Saul tries to kill David who acts kindly to his pursuer
¶ And the Ziphites came unto Saul to Gibeah, saying, Doth not David
hide himself in the hill of Hachilah, which is before Jeshimon?
2 Then Saul arose, and went down to the wilderness of Ziph, having three thousand chosen men of Israel with him, to seek David in the wilderness of Ziph.
3 And Saul pitched in the hill of Hachilah, which is before Jeshimon, by the way. But David abode in the wilderness, and he saw that Saul came after him into the wilderness.
- Hachilah See 1sa2319.
There is no reason to suppose that this is one of two biblical accounts
of the same story.
1 - Ziphites ... David ... Hachilah David and Saul had played hide and seek here before under similar circumstances. See 1sa23 & 1sa24.
| 4 David therefore sent
out spies, and understood that Saul was come in very deed.
5 And David arose, and came to the place where Saul had pitched: and David beheld the place where Saul lay, and Abner the son of Ner, the captain of his host: and Saul lay in the trench, and the people pitched round about him.
|5 - Trench From ma'gal, Or an entrenchment. See the word in 1sa1720.|
| 6 ¶ Then answered David
and said to Ahimelech the Hittite, and to Abishai the son of Zeruiah, brother
to Joab, saying, Who will go down with me to Saul to the camp? And Abishai
said, I will go down with thee.
7 So David and Abishai came to the people by night: and, behold, Saul lay sleeping within the trench, and his spear stuck in the ground at his bolster: but Abner and the people lay round about him.
8 Then said Abishai to David, God hath delivered thine enemy into thine hand this day: now therefore let me smite him, I pray thee, with the spear even to the earth at once, and I will not smite him the second time.
.9 And David said to Abishai, Destroy him not: for who can stretch forth his hand against the LORD'S anointed, and be guiltless?
- Ahimelech the Hittite The man is mentioned only this once.
For Hittites see ge2303ff,
6 - Abishai David's nephew.
9 - Destroy him not David had risen above the revenge cycle, a concept of kindness to enemies that few practice today. Also, ex2228.
| 10 David said furthermore,
As the LORD liveth, the LORD shall smite him; or his day shall come to
die; or he shall descend into battle, and perish.
11 The LORD forbid that I should stretch forth mine hand against the LORD'S anointed: but, I pray thee, take thou now the spear that is at his bolster, and the cruse of water, and let us go.
.12 So David took the spear and the cruse of water from Saul's bolster; and they gat them away, and no man saw it, nor knew it, neither awaked: for they were all asleep; because a deep sleep from the LORD was fallen upon them.
- The Lord David recognized that the Lord could and would
do what would be right.
12 - Deep sleep There were 3000 men. God has many ways to protect us ac1207. Those who do not trust Him may fear, and when He doesn't protect us, we can be sure that in the end, it is for His glory and what we would have wanted.
| 13 ¶ Then David went
over to the other side, and stood on the top of an hill afar off; a great
space being between them:
14 And David cried to the people, and to Abner the son of Ner, saying, Answerest thou not, Abner? Then Abner answered and said, Who art thou that criest to the king?
15 And David said to Abner, Art not thou a valiant man? and who is like to thee in Israel? wherefore then hast thou not kept thy lord the king? for there came one of the people in to destroy the king thy lord.
16 This thing is not good that thou hast done. As the LORD liveth, ye are worthy to die, because ye have not kept your master, the LORD'S anointed. And now see where the king's spear is, and the cruse of water that was at his bolster.
| 17 And Saul knew David's
voice, and said, Is this thy voice, my son David? And David said, It is
my voice, my lord, O king.
.18 And he said, Wherefore doth my lord thus pursue after his servant? for what have I done? or what evil is in mine hand?
19 Now therefore, I pray thee, let my lord the king hear the words of his servant. If the LORD have stirred thee up against me, let him accept an offering: but if they be the children of men, cursed be they before the LORD; for they have driven me out this day from abiding in the inheritance of the LORD, saying, Go, serve other gods.
.20 Now therefore, let not my blood fall to the earth before the face of the LORD: for the king of Israel is come out to seek a flea, as when one doth hunt a partridge in the mountains.
- Is this thy voice? It was still dark.
18 - What have I done? A tactful question. Compare ps00703.
19 - Let my lord the king hear David presented two alternatives: (1) If he had sinned against the king, the king could follow the instructions in the Toarh le04. If the king had heard slander, it was then evident that David was not guilty. The regulations of the Torah were again to be applied de2724-6.
| 21 ¶ Then said Saul,
I have sinned: return, my son David: for I will no more do thee harm, because
my soul was precious in thine eyes this day: behold, I have played the
fool, and have erred exceedingly.
22 And David answered and said, Behold the king's spear! and let one of the young men come over and fetch it.
23 The LORD render to every man his righteousness and his faithfulness: for the LORD delivered thee into my hand to day, but I would not stretch forth mine hand against the LORD'S anointed.
24 And, behold, as thy life was much set by this day in mine eyes, so let my life be much set by in the eyes of the LORD, and let him deliver me out of all tribulation.
25 Then Saul said to David, Blessed be thou, my son David: thou shalt both do great things, and also shalt still prevail. So David went on his way, and Saul returned to his place.
- I have sinned Convicted and realizing that David could
have killed him, he recognized his guilt. With no good evidence the Saul
had changed, David preferred to remain a fugitive.
The Torah is the five books of Moses.