1 Samuel 18:5-19:24 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
5 David did everything Saul sent him to do. He did it so well that Saul gave him a high rank in the army. That pleased Saul’s whole army, including his officers.
6 After David had killed Goliath, the men of Israel returned home. The women came out of all the towns of Israel to meet King Saul. They danced and sang joyful songs. They played harps and tambourines. 7 As they danced, they sang,
“Saul has killed thousands of men.
8 That song made Saul very angry. It really upset him. He said to himself, “They are saying David has killed tens of thousands of men. But they are saying I’ve killed only thousands. The only thing left for him to get is the kingdom itself.” 9 From that time on, Saul watched David closely.
10 The next day an evil spirit sent by God came powerfully on Saul. Saul began to prophesy in his house. At that same time David began to play the harp, just as he usually did. Saul was holding a spear. 11 He threw it at David. As he did, he said to himself, “I’ll pin David to the wall.” But David got away from him twice.
12 The Lord had left Saul and was with David. So Saul was afraid of David. 13 He sent David away. He put him in command of 1,000 men. David led the troops in battle. 14 In everything he did, he was very successful. That’s because the Lord was with him. 15 When Saul saw how successful David was, he became afraid of him. 16 But all the troops of Israel and Judah loved David. That’s because he led them in battle.
17 Saul said to David, “Here is my older daughter Merab. I’ll give her to you to be your wife. Just serve me bravely and fight the Lord’s battles.” Saul said to himself, “I won’t have to lift my hand to strike him down. The Philistines will do that!”
18 But David said to Saul, “Who am I? Is anyone in my whole family that important in Israel? Am I worthy to become the king’s son-in-law?” 19 The time came for Saul to give his daughter Merab to David. Instead, Saul gave her to Adriel from Meholah to be his wife.
20 Saul’s daughter Michal was in love with David. When they told Saul about it, he was pleased. 21 “I’ll give her to David to be his wife,” Saul said to himself. “Then maybe she’ll trap him. And maybe the Philistines will strike him down.” So Saul said to David, “Now you have a second chance to become my son-in-law.”
22 Then Saul gave an order to his attendants. He said, “Speak to David in private. Tell him, ‘The king likes you. All his attendants love you. So become his son-in-law.’ ”
23 Saul’s attendants spoke those very words to David. But David said, “Do you think it’s a small thing to become the king’s son-in-law? I’m only a poor man. I’m not very well known.”
24 Saul’s attendants told him what David had said. 25 Saul said, “Tell David, ‘Here’s the price the king wants for the bride. He wants you to kill 100 Philistines. Then bring back the skins you cut off when you circumcise them. That’s how Saul will get even with his enemies.’ ” Saul hoped that the Philistines would strike David down.
26 Saul’s attendants also told David those things. Then David was pleased to become the king’s son-in-law. So before the wedding day, 27 David and his men went out and killed 200 Philistines. They circumcised the Philistines. Then David brought back all the skins. They counted out the full number and gave them to the king. By doing that, David could become the king’s son-in-law. So Saul gave David his daughter Michal to be his wife.
28 Saul realized that the Lord was with David. He also realized that his daughter Michal loved David. 29 So Saul became even more afraid of him. As long as Saul lived, he remained David’s enemy.
30 The Philistine commanders kept on going out to battle. Every time they did, David had more success against them than the rest of Saul’s officers. So his name became well known.
Saul Tries to Kill David
19 Saul told his son Jonathan and all the attendants to kill David. But Jonathan liked David very much. 2 So Jonathan warned him, “My father Saul is looking for a chance to kill you. Be very careful tomorrow morning. Find a place to hide and stay there. 3 My father and I will come and stand in the field where you are hiding. I’ll speak to him about you. Then I’ll tell you what I find out.”
4 Jonathan told his father Saul some good things about David. He said to him, “Please don’t do anything to harm David. He hasn’t done anything to harm you. And what he’s done has helped you a lot. 5 He put his own life in danger when he killed Goliath. The Lord used him to win a great battle for the whole nation of Israel. When you saw it, you were glad. So why would you do anything to harm a man like David? He isn’t guilty of doing anything to harm you. Why would you want to kill him without any reason?”
6 Saul paid attention to Jonathan. Saul made a promise. He said, “You can be sure that the Lord lives. And you can be just as sure that David will not be put to death.”
7 So Jonathan sent for David and told him everything he and Saul had said. Then he brought David to Saul. David served Saul as he had done before.
8 Once more war broke out. So David went out and fought against the Philistines. He struck them down with so much force that they ran away from him.
9 But an evil spirit sent by the Lord came on Saul. It happened as he was sitting in his house and holding his spear. While David was playing the harp, 10 Saul tried to pin him to the wall with his spear. But David got away from him just as Saul drove the spear into the wall. That night David escaped.
