1: After the death of Saul, when David had returned from the
slaughter of the Amal'ekites, David remained two days in Ziklag;
2: and on the third day, behold, a man came from Saul's camp,
with his clothes rent and earth upon his head. And when he came to
David, he fell to the ground and did obeisance.
3: David said to him, "Where do you come from?" And he
said to him, "I have escaped from the camp of Israel."
4: And David said to him, "How did it go? Tell me." And
he answered, "The people have fled from the battle, and many of the
people also have fallen and are dead; and Saul and his son Jonathan are
5: Then David said to the young man who told him, "How do
you know that Saul and his son Jonathan are dead?"
6: And the young man who told him said, "By chance I
happened to be on Mount Gilbo'a; and there was Saul leaning upon his
spear; and lo, the chariots and the horsemen were close upon him.
7: And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called to me.
And I answered, `Here I am.'
8: And he said to me, `Who are you?' I answered him, `I am an
9: And he said to me, `Stand beside me and slay me; for anguish
has seized me, and yet my life still lingers.'
10: So I stood beside him, and slew him, because I was sure that
he could not live after he had fallen; and I took the crown which was on
his head and the armlet which was on his arm, and I have brought them
here to my lord."
11: Then David took hold of his clothes, and rent them; and so
did all the men who were with him;
12: and they mourned and wept and fasted until evening for Saul
and for Jonathan his son and for the people of the Lord and for the
house of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword.
13: And David said to the young man who told him, "Where do
you come from?" And he answered, "I am the son of a sojourner,
14: David said to him, "How is it you were not afraid to put
forth your hand to destroy the Lord's anointed?"
15: Then David called one of the young men and said, "Go,
fall upon him." And he smote him so that he died.
16: And David said to him, "Your blood be upon your head;
for your own mouth has testified against you, saying, `I have slain the
17: And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul and
Jonathan his son,
18: and he said it should be taught to the people of Judah;
behold, it is written in the Book of Jashar. He said:
19: "Thy glory, O Israel, is slain upon thy high places! How
are the mighty fallen!
20: Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of
Ash'kelon; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, lest the
daughters of the uncircumcised exult.
21: "Ye mountains of Gilbo'a, let there be no dew or rain
upon you, nor upsurging of the deep! For there the shield of the mighty
was defiled, the shield of Saul, not anointed with oil.
22: "From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the
mighty, the bow of Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul
returned not empty.
23: "Saul and Jonathan, beloved and lovely! In life and in
death they were not divided; they were swifter than eagles, they were
stronger than lions.
24: "Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you
daintily in scarlet, who put ornaments of gold upon your apparel.
25: "How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle!
"Jonathan lies slain upon thy high places.
26: I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan; very pleasant
have you been to me; your love to me was wonderful, passing the love of
27: "How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war
1: After this David inquired of the Lord, "Shall I go up
into any of the cities of Judah?" And the Lord said to him,
"Go up." David said, "To which shall I go up?" And
He said, "To Hebron."
2: So David went up there, and his two wives also, Ahin'o-am of
Jezreel, and Ab'igail the widow of Nabal of Carmel.
3: And David brought up his men who were with him, every one with
his household; and they dwelt in the towns of Hebron.
4: And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king
over the house of Judah. When they told David, "It was the men of
Ja'besh-gil'ead who buried Saul,"
5: David sent messengers to the men of Ja'besh-gil'ead, and said
to them, "May you be blessed by the Lord, because you showed this
loyalty to Saul your lord, and buried him!
6: Now may the Lord show steadfast love and faithfulness to you!
And I will do good to you because you have done this thing.
7: Now therefore let your hands be strong, and be valiant; for
Saul your lord is dead, and the house of Judah has anointed me king over
8: Now Abner the son of Ner, commander of Saul's army, had taken
Ish-bo'sheth the son of Saul, and brought him over to Mahana'im;
9: and he made him king over Gilead and the Ash'urites and
Jezreel and E'phraim and Benjamin and all Israel.
Ish-bo'sheth, Saul's son, was forty years old when he began
to reign over Israel, and he reigned two years. But the house of Judah
11: And the time that David was king in Hebron over the house of
Judah was seven years and six months.
12: Abner the son of Ner, and the servants of Ish-bo'sheth the
son of Saul, went out from Mahana'im to Gibeon.
13: And Jo'ab the son of Zeru'iah, and the servants of David,
went out and met them at the pool of Gibeon; and they sat down, the one
on the one side of the pool, and the other on the other side of the
14: And Abner said to Jo'ab, "Let the young men arise and
play before us." And Jo'ab said, "Let them arise."
15: Then they arose and passed over by number, twelve for
Benjamin and Ish-bo'sheth the son of Saul, and twelve of the servants of
16: And each caught his opponent by the head, and thrust his
sword in his opponent's side; so they fell down together. Therefore that
place was called Hel'kath-hazzu'rim, which is at Gibeon.
17: And the battle was very fierce that day; and Abner and the
men of Israel were beaten before the servants of David.
18: And the three sons of Zeru'iah were there, Jo'ab, Abi'shai,
and As'ahel. Now As'ahel was as swift of foot as a wild gazelle;
19: and As'ahel pursued Abner, and as he went he turned neither
to the right hand nor to the left from following Abner.
20: Then Abner looked behind him and said, "Is it you,
As'ahel?" And he answered, "It is I."
21: Abner said to him, "Turn aside to your right hand or to
your left, and seize one of the young men, and take his spoil." But
As'ahel would not turn aside from following him.
22: And Abner said again to As'ahel, "Turn aside from
following me; why should I smite you to the ground? How then could I
lift up my face to your brother Jo'ab?"
But he refused to turn aside; therefore Abner smote him in
the belly with the butt of his spear, so that the spear came out at his
back; and he fell there, and died where he was. And all who came to the
place where As'ahel had fallen and died, stood still.
24: But Jo'ab and Abi'shai pursued Abner; and as the sun was
going down they came to the hill of Ammah, which lies before Gi'ah on
the way to the wilderness of Gibeon.
25: And the Benjaminites gathered themselves together behind
Abner, and became one band, and took their stand on the top of a hill.
26: Then Abner called to Jo'ab, "Shall the sword devour for
ever? Do you not know that the end will be bitter? How long will it be
before you bid your people turn from the pursuit of their
27: And Jo'ab said, "As God lives, if you had not spoken,
surely the men would have given up the pursuit of their brethren in the
28: So Jo'ab blew the trumpet; and all the men stopped, and
pursued Israel no more, nor did they fight any more.
29: And Abner and his men went all that night through the Arabah;
they crossed the Jordan, and marching the whole forenoon they came to
30: Jo'ab returned from the pursuit of Abner; and when he had
gathered all the people together, there were missing of David's servants
nineteen men besides As'ahel.
31: But the servants of David had slain of Benjamin three hundred
and sixty of Abner's men.
32: And they took up As'ahel, and buried him in the tomb of his
father, which was at Bethlehem. And Jo'ab and his men marched all night,
and the day broke upon them at Hebron.
1: There was a long war between the house of Saul and the house
of David; and David grew stronger and stronger, while the house of Saul
became weaker and weaker.
2: And sons were born to David at Hebron: his first-born was
Amnon, of Ahin'o-am of Jezreel;
3: and his second, Chil'e-ab, of Ab'igail the widow of Nabal of
Carmel; and the third, Ab'salom the son of Ma'acah the daughter of
Talmai king of Geshur;
4: and the fourth, Adoni'jah the son of Haggith; and the fifth,
Shephati'ah the son of Abi'tal;
5: and the sixth, Ith're-am, of Eglah, David's wife. These were
born to David in Hebron.
6: While there was war between the house of Saul and the house of
David, Abner was making himself strong in the house of Saul.
7: Now Saul had a concubine, whose name was Rizpah, the daughter
of Ai'ah; and Ish-bo'sheth said to Abner, "Why have you gone in to
my father's concubine?"
8: Then Abner was very angry over the words of Ish-bo'sheth, and
said, "Am I a dog's head of Judah? This day I keep showing loyalty
to the house of Saul your father, to his brothers, and to his friends,
and have not given you into the hand of David; and yet you charge me
today with a fault concerning a woman.
9: God do so to Abner, and more also, if I do not accomplish for
David what the Lord has sworn to him,
10: to transfer the kingdom from the house of Saul, and set up
the throne of David over Israel and over Judah, from Dan to
11: And Ish-bo'sheth could not answer Abner another word, because
he feared him.
12: And Abner sent messengers to David at Hebron, saying,
"To whom does the land belong? Make your covenant with me, and
behold, my hand shall be with you to bring over all Israel to you."
13: And he said, "Good; I will make a covenant with you; but
one thing I require of you; that is, you shall not see my face, unless
you first bring Michal, Saul's daughter, when you come to see my
14: Then David sent messengers to Ish-bo'sheth Saul's son,
saying, "Give me my wife Michal, whom I betrothed at the price of a
hundred foreskins of the Philistines."
15: And Ish-bo'sheth sent, and took her from her husband Pal'ti-el
the son of La'ish.
16: But her husband went with her, weeping after her all the way
to Bahu'rim. Then Abner said to him, "Go, return"; and he
17: And Abner conferred with the elders of Israel, saying,
"For some time past you have been seeking David as king over you.
18: Now then bring it about; for the Lord has promised David,
saying, `By the hand of my servant David I will save my people Israel
from the hand of the Philistines, and from the hand of all their
19: Abner also spoke to Benjamin; and then Abner went to tell
David at Hebron all that Israel and the whole house of Benjamin thought
good to do.
20: When Abner came with twenty men to David at Hebron, David
made a feast for Abner and the men who were with him.
21: And Abner said to David, "I will arise and go, and will
gather all Israel to my lord the king, that they may make a covenant
with you, and that you may reign over all that your heart desires."
So David sent Abner away; and he went in peace.
22: Just then the servants of David arrived with Jo'ab from a
raid, bringing much spoil with them. But Abner was not with David at
Hebron, for he had sent him away, and he had gone in peace.
23: When Jo'ab and all the army that was with him came, it was
told Jo'ab, "Abner the son of Ner came to the king, and he has let
him go, and he has gone in peace."
24: Then Jo'ab went to the king and said, "What have you
done? Behold, Abner came to you; why is it that you have sent him away,
so that he is gone?
25: You know that Abner the son of Ner came to deceive you, and
to know your going out and your coming in, and to know all that you are
26: When Jo'ab came out from David's presence, he sent messengers
after Abner, and they brought him back from the cistern of Sirah; but
David did not know about it.
27: And when Abner returned to Hebron, Jo'ab took him aside into
the midst of the gate to speak with him privately, and there he smote
him in the belly, so that he died, for the blood of As'ahel his brother.
28: Afterward, when David heard of it, he said, "I and my
kingdom are for ever guiltless before the Lord for the blood of Abner
the son of Ner.
29: May it fall upon the head of Jo'ab, and upon all his father's
house; and may the house of Jo'ab never be without one who has a
discharge, or who is leprous, or who holds a spindle, or who is slain by
the sword, or who lacks bread!"
30: So Jo'ab and Abi'shai his brother slew Abner, because he had
killed their brother As'ahel in the battle at Gibeon.
31: Then David said to Jo'ab and to all the people who were with
him, "Rend your clothes, and gird on sackcloth, and mourn before
Abner." And King David followed the bier.
