1 Samuel 14:1-52

14  And one day Saul’s son Jonathan said to the young man who was squire to him “Come, let us go across to the Philistines’ force over yonder,” but did not tell his father. 2 ** Saul was staying in the outskirts of Gebaʽ, under the pomegranate-tree in Migron; the people with him amounted to about six hundred men, 3  and Ahijah, the son of Ahitub the brother of Icabod the son of Pinehas the son of ʽEli Jehovah’s priest at Shiloh, bearing an ephod; and the people did not know that Jonathan went. 4  And between the crossings, where Jonathan tried to go across to the Philistine force, there is a tooth of rock over on this side and a tooth of rock over on that side, one named Boses and the other named Seneh, 5  the one tooth towering up on the north, toward Micmas, and the other on the south, toward Gebaʽ. 6  And Jonathan said to the young man who was squire to him “Come, let us go across to those uncircumcised fellows’ supporting force; maybe Jehovah will do something for us, for Jehovah has no lack of power to give victory by many or by few”; 7  and his squire said to him “Do whatever you feel inclined to: I am with you, just as you feel.” 8  And Jonathan said “You see, we shall be going across to the men and exposing ourselves to their sight: 9  if they tell us ‘keep still till we get to you’ we will stand where we are and not go up to them; 10  but if they say ‘come up to us’ we will go up, because Jehovah will have given them into our hands, and this will be the token for us.” 11  And the two of them exposed themselves to the sight of the Philistine supporting force, and the Philistines said “There are some Hebrews coming out of the holes they were hiding themselves in”; 12  and the men of the supporting force answered Jonathan and his squire “Come up to us and we will let you know something.” And Jonathan said to his squire “Come up behind me, because Jehovah has given them into Israel’s hands.” 13  And Jonathan climbed up on hands and feet, and his squire behind him; and they fell before Jonathan, while his squire finished killing them behind him. 14 * And the first havoc that Jonathan and his squire made was about twenty men, in about half a furrow of a one-yoke plowing. 15 *** And there came a panic in the camp and in the field, among all the people in the supporting force; and the ravagers were panic-struck too, and would not work; and the earth quivered, and it became an unearthly panic. 16  And the sentinels Saul had at Gebaʽ in Benjamin saw how the uproar was surging back and forth; 17  and Saul said to the people who were with him “Look up the men and see who has left us”; and they looked up and found Jonathan and his squire missing. 18  And Saul said to Ahijah “Bring the ephod here”; for he was bearing the ephod before Israel that day. 19  And while Saul was speaking to the priest the uproar in the Philistine camp kept growing greater; and Saul said to the priest “Take your hand off,” 20  and Saul and all the people who were with him took the field. And they came to the battle and found it had come to be one man’s sword against another in utter anarchy. 21  And the Hebrews that had belonged to the Philistines as before, who had come up with them to the camp, also faced about to be with the Israelites who were with Saul and Jonathan; 22  and all the men of Israel that had been hiding in the highland of Ephraim heard that the Philistines had run, and they too dogged them with a running fight. 23 ** And Jehovah gave Israel the victory that day. And the fighting went past Beth-Aven, 24 * and all the people came to be with Saul, about ten thousand men, and the fighting spread out all over the highland of Ephraim. And Saul laid a great interdict that day, and banned the people with the words “Cursed be the man who eats food till it is evening and I am revenged on my enemies”; and none of the people tasted food, but all the countryside fasted. 25 * And there were combs of honey over the wilds; 26 * and the people came to the combs and found that the bees had gone away from them; but there was no one that put his hand to his mouth, because the people were afraid of the oath. 27  But Jonathan had not heard when his father put the people to the oath; and he reached out the tip of a stick he had in his hand and dipped it into a comb of honey, and put his hand to his mouth, and his eyes brightened up. 28 * And a man of the people answered “Your father has put the people to an oath ‘Cursed be the man who eats food today’; and the people have grown faint.” 