Reading for April   1 Samuel  17:26 2 Kings 13:13 

April 1

1 Samuel 17:26 — 19:24

26 And David began to say to the men that were standing close by him: “What will be done to the man that strikes down that Philistine over there and actually turns away reproach from upon Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he has to taunt the battle lines of the living God?” 27 Then the people said to him the same words as before, saying: “This is the way it will be done to the man that strikes him down.” 28 And Eliab his oldest brother got to hear as he spoke to the men, and Eliab’s anger grew hot against David, so that he said: “Why is it that you have come down? And in whose charge did you leave those few sheep behind in the wilderness? I myself well know your presumptuousness and the badness of your heart, because you have come down for the purpose of seeing the battle.” 29 To this David said: “What have I done now? Was it not just a word?” 30 With that he turned about from beside him toward someone else and went saying the same word as before, and, in turn, the people gave him the same reply as formerly.

31 So the words that David spoke came to be heard, and they went telling them before Saul. Hence he fetched him. 32 And David proceeded to say to Saul: “Do not let the heart of any man collapse within him. Your servant himself will go and actually fight with this Philistine.” 33 But Saul said to David: “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a boy, and he is a man of war from his boyhood.” 34 And David went on to say to Saul: “Your servant became a shepherd of his father among the flock, and there came a lion, and also a bear, and [each] carried off a sheep from the drove. 35 And I went out after it and struck it down and made the rescue from its mouth. When it began rising against me, I grabbed hold of its beard and struck it down and put it to death. 36 Both the lion and the bear your servant struck down; and this uncircumcised Philistine must become like one of them, for he has taunted the battle lines of the living God.” 37 Then David added: “Jehovah, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, he it is who will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” At this Saul said to David: “Go, and may Jehovah himself prove to be with you.”

38 Saul now went clothing David with his garments, and he put a copper helmet upon his head, after which he clothed him with a coat of mail. 39 Then David girded his sword on over his garments and undertook to go [but could not], because he had not tried them out. Finally David said to Saul: “I am unable to go in these things, for I have not tried them out.” So David removed them off him. 40 And he proceeded to take his staff in his hand and to choose for himself the five smoothest stones from the torrent valley and to place them in his shepherds’ bag that served him as a receptacle, and in his hand was his sling. And he began approaching the Philistine.

41 And the Philistine began to come, coming nearer and nearer to David, and the man carrying the large shield was ahead of him. 42 Now when the Philistine looked and saw David, he began despising him because he proved to be a boy and ruddy, of beautiful appearance. 43 So the Philistine said to David: “Am I a dog, so that you are coming to me with staves?” With that the Philistine called down evil upon David by his gods. 44 And the Philistine went on to say to David: “Just come to me, and I will give your flesh to the fowls of the heavens and to the beasts of the field.”

45 In turn David said to the Philistine: “You are coming to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin, but I am coming to you with the name of Jehovah of armies, the God of the battle lines of Israel, whom you have taunted. 46 This day Jehovah will surrender you into my hand, and I shall certainly strike you down and remove your head off you; and I shall certainly give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines this day to the fowls of the heavens and to the wild beasts of the earth; and people of all the earth will know that there exists a God belonging to Israel. 47 And all this congregation will know that neither with sword nor with spear does Jehovah save, because to Jehovah belongs the battle, and he must give YOU men into our hand.”

48 And it occurred that the Philistine rose and kept coming and drawing nearer to meet David, and David began hurrying and running toward the battle line to meet the Philistine. 49 Then David thrust his hand into his bag and took a stone from there and slung it, so that he struck the Philistine in his forehead and the stone sank into his forehead, and he went falling upon his face to the earth. 50 So David, with a sling and a stone, proved stronger than the Philistine and struck the Philistine down and put him to death; and there was no sword in David’s hand. 51 And David continued running and got to stand over the Philistine. Then he took his sword and pulled it out of its sheath and definitely put him to death when he cut his head off with it. And the Philistines got to see that their mighty one had died, and they took to flight.

52 At that the men of Israel and of Judah rose and broke into shouting and went in pursuit of the Philistines clear to [the] valley and as far as the gates of Ekron, and the fatally wounded of the Philistines kept falling on the way from Shaaraim, both as far as Gath and as far as Ekron. 53 Afterward the sons of Israel returned from hotly pursuing the Philistines and went pillaging their camps.