32: They buried Abner at Hebron; and the king lifted up his voice
and wept at the grave of Abner; and all the people wept.
33: And the king lamented for Abner, saying, "Should Abner
die as a fool dies?
34: Your hands were not bound, your feet were not fettered; as
one falls before the wicked you have fallen." And all the people
wept again over him.
35: Then all the people came to persuade David to eat bread while
it was yet day; but David swore, saying, "God do so to me and more
also, if I taste bread or anything else till the sun goes down!"
36: And all the people took notice of it, and it pleased them; as
everything that the king did pleased all the people.
37: So all the people and all Israel understood that day that it
had not been the king's will to slay Abner the son of Ner.
38: And the king said to his servants, "Do you not know that
a prince and a great man has fallen this day in Israel?
39: And I am this day weak, though anointed king; these men the
sons of Zeru'iah are too hard for me. The Lord requite the evildoer
according to his wickedness!"
1: When Ish-bo'sheth, Saul's son, heard that Abner had died at
Hebron, his courage failed, and all Israel was dismayed.
2: Now Saul's son had two men who were captains of raiding bands;
the name of the one was Ba'anah, and the name of the other Rechab, sons
of Rimmon a man of Benjamin from Be-er'oth (for Be-er'oth also is
reckoned to Benjamin;
3: the Be-er'othites fled to Gitta'im, and have been sojourners
there to this day).
4: Jonathan, the son of Saul, had a son who was crippled in his
feet. He was five years old when the news about Saul and Jonathan came
from Jezreel; and his nurse took him up, and fled; and, as she fled in
her haste, he fell, and became lame. And his name was Mephib'osheth.
5: Now the sons of Rimmon the Be-er'othite, Rechab and Ba'anah,
set out, and about the heat of the day they came to the house of
Ish-bo'sheth, as he was taking his noonday rest.
6: And behold, the doorkeeper of the house had been cleaning
wheat, but she grew drowsy and slept; so Rechab and Ba'anah his brother
7: When they came into the house, as he lay on his bed in his
bedchamber, they smote him, and slew him, and beheaded him. They took
his head, and went by the way of the Arabah all night,
8: and brought the head of Ish-bo'sheth to David at Hebron. And
they said to the king, "Here is the head of Ish-bo'sheth, the son
of Saul, your enemy, who sought your life; the Lord has avenged my lord
the king this day on Saul and on his offspring."
9: But David answered Rechab and Ba'anah his brother, the sons of
Rimmon the Be-er'othite, "As the Lord lives, who has redeemed my
life out of every adversity,
10: when one told me, `Behold, Saul is dead,' and thought he was
bringing good news, I seized him and slew him at Ziklag, which was the
reward I gave him for his news.
11: How much more, when wicked men have slain a righteous man in
his own house upon his bed, shall I not now require his blood at your
hand, and destroy you from the earth?"
12: And David commanded his young men, and they killed them, and
cut off their hands and feet, and hanged them beside the pool at Hebron.
But they took the head of Ish-bo'sheth, and buried it in the tomb of
Abner at Hebron.
1: Then all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron, and
said, "Behold, we are your bone and flesh.
2: In times past, when Saul was king over us, it was you that led
out and brought in Israel; and the Lord said to you, `You shall be
shepherd of my people Israel, and you shall be prince over
3: So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron; and
King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the Lord, and they
anointed David king over Israel.
4: David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he
reigned forty years.
5: At Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months;
and at Jerusalem he reigned over all Israel and Judah thirty-three
6: And the king and his men went to Jerusalem against the
Jeb'usites, the inhabitants of the land, who said to David, "You
will not come in here, but the blind and the lame will ward you
off" -- thinking, "David cannot come in here."
7: Nevertheless David took the stronghold of Zion, that is, the
city of David.
8: And David said on that day, "Whoever would smite the
Jeb'usites, let him get up the water shaft to attack the lame and the
blind, who are hated by David's soul." Therefore it is said,
"The blind and the lame shall not come into the house."
9: And David dwelt in the stronghold, and called it the city of
David. And David built the city round about from the Millo inward.
10: And David became greater and greater, for the Lord, the God
of hosts, was with him.
11: And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar
trees, also carpenters and masons who built David a house.
12: And David perceived that the Lord had established him king
over Israel, and that He had exalted his kingdom for the sake of His
13: And David took more concubines and wives from Jerusalem,
after he came from Hebron; and more sons and daughters were born to
14: And these are the names of those who were born to him in
Jerusalem: Sham'mu-a, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon,
15: Ibhar, Eli'shu-a, Nepheg, Japhi'a,
16: Eli'shama, Eli'ada, and Eliph'elet.
17: When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king
over Israel, all the Philistines went up in search of David; but David
heard of it and went down to the stronghold.
18: Now the Philistines had come and spread out in the valley of
19: And David inquired of the Lord, "Shall I go up against
the Philistines? Wilt Thou give them into my hand?" And the Lord
said to David, "Go up; for I will certainly give the Philistines
into your hand."
20: And David came to Ba'al-pera'zim, and David defeated them
there; and he said, "The Lord has broken through my enemies before
me, like a bursting flood." Therefore the name of that place is
21: And the Philistines left their idols there, and David and his
men carried them away.
22: And the Philistines came up yet again, and spread out in the
valley of Reph'aim.
23: And when David inquired of the Lord, He said, "You shall
not go up; go around to their rear, and come upon them opposite the
24: And when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the
balsam trees, then bestir yourself; for then the Lord has gone out
before you to smite the army of the Philistines."
25: And David did as the Lord commanded him, and smote the
Philistines from Geba to Gezer.
1: David again gathered all the chosen men of Israel, thirty
2: And David arose and went with all the people who were with him
from Ba'ale-judah, to bring up from there the ark of God, which is
called by the name of the Lord of hosts who sits enthroned on the
3: And they carried the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought
it out of the house of Abin'adab which was on the hill; and Uzzah and
Ahi'o, the sons of Abin'adab, were driving the new cart
4: with the ark of God; and Ahi'o went before the ark.
5: And David and all the house of Israel were making merry before
the Lord with all their might, with songs and lyres and harps and
tambourines and castanets and cymbals.
6: And when they came to the threshing floor of Nacon, Uzzah put
out his hand to the ark of God and took hold of it, for the oxen
7: And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah; and God
smote him there because he put forth his hand to the ark; and he died
there beside the ark of God.
8: And David was angry because the Lord had broken forth upon
Uzzah; and that place is called Pe'rez-uz'zah, to this day.
9: And David was afraid of the Lord that day; and he said,
"How can the ark of the Lord come to me?"
10: So David was not willing to take the ark of the Lord into the
city of David; but David took it aside to the house of O'bed-e'dom the
11: And the ark of the Lord remained in the house of O'bed-e'dom
the Gittite three months; and the Lord blessed O'bed-e'dom and all his
12: And it was told King David, "The Lord has blessed the
household of O'bed-e'dom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark
of God." So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house
of O'bed-e'dom to the city of David with rejoicing;
13: and when those who bore the ark of the Lord had gone six
paces, he sacrificed an ox and a fatling.
14: And David danced before the Lord with all his might; and
David was girded with a linen ephod.
15: So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of
the Lord with shouting, and with the sound of the horn.
16: As the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal
the daughter of Saul looked out of the window, and saw King David
leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart.
17: And they brought in the ark of the Lord, and set it in its
place, inside the tent which David had pitched for it; and David offered
burnt offerings and peace offerings before the Lord.
18: And when David had finished offering the burnt offerings and
the peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of
19: and distributed among all the people, the whole multitude of
Israel, both men and women, to each a cake of bread, a portion of meat,
and a cake of raisins. Then all the people departed, each to his house.
20: And David returned to bless his household. But Michal the
daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, "How the king of
Israel honored himself today, uncovering himself today before the eyes
of his servants' maids, as one of the vulgar fellows shamelessly
21: And David said to Michal, "It was before the Lord, who
chose me above your father, and above all his house, to appoint me as
prince over Israel, the people of the Lord -- and I will make merry
before the Lord.
22: I will make myself yet more contemptible than this, and I
will be abased in your eyes; but by the maids of whom you have spoken,
by them I shall be held in honor."
23: And Michal the daughter of Saul had no child to the day of
1: Now when the king dwelt in his house, and the Lord had given
him rest from all his enemies round about,
2: the king said to Nathan the prophet, "See now, I dwell in
a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells in a tent."
3: And Nathan said to the king, "Go, do all that is in your
heart; for the Lord is with you."
4: But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan,
5: "Go and tell my servant David, `Thus says the Lord: Would
you build me a house to dwell in?
6: I have not dwelt in a house since the day I brought up the
people of Israel from Egypt to this day, but I have been moving about in
a tent for my dwelling.
7: In all places where I have moved with all the people of
Israel, did I speak a word with any of the judges of Israel, whom I
commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying, "Why have you not
built Me a house of cedar?"'
8: Now therefore thus you shall say to my servant David, `Thus
says the Lord of hosts, I took you from the pasture, from following the
sheep, that you should be prince over my people Israel;
9: and I have been with you wherever you went, and have cut off
all your enemies from before you; and I will make for you a great name,
like the name of the great ones of the earth.
10: And I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will
plant them, that they may dwell in their own place, and be disturbed no
more; and violent men shall afflict them no more, as formerly,
11: from the time that I appointed judges over my people Israel;
and I will give you rest from all your enemies. Moreover the Lord
declares to you that the Lord will make you a house.
12: When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your
fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come forth
from your body, and I will establish his kingdom.
13: He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the
throne of his kingdom for ever.
14: I will be his father, and he shall be my son. When he commits
iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, with the stripes of
the sons of men;
15: but I will not take my steadfast love from him, as I took it
from Saul, whom I put away from before you.
16: And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure for ever
before Me; your throne shall be established for ever.'"
17: In accordance with all these words, and in accordance with
all this vision, Nathan spoke to David.
18: Then King David went in and sat before the Lord, and said,
"Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that Thou hast brought
me thus far?
19: And yet this was a small thing in Thy eyes, O Lord God; Thou
hast spoken also of Thy servant's house for a great while to come, and
hast shown me future generations, O Lord God!
20: And what more can David say to Thee? For Thou knows Thy
servant, O Lord God!
21: Because of Thy promise, and according to Thy own heart, Thou
hast wrought all this greatness, to make Thy servant know it.
22: Therefore Thou art great, O Lord God; for there is none like
Thee, and there is no God besides Thee, according to all that we have
heard with our ears.
23: What other nation on earth is like Thy people Israel, whom
God went to redeem to be his people, making himself a name, and doing
for them great and terrible things, by driving out before his people a
nation and its gods?
24: And Thou didst establish for Thyself Thy people Israel to be
Thy people for ever; and Thou, O Lord, didst become their God.
25: And now, O Lord God, confirm for ever the word which Thou
hast spoken concerning Thy servant and concerning his house, and do as
Thou hast spoken;
26: and Thy name will be magnified for ever, saying, `The Lord of
hosts is God over Israel,' and the house of Thy servant David will be
established before Thee.
27: For Thou, O Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, hast made this
revelation to Thy servant, saying, `I will build you a house'; therefore
Thy servant has found courage to pray this prayer to Thee.
