26:1 And the Ziphites came to Saul to Gibeah, saying, Does not David hide himself in the hill of Hachilah, which is before the desert?
26:2 Then Saul arose, and went down to the wilderness of Ziph, having three thousand chosen men of Israel with him, to seek David in the wilderness of Ziph.
26:3 And Saul encamped in the hill of Hachilah, which is before the desert, by the way. But David remained in the wilderness, and he saw that Saul came after him into the wilderness.
26:4 David therefore sent out spies, and understood that Saul came of a certainty.
26:5 And David arose, and came to the place where Saul had encamped; and David saw the place where Saul lay, and Abner the son of Ner, the captain of his host: and Saul lay inside the place of the wagons, and the people were encamped round about him.
26:6 Then David answered and said to Ahimelech the Hittite, and to Abishai the son of Zeruiah, brother to Joab, saying, Who will go down with me to Saul at the camp? And Abishai said, I will go down with you.
26:7 So David and Abishai came to the people by night: and, look, Saul lay sleeping inside the place of the wagons, with his spear stuck in the ground at his head; and Abner and the people lay round about him.
26:8 Then Abishai said to David, God has delivered up your enemy into your hand this day: now therefore let me strike him, I pray you, with the spear to the earth at one stroke, and I will not strike him the second time.
26:9 And David said to Abishai, Don't destroy him; for who can put forth his hand against Yahweh's anointed, and be innocent?
26:10 And David said, As Yahweh lives, Yahweh will strike him; or his day will come to die; or he will go down into battle and perish.
26:11 Yahweh forbid that I should put forth my hand against Yahweh's anointed: but now take, I pray you, the spear that is at his head, and the cruse of water, and let us go.
26:12 So David took the spear and the cruse of water from Saul's head; and they got away: and no man saw it, nor knew it, neither did any awake; for they were all asleep, because a deep sleep from Yahweh had fallen on them.
26:13 Then David went over to the other side, and stood on the top of the mountain far off; a great space being between them;
26:14 and David cried to the people, and to Abner the son of Ner, saying, Don't you answer, Abner? Then Abner answered and said, Who are you that cried to the king?
26:15 And David said to Abner, Are you not a [valiant] man? And who is like you in Israel? Why then haven't you kept watch over your lord the king? For there came one of the people in to destroy the king your lord.
26:16 This thing is not good that you have done. As Yahweh lives, you+ are worthy to die, because you+ haven't kept watch over your+ lord, Yahweh's anointed. And now see where the king's spear is, and the cruse of water that was at his head.
26:17 And Saul knew David's voice, and said, Is this your voice, my son David? And David said, It is my voice, my lord, O king.
26:18 And he said, Why does my lord pursue after his slave? For what have I done? Or what evil is in my hand?
26:19 Now therefore, I pray you, let my lord the king hear the words of his slave. If it is Yahweh who has stirred you up against me, let him accept an offering: but if it is the sons of man, cursed be they before Yahweh: for they have driven me out this day that I should not share in the inheritance of Yahweh, saying, Go, serve other gods.
26:20 Now therefore, don't let my blood fall to the earth away from the presence of Yahweh: for the king of Israel has come out to seek a flea, as when one hunts a partridge in the mountains.
26:21 Then said Saul, I have sinned: return, my son David; for I will do you harm no more, because my soul was precious in your eyes this day: look, I have played the fool, and have erred exceedingly.
26:22 And David answered and said, Look at the spear, O king! Let then one of the young men come over and fetch it.
26:23 And Yahweh will render to every man his righteousness and his faithfulness; since Yahweh delivered you into my hand today, and I would not put forth my hand against Yahweh's anointed.
26:24 And, look, as your soul was much set by this day in my eyes, so let my soul be much set by in the eyes of Yahweh, and let him deliver me out of all tribulation.
26:25 Then Saul said to David, Blessed be you, my son David: you will both do mightily, and will surely prevail. So David went his way, and Saul returned to his place.
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