1 Samuel 28-31 Bible in Basic English

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28 1  Now in those days the Philistines got their forces together to make war on Israel. And Achish said to David, Certainly you and your men are to go out with me to the fight. 2  And David said to Achish, You will see now what your servant will do. And Achish said to David, Then I will make you keeper of my head for ever.

Saul and the Medium at En-dor

3  Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel, after weeping for him, had put his body in its last resting-place in Ramah, his town. And Saul had put away from the land all those who had control of spirits and who made use of secret arts. 4  And the Philistines came together and put their forces in position in Shunem; and Saul got all Israel together and they took up their positions in Gilboa. 5  And when Saul saw the Philistine army he was troubled, and his heart was moved with fear. 6  And when Saul went for directions to the Lord, the Lord gave him no answer, by a dream or by the Urim or by the prophets.

7  Then Saul said to his servants, Get me a woman who has control of a spirit so that I may go to her and get directions. And his servants said to him, There is such a woman at En-dor. 8  So Saul, putting on other clothing, so that he might not be seen to be the king, took two men with him and went to the woman by night; and he said, Now, with the help of the spirit which you have, make the person whose name I will give you come up. 9  And the woman said to him, But you have knowledge of what Saul has done, how he has put away out of the land those who have control of spirits and the users of secret arts: why would you, by a trick, put me in danger of death? 10  And Saul made an oath to her by the Lord, saying, By the living Lord, no punishment will come to you for this. 11  Then the woman said, Who am I to let you see? And he said, Make Samuel come up for me. 12  And the woman saw that it was Saul, and she gave a loud cry, and said to Saul, Why have you made use of deceit? for you are Saul. 13  And the king said to her, Have no fear: what do you see? And the woman said to Saul, I see a god coming up out of the earth. 14  And he said to her, What is his form? And she said, It is an old man coming up covered with a robe. And Saul saw that it was Samuel, and with his face bent down to the earth he gave him honour.

15  And Samuel said to Saul, Why have you made me come up, troubling my rest? And Saul in answer said, I am in great danger; for the Philistines are making war on me, and God has gone away from me and will no longer give me any answer, by the prophets or by dreams: so I have sent for you to make clear to me what I am to do. 16  And Samuel said, Why do you put your questions to me, seeing that God has gone away from you and is on the side of him who is against you? 17  And the Lord himself has done what I said: the Lord has taken the kingdom out of your hand and given it to your neighbour David; 18  Because you did not do what the Lord said, and did not give effect to his burning wrath against Amalek. So the Lord has done this thing to you today. 19  And more than this, the Lord will give Israel up with you into the hands of the Philistines: and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me: and the Lord will give up the army of Israel into the hands of the Philistines.

20  Then Saul went down flat on the earth, and was full of fear because of Samuel's words: and there was no strength in him, for he had taken no food all that day or all that night. 21  And the woman came to Saul and saw that he was in great trouble, and said to him, See now, your servant has given ear to your words, and I have put my life in danger by doing what you said. 22  So now, give ear to the voice of your servant, and let me give you a little bread; and take some food to give you strength when you go on your way. 23  But he would not, saying, I have no desire for food. But his servants, together with the woman, made him take food, and he gave way to them. So he got up from the earth, and took his seat on the bed. 24  And the woman had in the house a young cow, made fat for food; and she put it to death straight away; and she took meal and got it mixed and made unleavened bread; 25  And she put it before Saul and his servants, and they had a meal. Then they got up and went away the same night.

The Philistines Distrust David

29 1  Now the Philistines got all their army together at Aphek: and the Israelites put their forces in position by the fountain in Jezreel. 2  And the lords of the Philistines went on with their hundreds and their thousands, and David and his men came after with Achish. 3  Then the rulers of the Philistines said, What are these Hebrews doing here? And Achish said to the rulers of the Philistines, Is this not David, the servant of Saul the king of Israel, who has been with me for a year or two, and I have never seen any wrong in him from the time when he came to me till now? 4  But the rulers of the Philistines were angry with him, and said to him, Make the man go back to the place you have given him; do not let him go down with us to the fight, or he may be turned against us and be false to us: for how will this man make peace with his lord? will it not be with the heads of these men? 5  Is this not David, who was named in their songs, when in the dance they said to one another, Saul has put to death thousands, and David tens of thousands?

6  Then Achish sent for David and said to him, By the living Lord, you are upright, and everything you have done with me in the army has been pleasing to me: I have seen no evil in you from the day when you came to me till now: but still, the lords are not pleased with you. 7  So now go back, and go in peace, so that you do not make the lords of the Philistines angry. 8  And David said to Achish, But what have I done? what have you seen in your servant while I have been with you till this day, that I may not go and take up arms against those who are now making war on my lord the king? 9  And Achish in answer said, It is true that in my eyes you are good, like an angel of God: but still, the rulers of the Philistines have said, He is not to go up with us to the fight. 10  So get up early in the morning, with the servants of your lord who are with you, and go to the place I have given you, and have no evil design in your heart, for you are good in my eyes; but when there is light enough in the morning, go away. 11  So David and his men got up early in the morning to go back to the land of the Philistines. And the Philistines went up to Jezreel.

