NASB — 1 Samuel 20 — KJV

David and Jonathan Covenant

1 Then David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and asaid Ito Jonathan, “What have I done? What is my iniquity? And what is my sin before your father, that he is seeking my life?” 2 He said to him, “Far from it, you shall not die. Behold, my father does nothing either great or small Iwithout disclosing it to me. So why should my father hide this thing from me? It is not so!” 3 Yet David avowed again, Isaying, “Your father knows well that I have found favor in your sight, and he has said, ‘Do not let Jonathan know this, or he will be grieved.’ But truly bas the LORD lives and as your soul lives, there is IIhardly a step between me and death.” 4 Then Jonathan said to David, “Whatever Iyou say, I will do for you.” 5 So David said to Jonathan, “Behold, tomorrow is athe new moon, and I ought bto sit down to eat with the king. But let me go, cthat I may hide myself in the field until the third evening. 6 If your father misses me at all, then say, ‘David earnestly asked [leave] of me to run to aBethlehem his city, because it is bthe yearly sacrifice there for the whole family.’ 7 If he Isays, ‘It is good,’ your servant [will be] safe; but if he is very angry, aknow that he has decided on evil. 8 Therefore deal kindly with your servant, for ayou have brought your servant into a covenant of the LORD with you. But bif there is iniquity in me, put me to death yourself; for why then should you bring me to your father?” 9 Jonathan said, “Far be it from you! For if I should indeed learn that evil has been decided by my father to come upon you, then would I not tell you about it?” 10 Then David said to Jonathan, “Who will tell me Iif your father answers you harshly?” 11 Jonathan said to David, “Come, and let us go out into the field.” So both of them went out to the field.

[1] ILit before a1S 24:9
[2] ILit and he does not uncover my ear
[3] ILit and said IILit about aDt 6:13 b1S 25:26; 2K 2:6
[4] ILit your soul says
[5] aNu 10:10; 28:11-15; Am 8:5 b1S 20:24, 27 c1S 19:2
[6] a1S 17:58 bDt 12:5; 1S 9:12
[7] ILit says thus a1S 25:17
[8] a1S 18:3; 23:18 b2S 14:32
[10] ILit or what

12 ¶ Then Jonathan said to David, “The LORD, the God of Israel, [be witness]! When I have sounded out my father about this time tomorrow, [or] the third day, behold, if there is good [feeling] toward David, shall I not then send to you and Imake it known to you? 13 If it please my father [to do] you harm, amay the LORD do so to Jonathan and more also, if I do not Imake it known to you and send you away, that you may go in safety. And bmay the LORD be with you as He has been with my father. 14 If I am still alive, will you not show me the lovingkindness of the LORD, that I may not die? 15 aYou shall not cut off your lovingkindness from my house forever, not even when the LORD cuts off every one of the enemies of David from the face of the earth.” 16 So Jonathan made a [covenant] with the house of David, [saying], “aMay the LORD require [it] at the hands of David’s enemies.” 17 Jonathan made David vow again because of his love for him, because ahe loved him as he loved his own life.

[12] ILit uncover your ear
[13] ILit uncover your ear aRu 1:17; 1S 3:17 bJsh 1:5; 1S 17:37; 18:12; 1Ch 22:11, 16
[15] a2S 9:1, 3
[16] aDt 23:21; 1S 25:22
[17] a1S 18:1

18 ¶ Then Jonathan said to him, “aTomorrow is the new moon, and you will be missed because your seat will be empty. 19 When you have stayed for three days, you shall go down quickly and come to the place where you hid yourself on that eventful day, and you shall remain by the stone Ezel. 20 I will shoot three arrows to the side, as though I shot at a target. 21 And behold, I will send the lad, [saying], ‘Go, find the arrows.’ If I specifically say to the lad, ‘Behold, the arrows are on this side of you, get them,’ then come; for there is safety for you and Ino harm, as the LORD lives. 22 But if I Isay to the youth, ‘aBehold, the arrows are beyond you,’ go, for the LORD has sent you away. 23 aAs for the Iagreement of which you and I have spoken, behold, bthe LORD is between you and me forever.”

