David therefore departed from there, and escaped to the cave of Adullam: and when his brethren and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. 2 And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves to him; and he became captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.
3 And David went from there to Mizpeh of Moab: and he said to the king of Moab, Let my father and my mother, I pray you, come forth, and be with you, till I know what Elohim will do for me. 4 And he brought them before the king of Moab: and they dwelt with him all the while that David was in the stronghold. 5 And the prophet Gad said to David, Do not remain in the stronghold; depart, and go to the land of Judah. Then David departed, and came into the forest of Hereth.
6 And Saul heard that David was discovered, and the men that were with him: now Saul was sitting in Gibeah, under the tamarisk tree in Ramah, with his spear in his hand, and all his servants were standing around him. 7 And Saul said to his servants that stood around him, Hear now, you Benjamites; will the son of Jesse give every one of you fields and vineyards, will he make you all captains of thousands and captains of hundreds, 8 that all of you have conspired against me, and there is nobody that tells me when my son makes a league with the son of Jesse, and there is none of you that is sorry for me, or tells me that my son has stirred up my servant against me, to lie in wait, as at this day? 9 Then answered Doeg the Edomite, who stood by the servants of Saul, and said, I saw the son of Jesse coming to Nob, to Ahimelech the son of Ahitub. 10 And he inquired of Yahweh for him, and gave him provisions, and gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine.
11 Then the king sent to call Ahimelech the priest, the son of Ahitub, and all his father’s house, the priests that were in Nob: and they all came to the king. 12 And Saul said, Hear now, you son of Ahitub. And he answered, Here I am, my superior. 13 And Saul said to him, Why have you conspired against me, you and the son of Jesse, in that you have given him bread, and a sword, and have inquired of Elohim for him, that he should rise against me, to lie in wait; as at this day? 14 Then Ahimelech answered the king, and said, And who among all your servants is so faithful as David, who is the king’s son-in-law, and is taken into your council, and is honorable in your house? 15 Have I today begun to inquire of Elohim for him? It is far from me: do not let the king impute anythingto his servant, nor to all the house of my father; for your servant knows nothing of all this, more or less. 16 And the king said, You shall surely die, Ahimelech, you, and all your father’s house. 17 And the king said to the guard that stood around him, Turn, and kill the priests of Yahweh; because their hand also is with David, and because they knew that he fled, and did not tell it to me. But the servants of the king would not put forth their hand to fall upon the priests of Yahweh. 18 And the king said to Doeg, Turn yourself, and fall upon the priests. And Doeg the Edomite turned, and he fell upon the priests, and he killed on that day eighty-five persons that did wear a linen ephod. 19 And Nob, the city of the priests, he struck with the edge of the sword, both men and women, children and sucklings, and oxen and asses and sheep, with the edge of the sword.
20 And one of the sons of Ahimelech the son of Ahitub, named Abiathar, escaped, and fled after David. 21 And Abiathar told David that Saul had killed Yahweh’s priests. 22 And David said to Abiathar, I knew on that day, when Doeg the Edomite was there, that he would surely tell Saul: I am responsible for the death of all the persons of your father’s house. 23 Remain with me, fear not; for he that seeks my life seeks your life: for with me you shall be in safeguard.
And they told David, saying, Behold, the Philistines are fighting against Keilah, and are robbing the threshing-floors. 2 Therefore David inquired of Yahweh, saying, Shall I go and attack these Philistines? And Yahweh said to David, Go, and attack the Philistines, and save Keilah. 3 And David’s men said to him, Behold, we are afraid here in Judah: how much more then if we go to Keilah against the armies of the Philistines? 4 Then David inquired of Yahweh yet again. And Yahweh answered him and said, Arise, go down to Keilah; for I will deliver the Philistines into your hand. 5 And David and his men went to Keilah, and fought with the Philistines, and brought away their cattle, and killed them with a great slaughter. So David saved the inhabitants of Keilah. 6 And it came to pass, when Abiathar the son of Ahimelech fled to David to Keilah, that he came down with an ephod in his hand.
7 And it was told to Saul that David had come to Keilah. And Saul said, Elohim has delivered him into my hand; for he is shut in, by entering into a town that has gates and bars. 8 And Saul summoned all the people to war, to go down to Keilah, to besiege David and his men. 9 And David knew that Saul was devising mischief against him; and he said to Abiathar the priest, Bring the ephod here. 10 Then David said, O Yahweh, the Elohim of Israel, your servant has surely heard that Saul seeks to come to Keilah, to destroy the city for my sake. 11 Will the men of Keilah deliver me up into his hand? Will Saul come down, as your servant has heard? O Yahweh, the Elohim of Israel, I am pleading with you, tell your servant. And Yahweh said, He will come down. 12 Then David said, Will the men of Keilah deliver me and my men up into the hand of Saul? And Yahweh said, They will deliver you up. 13 Then David and his men, who were about six hundred, rose and departed out of Keilah, and went wherever they could go. And it was told to Saul that David had escaped from Keilah; and he did not go forth. 14 And David remained in the wilderness in the strongholds, and remained in the hill-country in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but Elohim did not deliver him into his hand.