28: And now, O Lord God, Thou art God, and Thy words are true,
and Thou hast promised this good thing to Thy servant;
29: now therefore may it please Thee to bless the house of Thy
servant, that it may continue for ever before Thee; for Thou, O Lord
God, hast spoken, and with Thy blessing shall the house of Thy servant
be blessed for ever."
1: After this David defeated the Philistines and subdued them,
and David took Meth'eg-am'mah out of the hand of the Philistines.
2: And he defeated Moab, and measured them with a line, making
them lie down on the ground; two lines he measured to be put to death,
and one full line to be spared. And the Moabites became servants to
David and brought tribute.
3: David also defeated Hadade'zer the son of Rehob, king of
Zobah, as he went to restore his power at the river Euphra'tes.
4: And David took from him a thousand and seven hundred horsemen,
and twenty thousand foot soldiers; and David hamstrung all the chariot
horses, but left enough for a hundred chariots.
5: And when the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadade'zer king
of Zobah, David slew twenty-two thousand men of the Syrians.
6: Then David put garrisons in Aram of Damascus; and the Syrians
became servants to David and brought tribute. And the Lord gave victory
to David wherever he went.
7: And David took the shields of gold which were carried by the
servants of Hadade'zer, and brought them to Jerusalem.
8: And from Betah and from Bero'thai, cities of Hadade'zer, King
David took very much bronze.
9: When To'i king of Hamath heard that David had defeated the
whole army of Hadade'zer,
10: To'i sent his son Joram to King David, to greet him, and to
congratulate him because he had fought against Hadade'zer and defeated
him; for Hadade'zer had often been at war with To'i. And Joram brought
with him articles of silver, of gold, and of bronze;
11: these also King David dedicated to the Lord, together with
the silver and gold which he dedicated from all the nations he subdued,
12: from Edom, Moab, the Ammonites, the Philistines, Am'alek, and
from the spoil of Hadade'zer the son of Rehob, king of Zobah.
13: And David won a name for himself. When he returned, he slew
eighteen thousand E'domites in the Valley of Salt.
14: And he put garrisons in Edom; throughout all Edom he put
garrisons, and all the E'domites became David's servants. And the Lord
gave victory to David wherever he went.
15: So David reigned over all Israel; and David administered
justice and equity to all his people.
16: And Jo'ab the son of Zeru'iah was over the army; and
Jehosh'aphat the son of Ahi'lud was recorder;
17: and Zadok the son of Ahi'tub and Ahim'elech the son of
Abi'athar were priests; and Serai'ah was secretary;
18: and Benai'ah the son of Jehoi'ada was over the Cher'ethites
and the Pel'ethites; and David's sons were priests.
1: And David said, "Is there still any one left of the house
of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan's sake?"
2: Now there was a servant of the house of Saul whose name was
Ziba, and they called him to David; and the king said to him, "Are
you Ziba?" And he said, "Your servant is he."
3: And the king said, "Is there not still some one of the
house of Saul, that I may show the kindness of God to him?" Ziba
said to the king, "There is still a son of Jonathan; he is crippled
in his feet."
4: The king said to him, "Where is he?" And Ziba said
to the king, "He is in the house of Machir the son of Am'miel, at
5: Then King David sent and brought him from the house of Machir
the son of Am'miel, at Lo-debar.
6: And Mephib'osheth the son of Jonathan, son of Saul, came to
David, and fell on his face and did obeisance. And David said, "Mephib'osheth!"
And he answered, "Behold, your servant."
7: And David said to him, "Do not fear; for I will show you
kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan, and I will restore to you
all the land of Saul your father; and you shall eat at my table
8: And he did obeisance, and said, "What is your servant,
that you should look upon a dead dog such as I?"
9: Then the king called Ziba, Saul's servant, and said to him,
"All that belonged to Saul and to all his house I have given to
your master's son.
10: And you and your sons and your servants shall till the land
for him, and shall bring in the produce, that your master's son may have
bread to eat; but Mephib'osheth your master's son shall always eat at my
table." Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.
11: Then Ziba said to the king, "According to all that my
lord the king commands his servant, so will your servant do." So
Mephib'osheth ate at David's table, like one of the king's sons.
12: And Mephib'osheth had a young son, whose name was Mica. And
all who dwelt in Ziba's house became Mephib'osheth's servants.
13: So Mephib'osheth dwelt in Jerusalem; for he ate always at the
king's table. Now he was lame in both his feet.
1: After this the king of the Ammonites died, and Hanun his son
reigned in his stead.
2: And David said, "I will deal loyally with Hanun the son
of Nahash, as his father dealt loyally with me." So David sent by
his servants to console him concerning his father. And David's servants
came into the land of the Ammonites.
3: But the princes of the Ammonites said to Hanun their lord,
"Do you think, because David has sent comforters to you, that he is
honoring your father? Has not David sent his servants to you to search
the city, and to spy it out, and to overthrow it?"
4: So Hanun took David's servants, and shaved off half the beard
of each, and cut off their garments in the middle, at their hips, and
sent them away.
5: When it was told David, he sent to meet them, for the men were
greatly ashamed. And the king said, "Remain at Jericho until your
beards have grown, and then return."
6: When the Ammonites saw that they had become odious to David,
the Ammonites sent and hired the Syrians of Beth-re'hob, and the Syrians
of Zobah, twenty thousand foot soldiers, and the king of Ma'acah with a
thousand men, and the men of Tob, twelve thousand men.
7: And when David heard of it, he sent Jo'ab and all the host of
the mighty men.
8: And the Ammonites came out and drew up in battle array at the
entrance of the gate; and the Syrians of Zobah and of Rehob, and the men
of Tob and Ma'acah, were by themselves in the open country.
9: When Jo'ab saw that the battle was set against him both in
front and in the rear, he chose some of the picked men of Israel, and
arrayed them against the Syrians;
10: the rest of his men he put in the charge of Abi'shai his
brother, and he arrayed them against the Ammonites.
11: And he said, "If the Syrians are too strong for me, then
you shall help me; but if the Ammonites are too strong for you, then I
will come and help you.
12: Be of good courage, and let us play the man for our people,
and for the cities of our God; and may the Lord do what seems good to
13: So Jo'ab and the people who were with him drew near to battle
against the Syrians; and they fled before him.
14: And when the Ammonites saw that the Syrians fled, they
likewise fled before Abi'shai, and entered the city. Then Jo'ab returned
from fighting against the Ammonites, and came to Jerusalem.
15: But when the Syrians saw that they had been defeated by
Israel, they gathered themselves together.
16: And Hadade'zer sent, and brought out the Syrians who were
beyond the Euphra'tes; and they came to Helam, with Shobach the
commander of the army of Hadade'zer at their head.
17: And when it was told David, he gathered all Israel together,
and crossed the Jordan, and came to Helam. And the Syrians arrayed
themselves against David, and fought with him.
18: And the Syrians fled before Israel; and David slew of the
Syrians the men of seven hundred chariots, and forty thousand horsemen,
and wounded Shobach the commander of their army, so that he died there.
19: And when all the kings who were servants of Hadade'zer saw
that they had been defeated by Israel, they made peace with Israel, and
became subject to them. So the Syrians feared to help the Ammonites any
1: In the spring of the year, the time when kings go forth to
battle, David sent Jo'ab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and
they ravaged the Ammonites, and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at
2: It happened, late one afternoon, when David arose from his
couch and was walking upon the roof of the king's house, that he saw
from the roof a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful.
3: And David sent and inquired about the woman. And one said,
"Is not this Bathshe'ba, the daughter of Eli'am, the wife of Uri'ah
4: So David sent messengers, and took her; and she came to him,
and he lay with her. (Now she was purifying herself from her
uncleanness.) Then she returned to her house.
5: And the woman conceived; and she sent and told David, "I
am with child."
6: So David sent word to Jo'ab, "Send me Uri'ah the
Hittite." And Jo'ab sent Uri'ah to David.
7: When Uri'ah came to him, David asked how Jo'ab was doing, and
how the people fared, and how the war prospered.
8: Then David said to Uri'ah, "Go down to your house, and
wash your feet." And Uri'ah went out of the king's house, and there
followed him a present from the king.
9: But Uri'ah slept at the door of the king's house with all the
servants of his lord, and did not go down to his house.
10: When they told David, "Uri'ah did not go down to his
house," David said to Uri'ah, "Have you not come from a
journey? Why did you not go down to your house?"
11: Uri'ah said to David, "The ark and Israel and Judah
dwell in booths; and my lord Jo'ab and the servants of my lord are
camping in the open field; shall I then go to my house, to eat and to
drink, and to lie with my wife? As you live, and as your soul lives, I
will not do this thing."
12: Then David said to Uri'ah, "Remain here today also, and
tomorrow I will let you depart." So Uri'ah remained in Jerusalem
that day, and the next.
13: And David invited him, and he ate in his presence and drank,
so that he made him drunk; and in the evening he went out to lie on his
couch with the servants of his lord, but he did not go down to his
14: In the morning David wrote a letter to Jo'ab, and sent it by
the hand of Uri'ah.
15: In the letter he wrote, "Set Uri'ah in the forefront of
the hardest fighting, and then draw back from him, that he may be struck
down, and die."
16: And as Jo'ab was besieging the city, he assigned Uri'ah to
the place where he knew there were valiant men.
17: And the men of the city came out and fought with Jo'ab; and
some of the servants of David among the people fell. Uri'ah the Hittite
was slain also.
18: Then Jo'ab sent and told David all the news about the
19: and he instructed the messenger, "When you have finished
telling all the news about the fighting to the king,
20: then, if the king's anger rises, and if he says to you, `Why
did you go so near the city to fight? Did you not know that they would
shoot from the wall?
21: Who killed Abim'elech the son of Jerub'besheth? Did not a
woman cast an upper millstone upon him from the wall, so that he died at
Thebez? Why did you go so near the wall?' then you shall say, `Your
servant Uri'ah the Hittite is dead also.'"
22: So the messenger went, and came and told David all that Jo'ab
had sent him to tell.
23: The messenger said to David, "The men gained an
advantage over us, and came out against us in the field; but we drove
them back to the entrance of the gate.
24: Then the archers shot at your servants from the wall; some of
the king's servants are dead; and your servant Uri'ah the Hittite is
25: David said to the messenger, "Thus shall you say to
Jo'ab, `Do not let this matter trouble you, for the sword devours now
one and now another; strengthen your attack upon the city, and overthrow
it.' And encourage him."
26: When the wife of Uri'ah heard that Uri'ah her husband was
dead, she made lamentation for her husband.
27: And when the mourning was over, David sent and brought her to
his house, and she became his wife, and bore him a son. But the thing
that David had done displeased the Lord.
1: And the Lord sent Nathan to David. He came to him, and said to
him, "There were two men in a certain city, the one rich and the
2: The rich man had very many flocks and herds;
3: but the poor man had nothing but one little ewe lamb, which he
had bought. And he brought it up, and it grew up with him and with his
children; it used to eat of his morsel, and drink from his cup, and lie
in his bosom, and it was like a daughter to him.
4: Now there came a traveler to the rich man, and he was
unwilling to take one of his own flock or herd to prepare for the
wayfarer who had come to him, but he took the poor man's lamb, and
prepared it for the man who had come to him."
