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1 Samuel 21:10 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— And David arose, and fled that day for fear of Saul, and went to Achish the king of Gath.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— And David arose, and fled that day for fear of Saul, and went to Achish the king of Gath.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Then David arose and fled that day from Saul, and went to Achish king of Gath.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— And David arose, and fled that day for fear of Saul, and went to Achish the king of Gath.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And David arose, and fled that day from before Saul, and went to Achish the king of Gath.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Then arose David, and fled, that day, from the face of Saul,—and came in unto Achish, king of Gath.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And David riseth and fleeth on that day from the face of Saul, and cometh in unto Achish king of Gath;
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— And David arose and fled that day from the face of Saul: and came to Achis, the king of Geth:
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— And Dauid arose, and fled that day, for feare of Saul, and went to Achish, the king of Gath.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And he gave it him; and David arose, and fled in that day from he presence of Saul: and David came to Achish{gr.Anchus} king of Gath{gr.Geth}.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— And Dawid arose, and fled that day for fear of Shaul, and went to Akhish the king of Gath.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
And Dwi דָּוִד 1732
{1732} Prime
From the same as H1730; loving; David, the youngest son of Jesse.
arose, 6965
{6965} Prime
A primitive root; to rise (in various applications, literally, figuratively, intensively and causatively).
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
and fled 1272
{1272} Prime
A primitive root; to bolt, that is, figuratively to flee suddenly.
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
that x1931
(1931) Complement
The second form is the feminine beyond the Pentateuch; a primitive word, the third person pronoun singular, he (she or it); only expressed when emphatic or without a verb; also (intensively) self, or (especially with the article) the same; sometimes (as demonstrative) this or that; occasionally (instead of copula) as or are.
day 3117
{3117} Prime
From an unused root meaning to be hot; a day (as the warm hours), whether literally (from sunrise to sunset, or from one sunset to the next), or figuratively (a space of time defined by an associated term), (often used adverbially).
for fear y6440
[6440] Standard
Plural (but always used as a singular) of an unused noun (פָּנֶה paneh, {paw-neh'}; from H6437); the face (as the part that turns); used in a great variety of applications (literally and figuratively); also (with prepositional prefix) as a preposition (before, etc.).
of x4480
(4480) Complement
For H4482; properly a part of; hence (prepositionally), from or out of in many senses.
(6440) Complement
Plural (but always used as a singular) of an unused noun (פָּנֶה paneh, {paw-neh'}; from H6437); the face (as the part that turns); used in a great variety of applications (literally and figuratively); also (with prepositional prefix) as a preposition (before, etc.).
l שָׁאוּל, 7586
{7586} Prime
Passive participle of H7592; asked; Shaul, the name of an Edomite and two Israelites.
and went 935
{0935} Prime
A primitive root; to go or come (in a wide variety of applications).
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
to x413
(0413) Complement
(Used only in the shortened constructive form (the second form)); a primitive particle, properly denoting motion towards, but occasionally used of a quiescent position, that is, near, with or among; often in general, to.
Ģ אָכִישׁ 397
{0397} Prime
Of uncertain derivation; Akish, a Philistine king.
the king 4428
{4428} Prime
From H4427; a king.
of Ga גַּת. 1661
{1661} Prime
The same as H1660; Gath, a Philistine city.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

1 Samuel 21:10

_ _ 1 Samuel 21:10-15. At Gath he feigns himself mad.

_ _ David ... fled ... to Achish the king of Gath — which was one of the five principalities of the Philistines. In this place his person must have been known, and to venture into that country, he their greatest enemy, and with the sword of Goliath in his hand, would seem to have been a perilous experiment; but, doubtless, the protection he received implies that he had been directed by the divine oracle. Achish was generous (1 Samuel 27:6). He might wish to weaken the resources of Saul, and it was common in ancient times for great men to be harbored by neighboring princes.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

