1 Samuel 26:5

5 Then David rose and came to the place where Saul had encamped. And David saw the place where Saul lay, with 1Abner the son of Ner, the commander of his army. Saul was lying within 2the encampment, while the army was encamped around him.

1 Samuel 26:5 Meaning and Commentary

1 Samuel 26:5

And David arose, and came to the place where Saul had pitched,
&c.] Came near it, within sight of it; so that he could take a view of it with his naked eye, and observe where and in what manner he was encamped:

and David beheld the place where Saul lay, and Abner the son of Ner,
the captain of his host;
where he and his general had their quarters in the camp:

and Saul lay in the trench;
or circuit; not in the foss or ditch thrown up, in which an army sometimes lies entrenched; but this is to be understood either of the camp itself, so called, as Ben Gersom, Abarbinel, and Ben Melech think, because it lay in a circular form, that all comers to it on every side might be seen; or else a sort of fortress all around the camp, made of carriages joined together; and as the word signifies a carriage, cart or chariot, it may design the chariot in which Saul slept, as kings have been used to do when not in their houses; and to this the Septuagint agrees, which uses a word that Procopius Gazaeus says signifies one kind of a chariot, and is used of a chariot drawn by mules, in the Greek version of ( Isaiah 66:20 ) ; Grotius observes, kings used to sleep in chariots where there were no houses; (See Gill on 1 Samuel 17:20); though he rather seems to have slept, "sub die", in the open air:

and the people pitched round about him;
both for the sake of honour, and for his greater security; this shows it could not be the loss he laid in, for then they could not pitch around him.

1 Samuel 26:5 In-Context

3 And Saul encamped on the hill of Hachilah, which is beside the road on the east of Jeshimon. But David remained in the wilderness. When he saw that Saul came after him into the wilderness,
4 David sent out spies and learned that Saul had come.
5 Then David rose and came to the place where Saul had encamped. And David saw the place where Saul lay, with Abner the son of Ner, the commander of his army. Saul was lying within the encampment, while the army was encamped around him.
6 Then David said to Ahimelech the Hittite, and to Joab's brother Abishai the son of Zeruiah, "Who will go down with me into the camp to Saul?" And Abishai said, "I will go down with you."
7 So David and Abishai went to the army by night. And there lay Saul sleeping within the encampment, with his spear stuck in the ground at his head, and Abner and the army lay around him.

Cross References 2

  • 1. 1 Samuel 14:50; 1 Samuel 17:55; 2 Samuel 2:8
  • 2. 1 Samuel 17:20