5: Then David's anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he
said to Nathan, "As the Lord lives, the man who has done this
deserves to die;
6: and he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this
thing, and because he had no pity."
7: Nathan said to David, "You are the man. Thus says the
Lord, the God of Israel, `I anointed you king over Israel, and I
delivered you out of the hand of Saul;
8: and I gave you your master's house, and your master's wives
into your bosom, and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah; and if
this were too little, I would add to you as much more.
9: Why have you despised the word of the Lord, to do what is evil
in his sight? You have smitten Uri'ah the Hittite with the sword, and
have taken his wife to be your wife, and have slain him with the sword
of the Ammonites.
10: Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house,
because you have despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uri'ah the
Hittite to be your wife.'
11: Thus says the Lord, `Behold, I will raise up evil against you
out of your own house; and I will take your wives before your eyes, and
give them to your neighbor, and he shall lie with your wives in the
sight of this sun.
12: For you did it secretly; but I will do this thing before all
Israel, and before the sun.'"
13: David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the
Lord." And Nathan said to David, "The Lord also has put away
your sin; you shall not die.
14: Nevertheless, because by this deed you have utterly scorned
the Lord, the child that is born to you shall die."
15: Then Nathan went to his house. And the Lord struck the child
that Uri'ah's wife bore to David, and it became sick.
16: David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted,
and went in and lay all night upon the ground.
17: And the elders of his house stood beside him, to raise him
from the ground; but he would not, nor did he eat food with them.
18: On the seventh day the child died. And the servants of David
feared to tell him that the child was dead; for they said, "Behold,
while the child was yet alive, we spoke to him, and he did not listen to
us; how then can we say to him the child is dead? He may do himself some
19: But when David saw that his servants were whispering
together, David perceived that the child was dead; and David said to his
servants, "Is the child dead?" They said, "He is
20: Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed
himself, and changed his clothes; and he went into the house of the
Lord, and worshiped; he then went to his own house; and when he asked,
they set food before him, and he ate.
21: Then his servants said to him, "What is this thing that
you have done? You fasted and wept for the child while it was alive; but
when the child died, you arose and ate food."
22: He said, "While the child was still alive, I fasted and
wept; for I said, `Who knows whether the Lord will be gracious to me,
that the child may live?'
23: But now he is dead; why should I fast? Can I bring him back
again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me."
24: Then David comforted his wife, Bathshe'ba, and went in to
her, and lay with her; and she bore a son, and he called his name
Solomon. And the Lord loved him,
25: and sent a message by Nathan the prophet; so he called his
name Jedidi'ah, because of the Lord.
26: Now Jo'ab fought against Rabbah of the Ammonites, and took
the royal city.
27: And Jo'ab sent messengers to David, and said, "I have
fought against Rabbah; moreover, I have taken the city of waters.
28: Now, then, gather the rest of the people together, and encamp
against the city, and take it; lest I take the city, and it be called by
29: So David gathered all the people together and went to Rabbah,
and fought against it and took it.
30: And he took the crown of their king from his head; the weight
of it was a talent of gold, and in it was a precious stone; and it was
placed on David's head. And he brought forth the spoil of the city, a
very great amount.
31: And he brought forth the people who were in it, and set them
to labor with saws and iron picks and iron axes, and made them toil at
the brick kilns; and thus he did to all the cities of the Ammonites. Then
David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.
1: Now Ab'salom, David's son, had a beautiful sister, whose name
was Tamar; and after a time Amnon, David's son, loved her.
2: And Amnon was so tormented that he made himself ill because of
his sister Tamar; for she was a virgin, and it seemed impossible to
Amnon to do anything to her.
3: But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jon'adab, the son of
Shim'e-ah, David's brother; and Jon'adab was a very crafty man.
4: And he said to him, "O son of the king, why are you so
haggard morning after morning? Will you not tell me?" Amnon said to
him, "I love Tamar, my brother Ab'salom's sister."
5: Jon'adab said to him, "Lie down on your bed, and pretend
to be ill; and when your father comes to see you, say to him, `Let my
sister Tamar come and give me bread to eat, and prepare the food in my
sight, that I may see it, and eat it from her hand.'"
6: So Amnon lay down, and pretended to be ill; and when the king
came to see him, Amnon said to the king, "Pray let my sister Tamar
come and make a couple of cakes in my sight, that I may eat from her
7: Then David sent home to Tamar, saying, "Go to your
brother Amnon's house, and prepare food for him."
8: So Tamar went to her brother Amnon's house, where he was lying
down. And she took dough, and kneaded it, and made cakes in his sight,
and baked the cakes.
9: And she took the pan and emptied it out before him, but he
refused to eat. And Amnon said, "Send out every one from me."
So every one went out from him.
10: Then Amnon said to Tamar, "Bring the food into the
chamber, that I may eat from your hand." And Tamar took the cakes
she had made, and brought them into the chamber to Amnon her brother.
11: But when she brought them near him to eat, he took hold of
her, and said to her, "Come, lie with me, my sister."
12: She answered him, "No, my brother, do not force me; for
such a thing is not done in Israel; do not do this wanton folly.
13: As for me, where could I carry my shame? And as for you, you
would be as one of the wanton fools in Israel. Now therefore, I pray
you, speak to the king; for he will not withhold me from you."
14: But he would not listen to her; and being stronger than she,
he forced her, and lay with her.
15: Then Amnon hated her with very great hatred; so that the
hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he
had loved her. And Amnon said to her, "Arise, be gone."
16: But she said to him, "No, my brother; for this wrong in
sending me away is greater than the other which you did to me." But
he would not listen to her.
17: He called the young man who served him and said, "Put
this woman out of my presence, and bolt the door after her."
18: Now she was wearing a long robe with sleeves; for thus were
the virgin daughters of the king clad of old. So his servant put her
out, and bolted the door after her.
19: And Tamar put ashes on her head, and rent the long robe which
she wore; and she laid her hand on her head, and went away, crying aloud
as she went.
20: And her brother Ab'salom said to her, "Has Amnon your
brother been with you? Now hold your peace, my sister; he is your
brother; do not take this to heart." So Tamar dwelt, a desolate
woman, in her brother Ab'salom's house.
21: When King David heard of all these things, he was very angry.
22: But Ab'salom spoke to Amnon neither good nor bad; for
Ab'salom hated Amnon, because he had forced his sister Tamar.
23: After two full years Ab'salom had sheepshearers at Ba'al-ha'zor,
which is near E'phraim, and Ab'salom invited all the king's sons.
24: And Ab'salom came to the king, and said, "Behold, your
servant has sheepshearers; pray let the king and his servants go with
25: But the king said to Ab'salom, "No, my son, let us not
all go, lest we be burdensome to you." He pressed him, but he would
not go but gave him his blessing.
26: Then Ab'salom said, "If not, pray let my brother Amnon
go with us." And the king said to him, "Why should he go with
27: But Ab'salom pressed him until he let Amnon and all the
king's sons go with him.
28: Then Ab'salom commanded his servants, "Mark when Amnon's
heart is merry with wine, and when I say to you, `Strike Amnon,' then
kill him. Fear not; have I not commanded you? Be courageous and be
29: So the servants of Ab'salom did to Amnon as Ab'salom had
commanded. Then all the king's sons arose, and each mounted his mule and
30: While they were on the way, tidings came to David, "Ab'salom
has slain all the king's sons, and not one of them is left."
31: Then the king arose, and rent his garments, and lay on the
earth; and all his servants who were standing by rent their garments.
32: But Jon'adab the son of Shim'e-ah, David's brother, said,
"Let not my lord suppose that they have killed all the young men
the king's sons, for Amnon alone is dead, for by the command of Ab'salom
this has been determined from the day he forced his sister Tamar.
33: Now therefore let not my lord the king so take it to heart as
to suppose that all the king's sons are dead; for Amnon alone is
34: But Ab'salom fled. And the young man who kept the watch
lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold, many people were coming from
the Horona'im road by the side of the mountain.
35: And Jon'adab said to the king, "Behold, the king's sons
have come; as your servant said, so it has come about."
36: And as soon as he had finished speaking, behold, the king's
sons came, and lifted up their voice and wept; and the king also and all
his servants wept very bitterly.
37: But Ab'salom fled, and went to Talmai the son of Ammi'hud,
king of Geshur. And David mourned for his son day after day.
38: So Ab'salom fled, and went to Geshur, and was there three
39: And the spirit of the king longed to go forth to Ab'salom;
for he was comforted about Amnon, seeing he was dead.
1: Now Jo'ab the son of Zeru'iah perceived that the king's heart
went out to Ab'salom.
2: And Jo'ab sent to Teko'a, and fetched from there a wise woman,
and said to her, "Pretend to be a mourner, and put on mourning
garments; do not anoint yourself with oil, but behave like a woman who
has been mourning many days for the dead;
3: and go to the king, and speak thus to him." So Jo'ab put
the words in her mouth.
4: When the woman of Teko'a came to the king, she fell on her
face to the ground, and did obeisance, and said, "Help, O
5: And the king said to her, "What is your trouble?"
She answered, "Alas, I am a widow; my husband is dead.
6: And your handmaid had two sons, and they quarreled with one
another in the field; there was no one to part them, and one struck the
other and killed him.
7: And now the whole family has risen against your handmaid, and
they say, `Give up the man who struck his brother, that we may kill him
for the life of his brother whom he slew'; and so they would destroy the
heir also. Thus they would quench my coal which is left, and leave to my
husband neither name nor remnant upon the face of the earth."
8: Then the king said to the woman, "Go to your house, and I
will give orders concerning you."
9: And the woman of Teko'a said to the king, "On me be the
guilt, my lord the king, and on my father's house; let the king and his
throne be guiltless."
10: The king said, "If any one says anything to you, bring
him to me, and he shall never touch you again."
11: Then she said, "Pray let the king invoke the Lord your
God, that the avenger of blood slay no more, and my son be not
destroyed." He said, "As the Lord lives, not one hair of your
son shall fall to the ground."
12: Then the woman said, "Pray let your handmaid speak a
word to my lord the king." He said, "Speak."
13: And the woman said, "Why then have you planned such a
thing against the people of God? For in giving this decision the king
convicts himself, inasmuch as the king does not bring his banished one
14: We must all die, we are like water spilt on the ground, which
cannot be gathered up again; but God will not take away the life of him
who devises means not to keep his banished one an outcast.
15: Now I have come to say this to my lord the king because the
people have made me afraid; and your handmaid thought, `I will speak to
the king; it may be that the king will perform the request of his
For the king will hear, and deliver his servant from the hand of the man
who would destroy me and my son together from the heritage of God.'
17: And your handmaid thought, `The word of my lord the king will
set me at rest'; for my lord the king is like the angel of God to
discern good and evil. The Lord your God be with you!"
18: Then the king answered the woman, "Do not hide from me
anything I ask you." And the woman said, "Let my lord the king
19: The king said, "Is the hand of Jo'ab with you in all
this?" The woman answered and said, "As surely as you live, my
lord the king, one cannot turn to the right hand or to the left from
anything that my lord the king has said. It was your servant Jo'ab who
bade me; it was he who put all these words in the mouth of your
In order to change the course of affairs your servant Jo'ab did this.
