In which Saul goes senile (and dead, in the end) and David kills Goliath, has to run away repeatedly from his jealous boss. The great cartoon is from Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal…
1 Samuel 14
Saul’s son Jonathan goes a-baiting the Philistines without telling his dad, who is chilling out under a pomegranate tree in Gibeah.
Jonathan and armorer decide to break cover
Verse 11 And both of them discovered themselves unto the garrison of the Philistines: and the Philistines said, Behold, the Hebrews come forth out of the holes where they had hid themselves.
And they do a little light mass-murdering
Verse 14 And that first slaughter, which Jonathan and his armourbearer made, was about twenty men, within as it were an half acre of land, which a yoke of oxen might plow.
It’s noisy, this killing. Saul finally clocks son Johnny is missing, raises an army successfully, drawing even the traitors back into the Hebrew fold.
Verse 21 Moreover the Hebrews that were with the Philistines before that time, which went up with them into the camp from the country round about, even they also turned to be with the Israelites that were with Saul and Jonathan.
Saul doesn’t seem to understand that an army marches on its stomach.
Verse 24 And the men of Israel were distressed that day: for Saul had adjured the people, saying, Cursed be the man that eateth any food until evening, that I may be avenged on mine enemies. So none of the people tasted any food.
Except Jonathan, who doesn’t get the news, eats and pisses off the starving fighters. And Jonathan says “wtf, we would kill more if we ate!”
Verse 30 How much more, if haply the people had eaten freely to day of the spoil of their enemies which they found? for had there not been now a much greater slaughter among the Philistines?
And they take his advice.
Verse 31-2 And they smote the Philistines that day from Michmash to Aijalon: and the people were very faint. And the people flew upon the spoil, and took sheep, and oxen, and calves, and slew them on the ground: and the people did eat them with the blood.
People fess up and Saul wants a big stone and some ox and sheep and don’t drink the blood. Oh, and we’re gonna do a midnight raid on the Philistines.
Saul predicts his son is gonna die, but doesn’t know why.
Verse 43 Then Saul said to Jonathan, Tell me what thou hast done. And Jonathan told him, and said, I did but taste a little honey with the end of the rod that was in mine hand, and, lo, I must die.
The people of Israel snatch Jonathan from Saul before he can execute his son.
And Saul does some smiting and leading…
1 Samuel 15
Samuel gives Saul a “peace” mission
Verse 3 Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
For previous service rendered, the Kenites are warned to bugger off, and do. Lots of other folks get smited.
But God, God himself has regrets…
Verse 11 It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the LORD all night.
Saul turns up, bootied up. Samuel says, what’s with the bleating I hear? Saul says, it’s the best of the sheep and oxen. You were supposed to destroy EVERYTHING. Saul tries the old “it’s for burnt offerings” but that doesn’t cut the mustard.
Saul admits he let himself get swayed by trying to win a popularity contest.
Verse 24 And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.
Saul’s request of Samuel to help make it all good fails….
Verse 28 And Samuel said unto him, The LORD hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou.
And then Samuel decides the Geneva Convention and that “thou shalt not kill” commandment is for girly-men…
Verse 32 Then said Samuel, Bring ye hither to me Agag the king of the Amalekites. And Agag came unto him delicately. And Agag said, Surely the bitterness of death is past.
33: And Samuel said, As thy sword hath made women childless, so shall thy mother be childless among women. And Samuel hewed Agag in pieces before the LORD in Gilgal.
Sammy and Saul do not talk anymore….
1 Samuel 16
God has another plan, and wants Samuel to stop moping and go poor oil over the next king’s head. Samuel is worried Saul will find out and be, like, jealous… And God tells him to have a cow, man.
Verse 2And Samuel said, How can I go? if Saul hear it, he Will kill me. And the LORD said, Take an heifer with thee, and say, I am come to sacrifice to the LORD.
In Bethlehem, Samuel sees a likely lad and thinks that’ll be God’s Choice.
Verse 7 But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.
Neither is it any of that family, except maybe??
Verse 11 And Samuel said unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the youngest, and, behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he come hither.
And it’s that one, called… David.
And meanwhile an evil spirit from the Lord is getting stuck into former favourite Saul.
Verse 14-5 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him. And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.
And harp-playing from a mighty valiant man is prescribed, and Saul asks for young David (now there’s a coincidence. Verily, the Lord moveth in mysterious ways.
And David goes to Saul, is loved greatly and becomes armour-bearer. And harpist.
