1 Samuel 30International Children’s Bible (ICB)
David’s War with the Amalekites
30 On the third day David and his men arrived at Ziklag. The Amalekites had raided southern Judah and Ziklag. They had attacked Ziklag and burned it. 2 They took the women and everyone in Ziklag as prisoners, both young and old. But they did not kill any of the people. They only took them away.
3 When David and his men came to Ziklag, they found the town had been burned. Their wives, sons and daughters had been taken as prisoners. 4 Then David and his army cried loudly until they were too weak to cry anymore. 5 David’s two wives had also been taken. They were Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail the widow of Nabal from Carmel. 6 The men in the army were threatening to kill David with stones. This upset David very much. Each man was sad and angry because his sons and daughters had been taken as prisoners. But David found strength in the Lord his God. 7 David said to Abiathar the priest, “Bring me the holy vest.”
8 Then David prayed to the Lord. He said, “Should I chase the people who took our families? Will I catch them?”
The Lord answered, “Chase them. You will catch them. You will succeed in saving your families.”
9 David and the 600 men with him came to the Besor Ravine. Some of the men stayed there. 10 David and 400 men kept up the chase. The other 200 men stayed behind because they were too tired and weak to cross the ravine.
11 David’s men found an Egyptian in a field. They took him to David. They gave the Egyptian some water to drink and some food to eat. 12 They gave him a piece of a fig cake and two clusters of raisins. He felt better after eating. He had not eaten any food or drunk any water for three days and nights.
13 David asked him, “Who is your master? Where do you come from?”
He answered, “I’m an Egyptian. I’m the slave of an Amalekite. Three days ago my master left me, because I became sick. 14 We attacked the southern area of the Kerethites. We attacked the land of Judah and the southern area belonging to Caleb. We burned Ziklag, as well.
15 David asked him, “Will you lead me to the people who took our families?”
He answered, “Yes, if you will make a promise to me before God. Promise that you won’t kill me or give me back to my master. Then I will take you to them.”
16 So the Egyptian led David to the Amalekites. They were lying around on the ground, eating and drinking. They were celebrating with the things they had taken from the land of the Philistines and from Judah. 17 David fought them from sunset until evening the next day. None of them escaped, except 400 young men who rode off on their camels. 18 David got his two wives back. He also got back everything the Amalekites had taken. 19 Nothing was missing. David brought back everything: the young and old people, the sons and daughters, the valuable things and everything the Amalekites had taken. 20 David took all the sheep and cattle. His men made these animals go in front. They said, “They are David’s prize.”
21 Then David came to the 200 men who had been too tired and weak to follow him. He had made them stay at the Besor Ravine. They came out to meet David and the army with him. When he came near, the men at the ravine greeted David and his army.
22 But there were evil men and troublemakers in the group that followed David. They said, “These 200 men didn’t go with us. So we won’t give them any of the things we took. But each man may take his wife and children and go.”
23 David answered, “No, my brothers. Don’t do that after what the Lord has given us. He has given us the enemy who attacked us. 24 Who will listen to what you say? The share will be the same for the man who stayed with the supplies as for the man who went into battle. All will share alike.” 25 David made this an order and rule for Israel. This order and rule continues even today.
26 David arrived in Ziklag. Then he sent some of the things he had taken from the Amalekites to his friends, the leaders of Judah. He said, “Here is a present for you from the things we took from the Lord’s enemies.”
27 David sent some things from the Amalekites to the leaders in Bethel, Ramoth in the southern part of Judah, Jattir, 28 Aroer, Siphmoth, Eshtemoa 29 and Racal. He also sent some to the leaders of the cities of the Jerahmeelites and the Kenites, 30 to Hormah, Bor Ashan, Athach 31 and Hebron. He sent some things to the people in all the other places where he and his men had been.
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