But my lord has wisdom like the wisdom of the angel of God to know all
things that are on the earth."
21: Then the king said to Jo'ab, "Behold now, I grant this;
go, bring back the young man Ab'salom."
22: And Jo'ab fell on his face to the ground, and did obeisance,
and blessed the king; and Jo'ab said, "Today your servant knows
that I have found favor in your sight, my lord the king, in that the
king has granted the request of his servant."
23: So Jo'ab arose and went to Geshur, and brought Ab'salom to
24: And the king said, "Let him dwell apart in his own
house; he is not to come into my presence." So Ab'salom dwelt apart
in his own house, and did not come into the king's presence.
25: Now in all Israel there was no one so much to be praised for
his beauty as Ab'salom; from the sole of his foot to the crown of his
head there was no blemish in him.
And when he cut the hair of his head (for at the end of every year he
used to cut it; when it was heavy on him, he cut it), he weighed the
hair of his head, two hundred shekels by the king's weight.
27: There were born to Ab'salom three sons, and one daughter
whose name was Tamar; she was a beautiful woman.
28: So Ab'salom dwelt two full years in Jerusalem, without coming
into the king's presence.
29: Then Ab'salom sent for Jo'ab, to send him to the king; but
Jo'ab would not come to him. And he sent a second time, but Jo'ab would
30: Then he said to his servants, "See, Jo'ab's field is
next to mine, and he has barley there; go and set it on fire." So
Ab'salom's servants set the field on fire.
31: Then Jo'ab arose and went to Ab'salom at his house, and said
to him, "Why have your servants set my field on fire?"
32: Ab'salom answered Jo'ab, "Behold, I sent word to you,
`Come here, that I may send you to the king, to ask, "Why have I
come from Geshur? It would be better for me to be there still." Now
therefore let me go into the presence of the king; and if there is guilt
in me, let him kill me.'"
33: Then Jo'ab went to the king, and told him; and he summoned
Ab'salom. So he came to the king, and bowed himself on his face to the
ground before the king; and the king kissed Ab'salom.
1: After this Ab'salom got himself a chariot and horses, and
fifty men to run before him.
2: And Ab'salom used to rise early and stand beside the way of
the gate; and when any man had a suit to come before the king for
judgment, Ab'salom would call to him, and say, "From what city are
you?" And when he said, "Your servant is of such and such a
tribe in Israel,"
3: Ab'salom would say to him, "See, your claims are good and
right; but there is no man deputed by the king to hear you."
4: Ab'salom said moreover, "Oh that I were judge in the
land! Then every man with a suit or cause might come to me, and I would
give him justice."
5: And whenever a man came near to do obeisance to him, he would
put out his hand, and take hold of him, and kiss him.
6: Thus Ab'salom did to all of Israel who came to the king for
judgment; so Ab'salom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.
7: And at the end of four years Ab'salom said to the king,
"Pray let me go and pay my vow, which I have vowed to the Lord, in
8: For your servant vowed a vow while I dwelt at Geshur in Aram,
saying, `If the Lord will indeed bring me back to Jerusalem, then I will
offer worship to the Lord.'"
9: The king said to him, "Go in peace." So he arose,
and went to Hebron.
10: But Ab'salom sent secret messengers throughout all the tribes
of Israel, saying, "As soon as you hear the sound of the trumpet,
then say, `Ab'salom is king at Hebron!'"
11: With Ab'salom went two hundred men from Jerusalem who were
invited guests, and they went in their simplicity, and knew nothing.
12: And while Ab'salom was offering the sacrifices, he sent for
Ahith'ophel the Gi'lonite, David's counselor, from his city Giloh. And
the conspiracy grew strong, and the people with Ab'salom kept
13: And a messenger came to David, saying, "The hearts of
the men of Israel have gone after Ab'salom."
14: Then David said to all his servants who were with him at
Jerusalem, "Arise, and let us flee; or else there will be no escape
for us from Ab'salom; go in haste, lest he overtake us quickly, and
bring down evil upon us, and smite the city with the edge of the
15: And the king's servants said to the king, "Behold, your
servants are ready to do whatever my lord the king decides."
16: So the king went forth, and all his household after him. And
the king left ten concubines to keep the house.
17: And the king went forth, and all the people after him; and
they halted at the last house.
18: And all his servants passed by him; and all the Cher'ethites,
and all the Pel'ethites, and all the six hundred Gittites who had
followed him from Gath, passed on before the king.
19: Then the king said to It'tai the Gittite, "Why do you
also go with us? Go back, and stay with the king; for you are a
foreigner, and also an exile from your home.
20: You came only yesterday, and shall I today make you wander
about with us, seeing I go I know not where? Go back, and take your
brethren with you; and may the Lord show steadfast love and faithfulness
21: But It'tai answered the king, "As the Lord lives, and as
my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king shall be, whether for
death or for life, there also will your servant be."
22: And David said to It'tai, "Go then, pass on." So
It'tai the Gittite passed on, with all his men and all the little ones
who were with him.
23: And all the country wept aloud as all the people passed by,
and the king crossed the brook Kidron, and all the people passed on
toward the wilderness.
24: And Abi'athar came up, and lo, Zadok came also, with all the
Levites, bearing the ark of the covenant of God; and they set down the
ark of God, until the people had all passed out of the city.
25: Then the king said to Zadok, "Carry the ark of God back
into the city. If I find favor in the eyes of the Lord, he will bring me
back and let me see both it and his habitation;
26: but if he says, `I have no pleasure in you,' behold, here I
am, let him do to me what seems good to him."
27: The king also said to Zadok the priest, "Look, go back
to the city in peace, you and Abi'athar, with your two sons, Ahim'a-az
your son, and Jonathan the son of Abi'athar.
28: See, I will wait at the fords of the wilderness, until word
comes from you to inform me."
29: So Zadok and Abi'athar carried the ark of God back to
Jerusalem; and they remained there.
30: But David went up the ascent of the Mount of Olives, weeping
as he went, barefoot and with his head covered; and all the people who
were with him covered their heads, and they went up, weeping as they
31: And it was told David, "Ahith'ophel is among the
conspirators with Ab'salom." And David said, "O Lord, I pray
Thee, turn the counsel of Ahith'ophel into foolishness."
32: When David came to the summit, where God was worshiped,
behold, Hushai the Archite came to meet him with his coat rent and earth
upon his head.
33: David said to him, "If you go on with me, you will be a
burden to me.
34: But if you return to the city, and say to Ab'salom, `I will
be your servant, O king; as I have been your father's servant in time
past, so now I will be your servant,' then you will defeat for me the
counsel of Ahith'ophel.
35: Are not Zadok and Abi'athar the priests with you there? So
whatever you hear from the king's house, tell it to Zadok and Abi'athar
36: Behold, their two sons are with them there, Ahim'a-az,
Zadok's son, and Jonathan, Abi'athar's son; and by them you shall send
to me everything you hear."
37: So Hushai, David's friend, came into the city, just as
Ab'salom was entering Jerusalem.
1: When David had passed a little beyond the summit, Ziba the
servant of Mephib'osheth met him, with a couple of asses saddled,
bearing two hundred loaves of bread, a hundred bunches of raisins, a
hundred of summer fruits, and a skin of wine.
2: And the king said to Ziba, "Why have you brought
these?" Ziba answered, "The asses are for the king's household
to ride on, the bread and summer fruit for the young men to eat, and the
wine for those who faint in the wilderness to drink."
3: And the king said, "And where is your master's son?"
Ziba said to the king, "Behold, he remains in Jerusalem; for he
said, `Today the house of Israel will give me back the kingdom of my
4: Then the king said to Ziba, "Behold, all that belonged to
Mephib'osheth is now yours." And Ziba said, "I do obeisance;
let me ever find favor in your sight, my lord the king."
5: When King David came to Bahu'rim, there came out a man of the
family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shim'e-i, the son of Gera;
and as he came he cursed continually.
6: And he threw stones at David, and at all the servants of King
David; and all the people and all the mighty men were on his right hand
and on his left.
7: And Shim'e-i said as he cursed, "Begone, Begone, you man
of blood, you worthless fellow!
8: The Lord has avenged upon you all the blood of the house of
Saul, in whose place you have reigned; and the Lord has given the
kingdom into the hand of your son Ab'salom. See, your ruin is on you;
for you are a man of blood."
9: Then Abi'shai the son of Zeru'iah said to the king, "Why
should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over and take off
10: But the king said, "What have I to do with you, you sons
of Zeru'iah? If he is cursing because the Lord has said to him, `Curse
David,' who then shall say, `Why have you done so?'"
11: And David said to Abi'shai and to all his servants,
"Behold, my own son seeks my life; how much more now may this
Benjaminite! Let him alone, and let him curse; for the Lord has bidden
12: It may be that the Lord will look upon my affliction, and
that the Lord will repay me with good for this cursing of me
13: So David and his men went on the road, while Shim'e-i went
along on the hillside opposite him and cursed as he went, and threw
stones at him and flung dust.
14: And the king, and all the people who were with him, arrived
weary at the Jordan; and there he refreshed himself.
15: Now Ab'salom and all the people, the men of Israel, came to
Jerusalem, and Ahith'ophel with him.
16: And when Hushai the Archite, David's friend, came to Ab'salom,
Hushai said to Ab'salom, "Long live the king! Long live the
17: And Ab'salom said to Hushai, "Is this your loyalty to
your friend? Why did you not go with your friend?"
18: And Hushai said to Ab'salom, "No; for whom the Lord and
this people and all the men of Israel have chosen, his I will be, and
with him I will remain.
19: And again, whom should I serve? Should it not be his son? As
I have served your father, so I will serve you."
20: Then Ab'salom said to Ahith'ophel, "Give your counsel;
what shall we do?"
21: Ahith'ophel said to Ab'salom, "Go in to your father's
concubines, whom he has left to keep the house; and all Israel will hear
that you have made yourself odious to your father, and the hands of all
who are with you will be strengthened."
22: So they pitched a tent for Ab'salom upon the roof; and
Ab'salom went in to his father's concubines in the sight of all Israel.
23: Now in those days the counsel which Ahith'ophel gave was as
if one consulted the oracle of God; so was all the counsel of
Ahith'ophel esteemed, both by David and by Ab'salom.
1: Moreover Ahith'ophel said to Ab'salom, "Let me choose
twelve thousand men, and I will set out and pursue David tonight.
2: I will come upon him while he is weary and discouraged, and
throw him into a panic; and all the people who are with him will flee. I
will strike down the king only,
3: and I will bring all the people back to you as a bride comes
home to her husband. You seek the life of only one man, and all the
people will be at peace."
4: And the advice pleased Ab'salom and all the elders of Israel.
5: Then Ab'salom said, "Call Hushai the Archite also, and
let us hear what he has to say."
6: And when Hushai came to Ab'salom, Ab'salom said to him,
"Thus has Ahith'ophel spoken; shall we do as he advises? If not,
7: Then Hushai said to Ab'salom, "This time the counsel
which Ahith'ophel has given is not good."
8: Hushai said moreover, "You know that your father and his
men are mighty men, and that they are enraged, like a bear robbed of her
cubs in the field. Besides, your father is expert in war; he will not
spend the night with the people.
