David Flees to Gath

10 David fled that day from Saul’s presence and went to King Achish of Gath.(A) 11 But Achish’s servants said to him, “Isn’t this David, the king of the land? Don’t they sing about him during their dances:

Saul has killed his thousands,
but David his tens of thousands?”(B)

12 David took this to heart[a] and became very afraid of King Achish of Gath, 13 so he pretended to be insane in their presence.(C) He acted like a madman around them,[b] scribbling[c] on the doors of the gate and letting saliva run down his beard.

14 “Look! You can see the man is crazy,” Achish said to his servants. “Why did you bring him to me? 15 Do I have such a shortage of crazy people that you brought this one to act crazy around me? Is this one going to come into my house?”(D)

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  1. 1 Samuel 21:12 Lit David placed these words in his heart
  2. 1 Samuel 21:13 Lit madman in their hand
  3. 1 Samuel 21:13 LXX reads drumming