The men said, "This is the day the LORD spoke1 of when he saida to you, 'I will give your enemy into your hands for you to deal with as you wish.' "2 Then David crept up unnoticed and cut3 off a corner of Saul's robe.
Afterward, David was conscience-stricken4 for having cut off a corner of his robe.
He said to his men, "The LORD forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the LORD's anointed,5 or lift my hand against him; for he is the anointed of the LORD."
With these words David rebuked his men and did not allow them to attack Saul. And Saul left the cave and went his way.
Then David went out of the cave and called out to Saul, "My lord the king!" When Saul looked behind him, David bowed down and prostrated himself with his face to the ground.69
He said to Saul, "Why do you listen7 when men say, 'David is bent on harming8 you'?
This day you have seen with your own eyes how the LORD delivered you into my hands in the cave. Some urged me to kill you, but I spared9 you; I said, 'I will not lift my hand against my master, because he is the LORD's anointed.'
See, my father, look at this piece of your robe in my hand! I cut10 off the corner of your robe but did not kill you. Now understand and recognize that I am not guilty11 of wrongdoing12 or rebellion. I have not wronged13 you, but you are hunting14 me down to take my life.1512
May the LORD judge16 between you and me. And may the LORD avenge17 the wrongs you have done to me, but my hand will not touch you.
As the old saying goes, 'From evildoers come evil deeds,18' so my hand will not touch you.
"Against whom has the king of Israel come out? Whom are you pursuing? A dead dog?19 A flea?2015
May the LORD be our judge21 and decide22 between us. May he consider my cause and uphold23 it; may he vindicate24 me by delivering25 me from your hand."
When David finished saying this, Saul asked, "Is that your voice,26 David my son?" And he wept aloud.
"You are more righteous than I,"27 he said. "You have treated me well,28 but I have treated you badly.29