1 Samuel 21:10-15

_ _ David, though king elect, is here an exile — designed to be master of vast treasures, yet just now begging his bread — anointed to the crown, and yet here forced to flee from his country. Thus do God's providences sometimes seem to run counter to his promises, for the trial of his people's faith, and the glorifying of his name, in the accomplishment of his counsels, notwithstanding the difficulties that lay in the way. Here is, 1. David's flight into the land of the Philistines, where he hoped to be hid, and to remain undiscovered in the court or camp of Achish king of Gath, 1 Samuel 21:10. Israel's darling is necessitated to quit the land of Israel, and he that was the Philistine's great enemy (upon I know not what inducements) goes to seek for shelter among them. It should seem that as, though the Israelites loved him, yet the king of Israel had a personal enmity to him, which obliged him to leave his own country, so, though the Philistines hated him, yet the king of Gath had a personal kindness for him, valuing his merit, and perhaps the more for his killing Goliath of Gath, who, it may be, had been no friend to Achish. To him David now went directly, as to one he could confide in, as afterwards (1 Samuel 27:2, 1 Samuel 27:3), and Achish would not have protected him but that he was afraid of disobliging his own people. God's persecuted people have often found better usage from Philistines than from Israelites, in the Gentile theatres than in the Jewish synagogues. The king of Judah imprisoned Jeremiah, and the king of Babylon set him at liberty. 2. The disgust which the servants of Achish took at his being there, and their complaint of it to Achish (1 Samuel 21:11): “Is not this David? Is not this he that has triumphed over the Philistines? witness that burden of the song which was so much talked of, Saul has slain his thousands, but David, this very man, his ten thousands. Nay, Is not this he that (if our intelligence from the land of Israel be true) is, or is to be, king of the land?” As such, “he must be an enemy to our country; and is it safe or honourable for us to protect or entertain such a man?” Achish perhaps had intimated to them that it would be policy to entertain David, because he was now an enemy to Saul, and he might be hereafter a friend to them. It is common for the outlaws of a nation to be sheltered by the enemies of that nation. But the servants of Achish objected to his politics, and thought it not at all fit that he should stay among them. 3. The fright which this put David into. Though he had some reason to put confidence in Achish, yet, when he perceived the servants of Achish jealous of him, he began to be afraid that Achish would be obliged to deliver him up to them, and he was sorely afraid (1 Samuel 21:12), and perhaps he was the more apprehensive of his own danger, when he was thus discovered, because he wore Goliath's sword, which, we may suppose, was well known in Gath, and with which he had reason to expect they would cut off his head, as he had cut off Goliath's with it. David now learned by experience what he has taught us (Psalms 118:9), that it is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes. Men of high degree are a lie, and, if we make them our hope, they may prove our fear. It was at this time that David penned Psalm 55 (Michtam, a golden psalm), when the Philistines took him in Gath, where having shown before God his distresses, he resolves (Psalms 55:3), “What time I am afraid I will trust in thee; and therefore (Psalms 55:11) will not be afraid what man can do unto me, no, not the sons of giants.” 4. The course he took to get out of their hands: He feigned himself mad, 1 Samuel 21:13. He used the gestures and fashions of a natural fool, or one that had gone out of his wits, supposing they would be ready enough to believe that the disgrace he had fallen into, and the troubles he was now in, had driven him distracted. This dissimulation of his cannot be justified (it was a mean thing thus to disparage himself, and inconsistent with truth thus to misrepresent himself, and therefore not becoming the honour and sincerity of such a man as David); yet it may in some degree be excused, for it was not a downright lie and it was like a stratagem in war, by which he imposed upon his enemies for the preservation of his own life. What David did here in pretence and for his own safety, which made it partly excusable, drunkards do really, and only to gratify a base lust: they made fools of themselves and change their behaviour; their words and actions commonly are either as silly and ridiculous as an idiot's or as furious and outrageous as a madman's, which has often made me wonder that ever men of sense and honour should allow themselves in it. 5. His escape by this means, 1 Samuel 21:14, 1 Samuel 21:15. I am apt to think Achish was aware that the delirium was but counterfeit, but, being desirous to protect David (as we find afterwards he was very kind to him, even when the lord of the Philistines favoured him not, 1 Samuel 28:1, 1 Samuel 28:2; 1 Samuel 29:6), he pretended to his servants that he really thought he was mad, and therefore had reason to question whether it was David or no; or, if it were, they need not fear him, what harm could he do them now that his reason had departed from him? They suspected that Achish was inclined to entertain him: “Not I,” says he. “He is a madman. I'll have nothing to do with him. You need not fear that I should employ him, or give him any countenance.” He humours the thing well enough when he asks, “Have I need of madmen? Shall this fool come into my house? I will show him no kindness, but then you shall do him no hurt, for, if he be a madmen, he is to be pitied.” He therefore drove him away, as it is in the title of Ps. 34, which David penned upon this occasion, and an excellent psalm it is, and shows that he did not change his spirit when he changed his behaviour, but even in the greatest difficulties and hurries his heart was fixed, trusting in the Lord; and he concludes that psalm with this assurance, that none of those that trust in God shall be desolate, though they may be, as he now was, solitary and distressed, persecuted, but not forsaken.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

