I Samuel 22
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1  David departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adulam; and when his brothers and all his father’s house heard, they joined him down there.

א  וַיֵּלֶךְ דָּוִד מִשָּׁם וַיִּמָּלֵט אֶל־מְעָרַת עֲדֻלָּם וַיִּשְׁמְעוּ אֶחָיו וְכָל־בֵּית אָבִיו וַיֵּרְדוּ אֵלָיו שָׁמָּה׃

2  Everyone who was in straits and everyone who was in debt and everyone who was desperate joined him, and he became their leader; there were about four hundred men with him.

ב  וַיִּתְקַבְּצוּ אֵלָיו כָּל־אִישׁ מָצוֹק וְכָל־אִישׁ אֲשֶׁר־לוֹ נֹשֶׁא וְכָל־אִישׁ מַר־נֶפֶשׁ וַיְהִי עֲלֵיהֶם לְשָׂר וַיִּהְיוּ עִמּוֹ כְּאַרְבַּע מֵאוֹת אִישׁ׃

3  David went from there to Mizpeh of Moab, and he said to the king of Moab, “Let my father and mother come [and stay] with you, until I know what Hashem will do for me.”

ג  וַיֵּלֶךְ דָּוִד מִשָּׁם מִצְפֵּה מוֹאָב וַיֹּאמֶר אֶל־מֶלֶךְ מוֹאָב יֵצֵא־נָא אָבִי וְאִמִּי אִתְּכֶם עַד אֲשֶׁר אֵדַע מַה־יַּעֲשֶׂה־לִּי אֱלֹהִים׃

4  So he led them to the king of Moab, and they stayed with him as long as David remained in the stronghold.

ד  וַיַּנְחֵם אֶת־פְּנֵי מֶלֶךְ מוֹאָב וַיֵּשְׁבוּ עִמּוֹ כָּל־יְמֵי הֱיוֹת־דָּוִד בַּמְּצוּדָה׃

5  But the Navi Gad said to David, “Do not stay in the stronghold; go at once to the territory of Yehuda.” So David left and went to the forest of Hereth.

ה  וַיֹּאמֶר גָּד הַנָּבִיא אֶל־דָּוִד לֹא תֵשֵׁב בַּמְּצוּדָה לֵךְ וּבָאתָ־לְּךָ אֶרֶץ יְהוּדָה וַיֵּלֶךְ דָּוִד וַיָּבֹא יַעַר חָרֶת׃

6  When Shaul heard that David and the men with him had been located—Shaul was then in Giva, sitting under the tamarisk tree on the height, spear in hand, with all his courtiers in attendance upon him—

ו  וַיִּשְׁמַע שָׁאוּל כִּי נוֹדַע דָּוִד וַאֲנָשִׁים אֲשֶׁר אִתּוֹ וְשָׁאוּל יוֹשֵׁב בַּגִּבְעָה תַּחַת־הָאֶשֶׁל בָּרָמָה וַחֲנִיתוֹ בְיָדוֹ וְכָל־עֲבָדָיו נִצָּבִים עָלָיו׃

7  Shaul said to the courtiers standing about him, “Listen, men of Binyamin! Will the son of Yishai give fields and vineyards to every one of you? And will he make all of you captains of thousands or captains of hundreds?

ז  וַיֹּאמֶר שָׁאוּל לַעֲבָדָיו הַנִּצָּבִים עָלָיו שִׁמְעוּ־נָא בְּנֵי יְמִינִי גַּם־לְכֻלְּכֶם יִתֵּן בֶּן־יִשַׁי שָׂדוֹת וּכְרָמִים לְכֻלְּכֶם יָשִׂים שָׂרֵי אֲלָפִים וְשָׂרֵי מֵאוֹת׃

8  Is that why all of you have conspired against me? For no one informs me when my own son makes a pact with the son of Yishai; no one is concerned for me and no one informs me when my own son has set my servant in ambush against me, as is now the case.”

ח  כִּי קְשַׁרְתֶּם כֻּלְּכֶם עָלַי וְאֵין־גֹּלֶה אֶת־אָזְנִי בִּכְרָת־בְּנִי עִם־בֶּן־יִשַׁי וְאֵין־חֹלֶה מִכֶּם עָלַי וְגֹלֶה אֶת־אָזְנִי כִּי הֵקִים בְּנִי אֶת־עַבְדִּי עָלַי לְאֹרֵב כַּיּוֹם הַזֶּה׃

9  Doeg Ha’adomi, who was standing among the courtiers of Shaul, spoke up: “I saw the son of Yishai come to Achimelech son of Achituv at Nov.

