1. David left Gath and escaped to the cave of Adulam where his brothers and his father's family came down to him.
2. Then those who had problems or debts or were embittered joined him there. Thus he became their chief; he had with him about four hundred men.
3. From there, David went to Mispeh in Moab and asked the king of Moab to let his father and mother stay with him until he found out what God would do for him.
4. So David left them with the king of Moab and they stayed there as long as David remained in the refuge.
5. The prophet Gad said to David, "Do not stay in the refuge; go to the land of Judah." So David left and entered the forest of Hereth.
6. Saul heard that David and his men had been seen. Saul was in Gibeah at the time, sitting under the tamarisk tree on the high place, his spear in hand, while his servants were standing by.
7. Saul addressed them, "Listen, men of Benjamin! Will the son of Jesse give every one of you fields of vineyards? Will he make each one of you a commander over a thousand or over a hundred men that you should all be conspiring against me?
8. Why, then, did no one tell me that my son made an agreement with the son of Jesse? No one among you had mercy on me and told me that my own son had stirred up my servant to conspire against me as is the case today."
9. At this, Doeg the Edomite, who was standing with the officers of Saul, spoke up, "I saw the son of Jesse come to Ahimelech, son of Ahitub, in Nob.
10. Ahimelech consulted Yahweh for him, provided him with food and gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine as well."
11. On hearing this, the king sent for Ahimelech the priest, son of Ahitub, and all his family who were priests in Nob. They all came to the king.
12. Then Saul said, "Listen, son of Ahitub." He replied, "Yes, my lord."
13. Saul asked him, "Why did you conspire with the son of Jesse, giving him food and a sword and consulting Yahweh for him so that he could rebel against me as is the case today?"
14. Ahimelech answered the king, "Who among all your servants is as faithful as David, the king's son-in-law, captain of your bodyguard and honored in your house?
15. Is today the first time that I have consulted Yahweh for him? By no means! Let not the king accuse me or any member of my family of such a thing for I knew nothing at all about the entire matter."
16. But the king said, "You and your entire family shall die, Ahimelech."
17. And the king at once commanded the guards who were standing by, "Turn and kill the priests of Yahweh for having assisted David. They knew very well that David was a fugitive but they did not tell me anything at all." The king's servants, however, refused to lift their hands against the priests of Yahweh.
18. And so the king turned to Doeg and commanded him, "Come and stab the priests." And so Doeg the Edomite drew near and stabbed the priests. On that day he killed eighty-five persons who were wearing the linen ephod.
19. After that, Saul put Nob, the city of priests, to the sword, killing men and women, children and infants, oxen, asses and sheep.
20. A son of Ahimelech, son of Ahitub, named Abiathar, escaped and fled to David.
21. Abiathar told David that Saul had killed the priests of Yahweh.
22. David said to him, "I knew that day, when Doeg the Edomite was there, that he would surely tell Saul. So I am responsible for the death of all your family.
23. Stay with me and do not be afraid for he who wants to kill you must also kill me. You will be safe with me."