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came out of the camp from Saul, with his clothes rent, and earth upon his head : and so it was, when he came to David, that he fell to the earth, and did obeisance. :
And David said unto him, From whence comest thou? And he said unto him, Out of the camp of Israel am I escaped.
And David said unto him, How went the matter? I pray thee, tell me. And he answered, That the people are fled from the battle, and many of the people also are fallen and dead, and Saul and Jonathan his son are dead also.
And David said unto the young man that told him, How knowest thou that Saul and Jonathan his son be dead? and the young man that told him, said, As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa, behold, Saul leaned upon his spear: and lo the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him.
And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called unto me: and I answered, Here am I.
And he said unto me, Who art thou ? and I answered him, I am an Amalekite.
He said unto me again, Stand, I pray thee, upon me and slay me: for anguish is come upon me, because my life is
whole in me. So I stood upon him, and slew him, because I was sure that he could not live after that he was fallen : and I took the crown that was upon his head, and the bracelet that was on his arm, and have brought them bither unto my lord.
Then David took hold on his clothes, and rent them, and likewise all the men that were with him.
And they mourned and wept, and fasted until even, for Saul and for Jonathan his son, and for the people of the LORD, and for the house of Israel, because they were fallen by the sword.
And And David said unto the young man that told him, Whence art thou ? And he answered, I am the son of a stranger, an Amalekite.
And David said unto him, How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand, to destroy the LORD's anointed? And David called one of the young men, and said, Go near and fall upon him. And he smote him that he died.
And David said unto him, Thy blood be upon thy head: for thy mouth hath testified against thee, saying, I have slain the Lord's anointed.
And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul, and over Jonathan his son.
The beauty of Israel is slain upon the high places • how are the mighty fallen! tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Ashkelon : lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised triumph.
Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain upon you, nor fields of offerings: for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil.
From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul returned not empty.
Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided: they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions.
Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with other delights, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel.
How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! 0 Jonathan, thou wast slain in thine high places.
I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan : very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.
How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons perished !
And David commanded that the children of Judah should be taught to use the bow.
ANNOTATIONS AND REFLECTIONS.
It is likely that David had already heard the event of the battle, but he might not have received a certain account of the manner of Saul's and Jonathan's death; the tale which he heard from the Amalekite seems to have been invented with a view of obtaining a reward from David; for the Scripture says, that Saul was dead before his armour-bearer killed himself. So far was David from rejoicing, that he expressed the utmost affiction, and shewed a noble resentment against the person who boasted of having slain the Lori's anointed, This man owning himself to be an Amalekite, David was fully justified in commanding him to be put to death; and by doing so he gave a convincing proof, that he was zealous for public justice, in preference to private interest. “ David's elegy is truly pathetic *, sorrow for Saul's unhappy fate made him forget his cruelty and injustice towards him, and he considered him as a brave man, a valiant leader, a magnificent prince of God's own appointment, and the father of Jonathan, nearly allied also to himself by marriage."
From the expression that Saul and Jonathan were lorely in their lives, and in their death they were not divided, we may infer, that though Jonathan, on some
* Delany's Life of David.
particular occasions, felt the effects of Saul's ungovernable temper, there was in general great harmony between them.
How tender is David's lamentation for this dear friend! He had reason to say, that Jonathan's love to him was wonderful : for surely never was there such an instance of disinterested friendship!
David's behaviour on Saul's death affords an excel. lent lesson, for it teaches us to avoid personal reflections on those that have injured us, as it is possible they may have done many praiseworthy actions ;, and it is ungenerous to speak ill of the dead, because they cannot vindicate their own characters.
It is painful to read of the death of that amiable man Jonathan. Why it pleased God to suffer him to be cut off we are not told, and therefore it is not right to indulge ourselves in fruitless enquiries. We should in such cases always call to mind, that in the present world we must not expect to see crimes or virtues fully reconRensed; for here the wicked frequently prosper, while good persons endure the extremest affliction ; but we may assure ourselves, that in a future state every one will receive the just reward of his actions; and there might David hope to meet again the ar friend whom the fate of war had separated from him.
It must not be omitted, that the friendship of Achish towards David seems to have continued; otherwise we may suppose, that he would have endeavoured to improve the victory he had gained over Saul, to effect the entire overthrow of Israel.
SECTION SECTION LXXXVIII.
DAVID GOETH TO HEBRON-IS MADE KING OF JUDAK
ISH-BOSHETH MADE KING OF ISRAEL.
From 1 Chron. Chap. xii.—2 Sam. Chap. ii. Now there came to David ut Ziklag, whilst he kept himself close because of Saul the son of Kish, mighty men, helpers of the war.
They were armed with bows, and could use both the right hand and the left in hurling stones, and shooting arrows out of a bow, and they were even of Saul's brethren of Benjamin.
And of the Gadites there separated themselves unto David, into the hold to the wilderness, men of might, and men of war fit for the battle, that could handle shield and buckler, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and were as swift as the roes upon the mountains.
And there fell some of Manasseh to David (when he came with the Philistines against Saul to battle, but they helped them not, for the lords of the Philistines, upon advisement, sent him away, saying, He will fall to his master Saul, to the jeopardy of our heads). And they helped David against the band of the rovers : for they were all mighty men of valour, and were captains in the host.
At that time, day by day, there came to David to help him, until it was a great host like the host of God.
And it came to pass after this, that David enquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I go up unto any of the cities of Judah? And the Lord said unto him, Go up. And David said, Whither shall I go up? And he said, Unto Hebron,