1) So, it happened just after Saul returned from following after the Philistines and it was revealed to him saying: ‘Check it out! David is in the strongholds of En-gedi.’ 2) So, Saul took three battalions (lit. “thousands”) of men chosen from all of Israel and went to seek David and his men upon the face of the cliffs of the wild goats 3) and he (Saul) came to the sheepfolds along the way and there was a cave, and Saul went in to relieve himself (lit. to cover his feet), but David and his men were sitting in the recesses of the cave.
4) And the men of David said to him, ‘Check it out—the day when Yahweh said to you, ‘Check it out! I, I am giving your enemy into your hand and you will do to him just as it will be good in your eyes.’’ So, David stood up and he cut off the hem of the robe belonging to Saul in secret.
5) But it happened afterward that David’s heart struck him on account of his cutting off the hem belonging to Saul. 6) And so, he said to his men, ‘I have a restriction from Yahweh if I should do this thing to my lord, to the one Yahweh anointed—to stretch out my hand against him.’ 7) So, David restrained his men with the words and did not allow them to rise against Saul. So, Saul stood up, (went) out of the cave, and went on his (lit. "the”) way.
8) And David stood up after this and he went out from the cave and called after Saul saying, ‘My lord the king!’ And Saul looked behind him and David bowed down nose to the ground (or “land”) and forced himself prostrated himself. 9) Then David said to Saul, ‘Why do you pay attention (lit. “hear”) the words of men saying, ‘Check it out, David seeks evil against you (lit. “your evil”)?’ 10) Check it out, THIS DAY your eyes have seen what Yahweh has given today into my hand in the cave and (some) said to kill you but I took pity on you and said, ‘I will not stretch out my hand against my lord BECAUSE he is the anointed (“Messiah”) of Yahweh.’ 11) So, my father, see! Even see the hem of your robe in my hand BECAUSE when I cut off the hem of your robe and didn’t kill you, know and see (for yourself) THAT there is no evil or rebellion in my hand and I haven’t sinned against you, but YOU, YOU lie in ambush for my whole being (“soul”) in order to take it. 12) Let Yahweh judge between me and you and Yahweh get justice for me (lit. “avenge me”), but my hand shall not be against you. 13) Just as the proverb says: ‘Out of the wicked comes wickedness,’ but my hand shall not be against you. 14) After whom does the King of Israel come out? After whom do you chase down (“hunt,” “pursue”)? After a dead dog? After one flea? 15) So, it shall be that Yahweh shall discern and judge between me and you, and He will see and He will argue my suit (verb and noun “to sue” are from the same root) and will provide sentence (verb is “to judge”) out of your hand.
16) So it happened after all of David’s speaking of these words to Saul, Saul said, ‘Is this your voice, my son David?’ And Saul raised his voice and wept. 17) And he said to David, ‘You are more righteous than I am BECAUSE you have dealt positively (lit. “good”) with me and I, I dealt negatively (lit. “evil”) with you. 18) And you, you have revealed today that you will continue accomplishing positive (deeds) for me as Yahweh rescued me from your hand and you didn’t kill me 19) BECAUSE let a man find his enemy and will he send him positively away? So, let Yahweh reward you (idea of “booty” after battle won, peace restored) well (“good”) on this day (for) what you accomplished for me. 20) And now, check it out, I KNOW that you’ll really, really become king and the kingdom shall stand (or be “founded, established”) in your hand. 21) Now, swear to me by Yahweh if you will not cut off my seed after me and if you will not destroy my name from my father’s house.’
22) So, David swore to Saul and Saul went to his house but David and his men went up into the stronghold.