1 Samuel Chapter 22 |
1David departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam; and when his brothers and all his father’s house heard, they joined him down there. 2Everyone who was in straits and everyone who was in debt and everyone who was desperate joined him, and he became their leader; there were about four hundred men with him. 3David went from there to Mizpeh of Moab, and he said to the king of Moab, “Let my father and mother come [and stay] with you, until I know what God will do for me.” 4So he led them to the king of Moab, and they stayed with him as long as David remained in the stronghold. 5But the prophet Gad said to David, “Do not stay in the stronghold; go at once to the territory of Judah.” So David left and went to the forest of Hereth.
6When Saul heard that David and the men with him had been located—Saul was then in Gibeah, sitting under the tamarisk tree on the height, spear in hand, with all his courtiers in attendance upon him— 7Saul said to the courtiers standing about him, “Listen, men of Benjamin! Will the son of Jesse give fields and vineyards to every one of you? And will he make all of you captains of thousands or captains of hundreds? 8Is that why all of you have conspired against me? For no one informs me when my own son makes a pact with the son of Jesse; no one is concerned for me and no one informs me when my own son has set my servant in ambush against me, as is now the case.”
9Doeg the Edomite, who was standing among the courtiers of Saul, spoke up: “I saw the son of Jesse come to Ahimelech son of Ahitub at Nob. 10He inquired of the Lord on his behalf and gave him provisions; he also gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine.” 11Thereupon the king sent for the priest Ahimelech son of Ahitub and for all the priests belonging to his father’s house at Nob. They all came to the king, 12and Saul said, “Listen to me, son of Ahitub.” “Yes, my lord,” he replied. 13And Saul said to him, “Why have you and the son of Jesse conspired against me? You gave him food and a sword, and inquired of God for him—that he may rise in ambush against me, as is now the case.”
14Ahimelech replied to the king, “But who is there among all your courtiers as trusted as David, son-in-law of Your Majesty and obedient to your bidding, and esteemed in your household? 15This is the first time that I inquired of God for him; I have done no wrong. Let not Your Majesty find fault with his servant [or] with any of my father’s house; for your servant knew nothing whatever about all this.” 16But the king said, “You shall die, Ahimelech, you and all your father’s house.” 17And the king commanded the guards standing by, “Turn about and kill the priests of the Lord, for they are in league with David; they knew he was running away and they did not inform me.” But the king’s servants would not raise a hand to strike down the priests of the Lord. 18Thereupon the king said to Doeg, “You, Doeg, go and strike down the priests.” And Doeg the Edomite went and struck down the priests himself; that day, he killed eighty-five men who wore the linen ephod. 19He put Nob, the town of the priests, to the sword: men and women, children and infants, oxen, asses, and sheep—[all] to the sword.
20But one son of Ahimelech son of Ahitub escaped—his name was Abiathar—and he fled to David. 21When Abiathar told David that Saul had killed the priests of the Lord, 22David said to Abiathar, “I knew that day, when Doeg the Edomite was there, that he would tell Saul. I am to blame for all the deaths in your father’s house. 23Stay with me; do not be afraid; for whoever seeks your life must seek my life also. It will be my care to guard you.”