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Jehovah’s Witnesses


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The Bible in Living English

1 Samuel 17:1-58

17  And the Philistines brought their armies together for war, and they met at Socoh, which belongs to Judah, and camped between Socoh and ʽAzekah, at Ephes-Dammim; 2*  and Saul and the men of Israel came together and camped in Terebinth Vale, and offered battle to the Philistines, 3  the Philistines standing on the mountain on this side and the Israelites on the mountain on that side, with the valley between them. 4  And a man came out between them from the Philistine line of battle, named Goliath, from Gath; he was nine and a half feet tall, 5  and he had a bronze helmet on his head and wore a hauberk of scales, the hauberk weighing a hundred and eighty pounds of bronze, 6*  and he had bronze greaves on his legs and a bronze javelin between his shoulders; 7  and the shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s pole, and the iron spearhead weighed twenty pounds, and his shield-carrier went in front of him. 8  And he stood and called out to the Israelite line of battle “Why have you come out to offer battle? I am the Philistine, you are subjects of Saul, select a man to come down to me: 9  if he can fight me, and kills me, we will be subject to you; but if I overcome him and kill him, you shall be subject to us and behave as such.” 10*  And the Philistine said “I this day flout Israel’s ranks: give me a man to fight with.” 11  And Saul and all the Israelites heard these words of the Philistine’s, and were dismayed and greatly afraid. 12*  And David, the son of an Ephrathite (that is, from Bethlehem in Judah) whose name was Jesse, who had eight sons, and who was in Saul’s days an old man, advanced in years, 13  —Jesse’s three oldest sons were gone to the war, following Saul; the names of his three sons who were gone to the war were Eliab the eldest, and Abinadab the second eldest, and Shammah the third; 14  David was the youngest, and the three oldest were gone to the war, following Saul,— 15*  David was gone, had gone back from Saul’s service to tend his father’s sheep at Bethlehem. 16  And the Philistine approached the first thing in the morning and again in the evening, and stood ready, forty days. 17*  And Jesse said to his son David “Take this bushel of roasted grain for your brothers, and ten cakes of bread, and get them to your brothers at the camp quick; 18  and bring these ten cuts of curd to the captain of the thousand, and make sure how your brothers are doing, and get the token from them; 19*  Saul and they, and all the men of Israel, are in Terebinth Vale, fighting the Philistines.” 20  And the first thing in the morning David left the sheep with a keeper and loaded himself up and went, as Jesse had ordered him; and he came to the cart-stand, and the force going out to form the line gave a cheer for the fighting; 21  and the Israelites and the Philistines formed their lines facing each other. 22  And David put down the things and left them with the supply-keeper, and ran to the front and came and asked how his brothers were doing. 23*  And as he was talking with them, up came a man between the fronts out of the Philistine line, named Goliath the Philistine, from Gath, and spoke these words, and David heard him. 24  And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled before him and were in great fear; 25  and the men of Israel said “Do you see this man that has come up? it is to flout Israel he has come up; and the king will make the man that kills him a very rich man and give him his daughter, and make his family free in Israel.” 26  And David said to the men that were standing with him “What will be done for the man who kills yonder Philistine and takes away the flout from Israel? for who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he has flouted the ranks of a living God?” 27  And the people told him the same thing: “so it will be done for the man who kills him.” 28  And his oldest brother Eliab heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab was angry at David, and said “What did you come down for, and whom did you leave those few sheep in the wilderness with? I know your headstrongness and cantankerousness, that it was in order to see the fighting you came down.” 29  And David said “What have I been doing now? it was talk, wasn’t it?” 30  and went from beside him around to another section of the front, and said the same thing; and the people gave him the same answer as before. 31  But the things David was saying were overheard and reported before Saul; and he had him brought. 32  And David said to Saul “Do not be downhearted, sir; your servant will go and fight this Philistine.” 33  But Saul said to David “You cannot go against this Philistine to fight him, because you are a boy and he has been a fighting man from his boyhood up.” 34  But David said to Saul “Your servant was tending sheep for his father, and there would come a lion or a bear and carry off a sheep out of the flock, 35  and I would go out after it and beat it and recover the creature out of its mouth; and one would stand up against me and I would hold its mane and strike it dead. 36  Both the lion and the bear your servant killed, and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has flouted the ranks of a living God.” 37  And David said “Jehovah, who brought me off safe from the lion and the bear, he will bring me off safe from this Philistine.” And Saul said to David “Go, and Jehovah be with you.” 38  And Saul dressed David in his own brigandine and put a bronze helmet on his head, 39  and belted his own sword on David over his brigandine; and David had trouble in walking, because he had not practiced. And David said to Saul “I cannot walk in these, because I have not practiced”; and they took them off him. 40  And he took his staff in his hand, and chose five pebbles out of the bed of the arroyo and put them in his shepherd’s wallet, his yalkut, and had his sling in his hand; and he approached the Philistine, 41  and the Philistine went on, drawing nearer and nearer to David, with the man that was his shield-carrier in front of him. 42  And the Philistine looked and saw David, and despised him because he was a boy, a ruddy youth and a beauty; 43  and the Philistine said to David “Am I a dog, that you are coming at me with staves?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods; 44  and the Philistine said to David “Come to me and have me give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the range.” 45  But David said to the Philistine “You are coming at me with sword and spear and javelin, but I am coming at you with the name of Jehovah of Armies, the God of Israel’s ranks which you have flouted. 46*  This day Jehovah will put you into my hands, and I shall kill you and take off your head and give your corpse and the corpses of the Philistine army to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth today, that all the land may know that Israel has a God: 47*  that all this assembly may know that victory is not by sword and spear, but battle belongs to Jehovah, and he will give you into our hands.” 48*  And when the Philistine stood up and came on, drawing nearer to David, David ran in haste toward the line of battle to meet the Philistine; 49  and David reached into his wallet and took a stone out of it and slung, and hit the Philistine in the forehead, and the stone sank into his forehead and he fell on his face on the ground; 50  and David outfought the Philistine with sling and stone, and struck the Philistine dead without having any sword in his hand. 51  And David ran and stood by the Philistine and took his sword and drew it from its sheath and finished killing him, cutting off his head with it; and the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, and they ran. 52**  And the men of Israel and Judah started up and gave a cheer, and pursued the Philistines till you come to Gath and to the gates of ʽEkron; and the killed Philistines fell from the Shagharaim road to Gath and ʽEkron; 53  and the sons of Israel came back from chasing the Philistines, and pillaged their camp. 54  And David took the Philistine’s head and brought it to Jerusalem, and put his outfit in his tent. 55  And when Saul saw David go out to meet the Philistine he said to Abner, the general of the army, “Whose son is the boy, Abner?” and Abner said “By your life, king, I do not know.” 56  And the king said “Ask whose son the young fellow is yourself.” 57  And when David came back from killing the Philistine, Abner took him and brought him before the king with the Philistine’s head in his hand. 58  And Saul said to him “Whose son are you, boy?” and David said “Son to your servant Jesse the Bethlehemite.”


17:2 Or Oak Vale
17:6-7 5000 shekels were perhaps about 160 lbs.; 600 shekels, say 20 lbs.
17:10 Or have flouted
17:12 Conj. in Saul’s days too old to come among the fighting men,—
17:15 Codd.* David was going back and forth from
17:17 An ephah was somewhat over a bushel.
17:19 Or Oak Vale
17:23 Or the man
17:46 Var. know that there is a God in Israel
17:47 Codd. that Jehovah does not give victory by sword and spear
17:48 Conj. from the line
17:52 Var. come to Gai and to the gates
17:52 Codd. in the Shaʽaraim road