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THE LOVE OF DAVID AND JONATHAN.
And afterwards David came and said unto Jonathan, “ What have I done ? and what is my sin that thy father should seek my life? For truly now there is but a step between me and death!” Then said Jonathan unto David, “Whatsoever thy soul desireth, I will even do it for thee.” And David made a covenant with Jonathan, that he would show kindness unto him and unto his seed forever.
And Jonathan loved David as his own soul. And Jonathan said, "Tomorrow is the feast of the new moon, and thou wilt be missed because thy seat will be empty; and after three days come thou and hide in the field, and I will go out and shoot arrows; and if I say unto the lad the arrow is on this side, behold my father is not angry, and thou mayest come and fear not; but if I say the arrows are beyond thee then thou must flee, and the Lord go with thee."
And when the new moon was come, the king sat down to meat. And David's place was empty. And Saul said unto Jonathan his son, “ Wherefore cometh not David to meat ?” And Jonathan answered Saul, “David earnestly asked leave of me to go to Beth-lehem; and he said, “Let me go I pray thee; for our family hath a sacrifice in the city; and my brother hath commanded me to be there;' therefore he cometh not to the king's table.” Then Saul's anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he cast a javelin at him. But Jonathan arose from the table in anger, for he was grieved for David when he saw that Saul, his father, was determined to slay him.
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. And he said unto the lad, “Run and find the arrows which I shoot." And as the lad ran he shot an arrow over beyond him—and Jonathan cailed after the lad, “The arrow is beyond thee.” And the lad gathered up the arrows and came to his master; and Jonathan gave his bow and arrows unto his lad, and said unto him, “Go carry them to the city.” And as soon as the lad was gone, David came out of his hiding-place. And Jonathan and David kissed one another and wept. And Jonathan said unto 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.
And David abode in the wilderness; and Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand. And Jonathan, Saul's son, arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God. And he said unto him, “Fear not; for the hand of Saul my father shall not find thee; and thou shalt be king over Israel, and I shall be next unto thee; and that also Saul my father knoweth.” And they two made a covenant before the Lord : and David abode in the wood, and Jonathan went to his own house.
And it came to pass that on a day while Saul was seeking David, that Saul was weary and went into a cave and fell asleep. Now David and his men were hid in the cave; and they said unto David, “Behold now hath the Lord delivered
THE LOVE OF DAVID AND JONATHAN.
thine enemy into thy hand.” But David said, “ The Lord forbid that I should stretch forth my hand against my master, the Lord's anointed!” So David suffered them not to rise against Saul ; but he cut off the skirt of Saul's robe. And when Saul arose and went on his way, David arose afterward, and went out of the cave and cried after Saul, saying, “My lord, the king !” And when Saul looked behind him, David stooped with his face to the earth and bowed himself. And David said unto Saul, “Wherefore hearest thou men's words, saying: “Behold, David seeketh thy hurt?' Behold, this day thou wert delivered into my hand in the cave; and some bade me kill thee; but I spared thee. And I said, “I will not put forth my hand against my lord, for he is the Lord's anointed. Moreover, my father, see the skirt of thy robe in my hand; I cut off the skirt of thy robe, and killed thee not; therefore, know thou that there is no evil in my hand, and I have not sinned against thee; and yet thou huntest my soul to take it."
And it came to pass, when David had made an end of speaking these words unto Saul, that Saul said, “Is this thy voice, my son David ?” And Saul lifted up his voice, and wept. And he said to David, “ Thou art more righteous than I: for thou hast rewarded me good, whereas I have rewarded thee evil. And thou hast showed this day how that thou hast dealt well with me : forasmuch as when the Lord had delivered me into thine hand, thou killedst me not. The Lord reward thee good for that thou hast done this day;” and Saul went home, and David returned to the cave.
And after a time, Saul arose, having three thousand chosen men with him, and went again to seek David. And when Saul had pitched his camp by the way, David came secretly and took away Saul's spear, and a cruse of water that stood by Saul's bolster while he slept. Then David went and stood on a hill-top afar off, and cried and said, “ Where now is the king's spear and the cruse of water that was by his bolster ? ” And Saul heard the voice and said, “Is that thy voice, my son David ?” And David said, “It is my voice; my lord ! oh, king! Wherefore doth my lord pursue thy servant? for what have I done? Then said Saul, “I have sinned! Return, my son David : for I will no more do thee harm, because my soul was precious in thine eyes this day : behold, I have played the fool and have erred exceedingly. And David answered and said, “Behold the king's spear! and let one of the young men come over and fetch it." So David went on his way and Saul returned to his place.
And it came to pass that the Philistines fought against Israel. Jonathan was slain in the battle, and the battle also went sore against Saul and the archers hit him; and he was sore wounded. Then he said unto his armor-bearer, “Draw thy sword and thrust me through, lest the Philistines fall upon me and slay me.” But his armor-bearer would not, for he was afraid. Therefore Saul took a sword and fell upon it; and when his armor-bearer saw that Saul was dead, he fell likewise on his sword, and died with him. So Saul died, and his sons, and his armor-bearer, and all his men.
THE LOVE OF DAVID AND JONATHAN.
And when they told David that Saul and Jonathan were both slain, he lamented over them, saying:
“Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives,
“From the blood of the slain,
“Oh, Jonathan, thou wast slain in thine high places !
“How are the mighty fallen,