; 18 and another company turned the way to Beth-horon; and another company turned the way of the border that looks down on the valley of Zeboim toward the wilderness.
19 Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel; for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears: 20 but all the Israelites went down to the Philistines, to sharpen his plowshare, and his colter, and his axe, and his mattock; 21 yet they had a file for the mattocks, and for the colters, and for the forks, and for the axes, and to set the goads, 22 So it came to pass in the day of battle, that there was neither sword nor spear found in the hand of any of the people that were with Saul and Jonathan: only with Saul and with Jonathan his son was there found. 23 And the garrison of the Philistines went out to the pass of Michmash.
Now there came a day, that Jonathan the son of Saul said to the young man that carried his armor, Come and let us go over to the Philistines’ garrison, that is on yonder side. But he did not tell his father. 2 And Saul remained in the farthest part of Gibeah under the pomegranate tree which is in Migron: and the people that were with him were about six hundred men; 3 and Ahijah, the son of Ahitub, Ichabod’s brother, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eli, the priest of Yahweh in Shiloh, wearing an ephod. And the people knew not that Jonathan was gone. 4 And between the passes, by which Jonathan sought to go over to the Philistines’ garrison, there was a rocky crag on the one side, and a rocky crag on the other side: and the name of the one was Bozez, and the name of the other Seneh. 5 The one crag rose up on the north in front of Michmash, and the other on the south in front of Geba.
6 And Jonathan said to the young man that carried his armor, Come, and let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised: it may be that Yahweh will work for us; for there is no restraint to Yahweh to save by many or by few. 7 And his armorbearer said to him, Do all that is in your heart: turn you, behold, I am with you according to your heart. 8 Then Jonathan said, Behold, we will pass over to the men, and we will disclose ourselves to them. 9 If they say thus to us, Stay until we come to you; then we will stand still in our place, and will not go up to them. 10 But if they say thus, Come up to us; then we will go us; for Yahweh has delivered them into our hand: and this shall Lie the sign to us. 11 And both of them disclosed themselves to the garrison of the Philistines: and the Philistines said, Behold, the Hebrews come forth out of the holes where they had hid themselves. 12 And the men of the garrison answered Jonathan and his armorbearer, and said, Come up to us, and we will show you something. And Jonathan said to his armorbearer, Come up after me; for Yahweh has delivered them into the hand of Israel. 13 And Jonathan climbed up on his hands and on his feet, and his armorbearer after him: and they fell before Jonathan; and his armorbearer killed them after him. 14 And that first slaughter, which Jonathan and his armorbearer made, was about twenty men, within as it were half a furrow’s length in an acre of land. 15 And there was a trembling in the camp, in the field, and among all the people; the garrison, and the plunderers, they also trembled; and the earth quaked: so there was a very great trembling.
16 And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked; and, behold, the multitude melted away, and they went here and there. 17 Then Saul said to the people that were with him, Number now, and see who is gone from us. And when they had numbered, behold, Jonathan and his armorbearer were not there. 18 And Saul said to Ahijah, Bring here the ark of Elohim. For the ark of Elohim was there at that time with the children of Israel. 19 And it came to pass, while Saul talked to the priest, that the tumult that was in the camp of the Philistines went on and increased: and Saul said to the priest, Withdraw your hand. 20 And Saul and all the people that were with him were gathered together, and came to the battle: and, behold, every man’s sword was against his fellow, and there was a very great destruction. 21 Now the Hebrews that were with the Philistines as before, and that went up with them into the camp, from the country all around, even they also turned to be with the Israelites that were with Saul and Jonathan. 22 Likewise all the men of Israel that had hid themselves in the hill-country of Ephraim, when they heard that the Philistines fled, even they also followed hard after them in the battle. 23 So Yahweh saved Israel that day: and the battle passed over by Beth-aven.
24 And the men of Israel were distressed that day; for Saul had commanded the people, saying, Cursed be the man that eats any food until it be evening, and I be avenged on my enemies. So none of the people tasted food. 25 And all the people came into the forest; and there was honey upon the ground. 26 And when the people came to the forest, behold, the honey dropped: but no man put his hand to his mouth; for the people feared the oath. 27 But Jonathan heard not when his father charged the people with the oath: so he put forth the end of the rod that was in his hand, and dipped it in the honeycomb, and put his hand to his mouth; and his eyes brightened. 28 Then one of the people answered, and said, Your father strictly charged the people with an oath, saying, Cursed be the man that eats food this day. And the people were faint. 29 Then said Jonathan, My father has troubled the land: see, I pray you, how my eyes have been brightened, because I tasted a little of this honey. 30 flow much more, if the people had eaten freely today of the spoil of their enemies which they found? For now has there been no great slaughter among the Philistines.
31 And they struck of the Philistines that day from Michmash to Aijalon. And the people were very faint; 32 and the people flew upon the plunder, and took sheep, and oxen, and calves, and killed them on the ground; and the people ate them with the blood. 33 Then they told Saul, saying, Behold, the people sin against Yahweh, in that they eat with the blood. And he said, you have dealt treacherously: roll a great stone to me this day. 34 And Saul said, Disperse yourselves among the people, and say to them, Bring me here every man his ox, and every man his sheep, and kill them here, and eat; and sin not against Yahweh in eating with the blood. And all the people brought every man his ox with him that night, and killed them there. 35 And Saul built an altar to Yahweh: the same was the first altar that he built to Yahweh.
