0 David commits random acts of genocide for the Philistines (1 Sam 26-28)

Episode 115: David commits random acts of genocide for the Philistines

1 Samuel 26-28

David takes Saul's spear and water while he's sleeping

26 1 The Ziphites came to Saul and told him that David was hiding out in the wilderness of Ziph. 2 So Saul went to Ziph with 3000 of his best soldiers to find David.

4 David sent out spies who discovered where Saul was camping. 5 So David went to the camp and found Saul asleep. 12 He took Saul's spear and jug of water. No one in Saul's camp noticed because a deep sleep from God had fallen upon them.

22 Then David shouted, "Look, I have the king's spear."

25 Saul said to David,

Blessed are you, my son David!

You'll do great things and will prevail.

So David went on his way and Saul returned to his place.

David commits random acts of genocide for the Philistines

27 1 David said to himself, "Saul is going to kill me. I'd better go hang out with the Philistines."

2 So he and his two new wives, Abigail and Ahinoam, and 600 outlaws lived in Gath with the Philistine king, Achish.

6-7 Achish gave David the city of Ziklag, where David lived for a year and four months.

8-9 While serving the Philistines, David and his men invaded the Geshurites, the Gezrites, and the Amalekites, killing all of the men and women, taking their animals and clothes, and coming back to report to the Philistine king.

10 King Achish would ask David when he returned each day, "Where did you go today, David?"

And David would say,

Oh, to the south of Judah, the south of the Jerahmeelites, and the south of the Kenites.

11 On these outings, David killed all of the men and women "lest they should tell on us."

12 King Achish was pleased by this, and said,

The Israelites will hate David for this. He will, therefore, be my servant forever.

28 1 As the Philistines gathered their armies for war, King Achish asked David,

Are you willing to fight with me against the Israelites?

2 David said, "Sure. You know how good I am at that."

King Achish said, "Great! You'll be my protector forever."

Saul visits a woman from Endor

3-5 Samuel had died, and Saul had expelled all of the wizards and people with familiar spirits. So when he saw that the Philistines were preparing for war, he had no one to do his fortune telling for him.

6 He tried asking God. But God wouldn't answer him. Not with dreams, the urim, or with prophets.

7 Saul said to his servants, "Find me a woman with a familiar spirit."

His servants said, "There's a woman with a familiar spirit at Endor."

8 So Saul disguised himself somehow and went to find the woman.

When he found her, he said, "I'd like you to bring a dead person back to life for me."

9 The woman said,

Saul has cut off people with familiar spirits. Are you trying to get me killed?

10 Saul said, "I swear to God that you'll be safe."

Samuel rises from the dead to give Saul the bad news

11 She asked, "Who do you want me to bring back to life?"

Saul said, "Samuel."

12 When the woman saw Samuel, she knew who Saul was.

13 Saul said, "Don't be afraid. What did you see?"

She said,

I saw gods coming out of the earth.

14 Among them was an old man covered with a mantle.

Saul figured that had to be Samuel.

15 Samuel said, "Why did you bring me up?"

Saul said,

The Philistines are attacking, and God won't talk to me. Not even by prophets or dreams. So I called you up to tell me what to do.

16 Samuel said,

So why talk to me about it?

God has left you and is now your enemy.

17-18 He has taken your kingdom away and given it to David, since you were unwilling to commit complete genocide on the Amalekites as God commanded.

19 God will deliver Israel into the hand of the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me (dead).

20 After Saul heard the words of Samuel, he fell to the ground, eating nothing for a day and a night.

21 Finally, after much coaxing, the woman of Endor killed a calf and fed it to Saul. Then Saul and his servants were on their way.

A few more words about this episode

He took Saul's spear and jug of water. (26:22)
If this story sounds familiar, it should. It is nearly identical to the story in 1 Sam 24 (Episode 113) where David snuck in undetected and cut off Saul's skirt while he was going to the bathroom.
David's two new wives, Abigail and Ahinoam (27:2)
David got Abigail for a wife when God killed her husband Nabal. (2 Sam 24, Episode 114). The Bible doesn't say how he obtained Ahinoam, although it is possible that she was Saul's wife (1 Sam 14:50).
The Philistine king, Achish (27:2)
This is the same king to whom David pretended to be insane. (1 Sam 21:10-15, Episode 112)
To the south of Judah (27:10)
While working for the Philistines, David attacked and killed his own people in the land of Judah. He was a traitor to Israel.
Saul was unwilling to commit complete genocide on the Amalekites as God commanded. (28:18)
See 1 Sam 15:2-3, Episode 107, Drunk With Blood: The Amalekite genocide.
There's a woman with a familiar spirit at Endor. (28:7)

In the podcast, Carole said that the witch of Endor sounded familiar. I suggested that she was probably thinking of something from Shakespeare, but I couldn't remember the quote. It turns out it is from Macbeth.

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and caldron bubble.
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the caldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork and blind-worm's sting,
Lizard's leg and howlet's wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and caldron bubble.
Cool it with a baboon's blood,
Then the charm is firm and good.

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