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1 Samuel Chapter 18 | Parsha:

1When [David] finished speaking with Saul, Jonathan’s soul became bound up with the soul of David; Jonathan loved David as himself. 2Saul took him [into his service] that day and would not let him return to his father’s house.— 3Jonathan and David made a pact, because [Jonathan] loved him as himself. 4Jonathan took off the cloak and tunic he was wearing and gave them to David, together with his sword, bow, and belt. 5David went out [with the troops], and he was successful in every mission on which Saul sent him, and Saul put him in command of all the soldiers; this pleased all the troops and Saul’s courtiers as well. 6When the [troops] came home [and] David returned from killing the Philistine, the women of all the towns of Israel came out singing and dancing to greet King Saul with timbrels, shouting, and sistrums. 7The women sang as they danced, and they chanted:
Saul has slain his thousands;
David, his tens of thousands!

8Saul was much distressed and greatly vexed about the matter. For he said, “To David they have given tens of thousands, and to me they have given thousands. All that he lacks is the kingship!” 9From that day on Saul kept a jealous eye on David. 10The next day an evil spirit of God gripped Saul and he began to rave in the house, while David was playing [the lyre], as he did daily. Saul had a spear in his hand, 11and Saul threw the spear, thinking to pin David to the wall. But David eluded him twice. 12Saul was afraid of David, for the Lord was with him and had turned away from Saul. 13So Saul removed him from his presence and appointed him chief of a thousand, to march at the head of the troops. 14 David was successful in all his undertakings, for the Lord was with him; 15and when Saul saw that he was successful, he dreaded him. 16All Israel and Judah loved David, for he marched at their head.

17Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter, Merab; I will give her to you in marriage; in return, you be my warrior and fight the battles of the Lord.” Saul thought: “Let not my hand strike him; let the hand of the Philistines strike him.” 18David replied to Saul, “Who am I and what is my life—my father’s family in Israel—that I should become Your Majesty’s son-in-law?” 19But at the time that Merab, daughter of Saul, should have been given to David, she was given in marriage to Adriel the Meholathite. 20Now Michal daughter of Saul had fallen in love with David; and when this was reported to Saul, he was pleased. 21Saul thought: “I will give her to him, and she can serve as a snare for him, so that the Philistines may kill him.” So Saul said to David, “You can become my son-in-law even now through the second one.” 22And Saul instructed his courtiers to say to David privately, “The king is fond of you and all his courtiers like you. So why not become the king’s son-in-law?” 23When the king’s courtiers repeated these words to David, David replied, “Do you think that becoming the son-in-law of a king is a small matter, when I am but a poor man of no consequence?” 24Saul’s courtiers reported to him, “This is what David answered.” 25And Saul said, “Say this to David: ‘The king desires no other bride-price than the foreskins of a hundred Philistines, as vengeance on the king’s enemies.’”—Saul intended to bring about David’s death at the hands of the Philistines.— 26When his courtiers told this to David, David was pleased with the idea of becoming the king’s son-in-law. Before the time had expired, 27David went out with his men and killed two hundred Philistines; David brought their foreskins and they were counted out for the king, that he might become the king’s son-in-law. Saul then gave him his daughter Michal in marriage. 28When Saul realized that the Lord was with David and that Michal daughter of Saul loved him, 29Saul grew still more afraid of David; and Saul was David’s enemy ever after.

30The Philistine chiefs marched out [to battle]; and every time they marched out, David was more successful than all the other officers of Saul. His reputation soared.

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