15 And David saw that Saul had come out to seek his life: and David was in the wilderness of Ziph in the wood. 16 And Jonathan, Saul’s son, arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in Elohim. 17 And he said to him, Fear not; for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you; and you shall be king over Israel, and I shall be next to you; and that also Saul my father knows. 18 And they made a covenant before Yahweh: and David remained in the wood, and Jonathan went to his house.
19 Then the Ziphites came up to Saul to Gibeah, saying, Does not David hide himself with us in the strongholds in the wood, in the hill of Hachilah, which is on the south of the desert? 20 Now therefore, O king, come down, according to all the desire of your soul to come down; and our part shall be to deliver him up into the king’s hand. 21 And Saul said, Blessed be you of Yahweh; for you have had compassion on me. 22 Go, I pray you, make sure, and know and see his place where he frequently is, and who has seen him there; for it has been told to me that he deals very subtly. 23 See therefore, and take knowledge of all the lurking-places where he hides himself, and come again to me of a certainty, and I will go with you: and it shall come to pass, if he is in the land, that I will search him out among all the thousands of Judah.
24 And they arose, and went to Ziph before Saul: but David and his men were in the wilderness of Maon, in the Arabah on the south of the desert. 25 And Saul and his men went to seek him. And they told David: then he came down to the rock, and remained in the wilderness of Maon. And when Saul heard that, he pursued after David in the wilderness of Maon. 26 And Saul went on this side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other side of the mountain: and David hurried to get away for fear of Saul; for Saul and his men surrounded David and his men all around to take them. 27 But there a messenger came to Saul, saying, Hurry, and come; for the Philistines have made a raid on the land. 28 So Saul returned from pursuing after David, and went against the Philistines: therefore they called that place Sela-hammahlekoth. 29 And David went up from there, and dwelt in the strongholds of En-gedi.
And it came to pass, when Saul had returned from following the Philistines, that it was told to him, saying, Behold, David is in the wilderness of En-gedi. 2 Then Saul took three thousand chosen men out of all Israel, and went to seek David and his men upon the rocks of the wild goats. 3 And he came to the sheepfolds by the way, where a cave was; and Saul went in to cover his feet. Now David and his men were remaining in the innermost parts of the cave. 4 And the men of David said to him, Behold, the day of which Yahweh said to you, Behold, I will deliver your enemy into your hand, and you shall do to him as it shall seem good to you. Then David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul’s robe privately. 5 And it came to pass afterward, that David’s heart grieved him, because he had cut off Saul’s skirt. 6 And he said to his men, Yahweh forbid that I should do this thing to my master, Yahweh’s anointed, to put forth my hand against him, seeing he is Yahweh’s anointed. 7 So David checked his men with these words, and did not allow them to rise against Saul. And Saul rose up out of the cave, and went on his way.
8 David also arose afterward, and went out of the cave, and cried after Saul, saying My Superior the king. And when Saul looked behind him, David bowed with his face to the earth, and did obeisance. 9 And David said to Saul, Why do you listen to men’s words, saying, Behold, David seeks to harm you? 10 Behold, this day your eyes have seen how that Yahweh had delivered you today into my hand in the cave: and some urged me to kill you; but my eye spared you; and I said, I will not put forth my hand against my Sovereign; for he is Yahweh’s anointed. 11 Moreover, my father, see, yes, see the skirt of your robe in my hand; for in that I cut off the skirt of your robe, and did not kill you, know and see that there is neither evil nor transgression in my hand, and I have not sinned against you, though you hunt after my life to take it. 12 May Yahweh judge between me and you; and may Yahweh avenge me of you; but my hand shall not be upon you. 13 As says the proverb of the ancients, Out of the wicked comes forth wickedness; but my hand shall not be upon you. 14 After whom is the king of Israel come out? After whom did you pursue? After a dead dog, after a flea. 15 May Yahweh therefore be judge, and give sentence between me and you, and see, and plead my cause, and deliver me out of your hand.
16 And it came to pass, when, David had made an end of speaking these words to Saul, that Saul said, Is this your voice, my son David? And Saul lifted up his voice, and wept. 17 And he said to David, You are more righteous than I; for you have rendered to me good, whereas I have rendered to you evil. 18 And you have declared this day how that you have dealt well with me, forasmuch as when Yahweh had delivered me up into your hand, you did not kill me. 19 For if a man finds his enemy, will he let him go well away? May Yahweh reward you good for that which you have done to me this day. 20 And now, behold, I know that you shall surely be king, and that the kingdom of Israel shall be established in your hand. 21 Swear now therefore to me by Yahweh, that you will not cut off my seed after me, and that you will not destroy my name out of my father’s house. 22 And David swore to Saul. And Saul went home; but David and his men went up to the stronghold.