[18] a1S 20:5, 25
[21] ILit there is nothing
[22] ILit say thus a1S 20:37
[23] ILit word a1S 20:14, 15 bGn 31:49, 53; 1S 20:42

24 ¶ So David hid in the field; and when the new moon came, the king sat down to eat food. 25 The king sat on his seat as usual, the seat by the wall; then Jonathan rose up and Abner sat down by Saul’s side, but aDavid’s place was empty. 26 Nevertheless Saul did not speak anything that day, for he thought, “It is an accident, ahe is not clean, surely [he is] not clean.” 27 It came about the next day, the second [day] of the new moon, that David’s place was empty; so Saul said to Jonathan his son, “Why has the son of Jesse not come to the meal, either yesterday or today?” 28 Jonathan then answered Saul, “aDavid earnestly asked leave of me [to go] to Bethlehem, 29 for he said, ‘Please Ilet me go, since our family has a sacrifice in the city, and my brother has commanded me to attend. And now, if I have found favor in your sight, please let me get away that I may see my brothers.’ For this reason he has not come to the king’s table.”

[25] a1S 20:18
[26] aLv 7:20, 21; 15:5; 1S 16:5
[28] a1S 20:6
[29] ILit send me away

Saul Is Angry with Jonathan

30 ¶ Then Saul’s anger burned against Jonathan and he said to him, “You son of a perverse, rebellious woman! Do I not know that you are choosing the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of your mother’s nakedness? 31 For Ias long as the son of Jesse lives on the earth, neither you nor your kingdom will be established. Therefore now, send and bring him to me, for ahe IImust surely die.” 32 But Jonathan answered Saul his father and said to him, “aWhy should he be put to death? What has he done?” 33 Then aSaul hurled his spear at him to strike him down; bso Jonathan knew that his father had decided to put David to death. 34 Then Jonathan arose from the table in fierce anger, and did not eat food on the second day of the new moon, for he was grieved over David because his father had dishonored him.

[31] ILit all the days which IILit is a son of death a2S 12:5
[32] aGn 31:36; 1S 19:5; Pv 31:9; Mt 27:23
[33] a1S 18:11; 19:10 b1S 20:7

35 ¶ Now it came about in the morning that Jonathan went out into the field for the appointment with David, and a little lad [was] with him. 36 He said to his lad, “aRun, find now the arrows which I am about to shoot.” As the lad was running, he shot Ian arrow past him. 37 When the lad reached the place of the arrow which Jonathan had shot, Jonathan called after the lad and said, “aIs not the arrow beyond you?” 38 And Jonathan called after the lad, “Hurry, be quick, do not stay!” And Jonathan’s lad picked up the arrow and came to his master. 39 But the lad was not aware of anything; only Jonathan and David knew about the matter. 40 Then Jonathan gave his weapons to his lad and said to him, “Go, bring [them] to the city.” 41 When the lad was gone, David rose from the south side and fell on his face to the ground, and abowed three times. And they kissed each other and wept together, but bDavid [wept] the more. 42 Jonathan said to David, “aGo in safety, inasmuch as we have sworn to each other in the name of the LORD, saying, ‘bThe LORD will be between me and you, and between my Idescendants and your Idescendants forever.’” IIThen he rose and departed, while Jonathan went into the city.

[36] ILit the a1S 20:20, 21
[37] a1S 20:22
[41] aGn 42:6 b1S 18:3
[42] ILit seed IICh 21:1 in Heb a1S 20:22 b1S 20:15, 16, 23


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David consulteth with Jonathan for his safety.

1 ¶ And David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and said before Jonathan, What have I done? what [is] mine iniquity? and what [is] my sin before thy father, that he seeketh my life? 2 And he said unto him, God forbid; thou shalt not die: behold, my father will do nothing either great or small, but that he will shew it me: and why should my father hide this thing from me? it [is] not [so]. 3 And David sware moreover, and said, Thy father certainly knoweth that I have found grace in thine eyes; and he saith, Let not Jonathan know this, lest he be grieved: but truly [as] the LORD liveth, and [as] thy soul liveth, [there is] but a step between me and death. 4 Then said Jonathan unto David, Whatsoever thy soul desireth, I will even do [it] for thee. 5 And David said unto Jonathan, Behold, to morrow [is] the new moon, and I should not fail to sit with the king at meat: but let me go, that I may hide myself in the field unto the third [day] at even. 6 If thy father at all miss me, then say, David earnestly asked [leave] of me that he might run to Bethlehem his city: for [there is] a yearly sacrifice there for all the family. 7 If he say thus, [It is] well; thy servant shall have peace: but if he be very wroth, [then] be sure that evil is determined by him. 8 Therefore thou shalt deal kindly with thy servant; for thou hast brought thy servant into a covenant of the LORD with thee: notwithstanding, if there be in me iniquity, slay me thyself; for why shouldest thou bring me to thy father? 9 And Jonathan said, Far be it from thee: for if I knew certainly that evil were determined by my father to come upon thee, then would not I tell it thee? 10 Then said David to Jonathan, Who shall tell me? or what [if] thy father answer thee roughly?

