Front Matter The Garden of Eden The First Great Crime The Flood The Tower of Babel Abraham Moves into Canaan Sodom and Gomorrah The Trial of Abraham's Faith Searching for a Wife for Isaac Isaac and Rebekah Esau Sells his Birthright Jacob Serves for Rachel Jacob Returns to Canaan Joseph is Sold into Egypt Pharaoh's Dream Joseph's Brethren Buy Corn Jacob Moves into Egypt The Early Life of Moses Egyptians Smitten with Plagues Egyptians Drowned in Red Sea The Lord Provides for Israel Plan to Build the Tabernacle The Golden Calf Wanderings of the Israelites Spying Out the Land of Canaan Punishing the Israelites Balaam is Made to Prophesy Border of the Promised Land Last Days of Moses Rahab Saves the Spies The Destruction of Jericho The Capture of Ai Joshua Conquers Canaan Gideon is Given a Sign Gideon Overcomes Midianites The Punishment of Abimelech Jephthah's Daughter The Young Samson Samson and the Philistines The Death of Samson Naomi and Ruth Ruth and Boaz The Young Samuel Philistines Capture the Ark Philistines Return the Ark Saul in Anointed King Jonathan and the Philistines The Disobedience of Saul Samuel Anoints David David and Goliath Saul is Jealous of David David and Jonathan The Madness of Saul David Spares the Life of Saul The Last Days of King Saul David Becomes King The Rebellion of Absalom The Death of Absalom Solomon Becomes King The Wisdom of Solomon Solomon Builds the Temple Queen of Sheba Visits Solomon Revolt of the Ten Tribes The Wickedness of Jeroboam Elijah Begins His Ministry Elijah Destroys the Prophets Elisha is Made a Prophet Death of Ahab Sickness of Ahaziah Last Days of Elijah Miracles of Elisha Naaman is Cured of Leprosy Flight of the Syrians Jehu is Appointed King The Story of Joash Last days of Elisha Destruction of Sennacherib Judah Led into Captivity Destruction of Jerusalem Daniel Interprets the Dream The Fiery Furnace Madness of Nebuchadnezzer Handwriting on the Wall Daniel in the Lion's Den Jonah Swallowed by a Fish Jonah Warns Nineveh Esther Becomes Queen The Vengeance of Haman Esther Saves Her People The Return from Captivity Nehemiah Rebuilds Jerusalem

Heroes of Israel - Lawton Evans

The Madness of Saul

David fled to Nob, where lived Ahimelech, the priest. When Ahimelech asked him: "Why are you alone and no man with you?" David told him the king had sent him on a secret mission, for he did not wish the priest to know that he was fleeing from Saul. He then asked Ahimelech to give him bread to eat, for he was hungry. Ahimelech had nothing to give David but the shewbread, which was hallowed bread for use in the temple, so he gave him that to eat.

Then David asked Ahimelech to give him a sword, for he had no weapon in his hand, saying the king's business had required haste.

"The sword of Goliath, whom you slew in the valley, is here, wrapped in a cloth," replied Ahimelech. "You may have that, for there is no other."

David told the priest there was no sword like that, and so he took it and went his way.

He next came to Achish, the king of Gath, where lived the Philistines. When the servants of King Achish saw David, they said: "Is not this man named David, and is he not the one of whom the people say that he slew his ten thousands, while Saul slew but his thousands?" When David heard the servants say this he knew he was recognized and was afraid of the people and the king.

David now pretended he was a madman, and scrabbled on the doors of the gates of the city, and dribbled at the mouth as though he had lost his wits. When Achish saw David in this condition he said: "See, the man is mad, why have you brought him to me? Have I need of madmen that you have brought this fellow into my presence?" And they let David loose so that he could leave Gath and the Philistines.

He came to the cave Adullam and made his dwelling there. When his brethren and all his father's house heard where he was they came to see him. Others came also, those in distress, those in debt, those who were discontented, until at last, about four hundred people gathered around David as he dwelt in the cave. At length a prophet named Gad, said to David: "Live no longer in this cave, but arise

with your people and go into the land of Judah." And David listened to the word of the prophet and left the cave.

of Jesse give every one of you fields and vineyards and make you captains of hundreds and thousands? All of you have conspired against me, and there is none of you that is sorry for me."

Then Doeg, who was set over the servants of Saul, said to the king: "I saw the son of Jesse coming to Nob, to Ahimelech the priest, and Ahimelech gave him food to eat and the sword of Goliath."

At this Saul was very angry and sent at once for Ahimelech and all the priests and made them come before him. Angrily he demanded of the priest: "Why have you conspired against me, and given bread and a sword to David, the son of Jesse? Do you not know that he will rise against me and lie in wait for me?"

"There is none of your servants so faithful as David," replied the priest. "He is your son-in-law, and goes at your bidding, and is honored in your house. I made no inquiry of him as to his mission: far be it from me. Let not the king think evil of me or of my household."

But Saul was again in a great rage and shouted aloud: "You shall surely die, Ahimelech, you and all your household," and he commanded the footmen that stood near to slay the priests, saying their hand was with David and that they knew where he fled and would not tell the king. But the servants of the king would not raise their hands against the priests of the Lord, and stood still before Saul.

The king turned to Doeg and told him: "Fall upon these priests and slay them, every one." And Doeg did as the king told him and slew all the priests and Ahimelech. Then Saul went with his soldiers to Nob, the city of the priests, and slew all the men, women and children, and all the cattle, because a great madness was upon him.