9: Behold, even now he has hidden himself in one of the pits, or
in some other place. And when some of the people fall at the first
attack, whoever hears it will say, `There has been a slaughter among the
people who follow Ab'salom.'
10: Then even the valiant man, whose heart is like the heart of a
lion, will utterly melt with fear; for all Israel knows that your father
is a mighty man, and that those who are with him are valiant men.
11: But my counsel is that all Israel be gathered to you, from
Dan to Beer-sheba, as the sand by the sea for multitude, and that you go
to battle in person.
12: So we shall come upon him in some place where he is to be
found, and we shall light upon him as the dew falls on the ground; and
of him and all the men with him not one will be left.
13: If he withdraws into a city, then all Israel will bring ropes
to that city, and we shall drag it into the valley, until not even a
pebble is to be found there."
14: And Ab'salom and all the men of Israel said, "The
counsel of Hushai the Archite is better than the counsel of Ahith'ophel."
For the Lord had ordained to defeat the good counsel of Ahith'ophel, so
that the Lord might bring evil upon Ab'salom.
15: Then Hushai said to Zadok and Abi'athar the priests,
"Thus and so did Ahith'ophel counsel Ab'salom and the elders of
Israel; and thus and so have I counseled.
16: Now therefore send quickly and tell David, `Do not lodge
tonight at the fords of the wilderness, but by all means pass over; lest
the king and all the people who are with him be swallowed up.'"
17: Now Jonathan and Ahim'a-az were waiting at En-ro'gel; a
maidservant used to go and tell them, and they would go and tell King
David; for they must not be seen entering the city.
18: But a lad saw them, and told Ab'salom; so both of them went
away quickly, and came to the house of a man at Bahu'rim, who had a well
in his courtyard; and they went down into it.
19: And the woman took and spread a covering over the well's
mouth, and scattered grain upon it; and nothing was known of it.
20: When Ab'salom's servants came to the woman at the house, they
said, "Where are Ahim'a-az and Jonathan?" And the woman said
to them, "They have gone over the brook of water." And when
they had sought and could not find them, they returned to Jerusalem.
21: After they had gone, the men came up out of the well, and
went and told King David. They said to David, "Arise, and go
quickly over the water; for thus and so has Ahith'ophel counseled
22: Then David arose, and all the people who were with him, and
they crossed the Jordan; by daybreak not one was left who had not
crossed the Jordan.
23: When Ahith'ophel saw that his counsel was not followed, he
saddled his ass, and went off home to his own city. And he set his house
in order, and hanged himself; and he died, and was buried in the tomb of
24: Then David came to Mahana'im. And Ab'salom crossed the Jordan
with all the men of Israel.
25: Now Ab'salom had set Ama'sa over the army instead of Jo'ab.
Ama'sa was the son of a man named Ithra the Ish'maelite, who had married
Ab'igal the daughter of Nahash, sister of Zeru'iah, Jo'ab's mother.
26: And Israel and Ab'salom encamped in the land of Gilead.
27: When David came to Mahana'im, Shobi the son of Nahash from
Rabbah of the Ammonites, and Machir the son of Am'miel from Lo-debar,
and Barzil'lai the Gileadite from Ro'gelim,
28: brought beds, basins, and earthen vessels, wheat, barley,
meal, parched grain, beans and lentils,
29: honey and curds and sheep and cheese from the herd, for David
and the people with him to eat; for they said, "The people are
hungry and weary and thirsty in the wilderness."
1: Then David mustered the men who were with him, and set over
them commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds.
2: And David sent forth the army, one third under the command of
Jo'ab, one third under the command of Abi'shai the son of Zeru'iah,
Jo'ab's brother, and one third under the command of It'tai the Gittite.
And the king said to the men, "I myself will also go out with
3: But the men said, "You shall not go out. For if we flee,
they will not care about us. If half of us die, they will not care about
us. But you are worth ten thousand of us; therefore it is better that
you send us help from the city."
4: The king said to them, "Whatever seems best to you I will
do." So the king stood at the side of the gate, while all the army
marched out by hundreds and by thousands.
5: And the king ordered Jo'ab and Abi'shai and It'tai, "Deal
gently for my sake with the young man Ab'salom." And all the people
heard when the king gave orders to all the commanders about Ab'salom.
6: So the army went out into the field against Israel; and the
battle was fought in the forest of E'phraim.
7: And the men of Israel were defeated there by the servants of
David, and the slaughter there was great on that day, twenty thousand
8: The battle spread over the face of all the country; and the
forest devoured more people that day than the sword.
9: And Ab'salom chanced to meet the servants of David. Ab'salom
was riding upon his mule, and the mule went under the thick branches of
a great oak, and his head caught fast in the oak, and he was left
hanging between heaven and earth, while the mule that was under him went
10: And a certain man saw it, and told Jo'ab, "Behold, I saw
Ab'salom hanging in an oak."
11: Jo'ab said to the man who told him, "What, you saw him!
Why then did you not strike him there to the ground? I would have been
glad to give you ten pieces of silver and a girdle."
12: But the man said to Jo'ab, "Even if I felt in my hand
the weight of a thousand pieces of silver, I would not put forth my hand
against the king's son; for in our hearing the king commanded you and
Abi'shai and It'tai, `For my sake protect the young man Ab'salom.'
13: On the other hand, if I had dealt treacherously against his
life (and there is nothing hidden from the king), then you yourself
would have stood aloof."
14: Jo'ab said, "I will not waste time like this with
you." And he took three darts in his hand, and thrust them into the
heart of Ab'salom, while he was still alive in the oak.
15: And ten young men, Jo'ab's armor-bearers, surrounded Ab'salom
and struck him, and killed him.
16: Then Jo'ab blew the trumpet, and the troops came back from
pursuing Israel; for Jo'ab restrained them.
17: And they took Ab'salom, and threw him into a great pit in the
forest, and raised over him a very great heap of stones; and all Israel
fled every one to his own home.
18: Now Ab'salom in his lifetime had taken and set up for himself
the pillar which is in the King's Valley, for he said, "I have no
son to keep my name in remembrance"; he called the pillar after his
own name, and it is called Ab'salom's monument to this day.
19: Then said Ahi'ma-az the son of Zadok, "Let me run, and
carry tidings to the king that the Lord has delivered him from the power
of his enemies."
20: And Jo'ab said to him, "You are not to carry tidings
today; you may carry tidings another day, but today you shall carry no
tidings, because the king's son is dead."
21: Then Jo'ab said to the Cushite, "Go, tell the king what
you have seen." The Cushite bowed before Jo'ab, and ran.
22: Then Ahi'ma-az the son of Zadok said again to Jo'ab,
"Come what may, let me also run after the Cushite." And Jo'ab
said, "Why will you run, my son, seeing that you will have no
reward for the tidings?"
23: "Come what may," he said, "I will run."
So he said to him, "Run." Then Ahi'ma-az ran by the way of the
plain, and outran the Cushite.
24: Now David was sitting between the two gates; and the watchman
went up to the roof of the gate by the wall, and when he lifted up his
eyes and looked, he saw a man running alone.
25: And the watchman called out and told the king. And the king
said, "If he is alone, there are tidings in his mouth." And he
came apace, and drew near.
26: And the watchman saw another man running; and the watchman
called to the gate and said, "See, another man running alone!"
The king said, "He also brings tidings."
27: And the watchman said, "I think the running of the
foremost is like the running of Ahi'ma-az the son of Zadok." And
the king said, "He is a good man, and comes with good
28: Then Ahi'ma-az cried out to the king, "All is
well." And he bowed before the king with his face to the earth, and
said, "Blessed be the Lord your God, who has delivered up the men
who raised their hand against my lord the king."
29: And the king said, "Is it well with the young man
Ab'salom?" Ahi'ma-az answered, "When Jo'ab sent your servant,
I saw a great tumult, but I do not know what it was."
30: And the king said, "Turn aside, and stand here." So
he turned aside, and stood still.
31: And behold, the Cushite came; and the Cushite said,
"Good tidings for my lord the king! For the Lord has delivered you
this day from the power of all who rose up against you."
32: The king said to the Cushite, "Is it well with the young
man Ab'salom?" And the Cushite answered, "May the enemies of
my lord the king, and all who rise up against you for evil, be like that
33: And the king was deeply moved, and went up to the chamber
over the gate, and wept; and as he went, he said, "O my son
Ab'salom, my son, my son Ab'salom! Would I had died instead of you, O
Ab'salom, my son, my son!"
1: It was told Jo'ab, "Behold, the king is weeping and
mourning for Ab'salom."
2: So the victory that day was turned into mourning for all the
people; for the people heard that day, "The king is grieving for
3: And the people stole into the city that day as people steal in
who are ashamed when they flee in battle.
4: The king covered his face, and the king cried with a loud
voice, "O my son Ab'salom, O Ab'salom, my son, my son!"
5: Then Jo'ab came into the house to the king, and said,
"You have today covered with shame the faces of all your servants,
who have this day saved your life, and the lives of your sons and your
daughters, and the lives of your wives and your concubines,
6: because you love those who hate you and hate those who love
you. For you have made it clear today that commanders and servants are
nothing to you; for today I perceive that if Ab'salom were alive and all
of us were dead today, then you would be pleased.
7: Now therefore arise, go out and speak kindly to your servants;
for I swear by the Lord, if you do not go, not a man will stay with you
this night; and this will be worse for you than all the evil that has
come upon you from your youth until now."
8: Then the king arose, and took his seat in the gate. And the
people were all told, "Behold, the king is sitting in the
gate"; and all the people came before the king. Now Israel had fled
every man to his own home.
9: And all the people were at strife throughout all the tribes of
Israel, saying, "The king delivered us from the hand of our
enemies, and saved us from the hand of the Philistines; and now he has
fled out of the land from Ab'salom.
10: But Ab'salom, whom we anointed over us, is dead in battle.
Now therefore why do you say nothing about bringing the king back?"
11: And King David sent this message to Zadok and Abi'athar the
priests, "Say to the elders of Judah, `Why should you be the last
to bring the king back to his house, when the word of all Israel has
come to the king?
12: You are my kinsmen, you are my bone and my flesh; why then
should you be the last to bring back the king?'
13: And say to Ama'sa, `Are you not my bone and my flesh? God do
so to me, and more also, if you are not commander of my army henceforth
in place of Jo'ab.'"
14: And he swayed the heart of all the men of Judah as one man;
so that they sent word to the king, "Return, both you and all your
15: So the king came back to the Jordan; and Judah came to Gilgal
to meet the king and to bring the king over the Jordan.
16: And Shim'e-i the son of Gera, the Benjaminite, from Bahu'rim,
made haste to come down with the men of Judah to meet King David;
17: and with him were a thousand men from Benjamin. And Ziba the
servant of the house of Saul, with his fifteen sons and his twenty
servants, rushed down to the Jordan before the king,
18: and they crossed the ford to bring over the king's household,
and to do his pleasure. And Shim'e-i the son of Gera fell down before
the king, as he was about to cross the Jordan,
19: and said to the king, "Let not my lord hold me guilty or
remember how your servant did wrong on the day my lord the king left
Jerusalem; let not the king bear it in mind.
20: For your servant knows that I have sinned; therefore, behold,
I have come this day, the first of all the house of Joseph to come down
to meet my lord the king."
