1 Samuel 18
Jonathan Befriends David
1 After David had finished speaking with Saul, the souls of Jonathan and David were knit together, and Jonathan loved him as himself. 2 And from that day Saul kept David with him and did not let him return to his father’s house.
3 Then Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. 4 And Jonathan removed the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, his sword, his bow, and his belt.
Saul Envies David
5 So David marched out and prospered in everything Saul sent him to do, and Saul set him over the men of war. And this was pleasing in the sight of all the people, and of Saul’s officers as well.
6 As the troops were returning home after David had killed the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel to meet King Saul with singing and dancing, with joyful songs, and with tambourines and other instruments. a 7 And as the women danced, they sang out:
“Saul has slain his thousands,
and David his tens of thousands.”
8 And Saul was furious and resented this song. “They have ascribed tens of thousands to David,” he said, “but only thousands to me. What more can he have but the kingdom?” 9 And from that day forward Saul kept a jealous eye on David.
10 The next day a spirit of distress b sent from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied inside the house while David played the harp as usual. Now Saul was holding a spear, 11 and he hurled it, thinking, “I will pin David to the wall.” But David eluded him twice.
12 So Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with David but had departed from Saul. 13 Therefore Saul sent David away and gave him command of a thousand men. David led the troops out to battle and back, 14 and he continued to prosper in all his ways, because the LORD was with him.
David Marries Michal
17 Then Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter Merab. I will give her to you in marriage. Only be valiant for me and fight the LORD’s battles.” But Saul was thinking, “I need not raise my hand against him; let the hand of the Philistines be against him.”
18 And David said to Saul, “Who am I, and what is my family or my father’s clan in Israel, that I should become the son-in-law of the king?” 19 So when it was time c to give Saul’s daughter Merab to David, she was given in marriage to Adriel of Meholah.
20 Now Saul’s daughter Michal loved David, and when this was reported to Saul, it pleased him. 21 “I will give her to David,” Saul thought, “so that she may be a snare to him, and the hand of the Philistines may be against him.” So Saul said to David, “For a second time now you can be my son-in-law.”
22 Then Saul ordered his servants, “Speak to David privately and tell him, ‘Behold, the king is pleased with you, and all his servants love you. Now therefore, become his son-in-law.’ ”
23 But when Saul’s servants relayed these words to David, he replied, “Does it seem trivial in your sight to be the son-in-law of the king? I am a poor man and lightly esteemed.”
24 And the servants told Saul what David had said.
25 Saul replied, “Say to David, ‘The king desires no other dowry but a hundred Philistine foreskins as revenge on his enemies.’ ” But Saul intended to cause David’s death at the hands of the Philistines.
26 When the servants reported these terms to David, he was pleased to become the king’s son-in-law. Before the wedding day arrived, 27 David and his men went out and killed two hundred Philistines. He brought their foreskins and presented them as payment in full to become the king’s son-in-law. Then Saul gave his daughter Michal to David in marriage.
30 Every time the Philistine commanders came out for battle, David was more successful than all of Saul’s officers, so that his name was highly esteemed.
6 a Possibly three-stringed instruments or cymbals or lutes or lyres
10 b Or a harmful spirit
19 c Or But when it was time