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1 Samuel 19

Saul Tries to Kill David
(Psalm 59:1–17)

1 Then Saul ordered his son Jonathan and all his servants to kill David.

But Jonathan delighted greatly in David, 2 so he warned David, saying, “My father Saul intends to kill you. Be on your guard in the morning;find a secret place and hide there. 3 I will go out and stand beside my father in the field where you are, so I can ask about you. And if I find out anything, I will tell you.”

4 Then Jonathan spoke well of David to his father Saul and said to him, “The king should not sin against his servant David; he has not sinned against you. In fact, his actions have been highly beneficial to you. 5 He took his life in his hands when he struck down the Philistine, and the LORD worked a great salvation for all Israel. You saw it and rejoiced, so why would you sin against innocent blood by killing David for no reason?”

6 Saul listened to the voice of Jonathan and swore an oath: “As surely as the LORD lives, David will not be put to death.”

7 So Jonathan summoned David and told him all these things. Then Jonathan brought David to Saul to serve him as he had before.

8 When war broke out again, David went out and fought the Philistines and struck them with such a mighty blow that they fled before him.

9 But as Saul was sitting in his house with his spear in his hand, a spirit of distress a from the LORD came upon him. While David was playing the harp, 10 Saul tried to pin him to the wall with his spear. But the spear struck the wall and David eluded him, ran away, and escaped that night.

11 Then Saul sent messengers to David’s house to watch him and kill him in the morning. But David’s wife Michal warned him, “If you do not run for your life tonight, tomorrow you will be dead!” 12 So Michal lowered David from the window, and he ran away and escaped.

13 Then Michal took a household idol b and laid it in the bed, placed some goat hair on its head, and covered it with a garment. 14 When Saul sent the messengers to seize David, Michal said, “He is ill.”

15 But Saul sent the messengers back to see David and told them, “Bring him up to me in his bed so I can kill him.” 16 And when the messengers entered, there was the idol in the bed with the quilt of goats’ hair on its head.

17 And Saul said to Michal, “Why did you deceive me like this? You sent my enemy away and he has escaped!”

Michal replied, “He said to me, ‘Help me get away, or I will kill you!’ ”

18 So David ran away and escaped. And he went to Samuel at Ramah and told him all that Saul had done to him. Then he and Samuel went to Naioth and stayed there.

19 When Saul was told that David was at Naioth in Ramah, 20 he sent messengers to capture him. But when they saw the group of prophets prophesying, with Samuel leading them, the Spirit of God came upon them, and Saul’s messengers also began to prophesy.

21 When this was reported to Saul, he sent more messengers, but they began to prophesy as well.

So Saul tried again and sent messengers a third time, and even they began to prophesy.

22 Finally, Saul himself left for Ramah and came to the large cistern at Secu, where he asked, “Where are Samuel and David?”

“At Naioth in Ramah,” he was told.

23 So Saul went to Naioth in Ramah. But the Spirit of God came upon even Saul, and he walked along prophesying until he came to Naioth in Ramah. 24 Then Saul stripped off his robes and also prophesied before Samuel. And he collapsed and lay naked all that day and night. That is why it is said, “Is Saul also among the prophets?”



9 a Or a harmful spirit
13 b Or a household god ; Hebrew teraphim ; also in verse 16

Next Chapter: 1 Samuel 20 >

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