And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.
Was knit with the soul of David - The same forcible phrase occurs of Jacob's love for Benjamin (marginal reference). Jonathan's truly heroic character is shown in this generous love of David, and admiration of his great deed.
And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house.
Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.
And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.
And David went out whithersoever Saul sent him, and behaved himself wisely: and Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul's servants.
And it came to pass as they came, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women came out of all cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet king Saul, with tabrets, with joy, and with instruments of musick.
The Philistine - Rather as in the margin. The allusion is not to Goliath, but to one of the expeditions referred to in 1 Samuel 18:5.
Singing and dancing - Women used to dance to the sound of the timbrel, and to sing as they danced and played.
(instruments of music The word means, an instrument like the triangle, or with three cords.
And the women answered one another as they played, and said, Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands.
As they played - Or danced with vocal and instrumental music (see Judges 16:25 note).
And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?
What can he have ... - Rather, "There is only the kingdom left for him." Compare for the same sentiment, 1 Kings 2:22. "A kingdom (says Camden) brooketh no companion, and majesty more heavily taketh injuries to heart."
And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.
And it came to pass on the morrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and there was a javelin in Saul's hand.
He prophesied - This, as the effect of the evil spirit coming upon him, is singular as regards Saul, but is borne out by what we read in 1 Kings 22:22. (Compare Acts 16:16-18; Acts 19:15; 1 John 4:1-3). It is impossible to give the sense of "raving" to the word "prophesied," as though a merely natural state of frenzy were intended. The "prophesying" here was as directly the effect of the coming of the evil spirit upon Saul, as the "prophesying" in 1 Samuel 10:10 was the effect of the Spirit of God coming upon him. At the same time it is quite true that "madness" and "prophesyings" were considered as near akin (see Jeremiah 29:26; 2 Kings 9:11).
And Saul cast the javelin; for he said, I will smite David even to the wall with it. And David avoided out of his presence twice.
And Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him, and was departed from Saul.
Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people.
And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the LORD was with him.
Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him.
But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them.
And Saul said to David, Behold my elder daughter Merab, her will I give thee to wife: only be thou valiant for me, and fight the LORD'S battles. For Saul said, Let not mine hand be upon him, but let the hand of the Philistines be upon him.
Saul had not hitherto fulfilled the promise of which David had heard (marginal reference); nor was it unnatural that Saul should delay to do so, until the shepherd's boy had risen to a higher rank.
And David said unto Saul, Who am I? and what is my life, or my father's family in Israel, that I should be son in law to the king?
What is my life - i. e., condition, or means of living (Proverbs 27:27 margin).
But it came to pass at the time when Merab Saul's daughter should have been given to David, that she was given unto Adriel the Meholathite to wife.
Adriel the Meholathite - The five sons of this marriage perished by the hands of the Gibeonites (marginal reference), where we learn further that the name of Adriel's father, or ancestor, was Barzillai. His birth-place was Meholah, probably the same as Abel-Meholah. (See 1 Kings 19:16 note).
And Michal Saul's daughter loved David: and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.
The thing pleased him - It partly relieved him from the charge of breaking his faith.
And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Wherefore Saul said to David, Thou shalt this day be my son in law in the one of the twain.
In the one of the twain - Some prefer "the second time" Job 33:14. The first contract had been broken by giving Merab to Adriel.
And Saul commanded his servants, saying, Commune with David secretly, and say, Behold, the king hath delight in thee, and all his servants love thee: now therefore be the king's son in law.
And Saul's servants spake those words in the ears of David. And David said, Seemeth it to you a light thing to be a king's son in law, seeing that I am a poor man, and lightly esteemed?
A poor man and lightly esteemed - Compare Psalm 119:141. Poor, and therefore unable to pay a sufficient dowry. See 1 Samuel 18:25.
And the servants of Saul told him, saying, On this manner spake David.
And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.
An hundred foreskins - This is merely another expression of the spirit which led to the constant application of the epithet uncircumcised to the Philistines 1 Samuel 14:6.
And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king's son in law: and the days were not expired.
The days were not expired - David was so rapid in his attack upon the Philistines that he was able to bring the required dowry within the time, and to receive his wife (Michal), before the time had expired within which he was to receive Merab.
Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king's son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.
And Saul saw and knew that the LORD was with David, and that Michal Saul's daughter loved him.
And Saul was yet the more afraid of David; and Saul became David's enemy continually.
Then the princes of the Philistines went forth: and it came to pass, after they went forth, that David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul; so that his name was much set by.