Keilah (Citadel) was a city in the lowlands of Judah (Joshua 15:44). In 1 Samuel, David rescued it from the attack of the Philistines (1 Samuel 23:1-8) but the inhabitants proved unfaithful to him, in that they sought to deliver him up to Saul (23:12). He and his men "departed from Keilah, and went whithersoever they could go.” They fled first to Hareth Hill, about 3 miles to the east, and thence through Hebron to Ziph. "And David was in the wilderness of Ziph, in a wood" (1 Samuel 23:15). Here Jonathan sought him out, "and strengthened his hand in God." This was the last interview between David and Jonathan (1 Samuel 23:16-18).
Benjamin of Tudela identified Kâkôn (Qaqun) as ancient Keilah in 1160. Others believe it to be modern Qila, 11 km (7 mi) northwest of Hebron. Still others identify it with Khuweilfeh, between Beit Jibrin (Eleutheropolis) and Beersheba, mentioned in the Amarna tablets.