31 Meanwhile, the Philistines were fighting Israel at Mount Gilboa. Israel’s soldiers ran from the Philistines, and many of them were killed. 2 The Philistines closed in on Saul and his sons, and they killed his sons Jonathan, Abinadab, and Malchishua. 3 The fighting was fierce around Saul, and he was badly wounded by enemy arrows.
4 Saul told the soldier who carried his weapons, “Kill me with your sword! I don’t want those worthless Philistines to torture me and make fun.” But the soldier was afraid to kill him.
Saul then took out his own sword; he stuck the blade into his stomach, and fell on it. 5 When the soldier knew that Saul was dead, he killed himself in the same way.
6 Saul was dead, his three sons were dead, and the soldier who carried his weapons was dead. They and all his soldiers died on that same day. 7 The Israelites on the other side of Jezreel Valley[a] and the other side of the Jordan learned that Saul and his sons were dead. They saw that the Israelite army had run away. So they ran away too, and the Philistines moved into the towns the Israelites had left behind.
8 The day after the battle, when the Philistines returned to the battlefield to take the weapons of the dead Israelite soldiers, they found Saul and his three sons lying dead on Mount Gilboa. 9-10 The Philistines cut off Saul’s head and pulled off his armor. Then they put his armor in the temple of the goddess Astarte, and they nailed his body to the city wall of Beth-Shan. They also sent messengers everywhere in Philistia to spread the good news in the temples of their idols and among their people.
11 The people who lived in Jabesh in Gilead heard what the Philistines had done to Saul’s body. 12 So one night, some brave men from Jabesh went to Beth-Shan. They took down the bodies of Saul and his sons, then brought them back to Jabesh and burned them. 13 They buried the bones under a small tree in Jabesh, and for seven days, they went without eating to show their sorrow.
31.7Jezreel Valley: Hebrew “valley.” Shunem (see 28.4) and Gilboa (see verse 1) were across the Jezreel Valley from each other.
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Try Bible Gateway Plus, a brand-new service that lets you experience Bible Gateway free of banner ads! It also gives you instant access to over 40 Bible study and inspirational devotional books, including the NIV Study Bible. With Bible Gateway Plus, you can experience and understand God's Word in life-changing new ways, without the distraction of ads. Try it free for 30 days—you can cancel at any time. Following your 30-day free trial, Bible Gateway Plus is only $3.99/month.