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21 Later David came into Nob+ to A·himʹe·lech the priest; and A·himʹe·lech+ began to tremble at meeting David and then said to him: “Why is it you are by yourself, and no one is with you?”+ 2 At this David said to A·himʹe·lech the priest: “The king himself commanded me as to a matter,+ and he went on to say to me, ‘Let no one know anything at all of the matter concerning which I am sending you and concerning which I have commanded you.’ And I have made an appointment with the young men* for such and such a place. 3 And now, if there are five loaves of bread at your disposal, just give them into my hand, or* whatever may be found.”+ 4 But the priest answered David and said: “There is no ordinary bread under my hand, but there is holy bread;+ provided that the young men have at least kept themselves from womankind.”+ 5 So David answered the priest and said to him: “But womankind has been kept away from us the same as formerly when I went out,*+ and the organisms* of the young men continue holy, although the mission itself is ordinary. And how much more so today, when one becomes holy in [his] organism?” 6 At that the priest gave him what was holy,+ because there happened to be no bread there but the showbread* that had been removed from before Jehovah+ so as to place fresh* bread there on the day of its being taken away. 7 Now one of Saul’s servants was there on that day, detained+ before Jehovah, and his name was Doʹeg+ the Eʹdom·ite,+ the principal one of the shepherds* that belonged to Saul.+ 8 And David went on to say to A·himʹe·lech: “And is there nothing here at your disposal, a spear or a sword? For neither my own sword nor my weapons did I take in my hand, because the king’s matter proved to be urgent.” 9 To this the priest said: “The sword of Go·liʹath+ the Phi·lisʹtine, whom you struck down in the low plain of Eʹlah+—here it is, wrapped up in a mantle, behind the ephʹod.+ If it is what you would take for yourself, take it, because there is no other here except it.” And David went on to say: “There is none like it. Give it to me.” 10 Then David rose up and continued running away+ on account of Saul on that day, and at length came to Aʹchish the king of Gath.+ 11 And the servants of Aʹchish began to say to him: “Is not this David the king+ of the land? Was it not to this one that they kept responding with* dances,+ saying, ‘Saul has struck down his thousands, And David his tens of thousands’?”*+ 12 And David began to take these words to his heart, and he became very much afraid+ on account of Aʹchish the king of Gath. 13 So he disguised+ his sanity under their eyes+ and began acting insane in their hand and kept making cross marks* on the doors of the gate* and let his saliva run down upon his beard. 14 Finally Aʹchish said to his servants: “Here YOU see a man behaving crazy. Why should YOU bring him to me? 15 Am I in need of people driven crazy, so that YOU have brought this one to behave crazy by me? Should this one come into my home?”
^ “Young men,” that is, of his escort.
^ “If there are five loaves of bread under your hand, give into my hand,” LXX; MSy, “what is there under your hand? Just give five loaves of bread into my hand.”
^ That is, on a military expedition.
^ Or, “vessels.”
^ Or, “bread of Presence,” M; Vg, “bread of presentation.”
^ Lit., “hot,” that is, freshly baked.
^ “The mightiest one of the runners,” by a change of one letter in M.
^ Lit., “in the.”
^ Or, “his myriads.”
^ “And kept drumming,” LXX.
^ Or, “city,” as represented by the gate. LXX, “city.”