29  And Jonathan said “My father has brought the country into trouble: see how my eyes brightened up when I tasted that little bit of honey; 30 * what if the people had eaten out of the plunder they have got from the enemy? then there would have been plenty of Philistines killed.” 31  And they were killing Philistines that day from Micmas to Aijalon, and the people grew very faint; 32  and the people flew upon the plunder and took sheep and cows and calves and slaughtered them on the ground, and the people ate over the blood. 33  And they told Saul “There are the people sinning against Jehovah by eating over the blood”; and he said “You have dealt falsely; roll a big stone here to me.” 34 * And Saul said “Scatter among the people and tell them to bring their bulls and sheep here to me and slaughter them here and eat them, and not sin against Jehovah by eating over the blood”; and all the people brought what they had and slaughtered it there. 35  And Saul built an altar to Jehovah: that was his first start in altar-building to Jehovah. 36  And Saul said “Let us go down after the Philistines by night and plunder among them till morning daylight, and not leave a man among them”; and they said “Do anything you think best.” But the priest said “Let us approach God here.” 37  And Saul put the question to God “Shall I go down after the Philistines? will you give them into Israel’s hands?” but he did not answer him that day. 38 * And Saul said “Come here, all the headmen of the people, and see for yourselves what the sin is in today; 39  for, by Jehovah who gives Israel the victory, be it in my son Jonathan, he shall die.” 40  And he said to all Israel “Be you one side and I and my son Jonathan will be one side”; and the people said to Saul “Do what you think best.” 41  And Saul said “Jehovah, God of Israel, why have you not answered your servant today? if this crime is in me or my son Jonathan, Jehovah, God of Israel, give Urim; and if this crime is in your people Israel, give Thummim.” And Jonathan and Saul were fixed upon, and the people went clear. 42  And Saul said “Toss between me and my son Jonathan: whichever Jehovah fixes upon, let him die”; and the people said to Saul “This thing shall not be,” but Saul overbore the people and they tossed between him and his son Jonathan, and Jonathan was fixed upon. 43  And Saul said to Jonathan “Tell me what you have done”; and Jonathan told him, saying “Tasted a little honey with the tip of the stick I had in my hand: here I am, I will die.” 44 * And Saul said “God do so, and more, but die you shall, Jonathan.” 45  But the people said to Saul “Jonathan die, who has won this great victory of Israel? away with the thought! by Jehovah, not a hair of his head shall fall to the ground, because he cooperated with God today.” And the people ransomed Jonathan so that he did not die. 46  And Saul came up from following the Philistines, and the Philistines went home. 47 * And Saul took the kingship over Israel, and made war round about on all his enemies, on Moab and on the Bene-ʽAmmon and on Edom and on the kings of Sobah and on the Philistines, and wherever he went he was victorious; and he built up a power. 48  And he defeated the ʽAmalekites and delivered Israel out of the hands of its pillagers. 49  And Saul’s sons were Jonathan and Ishbaal and Malkishuaʽ; and of his two daughters the older one’s name was Merab and the younger’s Mical; 50  and the name of Saul’s wife was Ahinoʽam the daughter of Ahimaʽas. And his general’s name was Abner the son of Saul’s uncle Ner: 51  Saul’s father Kish and Abner’s father Ner were the sons of Abiel. 52  And there was hard fighting with the Philistines throughout Saul’s time; and as Saul saw any brave and stalwart man he took him into his service.


14:2 Conj. pomegranate-tree in the threshing-place
14:2 Codd. of Gibeah or of the hill
14:14 Unc.; susp.; var. about twenty men with missiles and field pebbles. And
14:15 Codd. in the camp in the field, and among all the people; the supporting force and the ravagers Var. in the camp and in the field; and all the people, the supporting force and the ravagers
14:15 Var. omits and would not work
14:15 Lit. a panic of God
14:23 Var. went over to
14:23 Var. Beth-Horon
14:24 Codd. Saul committed a great error that day
14:25 Var. tasted food. And all the countryside came into the Badlands; and there was honey (the Hebrew word for Badlands is the same as the word for honeycomb)
14:26 Var. found there was a run of honey conj.* found them running with honey)
14:28 Conj. and the people were taken to witness or and notified the people
14:30 Var. as it is, there have not been many Philistines killed
14:34 Var. what oxen they had
14:38 Var. whom the sin is in
14:44 Var. do so to me
14:47 Var. on Edom and on Beth-Rehob and on the king of Sobah