And it came to pass, when Saul was returned from followinga the Philistines, that it was told him, saying , Behold, David is in the wilderness of Engedi.2
Then Saultookthreethousandchosenmen out of all Israel, and went to seekDavid and his menupon the rocks of the wild goats.3
And he came to the sheepcotesby the way, where was a cave; and Saul went in to cover his feet: and David and his menremained in the sides of the cave.4
And the men of Davidsaid unto him, Behold the day of which the LORDsaid unto thee, Behold, I will deliver thine enemy into thine hand, that thou mayest do to him as it shall seem good unto thee. Then Davidarose , and cut off the skirt of Saul'sbrobeprivily.5
And it came to pass afterward, that David'sheartsmote him, because he had cut offSaul'sskirt.6
And he said unto his men, The LORDforbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the LORD'Sanointed, to stretch forth mine hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD.7
So Davidstayedc his servants with these words, and suffered them not to rise against Saul. But Saul rose up out of the cave, and went on his way.8David also arose afterward, and went out of the cave, and criedafterSaul,saying , My lord the king. And when Saullookedbehind him, Davidstooped with his face to the earth, and bowed himself.
And Davidsaid to Saul, Wherefore hearest thou men'swords,saying , Behold, Davidseeketh thy hurt?10
Behold, this day thine eyes have seen how that the LORD had delivered thee to day into mine hand in the cave: and some bade me kill thee: but mine eye spared thee; and I said , I will not put forth mine hand against my lord; for he is the LORD'Sanointed.11
Moreover, my father,see , yea, see the skirt of thy robe in my hand: for in that I cut off the skirt of thy robe, and killed thee not, know thou and see that there is neither evil nor transgression in mine hand, and I have not sinned against thee; yet thou huntest my soul to take it.
The LORDjudge between me and thee, and the LORDavenge me of thee: but mine hand shall not be upon thee.
As saith the proverb of the ancients,Wickednessproceedeth from the wicked: but mine hand shall not be upon thee.
14After whom is the king of Israel come out ? after whom dost thou pursue ? after a deaddog,afteraflea.15
The LORD therefore be judge, and judge between me and thee, and see , and plead my cause, and deliverd me out of thine hand.16
And it came to pass, when David had made an end of speaking these words unto Saul, that Saulsaid , Is this thy voice, my sonDavid? And Saul lifted up his voice, and wept .
And he said to David, Thou art more righteous than I: for thou hast rewarded me good, whereas I have rewarded thee evil.18
And thou hast shewed this day how that thou hast dealtwell with me: forasmuch as when the LORD had deliverede me into thine hand, thou killedst me not.
For if a manfind his enemy , will he let him gowellaway? wherefore the LORDreward thee good for that thou hast done unto me this day.20
And now, behold, I know well that thou shalt surely be king , and that the kingdom of Israel shall be established in thine hand.21Swear now therefore unto me by the LORD, that thou wilt not cut off my seedafter me, and that thou wilt not destroy my name out of my father'shouse.22
And Davidsware unto Saul. And Saulwenthome; but David and his men gat them up unto the hold.