Verse 23 And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him.
1 Samuel 17
Fight! Fight! Fight!
Verse 1-2 Now the Philistines gathered together their armies to battle, and were gathered together at Shochoh, which belongeth to Judah, and pitched between Shochoh and Azekah, in Ephes-dammim. And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered together, and pitched by the valley of Elah, and set the battle in array against the Philistines.
And here comes Goliath…
Verse4-5 And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. And he had an helmet of brass upon his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail; and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of brass.
And Goliath says come on if you think you’re hard enough, and David… goes and feeds his father’s sheep at Bethlehem (verse 15). Very sensible.
Forty days of Goliath challenging for a fight. Are the Israelites waiting for him to become senescent?
Anyhow, there’s a bit of a fight, David turns up with provisions and clocks Goliath – for the first time it seems -, so maybe I shouldn’t have been so quick to label him coward. And the rewards for felling the giant are explained.
Verse 25 And the men of Israel said, Have ye seen this man that is come up? surely to defy Israel is he come up: and it shall be, that the man who killeth him, the king will enrich him with great riches, and will give him his daughter, and make his father’s house free in Israel.
David is getting flak from his own family.
Verse 28 And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride, and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.
David tells him to piss off and asks again of the rewards and then offers to Saul that he’ll fight Goliath, who says “you’re too young.”
So, David does an elevator pitch of his CV
Verse 34-5 And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock: And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him.
And with God as his co-founder in this particular start up, Saul would be a fool not become an, erm, angel investor.
Verse 37 David said moreover, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the LORD be with thee.
And they suit up David with armour, but David says “nah, I’ve not earnt it.” So instead he does the whole asymmetric war-fare thing…
Verse 40 And he took his staff in his hand, and chose him five smooth stones out of the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag which he had, even in a scrip; and his sling was in his hand: and he drew near to the Philistine.
Goliath is predictably offended.
Verse 43 And the Philistine said unto David, Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
David says God is on his side and he’s gonna chop Goliath’s head off and piss down his neck. (Ok, I embellished that last bit).
And Hallelujuah, it’s a miracle!!!
Verse 49 And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth.
And David keeps his promise
Verse 51 Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.
The men of Israel and Judah chase and kill the Philistines, naturally.
And then we get one of those obvious contradictions/continuity screw-ups that the Bible should be infamous for. In the last chapter, Saul sent to David’s dad specifically to ask for him to do harp duty. But now, having seen his armour-bearer in action.
Verse 55-6 And when Saul saw David go forth against the Philistine, he said unto Abner, the captain of the host, Abner, whose son is this youth? And Abner said, As thy soul liveth, O king, I cannot tell. And the king said, Inquire thou whose son the stripling is.
Of course, Saul may just be getting senile – Monty Burns can never remember Homer Simpson’s name, after all – but it does stretch credulity…
1 Samuel 18
And David is now the favourite of Jonathan (Saul’s son)
Verse 3-4 Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
David becomes a consigliere. And gets welcome by women with, um, tabrets?
And the women sing of Saul slaying thousands and David ten thousands, which leaves Saul “very wroth.” Men and their egos, eh? Never EVER show up your boss…
Um, David is playing with his hand. Does that mean what I think it means???
Verse 10 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and there was a javelin in Saul’s hand.
David seems to duck assassination twice, and Saul then promotes him upwards, but David stays nervous. His work ethic makes him popular.
Verse 16 But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them.
Action-packed verse- Saul wants David as a son-in-law and for the Philistines to do his dirty work…
Verse 17 And Saul said to David, Behold my elder daughter Merab, her will I give thee to wife: only be thou valiant for me, and fight the LORD’s battles. For Saul said, Let not mine hand be upon him, but let the hand of the Philistines be upon him.
David doubts, Merab gets given elsewhere, but David’s happier with her sister Michal anyhow. This works for devious old Saul.
Verse 21 And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Wherefore Saul said to David, Thou shalt this day be my son in law in the one of the twain.
Saul sends a back-channel message to David, who is still doing the whole “I am not worthy to be a king’s son-in-law” thing…
So Saul says “gimme a hundred foreskins of the Philistines and we’ll call it evens then.”
David’s happy now he has a concrete target, and with admirable directness, he goes out to get the job done.
Verse 27 Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king’s son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.
Saul sees that God is on David’s side and gets more afraid of him. And the Philistines “went forth” but David seems to keep a cooler head than Saul’s henchmen, so his reputation goes up.
