Year of the Bible
1 Samuel 29
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Commentary on the First Book of Samuel, Chapter 29:
We left David’s narrative in the last chapter with a cliffhanger (28:1-2), waiting to see what would happen when King Achish wanted David as his personal bodyguard in a battle against Israel. David isn’t forced to betray his own people, for the other Philistines leaders refuse to have him in their army of combined forces. Their fear allows David to safely leave King Achish’s employ.
The First Book of Samuel, Chapter 29:
The Philistines Reject David
1 Now the Philistines gathered all their forces at Aphek; and the Israelites were encamped by the fountain which is in Jezreel. 2 As the lords of the Philistines were passing on by hundreds and by thousands, and David and his men were passing on in the rear with Achish, 3 the commanders of the Philistines said, “What are these Hebrews doing here?” And Achish said to the commanders of the Philistines, “Is not this David, the servant of Saul, king of Israel, who has been with me now for days and years, and since he deserted to me I have found no fault in him to this day.” 4 But the commanders of the Philistines were angry with him; and the commanders of the Philistines said to him, “Send the man back, that he may return to the place to which you have assigned him; he shall not go down with us to battle, lest in the battle he become an adversary to us. For how could this fellow reconcile himself to his lord? Would it not be with the heads of the men here? 5 Is not this David, of whom they sing to one another in dances,
‘Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten
6 Then Achish called David and said to him, “As the Lord lives, you have been honest, and to me it seems right that you should march out and in with me in the campaign; for I have found nothing wrong in you from the day of your coming to me to this day. Nevertheless the lords do not approve of you. 7 So go back now; and go peaceably, that you may not displease the lords of the Philistines.” 8 And David said to Achish, “But what have I done? What have you found in your servant from the day I entered your service until now, that I may not go and ﬁght against the enemies of my lord the king?” 9 And Achish made answer to David, “I know that you are as blameless in my sight as an angel of God; nevertheless the commanders of the Philistines have said, ‘He shall not go up with us to the battle.’ 10 Now then rise early in the morning with the servants of your lord who came with you; and start early in the morning, and depart as soon as you have light.” 11 So David set out with his men early in the morning, to return to the land of the Philistines. But the Philistines went up to Jezreel.
*Daily Lectio Divina Question:
David, in this chapter, is spared having to go into battle against his own people. Put yourself in David's place in this chapter. What emotions are you experiencing? What might your dialogue with God be after experiencing what David experienced?
Biblical Commentary provided by the Catholic Biblical School of Michigan. Join a Catholic Biblical School of Michigan class this September at Holy Family in Grand Blanc, or online.
Revised Standard Version; Second Catholic Edition. (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2006).
Permission to use the RSV-2CE given for Bishop's Year of the Bible by Ignatius Press. Many thanks to Ignatius for this.
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1 Los filisteos reunieron todas sus
fuerzas en Afec y los israelitas estaban
acampados junto a la fuente que hay
en Yizreel. 2 Los jefes de los filisteos iban al
frente con los batallones de cien y de mil.
David y sus hombres iban en la retaguardia
junto a Aquis. 3 Dijeron los jefes de los
–¿Qué hacen aquí esos hebreos?
Aquis les respondió:
–Éste es David, el que fue servidor
de Saúl, rey de Israel; está junto a mí
hace ya un año o dos y no he encontrado
nada reprochable en él desde el día
en que vino hasta hoy.
4 Los jefes de los filisteos se enfurecieron
con él y le dijeron:
–Manda regresar a ese hombre y
que se quede en el lugar que le asignaste.
Que no salga con nosotros a la batalla,
no sea que se vuelva contra nosotros
en el combate. ¿Qué mejor manera de
complacer a su señor que con las cabezas
de nuestros hombres? 5 Además, ¿no
es David del que cantaban a coro: «Saúl
ha matado a mil, y David a diez mil»?
6 Entonces Aquis llamó a David y le
–¡Por vida del Señor! Tu eres recto y
me agrada que entres y salgas conmigo
en el campamento, pues nada malo he
encontrado en ti desde que llegaste hasta
hoy. Sin embargo, no resultas grato a
los jefes filisteos. 7 Vuélvete, por tanto, y
vete en paz para no disgustarlos.
8 Pero David dijo a Aquis:
–¿Qué he hecho, o qué has encontrado
en tu siervo desde el día en que
me presenté ante ti hasta hoy para no
permitirme salir a luchar contra los
enemigos de mi señor, el rey?
9 Aquis respondió a David:
–Bien sé yo que has sido para mí
como un ángel de Dios, pero los jefes filisteos
han decidido: «Que no suba con
nosotros a la batalla». 10 Por tanto, mañana
temprano os levantaréis tú y los
servidores de tu señor que han venido
contigo y os marcharéis antes de que
despunte la aurora.
11 Así pues, David y sus hombres madrugaron
para salir al amanecer, y se
volvieron al país de los filisteos. Los filisteos,
mientras, subieron a Yizreel.
Pregunta de Lectio Divina del día de hoy
La Biblia de Navarra
Permiso para usar esta versión de la primera edición de la Biblia de Navarra
para el Año de la Biblia del Obispo
dado por Ediciones Universidad de Navarra, S.A. (EUNSA).