1Saul was dead and David, returning after his victory over the Amalekites, had been at Ziklag for twodays. 2On the third day, a man arrived from Saul's camp with his clothes torn and earth on his head. When hecame to David, he fel to the ground and prostrated himself. 3David asked him, 'Where have you come from?' 'I have escaped from the Israelite camp,' he said. 4David said, 'What has happened? Tell me.' He replied, 'The people fled from the battle, and many ofthem have fal en and are dead. Saul and his son Jonathan are dead too.' 5Then David asked the young man who brought the news, 'How do you know that Saul and his sonJonathan are dead?' 6The young man replied, 'I happened to be on Mount Gilboa, and there was Saul, leaning on his spear,with the chariots and the cavalry bearing down on him. 7Glancing behind him and seeing me, he shouted to me. I replied, "Here I am!" 8He said, "Who are you?" I replied, "I am an Amalekite." 9He then said, "Come here and kil me. My head is swimming, although I still have al my strength." 10So I went over to him and killed him, because I knew that once he fel he could not survive. I then tookthe crown which he had on his head and the bracelet on his arm, and have brought them here to my lord.' 11David then took hold of his clothes and tore them, and all the men with him did the same. 12They mourned and wept and fasted until the evening for Saul and his son Jonathan, for the people ofYahweh and for the House of Israel, because they had fal en by the sword. 13David said to the young man who had brought the news, 'Where are you from?' He replied, 'I am theson of a resident foreigner, an Amalekite.' 14David said, 'How was it that you were not afraid to lift your hand to destroy Yahweh's anointed?' 15Then David called one of the young men. 'Come here,' he said, 'strike him down.' The man struck himand he died. 16David said, 'Your blood be on your own head. You convicted yourself out of your own mouth bysaying, "I kil ed Yahweh's anointed." ' 17David sang the fol owing lament over Saul and his son Jonathan 18(it is for teaching archery to the children of Judah; it is written in the Book of the Just): 19Does the splendour of Israel lie dead on your heights? How did the heroes fal ? 20Do not speak of it in Gath, nor broadcast it in the streets of Ashkelon, for fear the daughters of thePhilistines rejoice, for fear the daughters of the uncircumcised gloat. 21You mountains of Gilboa, no dew, no rain fal on you, O treacherous fields where the heroes' shieldlies dishonoured! Not greased with oil, the shield of Saul, 22but with the blood of wounded men, the fat of warriors! The bow of Jonathan never turned back, thesword of Saul never came home unsated! 23Saul and Jonathan, beloved and handsome, were divided neither in life, nor in death. Swifter thaneagles were they, stronger than lions. 24O daughters of Israel, weep for Saul who gave you scarlet and fine linen to wear, who pinned goldenjewel ery on your dresses! 25How did the heroes fall in the thick of the battle? Jonathan, by your dying I too am stricken, 26I am desolate for you, Jonathan my brother. Very dear you were to me, your love more wonderful tome than the love of a woman. 27How did the heroes fall and the weapons of war succumb!
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