Daily Tanach Shmuel 1 Chapter 26 Part 2: A second confrontation with Shaul

* The article below is an excerpt from the above Sefer

1.      Dovid confronts Shaul and his general and peace is once again made:

  • Dovid confronts Shaul’s general: Dovid crossed [the channel of water that was there and went[1]] to the opposite side of where Shaul was encamped and he stood on the mountaintop a very great distance from them [due to fear that they may nevertheless decide to chase after him[2]]. Dovid then called out to the people and to Avner Ben Ner and said to them, “Will you not answer me Avner?” Avner said back to him, “who are you calling and how dear you wake the king from his sleep.”
  • Dovid confronts Avner and Shaul with the sword: Dovid said to Avner, “Aren’t you a [great[3]] man and who is like you amongst Israel. Why didn’t you guard your master the King, as a certain member of the nation came to annihilate the king, your master. It is not good what you have done. I swear by the life of G-d you Are all liable for death over the fact that you did not guard your master, the anointed one of G-d. Now, look where the sword of the king is and where is his jar of water that was placed near his head.” Shaul recognized the voice of Dovid and he said to him, “Is this your voice my son Dovid?” Dovid replied, “Yes, my master the King, it is my voice.” Dovid then said, “Why does my master chase after me as what have I done and what evil is in my hand? Now please my master my King, please listen to the words of your servant. If it is G-d who has incited you against me [to hate me[4] due to my sins[5]], then I can try to nullify that with a Mincha [i.e. prayer[6]] to G-d. However, if it is man [who has freedom of choice[7]] that has incited you against me, then let these men be cursed before G-d, as they have banished me from being able to dwell within the portion of G-d [i.e. Eretz Yisrael[8]] and have told me to go serve other deities [as one who lives in the Diaspora is as if he serves idols[9], as now I see that I have no choice but will need to flee outside of Israel to escape your hand[10]]. Now, do not allow my blood to be spilled on the earth opposite of G-d [as He will constantly see it and take vengeance for my death[11]]. After all, the king of Israel has come out to search for a single flea similar to [a bird named] Korei who chases after the nests of other birds on the mountaintops.[12]
  • Shaul replies with regret: Shaul responded to Dovid saying, “I have again sinned my son Dovid. I will no longer do any evil to you as I see that I am considered of importance in your eyes as I have seen today. I have made a grave error and mistake in what I have done.”
  • Dovid returns the sword to the king: Dovid answered and said, “Here is the sword of the king,” and one of the lads went and took it [and brought it back to Shaul, however he did not allow Shaul himself to take it as he feared that he may have change of heart and kill him[13]].” Dovid then said the following prayer addressed towards Shaul, “Let G-d reward man for his righteousness and trustworthiness, as G-d had given you into my hands today and I did not desire to send my hand to harm the anointed one of G-d. The same way that your soul is viewed so great in my eyes on this day, so too may my soul rise in greatness in the eyes of G-d, and may He protect me from all suffering.”
  • Shaul blesses Dovid and they depart ways: Shaul said to Dovid, “Blessed be you my son Dovid and may you be successful in all of your endeavors [in becoming king over Israel[14]].” So Dovid and Shaul each departed to their own ways, with Shaul returning back to his city.


[1] Metzudos Dovid 26:13

[2] Ralbag 26:13

[3] Metzudos Dovid 26:15

[4] Rashi 26:19

[5] Ralbag 26:19; Metzudos Dovid ibid

[6] Rashi 26:19

[7] Metzudos Dovid 26:19

[8] Rashi 26:19

[9] Rashi 26:19

[10] Radak and Ralbag and Metzudos Dovid 26:19

[11] Radak 26:20

[12] Rashi 26:10; See However Metzudos Dovid ibid for another explanation

[13] Metzudos Dovid 26:22

[14] Mahariy Karo 26:25

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