David, Saul and Jonathan
1 When David had finished speak ing with Saul, Jonathan felt a deep affection for David and began to love him as himself. 2 Saul kept David with him from that day and did not allow him to return to his father’s house. 3 Then Jonathan made an agreement with David because he loved him as himself. 4 Jona than, taking off the cloak he was wearing, gave it to David; he also gave him his own armor, sword, bow and belt.
5 Wherever Saul sent David, he went and succeeded. For this reason, Saul put David in charge of the soldiers—a move which pleased Saul’s men and his officers as well. 6 When they arrived after David had slain the Philistine, the women came out from the cities of Israel to meet King Saul singing and dancing with timbrels and musical insruments. 7 They were merrily singing this song: “Saul has slain his thousands, and David, his tens of thousands.”
8 Saul was very displeased with this song and said, “They have given tens of thousands to David but to me only thousands! By now he has everything but the kingdom!” 9 From then on, Saul became very distrustful of David.
10 The following day, an evil spirit from God seized Saul, causing him to rave in his house. David then played on the lyre as he used to do, while Saul had his spear in hand. 11 Then Saul pointed it at David thinking, “I will nail David to the wall.” But David escaped on two occasions.
12 Saul saw that Yahweh was with David and had left him. And he was afraid. 13 So he removed David from his presence by making him chief of a thousand men. David went ahead of his troops 14 and was successful each time be cause Yahweh was with him. 15 The more successful David was, the more afraid Saul be came. 16 But all Israel and Judah loved David because he led them in their expeditions.
17 Saul said to David, “You know my eldest daughter, Merab. I will give her to you as your wife; be brave and fight Yahweh’s battles.” For Saul thought, “Let the Philistines strike him instead of myself.” 18 David answered Saul, “Who am I? And what is my father’s family in Israel that I should be the king’s son-in-law?” 19 Yet when it was time for Merab to be married to David, she was given instead to Adriel the Meholathite.
20 Now, Saul’s daughter, Michal, fell in love with David. When this came to Saul’s knowledge, he was very pleased 21 for he thought, “I shall promise her to him and it will be a snare to him. The Philistines will kill him.” So, Saul said to David a second time, “You shall now be my son-in-law.” 22 Then he commanded his servants to talk to David privately and say, “The king and all his servants like you. You should become the king’s son-in-law!” 23 Saul’s servants repeated these words to David who replied, “Do you think it is easy to become the king’s son-in-law, poor and unknown as I am?” 24 When Saul’s servants repeated to the king what David had said, 25 Saul ordered them to tell David, “The king wants no marriage gift other than a hundred Phi lis tine foreskins to take revenge on his enemies.” For Saul wanted David to fall into the hands of the Philistines. 26 Saul’s servants told this to David and it seemed to him that he could easily become the king’s son-in-law. 27 David and his men set out and killed two hundred Philistines. And they brought the king the foreskins so that David could become the king’s son-in-law. So Saul had to give his daughter Michal to David to become his wife.
28 Saul feared David for he knew that Yahweh was with him. But Michal, Saul’s daughter, loved him. 29 Saul feared David more and more and was his enemy until the end.
30 Whenever the Philistine chiefs en gaged David in battle, he succeeded more than any of Saul’s officers, in earning great fame for himself.