21: Abi'shai the son of Zeru'iah answered, "Shall not
Shim'e-i be put to death for this, because he cursed the Lord's
22: But David said, "What have I to do with you, you sons of
Zeru'iah, that you should this day be as an adversary to me? Shall any
one be put to death in Israel this day? For do I not know that I am this
day king over Israel?"
23: And the king said to Shim'e-i, "You shall not die."
And the king gave him his oath.
24: And Mephib'osheth the son of Saul came down to meet the king;
he had neither dressed his feet, nor trimmed his beard, nor washed his
clothes, from the day the king departed until the day he came back in
25: And when he came from Jerusalem to meet the king, the king
said to him, "Why did you not go with me, Mephib'osheth?"
26: He answered, "My lord, O king, my servant deceived me;
for your servant said to him, `Saddle an ass for me, that I may ride
upon it and go with the king.' For your servant is lame.
27: He has slandered your servant to my lord the king. But my
lord the king is like the angel of God; do therefore what seems good to
28: For all my father's house were but men doomed to death before
my lord the king; but you set your servant among those who eat at your
table. What further right have I, then, to cry to the king?"
29: And the king said to him, "Why speak any more of your
affairs? I have decided: you and Ziba shall divide the land."
30: And Mephib'osheth said to the king, "Oh, let him take it
all, since my lord the king has come safely home."
31: Now Barzil'lai the Gileadite had come down from Ro'gelim; and
he went on with the king to the Jordan, to escort him over the Jordan.
32: Barzil'lai was a very aged man, eighty years old; and he had
provided the king with food while he stayed at Mahana'im; for he was a
very wealthy man.
33: And the king said to Barzil'lai, "Come over with me, and
I will provide for you with me in Jerusalem."
34: But Barzil'lai said to the king, "How many years have I
still to live, that I should go up with the king to Jerusalem?
35: I am this day eighty years old; can I discern what is
pleasant and what is not? Can your servant taste what he eats or what he
drinks? Can I still listen to the voice of singing men and singing
women? Why then should your servant be an added burden to my lord the
36: Your servant will go a little way over the Jordan with the
king. Why should the king recompense me with such a reward?
37: Pray let your servant return, that I may die in my own city,
near the grave of my father and my mother. But here is your servant
Chimham; let him go over with my lord the king; and do for him whatever
seems good to you."
38: And the king answered, "Chimham shall go over with me,
and I will do for him whatever seems good to you; and all that you
desire of me I will do for you."
39: Then all the people went over the Jordan, and the king went
over; and the king kissed Barzil'lai and blessed him, and he returned to
his own home.
40: The king went on to Gilgal, and Chimham went on with him; all
the people of Judah, and also half the people of Israel, brought the
king on his way.
41: Then all the men of Israel came to the king, and said to the
king, "Why have our brethren the men of Judah stolen you away, and
brought the king and his household over the Jordan, and all David's men
42: All the men of Judah answered the men of Israel,
"Because the king is near of kin to us. Why then are you angry over
this matter? Have we eaten at all at the king's expense? Or has he given
us any gift?"
43: And the men of Israel answered the men of Judah, "We
have ten shares in the king, and in David also we have more than you.
Why then did you despise us? Were we not the first to speak of bringing
back our king?" But the words of the men of Judah were fiercer than
the words of the men of Israel.
1: Now there happened to be there a worthless fellow, whose name
was Sheba, the son of Bichri, a Benjaminite; and he blew the trumpet,
and said, "We have no portion in David, and we have no inheritance
in the son of Jesse; every man to his tents, O Israel!"
2: So all the men of Israel withdrew from David, and followed
Sheba the son of Bichri; but the men of Judah followed their king
steadfastly from the Jordan to Jerusalem.
3: And David came to his house at Jerusalem; and the king took
the ten concubines whom he had left to care for the house, and put them
in a house under guard, and provided for them, but did not go in to
them. So they were shut up until the day of their death, living as if in
4: Then the king said to Ama'sa, "Call the men of Judah
together to me within three days, and be here yourself."
5: So Ama'sa went to summon Judah; but he delayed beyond the set
time which had been appointed him.
6: And David said to Abi'shai, "Now Sheba the son of Bichri
will do us more harm than Ab'salom; take your lord's servants and pursue
him, lest he get himself fortified cities, and cause us trouble."
7: And there went out after Abi'shai, Jo'ab and the Cher'ethites
and the Pel'ethites, and all the mighty men; they went out from
Jerusalem to pursue Sheba the son of Bichri.
8: When they were at the great stone which is in Gibeon, Ama'sa
came to meet them. Now Jo'ab was wearing a soldier's garment, and over
it was a girdle with a sword in its sheath fastened upon his loins, and
as he went forward it fell out.
9: And Jo'ab said to Ama'sa, "Is it well with you, my
brother?" And Jo'ab took Ama'sa by the beard with his right hand to
10: But Ama'sa did not observe the sword which was in Jo'ab's
hand; so Jo'ab struck him with it in the body, and shed his bowels to
the ground, without striking a second blow; and he died. Then Jo'ab and
Abi'shai his brother pursued Sheba the son of Bichri.
11: And one of Jo'ab's men took his stand by Ama'sa, and said,
"Whoever favors Jo'ab, and whoever is for David, let him follow
12: And Ama'sa lay wallowing in his blood in the highway. And any
one who came by, seeing him, stopped; and when the man saw that all the
people stopped, he carried Ama'sa out of the highway into the field, and
threw a garment over him.
13: When he was taken out of the highway, all the people went on
after Jo'ab to pursue Sheba the son of Bichri.
14: And Sheba passed through all the tribes of Israel to Abel of
Beth-ma'acah; and all the Bichrites assembled, and followed him in.
15: And all the men who were with Jo'ab came and besieged him in
Abel of Beth-ma'acah; they cast up a mound against the city, and it
stood against the rampart; and they were battering the wall, to throw it
16: Then a wise woman called from the city, "Hear! Hear!
Tell Jo'ab, `Come here, that I may speak to you.'"
17: And he came near her; and the woman said, "Are you
Jo'ab?" He answered, "I am." Then she said to him,
"Listen to the words of your maidservant." And he answered,
"I am listening."
18: Then she said, "They were wont to say in old time, `Let
them but ask counsel at Abel'; and so they settled a matter.
19: I am one of those who are peaceable and faithful in Israel;
you seek to destroy a city which is a mother in Israel; why will you
swallow up the heritage of the Lord?"
20: Jo'ab answered, "Far be it from me, far be it, that I
should swallow up or destroy!
21: That is not true. But a man of the hill country of E'phraim,
called Sheba the son of Bichri, has lifted up his hand against King
David; give up him alone, and I will withdraw from the city." And
the woman said to Jo'ab, "Behold, his head shall be thrown to you
over the wall."
22: Then the woman went to all the people in her wisdom. And they
cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and threw it out to Jo'ab.
So he blew the trumpet, and they dispersed from the city, every man to
his home. And Jo'ab returned to Jerusalem to the king.
23: Now Jo'ab was in command of all the army of Israel; and
Benai'ah the son of Jehoi'ada was in command of the Cher'ethites and the
24: and Ador'am was in charge of the forced labor; and
Jehosh'aphat the son of Ahi'lud was the recorder;
25: and Sheva was secretary; and Zadok and Abi'athar were
26: and Ira the Ja'irite was also David's priest.
1: Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years,
year after year; and David sought the face of the Lord. And the Lord
said, "There is bloodguilt on Saul and on his house, because he put
the Gib'eonites to death."
2: So the king called the Gib'eonites. Now the Gib'eonites were
not of the people of Israel, but of the remnant of the Amorites;
although the people of Israel had sworn to spare them, Saul had sought
to slay them in his zeal for the people of Israel and Judah.
3: And David said to the Gib'eonites, "What shall I do for
you? And how shall I make expiation, that you may bless the heritage of
4: The Gib'eonites said to him, "It is not a matter of
silver or gold between us and Saul or his house; neither is it for us to
put any man to death in Israel." And he said, "What do you say
that I shall do for you?"
5: They said to the king, "The man who consumed us and
planned to destroy us, so that we should have no place in all the
territory of Israel,
6: let seven of his sons be given to us, so that we may hang them
up before the Lord at Gibeon on the mountain of the Lord." And the
king said, "I will give them."
7: But the king spared Mephib'osheth, the son of Saul's son
Jonathan, because of the oath of the Lord which was between them,
between David and Jonathan the son of Saul.
8: The king took the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Ai'ah,
whom she bore to Saul, Armo'ni and Mephib'osheth; and the five sons of
Merab the daughter of Saul, whom she bore to A'dri-el the son of
Barzil'lai the Meho'lathite;
9: and he gave them into the hands of the Gib'eonites, and they
hanged them on the mountain before the Lord, and the seven of them
perished together. They were put to death in the first days of harvest,
at the beginning of barley harvest.
10: Then Rizpah the daughter of Ai'ah took sackcloth, and spread
it for herself on the rock, from the beginning of harvest until rain
fell upon them from the heavens; and she did not allow the birds of the
air to come upon them by day, or the beasts of the field by night.
11: When David was told what Rizpah the daughter of Ai'ah, the
concubine of Saul, had done,
12: David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of his
son Jonathan from the men of Ja'besh-gil'ead, who had stolen them from
the public square of Beth-shan, where the Philistines had hanged them,
on the day the Philistines killed Saul on Gilbo'a;
13: and he brought up from there the bones of Saul and the bones
of his son Jonathan; and they gathered the bones of those who were
14: And they buried the bones of Saul and his son Jonathan in the
land of Benjamin in Zela, in the tomb of Kish his father; and they did
all that the king commanded. And after that God heeded supplications for
15: The Philistines had war again with Israel, and David went
down together with his servants, and they fought against the
Philistines; and David grew weary.
16: And Ish'bi-be'nob, one of the descendants of the giants,
whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of bronze, and who was girded
with a new sword, thought to kill David.
17: But Abi'shai the son of Zeru'iah came to his aid, and
attacked the Philistine and killed him. Then David's men adjured him,
"You shall no more go out with us to battle, lest you quench the
lamp of Israel."
18: After this there was again war with the Philistines at Gob;
then Sib'becai the Hu'shathite slew Saph, who was one of the descendants
of the giants.
19: And there was again war with the Philistines at Gob; and
Elha'nan the son of Ja'areor'egim, the Bethlehemite, slew Goliath the
Gittite, the shaft of whose spear was like a weaver's beam.
20: And there was again war at Gath, where there was a man of
great stature, who had six fingers on each hand, and six toes on each
foot, twenty-four in number; and he also was descended from the giants.
21: And when he taunted Israel, Jonathan the son of Shim'e-i,
David's brother, slew him.
22: These four were descended from the giants in Gath; and they
fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.
1: And David spoke to the Lord the words of this song on the day
when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from
the hand of Saul.
2: He said, "The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my
3: my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn
of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge, my savior; Thou saves me
4: I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am
saved from my enemies.
5: "For the waves of death encompassed me, the torrents of
perdition assailed me;
6: the cords of Sheol entangled me, the snares of death
7: "In my distress I called upon the Lord; to my God I
called. From his temple He heard my voice, and my cry came to his ears.
8: "Then the earth reeled and rocked; the foundations of the
heavens trembled and quaked, because He was angry.