[1] 1S 12:3; 19:19; 23:26; 24:11, 17; Ps 7:3; 18:20; 124:6; 2Co 1:12; 2P 2:9; 1Jn 3:21.
[2] Gn 44:7; Jsh 22:29; 24:16; 1S 9:15; 14:45; 20:12; Ps 40:6; Is 50:5; Lk 20:16; Jn 15:15; 17:8.
[3] Dt 6:13; 28:66; 1S 1:26; 17:55; 25:26; 27:1; 2S 15:21; 2K 2:2, 4, 6; Ps 116:3; Jr 4:2; 38:16; 1Co 15:30; 2Co 1:9; He 6:16.
[5] Nu 10:10; 28:11; 1S 19:2; 20:6, 19; 2K 4:23; Ps 55:12; 81:3; Pv 22:3; Jn 8:59; Ac 17:14; Col 2:16.
[6] 1S 9:12; 16:2; 17:58; Jn 7:42.
[7] Dt 1:23; 1S 20:9; 25:17; 2S 17:4; Es 7:7.
[8] Gn 24:49; 47:29; Jsh 2:14; 22:22; Ru 1:8; 1S 18:3; 20:16; 23:18; 2S 14:32; 1Ch 12:17; Ps 7:4; 116:11; Pv 3:3; Ac 25:11.
[9] 1S 19:2; 20:38, 42.
[10] Gn 42:7, 30; 1S 20:30; 25:10, 14, 17; 1K 12:13; Pv 18:23.

Jonathan and David renew their covenant by oath.

11 ¶ And Jonathan said unto David, Come, and let us go out into the field. And they went out both of them into the field. 12 And Jonathan said unto David, O LORD God of Israel, when I have sounded my father about to morrow any time, [or] the third [day], and, behold, [if there be] good toward David, and I then send not unto thee, and shew it thee; 13 The LORD do so and much more to Jonathan: but if it please my father [to do] thee evil, then I will shew it thee, and send thee away, that thou mayest go in peace: and the LORD be with thee, as he hath been with my father. 14 And thou shalt not only while yet I live shew me the kindness of the LORD, that I die not: 15 But [also] thou shalt not cut off thy kindness from my house for ever: no, not when the LORD hath cut off the enemies of David every one from the face of the earth. 16 So Jonathan made [a covenant] with the house of David, [saying], Let the LORD even require [it] at the hand of David's enemies. 17 And Jonathan caused David to swear again, because he loved him: for he loved him as he loved his own soul.

[12] Jsh 22:22; 1S 20:2; Jb 31:4; Ps 17:3; 139:1; Pv 20:5; 25:2.
[13] Jsh 1:5; Ru 1:17; 1S 3:17; 10:7; 11:6; 14:47; 17:37; 25:22; 2S 3:35; 7:15; 19:13; 1K 19:2; 20:10; 1Ch 22:11, 16; Mt 28:20; Php 4:9.
[14] 2S 9:3; Ep 5:1.
[15] 1S 24:21; 2S 9:1; 21:7.
[16] Gn 15:18; 1S 18:3; 25:22; 31:2; 2S 4:7; 21:8.
[17] Dt 13:6; 1S 18:1, 3; 2S 1:26; Pv 18:24.

Jonathan's token to David,

18 Then Jonathan said to David, To morrow [is] the new moon: and thou shalt be missed, because thy seat will be empty. 19 And [when] thou hast stayed three days, [then] thou shalt go down quickly, and come to the place where thou didst hide thyself when the business was [in hand], and shalt remain by the stone Ezel. 20 And I will shoot three arrows on the side [thereof], as though I shot at a mark. 21 And, behold, I will send a lad, [saying], Go, find out the arrows. If I expressly say unto the lad, Behold, the arrows [are] on this side of thee, take them; then come thou: for [there is] peace to thee, and no hurt; [as] the LORD liveth. 22 But if I say thus unto the young man, Behold, the arrows [are] beyond thee; go thy way: for the LORD hath sent thee away. 23 And [as touching] the matter which thou and I have spoken of, behold, the LORD [be] between thee and me for ever.