1 Samuel 21:10

To Achish — A strange action; but it must be considered, that Saul's rage was so great, his power also, and diligence in hunting after him that he despaired of escaping any other way: and a desperate disease, produceth a desperate remedy. The king elect is here an exile: anointed to the crown, and yet forced to run his country. So do God's providences sometimes run counter to his promises, for the trial of our faith, and the glorifying his name in accomplishing his counsels, notwithstanding the difficulties that lie in the way.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

1 Samuel 21:10

And David arose, and (h) fled that day for fear of Saul, and went to Achish the king of Gath.

(h) That is, out of Saul's domain.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

1 Samuel 27:1 And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: [there is] nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any coast of Israel: so shall I escape out of his hand.
1 Kings 19:3 And when he saw [that], he arose, and went for his life, and came to Beersheba, which [belongeth] to Judah, and left his servant there.
Jeremiah 26:21 And when Jehoiakim the king, with all his mighty men, and all the princes, heard his words, the king sought to put him to death: but when Urijah heard it, he was afraid, and fled, and went into Egypt;

or, Abimelech,
1 Samuel 27:2 And David arose, and he passed over with the six hundred men that [were] with him unto Achish, the son of Maoch, king of Gath.
Psalms 34:1 [[[A Psalm] of David, when he changed his behaviour before Abimelech; who drove him away, and he departed.]] I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise [shall] continually [be] in my mouth.

Jerome says there was a large town called Gath, in the way from Eleutheropolis to Gaza; and Eusebius speaks of another Gath, five miles from Eleutheropolis, towards Lydda (and consequently different from that mentioned by Jerome); and also of another Gath, between Jamnia and Antipatris. It appears to have been the extreme boundary of the Philistine territory in one direction, as Ekron was on the other (
1 Samuel 7:14 And the cities which the Philistines had taken from Israel were restored to Israel, from Ekron even unto Gath; and the coasts thereof did Israel deliver out of the hands of the Philistines. And there was peace between Israel and the Amorites.
1 Samuel 17:52 And the men of Israel and of Judah arose, and shouted, and pursued the Philistines, until thou come to the valley, and to the gates of Ekron. And the wounded of the Philistines fell down by the way to Shaaraim, even unto Gath, and unto Ekron.
), and lay near Mareshah (
2 Chronicles 11:8 And Gath, and Mareshah, and Ziph,
Micah 1:14 Therefore shalt thou give presents to Moreshethgath: the houses of Achzib [shall be] a lie to the kings of Israel.
), which agrees pretty well with the position assigned it by Jerome. But Reland and Dr. Wells agree with Eusebius; and the authors of the Universal History (b. i. c. 7) place it about six miles form Jamnia, fourteen south of Joppa, and thirty-two west of Jerusalem.
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1S 7:14; 17:52; 27:1, 2. 1K 19:3. 2Ch 11:8. Ps 34:1. Jr 26:21. Mi 1:14.

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