Add parallel Print Page Options

Jonathan Cuts a Covenant with David

18 Now it happened when he had finished speaking to Saul, that (A)the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and (B)Jonathan loved him as his own soul. And Saul took him that day and (C)did not let him return to his father’s house. Then (D)Jonathan cut a covenant with David because he loved him as his own soul. (E)And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, with his armor, even his sword and his bow and his belt. So David went out wherever Saul sent him and [a]prospered; and Saul set him over the men of war. And it was pleasing in the eyes of all the people and also in the eyes of Saul’s servants.

Saul Looks at David with Suspicion

And it happened as they were coming, when David returned from striking down the Philistine, that (F)the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with gladness, and with [b]musical instruments. And the women (G)sang as they [c]were merry and said,

(H)Saul has struck his thousands,
(I)And David his ten thousands.”

Then Saul became very angry, for this saying was [d]displeasing in his eyes; and he said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, but to me they have ascribed thousands. Now (J)what more can he have but the kingdom?” So Saul looked at David with suspicion from that day on.

10 Now it happened on the next day that (K)an evil spirit from God [e]came mightily upon Saul, and (L)he raved in the midst of the house. Now David was playing the harp with his hand, [f](M)as usual; and [g](N)a spear was in Saul’s hand. 11 (O)Then Saul hurled the spear for he thought, “I will [h]pin David to the wall.” But David [i]escaped from his presence twice.

12 And (P)Saul was afraid of David, (Q)for Yahweh was with him but (R)had turned away from Saul. 13 Therefore Saul turned him away from [j]his presence and appointed him as his commander of one thousand; and (S)he went out and came in before the people. 14 And David was [k]prospering in all his ways, and (T)Yahweh was with him. 15 Then Saul saw that he was [l]prospering greatly, so he dreaded him. 16 But (U)all Israel and Judah loved David, for he went out and came in before them.

17 Then Saul said to David, “(V)Here is my older daughter Merab; I will give her to you as a wife; only be a man of valor for me and fight (W)Yahweh’s battles.” For Saul thought, “My hand shall not be against him, but (X)let the hand of the Philistines be against him.” 18 But David said to Saul, “(Y)Who am I, and what is my life or my father’s family in Israel, that I should be the king’s son-in-law?” 19 So it happened at the time when Merab, Saul’s daughter, should have been given to David, that she was given to (Z)Adriel (AA)the Meholathite as a wife.

Saul’s Daughter Given to David

20 And (AB)Michal, Saul’s daughter, loved David. So they told Saul, and the thing was right in his eyes. 21 And Saul said, “I will give her to him that she may become a snare to him, and (AC)that the hand of the Philistines may be against him.” Therefore Saul said to David, “(AD)For a second time you may be my son-in-law today.” 22 Then Saul commanded his servants, “Speak to David secretly, saying, ‘Behold, the king delights in you, and all his servants love you; so now, become the king’s son-in-law.’” 23 So Saul’s servants spoke these words in [m]David’s hearing. But David said, “Is it trivial in your eyes to become the king’s son-in-law, (AE)since I am a poor man and lightly esteemed?” 24 And the servants of Saul told to him [n]according to these words which David spoke. 25 Saul then said, “Thus you shall say to David, ‘The king does not desire any (AF)dowry except one hundred foreskins of the Philistines, (AG)to take vengeance on the king’s enemies.’” Now (AH)Saul planned to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines. 26 Then his servants told David these words, and it was right in the eyes of David to become the king’s son-in-law. [o](AI)So before the days had expired, 27 David rose up and went, (AJ)he and his men, and struck down two hundred men among the Philistines. Then (AK)David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full number to the king, that he might become the king’s son-in-law. So Saul gave him Michal his daughter as a wife. 28 Then Saul saw and knew that Yahweh was with David, and that Michal, Saul’s daughter, loved him, 29 so Saul was even more afraid of David. So Saul was David’s enemy continually.

30 Then the commanders of the Philistines (AL)went out to battle, and it happened as often as they went out, that David (AM)behaved himself more insightfully than all the servants of Saul. So his name was highly esteemed.


  1. 1 Samuel 18:5 Or acted wisely
  2. 1 Samuel 18:6 Possibly three-stringed lutes
  3. 1 Samuel 18:7 Or danced
  4. 1 Samuel 18:8 Lit evil
  5. 1 Samuel 18:10 Lit succeeded, rushed upon
  6. 1 Samuel 18:10 Lit day by day
  7. 1 Samuel 18:10 Lit the
  8. 1 Samuel 18:11 Lit strike David and the wall
  9. 1 Samuel 18:11 Lit turned about
  10. 1 Samuel 18:13 Lit with him
  11. 1 Samuel 18:14 Or acting wisely
  12. 1 Samuel 18:15 Or acting very wisely
  13. 1 Samuel 18:23 Lit the ears of David
  14. 1 Samuel 18:24 Lit by saying according
  15. 1 Samuel 18:26 Lit And the days had not expired