1 Samuel 19:4
And Jonathan spoke good of David to Saul his father, and said to him, Let not the king sin against his servant, against David; because he has not sinned against you, and because his works have been to you-ward very good:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(4) Jonathan spake good of David.—The heir to the throne—the one above all men likely to be injured by the growing popularity of David—with great power and intense earnestness, represented to his father the king the great virtues, the unrivalled gifts, and, above all, the splendid services of the young soldier whose life Saul was so anxious to cut short. “See,’ urged the eloquent pleader for his friend’s life, “on that ever memorable occasion when he fought the giant, when he aimed the pebble of the brook from his shepherd’s sling, he put his life in his hand. Had he missed a hair’s-breadth, the giant would have slain him, and the deliverance then wrought for Israel would never have been accomplished.”

19:1-10 How forcible are right words! Saul was, for a time, convinced of the unreasonableness of his enmity to David; but he continued his malice against David. So incurable is the hatred of the seed of the serpent against that of the woman; so deceitful and desperately wicked is the heart of man without the grace of God, Jer 17:9.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. 4-7. Jonathan spake good of David—He told his father he was committing a great sin to plot against the life of a man who had rendered the most invaluable services to his country and whose loyalty had been uniformly steady and devoted. The strong remonstrances of Jonathan produced an effect on the impulsive mind of his father. As he was still susceptible of good and honest impressions, he bound himself by an oath to relinquish his hostile purpose; and thus, through the intervention of the noble-minded prince, a temporary reconciliation was effected, in consequence of which David was again employed in the public service. Jonathan spake good of David, which he could not do without hazard to himself. Herein therefore he performed the duty of a true friend, and of a valiant man. And Jonathan spake good of David unto Saul his father,.... Observed to him what a good man be was, and what good things he had done, what wisdom and prudence he had shown in the management of all his affairs, what valour and courage in all his expeditions, what faithfulness and integrity to his king and country in every instance:

and said unto him, let not the king sin against his servant, against David; by taking away his life; which would have been a great sin indeed, a sin against the law of God, which forbids murder, and which would have been attended with sad aggravations of cruelty and ingratitude:

because he hath not sinned against thee; had not disobeyed any of his orders, but faithfully served him in everything, and much less ever thought to take away his life, or seize his crown, as he might imagine:

and because his works have been to thee-ward very good; by slaying the Philistines, when he and his army were in the utmost terror; by driving away the evil spirit from him, through playing on his harp before him; as well as by commanding his troops, and leading them against the Philistines, and obtaining victory over them.

And Jonathan spake good of David unto Saul his father, and said unto him, Let not the king sin against his servant, against David; because he hath not sinned against thee, and because his works have been to thee-ward very good:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
4. spake good of David] Had Jonathan simply advised David to flee, without endeavouring to bring Saul to a better mind, he would have acted to the prejudice of his father’s interests, by depriving him of the best support of his kingdom.

to thee-ward] “Ward” is used as a termination denoting (a) direction (Exodus 37:9), (b) as here, relation.Verses 4-7. - In the field Jonathan intercedes for David, assures his father of his friend's innocence, reminds him of his noble exploit, and of Saul's own joy at it, and beseeches him not to shed innocent blood. And Saul, fickle and selfish, yet not destitute of noble feelings, repents of his purpose, and with characteristic impetuosity takes an oath that David's life shall be spared. Whereupon a reconciliation takes place, and David resumes his attendance upon the king's person. RENEWED ATTEMPT TO SLAY DAVID FRUSTRATED BY MICHAL (vers. 8-17). The knowledge of the fact that David had carried out all his enterprises with success had already filled the melancholy king with fear. But when the failure of this new plan for devoting David to certain death had forced the conviction upon him that Jehovah was with David, and that he was miraculously protected by Him; and when, in addition to this, there was the love of his daughter Michal to David; his fear of David grew into a lifelong enmity. Thus his evil spirit urged him ever forward to greater and greater hardness of heart.
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