ט  וַיַּעַן דֹּאֵג הָאֲדֹמִי וְהוּא נִצָּב עַל־עַבְדֵי־שָׁאוּל וַיֹּאמַר רָאִיתִי אֶת־בֶּן־יִשַׁי בָּא נֹבֶה אֶל־אֲחִימֶלֶךְ בֶּן־אֲחִטוּב׃

10  He inquired of Hashem on his behalf and gave him provisions; he also gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine.”

י  וַיִּשְׁאַל־לוֹ בַּיהֹוָה וְצֵידָה נָתַן לוֹ וְאֵת חֶרֶב גָּלְיָת הַפְּלִשְׁתִּי נָתַן לוֹ׃

11  Thereupon the king sent for the Kohen Achimelech son of Achituv and for all the Kohanim belonging to his father’s house at Nov. They all came to the king,

יא  וַיִּשְׁלַח הַמֶּלֶךְ לִקְרֹא אֶת־אֲחִימֶלֶךְ בֶּן־אֲחִיטוּב הַכֹּהֵן וְאֵת כָּל־בֵּית אָבִיו הַכֹּהֲנִים אֲשֶׁר בְּנֹב וַיָּבֹאוּ כֻלָּם אֶל־הַמֶּלֶךְ׃

12  and Shaul said, “Listen to me, son of Achituv.” “Yes, my lord,” he replied.

יב  וַיֹּאמֶר שָׁאוּל שְׁמַע־נָא בֶּן־אֲחִיטוּב וַיֹּאמֶר הִנְנִי אֲדֹנִי׃

13  And Shaul said to him, “Why have you and the son of Yishai conspired against me? You gave him food and a sword, and inquired of Hashem for him—that he may rise in ambush against me, as is now the case.”

va-YO-mer ay-LAV sha-UL LA-mah k’-shar-TEM a-LAI a-TAH u-ven yi-SHAI b’-ti-t’-KHA LO LE-khem v’-KHE-rev v’-sha-OL LO bay-lo-HEEM la-KUM ay-LAI l’-o-RAYV ka-YOM ha-ZEH

יג  וַיֹּאמֶר אלו [אֵלָיו] שָׁאוּל לָמָּה קְשַׁרְתֶּם עָלַי אַתָּה וּבֶן־יִשָׁי בְּתִתְּךָ לוֹ לֶחֶם וְחֶרֶב וְשָׁאוֹל לוֹ בֵּאלֹהִים לָקוּם אֵלַי לְאֹרֵב כַּיּוֹם הַזֶּה׃

 22:13   And inquired of Hashem for him

The Urim Ve’Tumim, mystical objects in the Kohen Gadol’s breastplate, were used to receive communication from Hashem. Divine messages were transmitted through the illumination of the twelve stones on the breast­plate, which represented the twelve tribes of IsraelRashi explains that by using the Urim Ve’Tumim to ask Hashem to provide instruction to David , the Kohanim treated David as a king, since they are not allowed to inquire of the Urim Ve’Tumim for a regular citizen.  Thus, King Shaul was angry not only that Achimelech had assisted David, but that he related to him as the king.  The use of the Urim Ve’Tumim is another example of the high level of God’s direct involvement in the lives of the Children of Israel, felt most acutely in Eretz Yisrael.

 Comment

14  Achimelech replied to the king, “But who is there among all your courtiers as trusted as David, son-in-law of Your Majesty and obedient to your bidding, and esteemed in your household?

יד  וַיַּעַן אֲחִימֶלֶךְ אֶת־הַמֶּלֶךְ וַיֹּאמַר וּמִי בְכָל־עֲבָדֶיךָ כְּדָוִד נֶאֱמָן וַחֲתַן הַמֶּלֶךְ וְסָר אֶל־מִשְׁמַעְתֶּךָ וְנִכְבָּד בְּבֵיתֶךָ׃

15  This is the first time that I inquired of Hashem for him; I have done no wrong. Let not Your Majesty find fault with his servant [or] with any of my father’s house; for your servant knew nothing whatever about all this.”

