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1 Samuel 29

1 The Philistines gathered all their troops at Aphek. The Israelites camped by the spring in Jezreel Valley.

2 The five Philistine kings marched with units of a hundred and of a thousand men. David and his men marched in the rear with King Achish.

3 The Philistine commanders saw them and asked: »What are these Hebrews doing here?« Achish answered: »This is David. He is the man who ran away from King Saul of Israel. He has been with me for more than a year. He has done nothing I can find fault with since the day he came to me.«

4 The Philistine commanders were angry with Achish and said to him: »Send that fellow back to the town you gave him. Do not let him go into battle with us. He might turn against us during the fight. What better way is there for him to win back his master’s favor than by causing the death of our men?

5 »This is David, the one about whom the women sang, as they danced: Saul has killed thousands, but David has killed tens of thousands.«

6 Achish called David and said: »I swear by the living God of Israel that you have been loyal to me. I would be pleased to have you go with me and fight in this battle. I have found no fault in you from the day you came to me. But the other kings do not approve of you.

7 »Go home in peace. Do not do anything that would displease them.«

8 David answered: »What have I done wrong? As you say, you have not found any fault in me since the day I started serving you. Why should I not go with you, my master and king, and fight your enemies?«

9 »I agree,« Achish replied. »I consider you as loyal as an angel of God. But the other kings say you may not go with us into battle.

10 »Tomorrow morning all of you who left Saul and came over to me must get up early and leave at first light.«

11 David and his men started out early the following morning. They went back to Philistia. The Philistines went on to Jezreel.

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