David Defeats the Amalekites

30 1  Now when David and his men came to Ziklag on the third day, the Amalekites had made an attack on the South and on Ziklag, and had overcome Ziklag and put it on fire; 2  And had made the women and all who were there, small and great, prisoners: they had not put any of them to death, but had taken them all away. 3  And when David and his men came to the town, they saw that it had been burned down, and their wives and their sons and daughters had been made prisoners. 4  Then David and the people who were with him gave themselves up to weeping till they were able to go on weeping no longer. 5  And David's two wives, Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail, the wife of Nabal of Carmel, had been made prisoners. 6  And David was greatly troubled; for the people were talking of stoning him, because their hearts were bitter, every man sorrowing for his sons and his daughters: but David made himself strong in the Lord his God.

7  And David said to Abiathar the priest, the son of Ahimelech, Come here to me with the ephod. And Abiathar took the ephod to David. 8  Then David, questioning the Lord, said, Am I to go after this band? will I be able to overtake them? And in answer he said, Go after them, for you will certainly overtake them, and get back everything. 9  So David went, and his six hundred men went with him, and they came to the stream Besor. 10  And David, with four hundred men, went on: but two hundred of them were overcome with weariness, and not able to go across the stream. 11  And in the fields they saw an Egyptian whom they took to David, and they gave him bread, and he had a meal, and they gave him water for drink; 12  And they gave him part of a cake of figs and some dry grapes; and after the food, his spirit came back to him, for he had had no food or drink for three days and nights. 13  And David said to him, Whose man are you and where do you come from? And he said, I am a young man of Egypt, servant to an Amalekite; and my master went on without me because three days back I became ill. 14  We made an attack on the south part of the country of the Cherethites, and on the land which is Judah's, and on the south of Caleb; and we put Ziklag on fire. 15  And David said to him, Will you take me down to this band? And he said, If you give me your oath that you will not put me to death or give me up to my master, I will take you to them. 16  And when he had taken him down, they saw them all, seated about on all sides, feasting and drinking among all the mass of goods which they had taken from the land of the Philistines and the land of Judah. 17  And David went on fighting them from evening till the evening of the day after; and not one of them got away but only four hundred young men who went in flight on camels. 18  And David got back everything the Amalekites had taken; and he got back his two wives. 19  There was no loss of anything, small or great, sons or daughters or goods or anything which they had taken away: David got it all back. 20  And they took all the flocks and herds, and driving them in front of him, said, These are David's.

21  And David came to the two hundred men, who because of weariness had not gone with him, but were waiting at the stream Besor: and they went out, meeting David and the people who were with him; and when they came near them, they said, How are you? 22  Then the bad and good-for-nothing men among those who went with David said, Because they did not go with us, we will give them nothing of the goods which we have got back, but only to every man his wife and children, so that he may take them and go. 23  Then David said, You are not to do this, my brothers, after what the Lord has given us, who has kept us safe and given up the band which came against us into our hands. 24  Who is going to give any attention to you in this question? for an equal part will be given to him who went to the fight and to him who was waiting by the goods: they are all to have the same. 25  And so he made it a rule and an order for Israel from that day till now. 26  And when David came to Ziklag, he sent some of the goods to the responsible men of Judah, and to his friends, saying, Here is an offering for you from the goods of those who were fighting against the Lord; 27  He sent to those who were in Beth-el, and in Ramah of the South, and in Jattir; 28  And to those in Arara and Eshtemoa 29  and Carmel and in the towns of the Jerahmeelites, and in the towns of the Kenites; 30  And to those who were in Hormah and in Bor-ashan and in Athach; 31  And in Hebron, and to all the places where David and his men had been living.

The Death of Saul and His Sons

31 1  Now the Philistines were fighting against Israel: and the men of Israel went in flight before the Philistines, falling down wounded in Mount Gilboa. 2  And the Philistines overtook Saul and his sons; and they put to death Jonathan and Abinadab and Malchi-shua, the sons of Saul. 3  And the fight was going badly for Saul, and the archers came across him, and he was wounded by the archers. 4  Then Saul said to the servant who had the care of his arms, Take out your sword and put it through me, before these men without circumcision come and make sport of me. But his servant, full of fear, would not do so. Then Saul took out his sword, and falling on it, put an end to himself. 5  And when his servant saw that Saul was dead, he did the same, and was united with him in death. 6  So death overtook Saul and his three sons and his servant on the same day. 7  And when the men of Israel across the valley and on the other side of Jordan saw that the army of Israel was in flight and that Saul and his sons were dead, they came out of their towns and went in flight; and the Philistines came and took them for themselves.

8  Now on the day after, when the Philistines came to take their goods from the dead, they saw Saul and his three sons dead on the earth in Mount Gilboa. 9  And cutting off his head and taking away his war-dress, they sent word into the land of the Philistines round about, to take the news to their gods and to the people. 10  His war-dress they put in the house of Astarte; and his body was fixed on the wall of Beth-shan. 11  And when the people of Jabesh-gilead had news of what the Philistines had done to Saul, 12  All the fighting men got up and, travelling all night, took Saul's body and the bodies of his sons from the wall of Beth-shan; and they came to Jabesh and had them burned there. 13  And their bones they put in the earth under a tree in Jabesh; and for seven days they took no food.

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