1 Samuel 19
Saul tells son Jonathan to whack David, and Jonathan tells David what’s afoot and if David hides himself, Jonathan will get Saul to repeat the order in David’s earshot. He speaks good of David, Saul recants, David exposes himself and everything is cool, [for now] and David smites some more Philistines.
But God doesn’t want Saul to play nice, so does the whole evil spirit thing again. So much for free will, eh.
Verse 9 And the evil spirit from the LORD was upon Saul, as he sat in his house with his javelin in his hand: and David played with his hand.
David will go blind with all that wanking…
David dodges a bullet/javelin, the hunt is on and David’s wife (Saul’s daughter) says If thou save not thy life to night, to morrow thou shalt be slain. So he legs it.
Verse 13 And Michal took an image, and laid it in the bed, and put a pillow of goats’ hair for his bolster, and covered it with a cloth.
Saul discovers the trickery and is irked at his daughter.
David tells Samuel what’s going on. Saul finds out where David is hiding and does some prophesizing and getting naked.
Verse 24 And he stripped off his clothes also, and prophesied before Samuel in like manner, and lay down naked all that day and all that night. Wherefore they say, Is Saul also among the prophets?
1 Samuel 20
David asks Jonathan why Saul is so intent on killing him. Jonathan says his dad tells him everything. David points out Saul knows he and David are mates, so may keep this particular murder plot secret.
And they cook up a bizarre plan which will involve shooting three arrows to the left or right
Yep, I think Saul is getting gaga. These are clinical signs…
Verse 30 Then Saul’s anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said unto him, Thou son of the perverse rebellious woman, do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion, and unto the confusion of thy mother’s nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he shall surely die.
Jonathan asks why?
Verse 33 And Saul cast a javelin at him to smite him: whereby Jonathan knew that it was determined of his father to slay David.
Jonathan is well pissed off, naturally!
And does the whole arrow as signal thing, and sends away his servant…
Verse 4 And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded.
Is that exceded or ex-seeded? Just askin’…
Anyhow, Jonathan tells David to get the heck outa Dodge.
Verse 41And Jonathan said to David, Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the LORD, saying, The LORD be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever. And he arose and departed: and Jonathan went into the city.
1 Samuel 21
David, on the run, finds a nervous priest and spins a yarn about secret missions. He wants feeding and the priest says “this bread is only for men who’ve kept away from women of late.”
Verse 5 And David answered the priest, and said unto him, Of a truth women have been kept from us about these three days, since I came out, and the vessels of the young men are holy, and the bread is in a manner common, yea, though it were sanctified this day in the vessel.
David eats. There’s a spy for Saul, named Doeg the Edomite. Davod asks the priest for some weaponry. There’s only Goliath’s sword, which David takes and legs it to Achish, the king of Gath.
The servants seem to be Saul-supporters, so David plays mad to stay alive.
Verse 13 And he changed his behaviour before them, and feigned himself mad in their hands, and scrabbled on the doors of the gate, and let his spittle fall down upon his beard.
And Achish is taken in by the act, and unimpressed with his staff.
Verse 15 Have I need of mad men, that ye have brought this fellow to play the mad man in my presence? shall this fellow come into my house?
I Samuel 22
David’s family join him at the cave Adullam
Verse 2 And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.
The prophet Gad tells David to get thee to the land of Judah, he does. Saul is SO wanting to kill David.
Verse 6 When Saul heard that David was discovered, and the men that were with him, (now Saul abode in Gibeah under a tree in Ramah, having his spear in his hand, and all his servants were standing about him;)
And Saul is in paranoid and accusatory mode (so dementing!!)
Verse 8 That all of you have conspired against me, and there is none that sheweth me that my son hath made a league with the son of Jesse, and there is none of you that is sorry for me, or sheweth unto me that my son hath stirred up my servant against me, to lie in wait, as at this day?
Doeg the Edomite tells Saul that the priest gave David the sword of Goliath. Saul gives the priest a bollocking, but
Verse 14- 5 Then Ahimelech answered the king, and said, And who is so faithful among all thy servants as David, which is the king’s son in law, and goeth at thy bidding, and is honourable in thine house? Did I then begin to inquire of God for him? be it far from me: let not the king impute any thing unto his servant, nor to all the house of my father: for thy servant knew nothing of all this, less or more.
