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Chapter 20

1But David fled from Najoth, which is in Ramatha, and came and said to Jonathan: What have I done? what is my iniquity, and what is my sin against thy father, that he seeketh my life? 2And he said to him: God forbid, thou shalt not die: for my father will do nothing great or little, without first telling me: hath then my father hid this word only from me? no, this shall not be. 3And he swore again to David. And David said: Thy father certainly knoweth that I have found grace in thy sight, and he will say: Let not Jonathan know this, lest he be grieved. But truly as the Lord liveth, and thy soul liveth, there is but one step (as I may say) between me and death. 4And Jonathan said to David: Whatsoever thy soul shall say to me, I will do for thee. 5And David said to Jonathan: Behold to morrow is the new moon, and I according to custom am wont to sit beside the king to eat: let me go then that I may be hid in the field till the evening of the third day. 6If thy father look and inquire for me, thou shalt answer him: David asked me that he might run to Bethlehem his own city: because there are solemn sacrifices there for all his tribe. 7If he shall say, It is well: thy servant shall have peace: but if he be angry, know that his malice is come to its height. 8Deal mercifully then with thy servant: for thou hast brought me thy servant into a covenant of the Lord with thee. But if there be any iniquity in me, do thou kill me, and bring me not in to thy father. 9And Jonathan said: Far be this from thee: for if I should certainly know that evil is determined by my father against thee, I could do no otherwise than tell thee. 10And David answered Jonathan: Who shall bring me word, if thy father should answer thee harshly concerning me? 11And Jonathan said to David: Come and let us go out into the field. And when they were both of them gone out into the field, 12Jonathan said to David: O Lord God of Israel, if I shall discover my father's mind, to morrow or the day after, and there be any thing good for David, and I send not immediately to thee, and make it known to thee, 13May the Lord do so and so to Jonathan and add still more. But if my father shall continue in malice against thee, I will discover it to thy ear, and will send thee away, that thou mayest go in peace, and the Lord be with thee, as he hath been with my father. 14And if I live, thou shalt shew me the kindness of the Lord: but if I die, 15Thou shalt not take away thy kindness from my house for ever, when the Lord shall have rooted out the enemies of David, every one of them from the earth, may he take away Jonathan from his house, and may the Lord require it at the hands of David's enemies. 16Jonathan therefore made a covenant with the house of David: and the Lord required it at the hands of David's enemies. 17And Jonathan swore again to David, because he loved him: for he loved him as his own soul. 18And Jonathan said to him: To morrow is the new moon, and thou wilt be missed: 19For thy seat will be empty till after tomorrow. So thou shalt go down quickly, and come to the place, where thou must be hid on the day when it is lawful to work, and thou shalt remain beside the stone, which is called Ezel. 20And I will shoot three arrows near it, and will shoot as if I were exercising myself at a mark. 21And I will send a boy, saying to him: Go and fetch me the arrows. 22If I shall say to the boy: Behold the arrows are on this side of thee, take them up: come thou to me, because, there is peace to thee, and there is no evil, as the Lord liveth. But if I shall speak thus to the boy: Behold the arrows are beyond thee: go in peace, for the Lord hath sent thee away. 23And concerning the word which I and thou have spoken, the Lord be between thee and me for ever. 24So David was hid in the field, and the new moon came, and the king sat down to eat bread. 25And when the king sat down upon his chair (according to custom) which was beside the wall, Jonathan arose, and Abner sat by Saul's side, and David's place appeared empty. 26And Saul said nothing that day, for he thought it might have happened to him, that he was not clean, nor purified. 27And when the second day after the new moon was come, David's place appeared empty again. And Saul said to Jonathan his son: Why cometh not the son of Isai to meat neither yesterday nor to day? 28And Jonathan answered Saul: He asked leave of me earnestly to go to Bethlehem, 29And he said: Let me go, for there is a solemn sacrifice in the city, one of my brethren hath sent for me: and now if I have found favour in thy eyes, I will go quickly, and see my brethren. For this cause he came not to the king's table. 30Then Saul being angry against Jonathan said to him: Thou son of a woman that is the ravisher of a man, do I not know that thou lovest the son of Isai to thy own confusion and to the confusion of thy shameless mother? 31For as long as the son of Isai liveth upon earth, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Therefore now presently send, and fetch him to me: for he is the son of death. 32And Jonathan answering Saul his father, said: Why shall he die: what hath he done? 33And Saul caught up a spear to strike him. And Jonathan understood that it was determined by his father to kill David. 34So Jonathan rose from the table in great anger, and did not eat bread on the second day after the new moon. For he was grieved for David, because his father had put him to confusion. 35And when the morning came, Jonathan went into the field, according to the appointment with David, and a little boy with him. 36And he said to his boy: Go, and fetch me the arrows which I shoot. And when the boy ran, he shot another arrow beyond the boy. 37The boy therefore came to the place of the arrow which Jonathan had shot: and Jonathan cried after the boy, and said: Behold the arrow is there further beyond thee. 38And Jonathan cried again after the boy, saying: Make haste speedily, stand not. And Jonathan's boy gathered up the arrows, and brought them to his master: 39And he knew not at all what was doing: for only Jonathan and David knew the matter. 40Jonathan therefore gave his arms to the boy, and said to him: Go, and carry them into the city. 41And when the boy was gone, David rose out of his place, which was towards the south, and falling on his face to the ground, adored thrice: and kissing one another, they wept together, but David more. 42And Jonathan said to David: Go in peace: and let all stand that 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. 43And David arose, and departed: and Jonathan went into the city.

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