טו  הַיּוֹם הַחִלֹּתִי לשאול־[לִשְׁאָל־] לוֹ בֵאלֹהִים חָלִילָה לִּי אַל־יָשֵׂם הַמֶּלֶךְ בְּעַבְדּוֹ דָבָר בְּכָל־בֵּית אָבִי כִּי לֹא־יָדַע עַבְדְּךָ בְּכָל־זֹאת דָּבָר קָטֹן אוֹ גָדוֹל׃

16  But the king said, “You shall die, Achimelech, you and all your father’s house.”

טז  וַיֹּאמֶר הַמֶּלֶךְ מוֹת תָּמוּת אֲחִימֶלֶךְ אַתָּה וְכָל־בֵּית אָבִיךָ׃

17  And the king commanded the guards standing by, “Turn about and kill the Kohanim of Hashem, for they are in league with David; they knew he was running away and they did not inform me.” But the king’s servants would not raise a hand to strike down the Kohanim of Hashem.

יז  וַיֹּאמֶר הַמֶּלֶךְ לָרָצִים הַנִּצָּבִים עָלָיו סֹבּוּ וְהָמִיתוּ כֹּהֲנֵי יְהֹוָה כִּי גַם־יָדָם עִם־דָּוִד וְכִי יָדְעוּ כִּי־בֹרֵחַ הוּא וְלֹא גָלוּ אֶת־אזנו [אָזְנִי] וְלֹא־אָבוּ עַבְדֵי הַמֶּלֶךְ לִשְׁלֹחַ אֶת־יָדָם לִפְגֹעַ בְּכֹהֲנֵי יְהֹוָה׃

18  Thereupon the king said to Doeg, “You, Doeg, go and strike down the Kohanim.” And Doeg Ha’adomi went and struck down the Kohanim himself; that day, he killed eighty-five men who wore the linen ephod.

יח  וַיֹּאמֶר הַמֶּלֶךְ לדויג [לְדוֹאֵג] סֹב אַתָּה וּפְגַע בַּכֹּהֲנִים וַיִּסֹּב דויג [דּוֹאֵג] הָאֲדֹמִי וַיִּפְגַּע־הוּא בַּכֹּהֲנִים וַיָּמֶת בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא שְׁמֹנִים וַחֲמִשָּׁה אִישׁ נֹשֵׂא אֵפוֹד בָּד׃

19  He put Nov, the town of the Kohanim, to the sword: men and women, children and infants, oxen, asses, and sheep—[all] to the sword.

יט  וְאֵת נֹב עִיר־הַכֹּהֲנִים הִכָּה לְפִי־חֶרֶב מֵאִישׁ וְעַד־אִשָּׁה מֵעוֹלֵל וְעַד־יוֹנֵק וְשׁוֹר וַחֲמוֹר וָשֶׂה לְפִי־חָרֶב׃

20  But one son of Achimelech son of Achituv escaped—his name was Evyatar—and he fled to David.

כ  וַיִּמָּלֵט בֵּן־אֶחָד לַאֲחִימֶלֶךְ בֶּן־אֲחִטוּב וּשְׁמוֹ אֶבְיָתָר וַיִּבְרַח אַחֲרֵי דָוִד׃

21  When Evyatar told David that Shaul had killed the Kohanim of Hashem,

כא  וַיַּגֵּד אֶבְיָתָר לְדָוִד כִּי הָרַג שָׁאוּל אֵת כֹּהֲנֵי יְהֹוָה׃

22  David said to Evyatar, “I knew that day, when Doeg Ha’adomi was there, that he would tell Shaul. I am to blame for all the deaths in your father’s house.

כב  וַיֹּאמֶר דָּוִד לְאֶבְיָתָר יָדַעְתִּי בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא כִּי־שָׁם דויג [דּוֹאֵג] הָאֲדֹמִי כִּי־הַגֵּד יַגִּיד לְשָׁאוּל אָנֹכִי סַבֹּתִי בְּכָל־נֶפֶשׁ בֵּית אָבִיךָ׃

23  Stay with me; do not be afraid; for whoever seeks your life must seek my life also. It will be my care to guard you.”

כג  שְׁבָה אִתִּי אַל־תִּירָא כִּי אֲשֶׁר־יְבַקֵּשׁ אֶת־נַפְשִׁי יְבַקֵּשׁ אֶת־נַפְשֶׁךָ כִּי־מִשְׁמֶרֶת אַתָּה עִמָּדִי׃

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I Samuel 22

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