1 Samuel 20 Expanded Bible (EXB)
Jonathan Helps David
20 Then David ·ran away [fled] from Naioth in Ramah. He went to Jonathan and asked, “What have I done? What is my ·crime [guilt; iniquity]? How did I ·sin against [offend; wrong] your father? Why is he ·trying to kill me [L seeking my life]?”
2 Jonathan answered, “·No [Never; Far from it]! You won’t die! See, my father doesn’t do anything ·great or small [important or unimportant] without first ·telling [confiding in] me. Why would he ·keep [hide] this from me? It’s not true!”
3 But David ·took an oath [vowed; swore], saying, “Your father knows very well that ·you like me [L I have found favor in your sight]. He says to himself, ‘Jonathan must not know about it, or he will be ·upset [hurt; grieved].’ As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I am only a step away from death!”
4 Jonathan said to David, “I’ll do ·anything you want me to do [L for you whatever you say].”
5 So David said, “Look, tomorrow is the New Moon festival [Num. 29:6; 2 Chr. 8:13; Ezra 3:5; Col. 2:16]. I am supposed to eat with the king, but let me hide in the field until the ·third evening [L evening of the third day]. 6 If your father notices I am gone, tell him, ‘David begged ·me to let him go [L to hurry/run] to his hometown of Bethlehem. Every year at this time his ·family group [whole clan] offers a sacrifice.’ 7 If your father says, ‘·Fine [Very well; Good],’ ·I am safe [L your servant is well]. But if he becomes angry, you will know that he ·wants to hurt me [is determined to harm me; has an evil plan]. 8 Jonathan, ·be loyal [show kindness/faithful love] to me, your servant. You have made an ·agreement [covenant; solemn pact] with me before the Lord. If I ·am guilty [have sinned], you may kill me yourself! Why ·hand me over [betray me] to your father?”
9 Jonathan answered, “·No, never [L Far be it from you]! If I learn that my father ·plans to hurt you [L decided on evil], ·I will warn you [wouldn’t I tell you?]!”
10 David asked, “Who will let me know if your father answers you ·unkindly [harshly]?”
11 Then Jonathan said [L to David], “Come, let’s go out into the field.” So the two of them went out into the field.
12 Jonathan said to David, “·I promise this before [L By] the Lord, the God of Israel: ·At [By] this same time ·the day after tomorrow [or tomorrow or the next day], I will ·find out how my father feels [sound out my father]. If he feels good toward you, I will send word to you and let you know. 13 But if my father plans to ·hurt [harm; kill] you, I will let you know and send you away safely. May the Lord ·punish me terribly [L deal severely with me, and worse,] if I don’t do this. And may the Lord be with you as he ·has been [used to be] with my father. 14 ·But show me the kindness of the Lord as long as I live so that I may not die [or If I am still alive, show me the faithful love/loyalty of the Lord. But if I die…] . 15 You must never ·stop showing [L cut off] your ·kindness [faithful love/loyalty] to my ·family [L house], even when the Lord has ·destroyed [exterminated; L cut off] all your enemies from the [L face of the] earth.”
16 So Jonathan ·made [L cut] an ·agreement [covenant; solemn pact] with David. He said, “May the Lord ·hold David’s enemies responsible [or destroy David’s enemies].” 17 And Jonathan asked David to repeat his ·promise [vow; oath] of love for him, because he loved David as much as he loved ·himself [L his own life/soul].
18 Jonathan said to David, “Tomorrow is the New Moon festival [20:5]. Your ·seat [place] will be empty, so my father will miss you. 19 ·On the third day [The day after tomorrow] go to the place where you hid when this trouble began. Wait by the ·rock Ezel [stone pile; mound of rock]. 20 I will shoot three arrows to the side of the rock as if I am shooting at a target. 21 Then I will send a boy to find the arrows. If I say to him, ‘The arrows are ·near you [L on this side]; bring them here,’ you may come out of hiding. You are safe. As the Lord lives, there is no ·danger [trouble; harm]. 22 But if I say to the ·boy [youngster], ‘Look, the arrows are ·beyond you [further on],’ you must go, because the Lord is sending you away. 23 Remember ·what we talked about [the promise we made]. The Lord is a witness between you and me forever.”
24 So David hid in the field. When the New Moon festival [20:5] came, the king sat down to eat. 25 He sat where he ·always [usually; customarily] sat, near the wall. Jonathan sat ·across from [facing] him, and Abner sat next to Saul, but David’s place was empty. 26 That day Saul said nothing. He thought, “Maybe something has happened to David so that he is unclean. [L Yes, surely he is unclean; C ritually unclean so he could not participate in a religious ceremony; Lev. 11–15] 27 But the next day was the second day of the month, and David’s place was still empty. So Saul said to Jonathan, “Why hasn’t the son of Jesse come to the ·feast [meal] yesterday or today?”
28 Jonathan answered [L Saul], “David begged me to let him go to Bethlehem. 29 He said, ‘Let me go, because our ·family [whole clan] has a sacrifice in the town, and my brother has ·ordered [commanded] me to be there. Now if I ·am your friend [L have found favor in your sight/eyes], please let me go to see my brothers.’ That is why he has not come to the king’s table.”
30 Then Saul ·became very angry with [L burned with anger against] Jonathan. He said, “You son of a ·wicked, worthless woman [whore; rebellious slut]! ·I [L Do I not…?] know you are on the side of David son of Jesse! ·You bring shame on yourself and on your mother who gave birth to you [L …to your own shame and the shame of your mother’s nakedness]. 31 As long as Jesse’s son lives [L on this earth], ·you will never be king or have a kingdom [L neither you nor your kingdom will be established]. Now send for David and bring him to me. He ·must [deserves to] die!”
32 Jonathan asked his father, “Why should David be killed? What wrong has he done?” 33 Then Saul threw his spear at Jonathan, ·trying to kill [L to strike] him. So Jonathan knew that his father ·really wanted [was determined] to kill David. 34 Jonathan ·was very angry [rose in fierce anger] and left the table. That second day of the ·month [or New Moon festival] he refused to eat. He ·was ashamed of his father and upset over David [grieved at his father’s shameful treatment of David; or grieved for David and because his father had disgraced/insulted/dishonored him].
35 The next morning Jonathan went out to the field to meet David as they had agreed. He had a young boy with him. 36 Jonathan said to the boy, “Run and find the arrows I shoot.” When he ran, Jonathan shot an arrow beyond him. 37 The boy ran to the place where Jonathan’s arrow fell, but Jonathan called, “The arrow is ·beyond [further ahead of] you!” 38 Then he shouted [L to the boy], “Hurry! Go quickly! Don’t ·stop [stay; linger]!” The boy picked up the arrow and brought it back to his master. 39 (The boy ·knew nothing about what this meant [suspected nothing]; only Jonathan and David ·knew [understood].) 40 Then Jonathan gave his weapons to the boy and told him, “Go [L bring them] back to town.”
41 When the boy left, David came out from the south side of the rock. He bowed facedown on the ground ·before Jonathan three [three] times. Then David and Jonathan kissed each other and cried together, but David cried the more.
42 Jonathan said to David, “Go in ·peace [safety]. We have ·promised [vowed; sworn] by the [L name of the] Lord ·that we will be friends [to each other]. We said, ‘The Lord will ·be a witness [L be] between you and me, and between our descendants always.’” Then ·David [L he got up and] left, and Jonathan went back to town.
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