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1 Samuel 27
David and the Philistines
1 David, however, said to himself, “One of these days now I will be swept away by the hand of Saul. There is nothing better for me than to escape to the land of the Philistines. Then Saul will stop searching for me all over Israel, and I will slip out of his hand.”
2 So David set out with his six hundred men and went to Achish son of Maoch, a the king of Gath. 3 David and his men settled in Gath with Achish. Each man had his family with him, and David had his two wives: Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail of Carmel, the widow of Nabal. 4 And when Saul learned that David had fled to Gath, he no longer searched for him.
5 Then David said to Achish, “If I have found favor in your eyes, let me be assigned a place in one of the outlying towns, so I can live there. For why should your servant live in the royal city with you?”
6 That day Achish gave him Ziklag, and to this day it still belongs to the kings of Judah. 7 And the time that David lived in Philistine territory amounted to a year and four months.
8 Now David and his men went up and raided the Geshurites, the Girzites, and the Amalekites. (From ancient times these people had inhabited the land extending to Shur and Egypt.) 9 Whenever David attacked a territory, he did not leave a man or woman alive, but he took the flocks and herds, the donkeys, camels, and clothing.
Then he would return to Achish, 10 who would ask him, “What have you raided today?”
And David would reply, “The Negev of Judah,” or “The Negev of Jerahmeel,” or “The Negev of the Kenites.”
11 David did not leave a man or woman alive to be brought to Gath, for he said, “Otherwise they will report us, saying, ‘This is what David did.’ ” And this was David’s custom the whole time he lived in Philistine territory.
12 So Achish trusted David, thinking, “Since he has made himself an utter stench to his people Israel, he will be my servant forever.”
2 a Maoch is a variant of Maacah ; see 1 Kings 2:39.