Then David crossed over to the other side and stood on top of the hill some distance away; there was a wide space between them.
He called out to the army and to Abner son of Ner, "Aren't you going to answer me, Abner?" Abner replied, "Who are you who calls to the king?"
David said, "You're a man, aren't you? And who is like you in Israel? Why didn't you guard your lord the king? Someone came to destroy your lord the king.
What you have done is not good. As surely as the LORD lives, you and your men deserve to die, because you did not guard your master, the LORD's anointed. Look around you. Where are the king's spear and water jug that were near his head?"
Saul recognized David's voice and said, "Is that your voice,1 David my son?" David replied, "Yes it is, my lord the king."
And he added, "Why is my lord pursuing his servant? What have I done, and what wrong2 am I guilty of ?
Now let my lord the king listen3 to his servant's words. If the LORD has incited you against me, then may he accept an offering.4 If, however, men have done it, may they be cursed before the LORD! They have now driven me from my share in the LORD's inheritance5 and have said, 'Go, serve other gods.'620
Now do not let my blood7 fall to the ground far from the presence of the LORD. The king of Israel has come out to look for a flea8--as one hunts a partridge in the mountains.9"
Then Saul said, "I have sinned.10 Come back, David my son. Because you considered my life precious11 today, I will not try to harm you again. Surely I have acted like a fool and have erred greatly."
"Here is the king's spear," David answered. "Let one of your young men come over and get it.
The LORD rewards12 every man for his righteousness13 and faithfulness. The LORD delivered14 you into my hands today, but I would not lay a hand on the LORD's anointed.
As surely as I valued your life today, so may the LORD value my life and deliver15 me from all trouble."
Then Saul said to David, "May you be blessed,16 my son David; you will do great things and surely triumph." So David went on his way, and Saul returned home.