54 Then David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem, and his weapons he put in his tent.

55 Now at the moment that Saul saw David going out to meet the Philistine, he said to Abner the chief of the army: “Whose son is the boy, Abner?” To this Abner said: “By the life of your soul, O king, I do not know at all!” 56 So the king said: “You inquire whose son the lad is.” 57 Accordingly, as soon as David returned from striking the Philistine down, Abner proceeded to take him and bring him before Saul with the head of the Philistine in his hand. 58 Saul now said to him: “Whose son are you, boy?” to which David said: “The son of your servant Jesse the Bethlehemite.”

And it came about that, as soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, Jonathan’s very soul became bound up with the soul of David, and Jonathan began to love him as his own soul. 2 Then Saul took him on that day, and he did not allow him to return to his father’s house. 3 And Jonathan and David proceeded to conclude a covenant, because of his loving him as his own soul. 4 Further, Jonathan stripped himself of the sleeveless coat that was on him and gave it to David, and also his garments, and even his sword and his bow and his belt. 5 And David began going out. Wherever Saul would send him he would act prudently, so that Saul placed him over the men of war; and it seemed good in the eyes of all the people and also in the eyes of the servants of Saul.

6 And it came about that at their coming in, when David returned from striking the Philistines down, the women began coming out from all the cities of Israel with song and dances to meet Saul the king, with tambourines, with rejoicing and with lutes. 7 And the women that were celebrating kept responding and saying:

“Saul has struck down his thousands,

And David his tens of thousands.”

8 And Saul began to be very angry, and this saying was bad from his viewpoint, so that he said: “They have given David tens of thousands, but to me they have given the thousands, and there is yet only the kingship to give him!” 9 And Saul was continually looking suspiciously at David from that day forward.

10 And it came about the next day that God’s bad spirit became operative upon Saul, so that he behaved like a prophet within the house, while David was playing music with his hand, as in former days; and the spear was in Saul’s hand. 11 And Saul proceeded to hurl the spear and say: “I will pin David even to the wall!” but David turned aside from before him, twice. 12 And Saul grew afraid of David because Jehovah proved to be with him, but from Saul he had departed. 13 Consequently Saul removed him from his company and appointed him as chief of a thousand for him; and he regularly went out and came in before the people. 14 And David was continually acting prudently in all his ways, and Jehovah was with him. 15 And Saul kept seeing that he was acting very prudently, so that he was scared of him. 16 And all Israel and Judah were lovers of David, because he was going out and coming in before them.

17 Finally Saul said to David: “Here is my oldest daughter Merab. She is the one that I shall give you as a wife. Only prove yourself a valiant person to me and fight the wars of Jehovah.” But as for Saul, he said to himself: “Do not let my hand come to be upon him, but let the hand of the Philistines come to be upon him.” 18 At this David said to Saul: “Who am I and who are my kinsfolk, my father’s family, in Israel, so that I should become son-in-law to the king?” 19 However, it came about that at the time for giving Merab, Saul’s daughter, to David, she herself had already been given to Adriel the Meholathite as a wife.

20 Now Michal, Saul’s daughter, was in love with David, and they went reporting it to Saul, and the matter was to his liking. 21 So Saul said: “I shall give her to him that she may serve as a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may come to be upon him.” Accordingly Saul said to David: “By [one of] the two women you will form a marriage alliance with me today.” 22 Further, Saul commanded his servants: “Speak to David secretly, saying, ‘Look! The king has found delight in you, and all his servants themselves have fallen in love with you. So now form a marriage alliance with the king.’” 23 And the servants of Saul began to speak these words in the ears of David, but David said: “Is it an easy thing in YOUR eyes to form a marriage alliance with the king, when I am a man of little means and lightly esteemed?” 24 Then the servants of Saul reported to him, saying: “It was with words like these that David spoke.”