36 And Saul said, Let us go down after the Philistines by night, and take plunder among them until the morning light, and let us not leave a man of them. And they said, Do whatever seems good to you. Then the priest said, Let us draw near here to Elohim. 37 And Saul asked counsel of Elohim, Shall I go down after the Philistines? Will you deliver them into the hand of Israel? But he answered him not that day. 38 And Saul said, Draw near here, all you chiefs of the people; and know and see in which this sin has been this day. 39 For, as Yahweh lives, who saves Israel, though it be in Jonathan my son, he shall surely die. But there was not a man among all the people that answered him. 40 Then said he to all Israel, You be on one side, and I and Jonathan my son will be on the other side. And the people said to Saul, Do what seems good to you. 41 Therefore Saul said to Yahweh, the Elohim of Israel, Show the right. And Jonathan and Saul were taken by lot; but the people escaped. 42 And Saul said, Cast lots between me and Jonathan my son. And Jonathan was taken.
43 Then Saul said to Jonathan, Tell me what you have done. And Jonathan told him, and said, I certainly tasted a little honey with the end of the rod that was in my hand; and, lo, I must die. 44 And Saul said, Elohim do so and more also; for you shall surely die, Jonathan. 45 And the people said to Saul, Shall Jonathan die, who has worked this great salvation in Israel? Far from it: as Yahweh lives, there shall not one hair of his head fall to the ground; for he has worked with Elohim today. So the people rescued Jonathan, that he died not. 46 Then Saul went up from following the Philistines; and the Philistines went to their own place.
47 Now when Saul had taken the kingdom of Israel, he fought against all his enemies on every side, against Moab, and against the children of Ammon, and against Edom, and against the kings of Zobah, and against the Philistines: and wherever he turned himself, he put them to the worse. 48 And he did valiantly, and plundered the Amalekites, and delivered Israel out of the hands of them that defeated them.
49 Now the sons of Saul were Jonathan, and Ishvi, and Malchishua; and the names of his two daughters were these: the name of the firstborn Merab, and the name of the younger Michal: 50 and the name of Saul’s wife was Ahinoam the daughter of Ahimaaz. And the name of the captain of his army was Abner the son of Ner, Saul’s uncle. 51 And Kish was the father of Saul; and Ner the father of Abner was the son of Abiel.
52 And there was bitter war against the Philistines all the days of Saul: and when Saul saw any mighty man, or any valiant man, he took him to himself.
And Samuel said to Saul, Yahweh sent me to anoint you to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore listen to the voice of the words of Yahweh. 2 In this manner says Yahweh of hosts, I have marked that which Amalek did to Israel, how he set himself against him in the way when he came up out of Egypt. 3 Now go and strike Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but kill both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
4 And Saul summoned the people, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah, 5 And Saul came to the city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley. 6 And Saul said to the Kenites, Go, depart, get you down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them; for you showed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites. 7 And Saul struck the Amalekites, from Havilah as far as Shur, that is before Egypt. 8 And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword. 9 But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but everything that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.
10 Then came the word of Yahweh to Samuel, saying, 11 It grieves me that I have set up Saul to be king; for he has turned back from following me, and has not performed my commandments. And Samuel was angry; and he cried to Yahweh all night. 12 And Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning; and it was told to Samuel, saying, Saul came to Carmel, and, behold, he set himself up a monument, and turned, and passed on, and went down to Gilgal. 13 And Samuel came to Saul; and Saul said to him, Blessed be you of Yahweh: I have performed the commandment of Yahweh. 14 And Samuel said, What means then this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear? 15 And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice to Yahweh your Elohim; and the rest we have utterly destroyed. 16 Then Samuel said to Saul, Stay, and I will tell you what Yahweh has said to me this night. And he said to him, Say on.
17 And Samuel said, Though you were tittle in your own sight, were you not made the head of the tribes of Israel? And Yahweh anointed you king over Israel; 18 and Yahweh sent you on a journey, and said, Go, and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed. 19 Why then did you not obey the voice of Yahweh, but flew upon the plunder, and did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh? 20 And Saul said to Samuel, Yes, I have obeyed the voice of Yahweh, and have gone the way which Yahweh sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. 21 But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the chief of the devoted things, to sacrifice to Yahweh your Elohim in Gilgal. 22 And Samuel said, Has Yahweh as great delight in burnt-offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of Yahweh? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to listen better than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as idolatry and teraphim, Because you have rejected the word of Yahweh, he has also rejected you from being king.
24 And Saul said to Samuel, I have sinned; for I have transgressed the commandment of Yahweh, and your words, because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice. 25 Now therefore, I pray you pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship Yahweh. 26 And Samuel said to Saul, I will not return with you; for you have rejected the word of Yahweh, and Yahweh has rejected you from being king over Israel. 27 And as Samuel turned about to go away, Saul laid hold upon the skirt of his robe, and it tore. 28 And Samuel said to him, Yahweh has torn the kingdom of Israel from you this day, and has given it to a neighbor of yours, that is better than you. 29 And also the Strength of Israel will not lie or repent; for he is not a man, that he should repent. 30 Then he said, I have sinned: yet honor me now, I pray you, before the elders of my people, and before Israel, and turn again with me, that I may worship Yahweh your Elohim. 31 So Samuel turned again after Saul; and Saul worshiped Yahweh.
32 Then Samuel said, Bring here to me Agag the king of the Amalekites. And Agag came to him cheerfully. And Agag said, Surely the bitterness of death is past. 33 And Samuel said, As your sword has made women childless, so shall your mother be childless among women. And Samuel cut Agag in pieces before Yahweh in Gilgal.
34 Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul. 35 And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death; for Samuel mourned for Saul: and Yahweh grieved that he had made Saul king over Israel.