11 Saul sent some men to watch David’s house. He told them to kill David the next morning. But David’s wife Michal warned him. She said, “You must run for your life tonight. If you don’t, tomorrow you will be killed.” 12 So Michal helped David escape through a window. He ran and got away. 13 Then Michal got a statue of a god. She laid it on David’s bed. She covered it with clothes. And she put some goat hair at the place where David’s head would have been.
14 Saul sent the men to capture David. But Michal told them, “He’s sick.”
15 Then Saul sent the men back to see David. He told them, “Bring him up here to me in his bed. Then I’ll kill him.” 16 But when the men entered, the only thing they found in the bed was the statue. Some goat hair was at the place where David’s head would have been.
17 Saul said to Michal, “Why did you trick me like this? Why did you help my enemy escape?”
Michal told him, “He said to me, ‘Help me get away. If you don’t, I’ll kill you.’ ”
18 After David had run away and escaped, he went to Samuel at Ramah. He told him everything Saul had done to him. Then David and Samuel went to Naioth and stayed there. 19 Saul was told, “David is in Naioth at Ramah.” 20 So Saul sent some men to capture him. When they got there, they saw a group of prophets who were prophesying. Samuel was standing there as their leader. Then the Spirit of God came on Saul’s men. So they also began to prophesy. 21 Saul was told about it. So he sent some more men. They began to prophesy too. Saul sent some men a third time. And they also began to prophesy. 22 Finally, Saul decided to go to Ramah himself. He went to the large well at Seku. He asked some people, “Where are Samuel and David?”
“Over in Naioth at Ramah,” they said.
23 So Saul went to Naioth at Ramah. But the Spirit of God even came on him. He walked along and prophesied until he came to Naioth. 24 There he took off his clothes. Then he also prophesied in front of Samuel. He lay there without his clothes on all that day and night. That’s why people say, “Is Saul also one of the prophets?”
John 8:31-59 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
Challenge to the Claim to Be Children of Abraham
31 Jesus spoke to the Jews who had believed him. “If you obey my teaching,” he said, “you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth. And the truth will set you free.”
33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s children. We have never been slaves of anyone. So how can you say that we will be set free?”
34 Jesus replied, “What I’m about to tell you is true. Everyone who sins is a slave of sin. 35 A slave has no lasting place in the family. But a son belongs to the family forever. 36 So if the Son of Man sets you free, you will really be free. 37 I know that you are Abraham’s children. But you are looking for a way to kill me. You have no room for my word. 38 I am telling you what I saw when I was with my Father. You are doing what you have heard from your father. ”
39 “Abraham is our father,” they answered.
Jesus said, “Are you really Abraham’s children? If you are, you will do what Abraham did. 40 But you are looking for a way to kill me. I am a man who has told you the truth I heard from God. Abraham didn’t do the things you want to do. 41 You are doing what your own father does.”
“We have the right to claim to be God’s children,” they objected. “The only Father we have is God himself.”
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me. I have come here from God. I have not come on my own. God sent me. 43 Why aren’t my words clear to you? Because you can’t really hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil. You want to obey your father’s wishes. From the beginning, the devil was a murderer. He has never obeyed the truth. There is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his natural language. He does this because he is a liar. He is the father of lies. 45 But because I tell the truth, you don’t believe me! 46 Can any of you prove I am guilty of sinning? Am I not telling the truth? Then why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you don’t hear is that you don’t belong to God.”
Jesus Makes Claims About Himself
48 The Jews answered Jesus, “Aren’t we right when we say you are a Samaritan? Aren’t you controlled by a demon?”
49 “I am not controlled by a demon,” said Jesus. “I honor my Father. You do not honor me. 50 I am not seeking glory for myself. But there is one who brings glory to me. He is the judge. 51 What I’m about to tell you is true. Whoever obeys my word will never die.”
52 Then they cried out, “Now we know you are controlled by a demon! Abraham died. So did the prophets. But you say that whoever obeys your word will never die. 53 Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died. So did the prophets. Who do you think you are?”
54 Jesus replied, “If I bring glory to myself, my glory means nothing. You claim that my Father is your God. He is the one who brings glory to me. 55 You do not know him. But I know him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you. But I do know him. And I obey his word. 56 Your father Abraham was filled with joy at the thought of seeing my day. He saw it and was glad.”
57 “You are not even 50 years old,” they said to Jesus. “And you have seen Abraham?”
58 “What I’m about to tell you is true,” Jesus answered. “Before Abraham was born, I am!” 59 When he said this, they picked up stones to kill him. But Jesus hid himself. He slipped away from the temple area.
Psalm 112 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
1 Praise the Lord.
Blessed are those who have respect for the Lord.
2 Their children will be powerful in the land.
10 Evil people will see it and be upset.
Proverbs 15:12-14 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
12 People who make fun of others don’t like to be corrected.
13 A happy heart makes a face look cheerful.
14 A heart that understands what is right looks for knowledge.
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