25 At that Saul said: “This is what YOU men will say to David, ‘The king has delight, not in marriage money, but in a hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to avenge himself on the enemies of the king.’” But as for Saul, he had schemed to have David fall by the hand of the Philistines. 26 So his servants reported these words to David, and the matter was to David’s liking, to form a marriage alliance with the king, and the days had not yet expired. 27 So David rose and he and his men went and struck down among the Philistines two hundred men, and David came bringing their foreskins and giving them in full number to the king, to form a marriage alliance with the king. In turn Saul gave him Michal his daughter as a wife. 28 And Saul got to see and know that Jehovah was with David. As for Michal, Saul’s daughter, she loved him. 29 And again Saul felt still more fear because of David, and Saul came to be an enemy of David always.

30 And the princes of the Philistines would go out, and it would happen that as often as they went out David acted most prudently of all the servants of Saul; and his name came to be very precious.

19 At length Saul spoke to Jonathan his son and to all his servants of putting David to death. 2 As for Jonathan, Saul’s son, he took great delight in David. So Jonathan told David, saying: “Saul my father is seeking to have you put to death. And now be on your guard, please, in the morning, and you must dwell in secrecy and keep yourself hidden. 3 And I, for my part, shall go out and certainly stand at the side of my father in the field where you will be, and I myself shall speak for you to my father, and I shall certainly see what will happen, and I shall be sure to tell you.”

4 Accordingly Jonathan spoke well of David to Saul his father and said to him: “Do not let the king sin against his servant David, for he has not sinned toward you and his works have been very good toward you. 5 And he proceeded to put his soul in his palm and strike the Philistine down, so that Jehovah performed a great salvation for all Israel. You saw it, and you gave way to rejoicing. So why should you sin against innocent blood in having David put to death for nothing?” 6 Then Saul obeyed the voice of Jonathan, and Saul swore: “As Jehovah is living, he will not be put to death.” 7 Afterward Jonathan called David and Jonathan told him all these words. Then Jonathan brought David to Saul, and he continued before him the same as formerly.

8 In time war broke out again and David went sallying forth and fighting against the Philistines and striking them down with a great slaughter, and they took to flight from before him.

9 And Jehovah’s bad spirit came to be upon Saul when he was sitting in his house with his spear in his hand, while David was playing music with his hand. 10 Consequently Saul sought to pin David to the wall with the spear, but he dodged from before Saul, so that he struck the spear into the wall. And David himself fled that he might escape during that night. 11 Later Saul sent messengers to David’s house to watch it and to have him put to death in the morning; but Michal his wife told David, saying: “If you are not letting your soul escape tonight, tomorrow you will be a man put to death.” 12 Immediately Michal had David descend through the window, that he might go and run away and escape. 13 Then Michal took the teraphim image and placed it on the couch, and a net of goats’ hair she put at the place of his head, after which she covered it with a garment.

14 Saul now sent messengers to take David, but she said: “He is sick.” 15 So Saul sent the messengers to see David, saying: “Bring him on his couch up to me to have him put to death.” 16 When the messengers came in, why, there was the teraphim image on the couch and a net of goats’ hair at the place of his head. 17 At this Saul said to Michal: “Why did you trick me like this, so that you sent my enemy away that he might escape?” In turn Michal said to Saul: “He himself said to me, ‘Send me away! Why should I put you to death?’”

18 As for David, he ran away and made his escape and got to come to Samuel at Ramah. And he proceeded to tell him all that Saul had done to him. Then he and Samuel went away, and they took up dwelling in Naioth. 19 In time the report got to Saul, saying: “Look! David is in Naioth in Ramah.” 20 At once Saul sent messengers to take David. When they got to see the elderly ones of the prophets prophesying, and Samuel standing in his position over them, the spirit of God came to be upon Saul’s messengers, and they began behaving like prophets, they also.

21 When they told it to Saul, he immediately sent other messengers, and they began behaving like prophets, they also. So Saul sent messengers again, the third set, and they began behaving like prophets, they also. 22 Finally he too went to Ramah. When he got as far as the great cistern that is in Secu, he began to inquire and say: “Where are Samuel and David?” To this they said: “There in Naioth in Ramah.” 23 And he kept on his way from there to Naioth in Ramah, and the spirit of God came to be upon him, yes, him, and he went on walking and continued behaving like a prophet until he came into Naioth in Ramah. 24 And he also proceeded to strip off his garments and behave, he also, like a prophet before Samuel, and he lay fallen naked all that day and all that night. That is why they came to say: “Is Saul also among the prophets?”