That’s enough cheekiness for Saul, who oversteps an invisible line
Verse 16- 7 And the king said, Thou shalt surely die, Ahimelech, thou, and all thy father’s house. And the king said unto the footmen that stood about him, Turn, and slay the priests of the LORD; because their hand also is with David, and because they knew when he fled, and did not shew it to me. But the servants of the king would not put forth their hand to fall upon the priests of the LORD.
But Doeg is up for a little king-sanctioned murder. Well, a lot – 85, to be precise…
Verse 18 And the king said to Doeg, Turn thou, and fall upon the priests. And Doeg the Edomite turned, and he fell upon the priests, and slew on that day fourscore and five persons that did wear a linen ephod.
One son of Ahimlech escapes, finds David who reproaches himself since he knew Doeg the Edomite would tell tales, and so blames himself for the killings…
I Samuel 23
The Philistines are a-smiting, David asks the Lord should he go and smite them. The Lord says yes. David’s soldiers are scared and mutinous, and so… David asks Lord to repeat the order?!! How is that NOT dereliction of duty worthy of a thunderbolt?! The Lord reassures David and
Verse 5 So David and his men went to Keilah, and fought with the Philistines, and brought away their cattle, and smote them with a great slaughter. So David saved the inhabitants of Keilah.
An unconcealed ephod lets Saul know David is in Keilah.
Verse 7 And it was told Saul that David was come to Keilah. And Saul said, God hath delivered him into mine hand; for he is shut in, by entering into a town that hath gates and bars.
David asks the Lord about this, and the Lord tells David to leg it (but surely with the Lord on his side… No, there must be some mysterious way going on here…) And David does the whole scarlet pimpernel thing.
Verse 14 And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and remained in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand.
The Ziphites are happy to help Saul kill David.
Verse 20 Now therefore, O king, come down according to all the desire of thy soul to come down; and our part shall be to deliver him into the king’s hand.
And David escapes to the wilderness of Maon but is cornered there and about to be slaughtered…
Verse 27 But there came a messenger unto Saul, saying, Haste thee, and come; for the Philistines have invaded the land. Wherefore Saul returned from pursuing after David, and went against the Philistines: therefore they called that place Sela-hammahlekoth.
I Samuel 24
Saul kills Philistines. David is hiding out in caves like Osama bin-Laden.
Verse 3 And he came to the sheepcotes by the way, where was a cave; and Saul went in to cover his feet: and David and his men remained in the sides of the cave.
David’s sidekicks have opinions…
Verse 4 And the men of David said unto him, Behold the day of which the LORD said 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 David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul’s robe privily.
But he gets cutter-offer’s remorse
Verse 6 And he said unto his men, The LORD forbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the LORD’s anointed, to stretch forth mine hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD.
David catches up to Saul, who has left the cave and throws himself to the ground and says, among other things…
Verse 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’s anointed.
Actually, the whole lot deserves quoting, since it’s one of them Bible stories you should know (but I didn’t).
Verse 11-4 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 LORD judge between me and thee, and the LORD avenge me of thee: but mine hand shall not be upon thee. As saith the proverb of the ancients, Wickedness proceedeth from the wicked: but mine hand shall not be upon thee. After whom is the king of Israel come out? after whom dost thou pursue? after a dead dog, after a flea.
Saul weeps and acknowledges David is more righteous and will be king. But David seems to be wondering if there will be yet another change of heart…
Verse 22 And David sware unto Saul. And Saul went home; but David and his men gat them up unto the hold.
I Samuel 25
At last, Samuel dies. David sends some of his servants to ask a local rich guy called Nabal to give his servants some food, as a test. Nabal tells David’s lot to piss off sharpish, and David readies for war, since Nabal Deserves to Die. Nabal’s very hot wife Abigail is told what’s up by some of Nabal’s shepherds, who have had no problems at all with David’s men. No point telling Nabal, “for he is such a son of Belial, that a man cannot speak to him.” So Abigail hopes she can give a life-savingly different answer to David’s emissaries’ request.
Verse 18 Then Abigail made haste, and took two hundred loaves, and two bottles of wine, and five sheep ready dressed, and five measures of parched corn, and an hundred clusters of raisins, and two hundred cakes of figs, and laid them on asses.
Is she going to be, um, pissing against the wall. For she meets David and he says
Verse 22 So and more also do God unto the enemies of David, if I leave of all that pertain to him by the morning light any that pisseth against the wall.
Abigail lays on the flattery thick, slags off Nabal and succeeds in convincing David he doesn’t want a massacre on his conscience. David says “thanks, I needed that.”