[18] 1S 20:5, 18.
[19] 1S 19:2; 20:5.
[21] Jr 4:2; 5:2; 12:16; Am 8:14.
[23] Gn 16:5; 31:50; 1S 20:14, 42.

Saul, missing David, seeketh to kill Jonathan.

24 ¶ So David hid himself in the field: and when the new moon was come, the king sat him down to eat meat. 25 And the king sat upon his seat, as at other times, [even] upon a seat by the wall: and Jonathan arose, and Abner sat by Saul's side, and David's place was empty. 26 Nevertheless Saul spake not any thing that day: for he thought, Something hath befallen him, he [is] not clean; surely he [is] not clean. 27 And it came to pass on the morrow, [which was] the second [day] of the month, that David's place was empty: and Saul said unto Jonathan his son, Wherefore cometh not the son of Jesse to meat, neither yesterday, nor to day? 28 And Jonathan answered Saul, David earnestly asked [leave] of me [to go] to Bethlehem: 29 And he said, Let me go, I pray thee; for our family hath a sacrifice in the city; and my brother, he hath commanded me [to be there]: and now, if I have found favour in thine eyes, let me get away, I pray thee, and see my brethren. Therefore he cometh not unto the king's table. 30 Then Saul's anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said unto him, Thou son of the perverse rebellious [woman], do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion, and unto the confusion of thy mother's nakedness? 31 For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he shall surely die. 32 And Jonathan answered Saul his father, and said unto him, Wherefore shall he be slain? what hath he done? 33 And Saul cast a javelin at him to smite him: whereby Jonathan knew that it was determined of his father to slay David. 34 So Jonathan arose from the table in fierce anger, and did eat no meat the second day of the month: for he was grieved for David, because his father had done him shame.

[24] Ps 50:16; Pv 4:17; 15:17; 17:1; 21:3, 27; Is 1:11; Zc 7:6; Jn 18:28.
[25] Jg 16:20.
[26] Lv 7:21; 11:24, 27, 31, 40; 15:5, 16, 19; Nu 19:16.
[27] 1S 18:11; 19:9, 15; 22:7, 13; 25:10; Is 11:1; Mt 13:55; 1P 2:4.
[28] 1S 20:6.
[29] 1S 17:28.
[30] Jb 5:2; Pv 14:29; 15:2; 19:12, 19; 21:24; 25:28; 27:3; Mt 5:22; Ep 4:31; 6:4; Jm 1:19.
[31] 1S 19:6, 11; 20:8; 26:16; 2S 19:28; Ps 79:11.
[32] 1S 18:11; 19:5, 10; 20:7; Pv 22:24; 24:11; 31:8; Ec 7:9; 9:3; Jr 17:9; Mt 27:23; Lk 23:22; Jn 7:51.
[34] Ec 7:20; Mk 3:5; Ep 4:26.

Jonathan lovingly taketh his leave of David.

35 ¶ And it came to pass in the morning, that Jonathan went out into the field at the time appointed with David, and a little lad with him. 36 And he said unto his lad, Run, find out now the arrows which I shoot. [And] as the lad ran, he shot an arrow beyond him. 37 And when the lad was come to the place of the arrow which Jonathan had shot, Jonathan cried after the lad, and said, [Is] not the arrow beyond thee? 38 And Jonathan cried after the lad, Make speed, haste, stay not. And Jonathan's lad gathered up the arrows, and came to his master. 39 But the lad knew not any thing: only Jonathan and David knew the matter. 40 And Jonathan gave his artillery unto his lad, and said unto him, Go, carry [them] to the city.

[35] 1S 20:19; 2S 20:5.
[36] 1S 20:20, 21.
[38] Ps 55:6; Pv 6:4; Mt 24:16; Mk 13:14; Lk 17:31.

41 ¶ [And] as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of [a place] toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded. 42 And Jonathan said to David, Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the LORD, saying, The LORD be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever. And he arose and departed: and Jonathan went into the city.

[41] Gn 29:11, 13; 43:28; 45:15; 1S 10:1; 18:3; 25:23; 2S 1:26; 9:6; 19:39; Ac 20:37.
[42] Nu 6:26; 1S 1:17; 20:22, 23; 23:18; Lk 7:50; Ac 16:36.


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