9: Smoke went up from his nostrils, and devouring fire from his
mouth; glowing coals flamed forth from him.
10: He bowed the heavens, and came down; thick darkness was under
11: He rode on a cherub, and flew; He was seen upon the wings of
12: He made darkness around him his canopy, thick clouds, a
gathering of water.
13: Out of the brightness before him coals of fire flamed forth.
14: The Lord thundered from heaven, and the Most High uttered his
15: And He sent out arrows, and scattered them; lightning, and
16: Then the channels of the sea were seen, the foundations of
the world were laid bare, at the rebuke of the Lord, at the blast of the
breath of His nostrils.
17: "He reached from on high, He took me, He drew me out of
18: He delivered me from my strong enemy, from those who hated
me; for they were too mighty for me.
19: They came upon me in the day of my calamity; but the Lord was
20: He brought me forth into a broad place; He delivered me,
because He delighted in me.
21: "The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness;
according to the cleanness of my hands He recompensed me.
22: For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not wickedly
departed from my God.
23: For all his ordinances were before me, and from his statutes
I did not turn aside.
24: I was blameless before him, and I kept myself from guilt.
25: Therefore the Lord has recompensed me according to my
righteousness, according to my cleanness in his sight.
26: "With the loyal Thou dost show thyself loyal; with the
blameless man Thou dost show thyself blameless;
27: with the pure Thou dost show thyself pure, and with the
crooked Thou dost show thyself perverse.
28: Thou dost deliver a humble people, but Thy eyes are upon the
haughty to bring them down.
29: Yea, Thou art my lamp, O Lord, and my God lightens my
30: Yea, by Thee I can crush a troop, and by my God I can leap
over a wall.
31: This God -- his way is perfect; the promise of the Lord
proves true; He is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
32: "For who is God, but the Lord? And who is a rock, except
33: This God is my strong refuge, and has made my way safe.
34: He made my feet like hinds' feet, and set me secure on the
35: He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of
36: Thou hast given me the shield of Thy salvation, and Thy help
made me great.
37: Thou didst give a wide place for my steps under me, and my
feet did not slip;
38: I pursued my enemies and destroyed them, and did not turn
back until they were consumed.
39: I consumed them; I thrust them through, so that they did not
rise; they fell under my feet.
40: For Thou didst gird me with strength for the battle; Thou
didst make my assailants sink under me.
41: Thou didst make my enemies turn their backs to me, those who
hated me, and I destroyed them.
42: They looked, but there was none to save; they cried to the
Lord, but He did not answer them.
43: I beat them fine as the dust of the earth, I crushed them and
stamped them down like the mire of the streets.
44: "Thou didst deliver me from strife with the peoples;
Thou didst keep me as the head of the nations; people whom I had not
known served me.
45: Foreigners came cringing to me; as soon as they heard of me,
they obeyed me.
46: Foreigners lost heart, and came trembling out of their
47: "The Lord lives; and blessed be my rock, and exalted be
my God, the rock of my salvation,
48: the God who gave me vengeance and brought down peoples under
49: who brought me out from my enemies; Thou didst exalt me above
my adversaries, Thou didst deliver me from men of violence.
50: "For this I will extol Thee, O Lord, among the nations,
and sing praises to Thy name.
51: Great triumphs He gives to his king, and shows steadfast love
to his anointed, to David, and his descendants for ever."
1: Now these are the last words of David: The oracle of David,
the son of Jesse, the oracle of the man who was raised on high, the
anointed of the God of Jacob, the sweet psalmist of Israel:
2: "The Spirit of the Lord speaks by me, His word is upon my
3: The God of Israel has spoken, the Rock of Israel has said to
me: When one rules justly over men, ruling in the fear of God,
4: He dawns on them like the morning light, like the sun shining
forth upon a cloudless morning, like rain that makes grass to sprout
from the earth.
5: Yea, does not my house stand so with God? For He has made with
me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and secure. For will
He not cause to prosper all my help and my desire?
6: But godless men are all like thorns that are thrown away; for
they cannot be taken with the hand;
7: but the man who touches them arms himself with iron and the
shaft of a spear, and they are utterly consumed with fire."
8: These are the names of the mighty men whom David had:
Josheb-basshe'beth a Tah-che'monite; he was chief of the three; he
wielded his spear against eight hundred whom he slew at one time.
9: And next to him among the three mighty men was Elea'zar the
son of Dodo, son of Aho'hi. He was with David when they defied the
Philistines who were gathered there for battle, and the men of Israel
10: He rose and struck down the Philistines until his hand was
weary, and his hand cleaved to the sword; and the Lord wrought a great
victory that day; and the men returned after him only to strip the
11: And next to him was Shammah, the son of Agee the Har'arite.
The Philistines gathered together at Lehi, where there was a plot of
ground full of lentils; and the men fled from the Philistines.
12: But he took his stand in the midst of the plot, and defended
it, and slew the Philistines; and the Lord wrought a great victory.
13: And three of the thirty chief men went down, and came about
harvest time to David at the cave of Adullam, when a band of Philistines
was encamped in the valley of Reph'aim.
14: David was then in the stronghold; and the garrison of the
Philistines was then at Bethlehem.
15: And David said longingly, "O that some one would give me
water to drink from the well of Bethlehem which is by the gate!"
16: Then the three mighty men broke through the camp of the
Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem which was by
the gate, and took and brought it to David. But he would not drink of
it; he poured it out to the Lord,
17: and said, "Far be it from me, O Lord, that I should do
this. Shall I drink the blood of the men who went at the risk of their
lives?" Therefore he would not drink it. These things did the three
18: Now Abi'shai, the brother of Jo'ab, the son of Zeru'iah, was
chief of the thirty. And he wielded his spear against three hundred men
and slew them, and won a name beside the three.
19: He was the most renowned of the thirty, and became their
commander; but he did not attain to the three.
20: And Benai'ah the son of Jehoi'ada was a valiant man of
Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds; he smote two ariels of Moab. He also
went down and slew a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen.
21: And he slew an Egyptian, a handsome man. The Egyptian had a
spear in his hand; but Benai'ah went down to him with a staff, and
snatched the spear out of the Egyptian's hand, and slew him with his own
22: These things did Benai'ah the son of Jehoi'ada, and won a
name beside the three mighty men.
23: He was renowned among the thirty, but he did not attain to
the three. And David set him over his bodyguard.
24: As'ahel the brother of Jo'ab was one of the thirty; Elha'nan
the son of Dodo of Bethlehem,
25: Shammah of Harod, Eli'ka of Harod,
26: Helez the Paltite, Ira the son of Ikkesh of Teko'a,
27: Abi-e'zer, of An'athoth, Mebun'nai the Hu'shathite,
28: Zalmon the Aho'hite, Ma'harai of Netoph'ah,
29: Heleb the son of Ba'anah of Netoph'ah, It'tai the son of
Ri'bai of Gib'e-ah of the Benjaminites,
30: Benai'ah of Pira'thon, Hid'dai of the brooks of Ga'ash,
31: Abi-al'bon the Ar'bathite, Az'maveth of Bahu'rim,
32: Eli'ahba of Sha-al'bon, the sons of Jashen, Jonathan,
33: Shammah the Har'arite, Ahi'am the son of Sharar the Har'arite,
34: Eliph'elet the son of Ahas'bai of Ma'acah, Eli'am the son of
Ahith'ophel of Gilo,
35: Hezro of Carmel, Pa'arai the Arbite,
36: Igal the son of Nathan of Zobah, Bani the Gadite,
37: Zelek the Ammonite, Na'harai of Be-er'oth, the armor-bearer
of Jo'ab the son of Zeru'iah,
38: Ira the Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite,
39: Uri'ah the Hittite: thirty-seven in all.
1: Again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and He
incited David against them, saying, "Go, number Israel and
2: So the king said to Jo'ab and the commanders of the army, who
were with him, "Go through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan to
Beer-sheba, and number the people, that I may know the number of the
3: But Jo'ab said to the king, "May the Lord your God add to
the people a hundred times as many as they are, while the eyes of my
lord the king still see it; but why does my lord the king delight in
4: But the king's word prevailed against Jo'ab and the commanders
of the army. So Jo'ab and the commanders of the army went out from the
presence of the king to number the people of Israel.
5: They crossed the Jordan, and began from Aro'er, and from the
city that is in the middle of the valley, toward Gad and on to Jazer.
6: Then they came to Gilead, and to Kadesh in the land of the
Hittites; and they came to Dan, and from Dan they went around to Sidon,
7: and came to the fortress of Tyre and to all the cities of the
Hivites and Canaanites; and they went out to the Negeb of Judah at
8: So when they had gone through all the land, they came to
Jerusalem at the end of nine months and twenty days.
9: And Jo'ab gave the sum of the numbering of the people to the
king: in Israel there were eight hundred thousand valiant men who drew
the sword, and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand.
10: But David's heart smote him after he had numbered the people.
And David said to the Lord, "I have sinned greatly in what I have
done. But now, O Lord, I pray Thee, take away the iniquity of Thy
servant; for I have done very foolishly."
11: And when David arose in the morning, the word of the Lord
came to the prophet Gad, David's seer, saying,
12: "Go and say to David, `Thus says the Lord, Three things
I offer you; choose one of them, that I may do it to you."
13: So Gad came to David and told him, and said to him,
"Shall three years of famine come to you in your land? Or will you
flee three months before your foes while they pursue you? Or shall there
be three days' pestilence in your land? Now consider, and decide what
answer I shall return to him who sent me."
14: Then David said to Gad, "I am in great distress; let us
fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is great; but let me not
fall into the hand of man."
15: So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning
until the appointed time; and there died of the people from Dan to
Beer-sheba seventy thousand men.
16: And when the angel stretched forth his hand toward Jerusalem
to destroy it, the Lord repented of the evil, and said to the angel who
was working destruction among the people, "It is enough; now stay
your hand." And the angel of the Lord was by the threshing floor of
Arau'nah the Jeb'usite.
17: Then David spoke to the Lord when he saw the angel who was
smiting the people, and said, "Lo, I have sinned, and I have done
wickedly; but these sheep, what have they done? Let Thy hand, I pray
Thee, be against me and against my father's house."
18: And Gad came that day to David, and said to him, "Go up,
rear an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Arau'nah the
19: So David went up at Gad's word, as the Lord commanded.
20: And when Arau'nah looked down, he saw the king and his
servants coming on toward him; and Arau'nah went forth, and did
obeisance to the king with his face to the ground.
21: And Arau'nah said, "Why has my lord the king come to his
servant?" David said, "To buy the threshing floor of you, in
order to build an altar to the Lord, that the plague may be averted from
22: Then Arau'nah said to David, "Let my lord the king take
and offer up what seems good to him; here are the oxen for the burnt
offering, and the threshing sledges and the yokes of the oxen for the
23: All this, O king, Arau'nah gives to the king." And
Arau'nah said to the king, "The Lord your God accept you."
24: But the king said to Arau'nah, "No, but I will buy it of
you for a price; I will not offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God
which cost me nothing." So David bought the threshing floor and the
oxen for fifty shekels of silver.
25: And David built there an altar to the Lord, and offered burnt
offerings and peace offerings. So the Lord heeded supplications for the
land, and the plague was averted from Israel.