Verse 34 For in very deed, as the LORD God of Israel liveth, which hath kept me back from hurting thee, except thou hadst hasted and come to meet me, surely there had not been left unto Nabal by the morning light any that pisseth against the wall.
Nabal throws a party, gets so drunk Abigail doesn’t tell him what she did….
Verse 37-8 But it came to pass in the morning, when the wine was gone out of Nabal, and his wife had told him these things, that his heart died within him, and he became as a stone. And it came to pass about ten days after, that the LORD smote Nabal, that he died.
But of course, this is good news to David, who sees the Lord’s hand in the death, and to celebrate, shag’s the widow…
Verse 39 And when David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, Blessed be the LORD, that hath pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal, and hath kept his servant from evil: for the LORD hath returned the wickedness of Nabal upon his own head, And David sent and communed with Abigail, to take her to him to wife.
Abigail hasted and arose and rode upon an ass with five damsels of hers… presumably old and selfish Nabal had not been meeting her needs….
Meanwhile, there’s trouble afoot, because Saul has unilaterally taken his daughter Michal out of marriage to David. There will, surely, be blood…
Verse 44 But Saul had given Michal his daughter, David’s wife, to Phalti the son of Laish, which was of Gallim.
I Samuel 26
Sigh. Somebody jumbled up some scrolls. We have more of the pre-cutting-of-cloth-in-cave thing of Saul hunting down David.
And we get a different version of David not killing Saul, this time with Saul asleep and David able to spear him if he so chooses.
Verse 12 So David took the spear and the cruse of water from Saul’s bolster; and they gat them away, and no man saw it, nor knew it, neither awaked: for they were all asleep; because a deep sleep from the LORD was fallen upon them.
Similar reveal of evidence that David could have, if he’d chosen, killed Saul, similar Saulian confession.
Verse 21 Then said Saul, I have sinned: return, my son David: for I will no more do thee harm, because my soul was precious in thine eyes this day: behold, I have played the fool, and have erred exceedingly.
1 Samuel 27
We are still in this blasted flashback…
Verse 1 And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: there is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any coast of Israel: so shall I escape out of his hand.
Except he does indeed have Abigail, Nabal’s widow. He asks his host for some land, since Saul isn’t pursuing him right now.
Verse 6-7 Then Achish gave him Ziklag that day: wherefore Ziklag pertaineth unto the kings of Judah unto this day. And the time that David dwelt in the country of the Philistines was a full year and four months.
And David can’t help but do some killing, of the Geshurites and Gezrites and Amalekites.
Verse 9 And David smote the land, and left neither man nor woman alive, and took away the sheep, and the oxen, and the asses, and the camels, and the apparel, and returned, and came to Achish.
His host Achish asks who he killed and David says oh, um, “against the south of Judah and the south of the Jerahmeelites and the Kenites”. And he can get away with it because he left no witnesses…
Verse 11 And David saved neither man nor woman alive, to bring tidings to Gath, saying, Lest they should tell on us, saying, So did David, and so will be his manner all the while he dwelleth in the country of the Philistines.
Charmer, this David. And Achish thinks that now David has committed these atrocities he can’t possibly be a double-agent. Fool.
Verse 12 And Achish believed David, saying, He hath made his people Israel utterly to abhor him; therefore he shall be my servant for ever.
1 Samuel 28
The Philistines are gonna fight, and Achish tells David he’s to fight on their side.
Verse 2 And David said to Achish, Surely thou shalt know what thy servant can do. And Achish said to David, Therefore will I make thee keeper of mine head for ever.
Saul has got shot of the wizards and all, but it seems not to have helped.
Verse 5-6 And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines, he was afraid, and his heart greatly trembled. And when Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams nor by Urim, nor by prophets.
Now, the whole reason God doesn’t like Saul is down to some burnt offerings (to other gods) that the latter made. Has he learnt? He has not…
Verse 7 Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and inquire of her. And his servants said to him, Behold, there is a woman that hath a familiar spirit at Endor.
She is crapping herself because of the fatwa against mediums, but somehow disguised Saul’s promise that “as the Lord liveth, three shall no punishment happen to thee for this thing” is enough to allay her fears and she, to his request, conjures up the Dead Samuel. This has gone all monkey’s paw…
Verse 15 And Samuel said to Saul, Why hast thou disquieted me, to bring me up? And Saul answered, I am sore distressed; for the Philistines make war against me, and God is departed from me, and answereth me no more, neither by prophets, nor by dreams: therefore I have called thee, that thou mayest make known unto me what I shall do.
Samuel is very very annoyed, and has nothing but bad news, including the following.
Verse 19 Moreover the LORD will also deliver Israel with thee into the hand of the Philistines: and to morrow shalt thou and thy sons be with me: the LORD also shall deliver the host of Israel into the hand of the Philistines.
The medium tries to get him to eat something
Verse 23 But he refused, and said, I will not eat. But his servants, together with the woman, compelled him; and he hearkened unto their voice. So he arose from the earth, and sat upon the bed.
So she kills a fat calf and makes some unleavened bread. They eat it and leave.
1 Samuel 29
The Philistines are marching, and the big bosses say to Achish – what’s with the Hebrew?! Achish tries to point out David’s been loyal and no trouble, but they’re having none of it.
Verse 4 And the princes of the Philistines were wroth with him; and the princes of the Philistines said unto him, Make this fellow return, that he may go again to his place which thou hast appointed him, and let him not go down with us to battle, lest in the battle he be an adversary to us: for wherewith should he reconcile himself unto his master? should it not be with the heads of these men?
Achish tells David to skedaddle. David does that whining “aren’t I good enough” thing that is beginning to get old, but eventually follows Achish’s orders…
Verse 10-11 Wherefore now rise up early in the morning with thy master’s servants that are come with thee: and as soon as ye be up early in the morning, and have light, depart. So David and his men rose up early to depart in the morning, to return into the land of the Philistines. And the Philistines went up to Jezreel.
1 Samuel 30
Bad news when they get back to Ziklag; the Amalekites have torched the joint and kidnapped all the women, including David’s wives.
Verse 4 Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep.
Via that ephod, David gets word from the Lord that a hot pursuit will be successful. His numbers shrink from 600 to 400 from fatigue and hunger. They find a hungry Egyptian and feed him up.
Verse 12 And they gave him a piece of a cake of figs, and two clusters of raisins: and when he had eaten, his spirit came again to him: for he had eaten no bread, nor drunk any water, three days and three nights.
Turns out he was with the Amalekites with the Armalites and got left behind on the retreat cos he was sick. A deal is brokered…
Verse 15 And David said to him, Canst thou bring me down to this company? And he said, Swear unto me by God, that thou wilt neither kill me, nor deliver me into the hands of my master, and I will bring thee down to this company.
God’s as good as Her word… David catches ’em up
Verse 17-8 And David smote them from the twilight even unto the evening of the next day: and there escaped not a man of them, save four hundred young men, which rode upon camels, and fled. And David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away: and David rescued his two wives.
They head back and meet the 200 too weak to come with. Many of the 400 say “give them their wives and kids back, but nowt else, and tell them to Piss Off.”
David nixes this. And when he gets back to Ziklag he sends out “spoil” to loads of places (they are listed of course, a mini-begatting), to “all the places where David himself and his men were wont to haunt.”
I Samuel 31
While David is happy divvying out the spoils, his mucker Jonathan, who repeatedly saved his life, is getting deaded.
Verse1-2 Now the Philistines fought against Israel: and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down slain in mount Gilboa. And the Philistines followed hard upon Saul and upon his sons; and the Philistines slew Jonathan, and Abinadab, and Malchi-shua, Saul’s sons.
Saul wants his henchman to kill him, but discovers you just can’t get the staff these days, and if you want a job done right, do it yourself…
Verse 4 Then said Saul unto his armourbearer, Draw thy sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these uncircumcised come and thrust me through, and abuse me. But his armourbearer would not; for he was sore afraid. Therefore Saul took a sword, and fell upon it.
And that sets the dominoes a-falling
Verse 7 And when the men of Israel that were on the other side of the valley, and they that were on the other side Jordan, saw that the men of Israel fled, and that Saul and his sons were dead, they forsook the cities, and fled; and the Philistines came and dwelt in them.
The Philistines, not respecting culture and acting like, um, philistines, find Saul’s body and his sons, and do nothing nearly as bad as used to happen in Vietnam (ear necklaces anyone? Genitals stuffed in mouths?)
Verse 10 And they put his armour in the house of Ashtaroth: and they fastened his body to the wall of Beth-shan. And when the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead heard of that which the Philistines had done to Saul; All the valiant men arose, and went all night, and took the body of Saul and the bodies of his sons from the wall of Beth-shan, and came to Jabesh, and burnt them there.
Well, 1 Samuel sure ends on a high note…
Verse 13 And they took their bones, and buried them under a tree at Jabesh, and fasted seven days.