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2 Samuel 10-12 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 10

Campaigns Against Ammon. After this,[a] the king of the Ammonites died, and Hanun his son succeeded him as king. David said, “I will show kindness to Hanun, the son of Nahash, as his father showed kindness to me.” Therefore David sent his servants to Hanun to console him concerning his father. But when David’s servants had entered the land of the Ammonites, the Ammonite princes said to their lord Hanun, “Do you think David is doing this—sending you these consolers—to honor your father? Is it not rather to explore the city, to spy on it, and to overthrow it, that David has sent his servants to you?” So Hanun seized David’s servants, shaved off half their beards, cut away the lower halves of their garments at the buttocks, and sent them away. David was told of it and he sent word for them to be intercepted, for the men had been greatly disgraced. “Remain at Jericho,” the king told them, “until your beards have grown again; then come back here.”

[b]When the Ammonites realized that they were in bad odor with David, they sent for and hired twenty thousand Aramean foot soldiers from Beth-rehob and Zobah, as well as the king of Maacah with one thousand men, and twelve thousand men from Tob.

When David heard of this, he sent Joab and his whole army of warriors against them. The Ammonites marched out and lined up for battle at the entrance of their city gate, while the Arameans of Zobah and Rehob and the men of Tob and Maacah remained apart in the open field. When Joab saw that there was a battle line both in front of and behind him, he chose some of the best fighters of Israel and lined them up against the Arameans; 10 the rest of the army he placed under the command of his brother Abishai and lined up to oppose the Ammonites. 11 And he said, “If the Arameans prove too strong for me, you must come and save me; and if the Ammonites prove too strong for you, I will come to save you. 12 Hold firm and let us show ourselves courageous for the sake of our people and the cities of our God; and may the Lord do what is good in his sight.” 13 Joab therefore advanced with his men for battle with the Arameans, but they fled before him. 14 And when the Ammonites saw that the Arameans had fled, they too fled before Abishai, and reentered their city. Joab then ceased his attack on the Ammonites and came to Jerusalem. 15 Seeing themselves vanquished by Israel, the Arameans held a full muster of troops. 16 Hadadezer sent for and brought Arameans from beyond the River. They came to Helam, with Shobach, the captain of Hadadezer’s army, at their head. 17 When this was reported to David, he gathered all Israel together, crossed the Jordan, and went to Helam. The Arameans drew up in formation against David and gave battle. 18 But the Arameans fled before Israel, and David killed seven hundred of their chariot fighters and forty thousand of their foot soldiers. He struck down Shobach, commander of the army, and he died on the field. 19 When Hadadezer’s vassal kings saw themselves vanquished by Israel, they made peace with the Israelites and became their subjects. After this, the Arameans were afraid to give further aid to the Ammonites.

Chapter 11

David’s Sin. At the turn of the year,[c] the time when kings go to war, David sent out Joab along with his officers and all Israel, and they laid waste the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. David himself remained in Jerusalem. One evening David rose from his bed and strolled about on the roof of the king’s house. From the roof he saw a woman bathing; she was very beautiful. David sent people to inquire about the woman and was told, “She is Bathsheba, daughter of Eliam, and wife of Uriah the Hittite, Joab’s armor-bearer.” Then David sent messengers and took her. When she came to him, he took her to bed, at a time when she was just purified after her period; and she returned to her house. But the woman had become pregnant; she sent a message to inform David, “I am pregnant.”

So David sent a message to Joab, “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” Joab sent Uriah to David. And when he came, David asked him how Joab was, how the army was, and how the war was going, and Uriah answered that all was well. David then said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and bathe your feet.” Uriah left the king’s house, and a portion from the king’s table was sent after him. But Uriah slept at the entrance of the king’s house with the other officers of his lord, and did not go down to his own house. 10 David was told, “Uriah has not gone down to his house.” So he said to Uriah, “Have you not come from a journey? Why, then, did you not go down to your house?” 11 Uriah answered David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are staying in tents, and my lord Joab and my lord’s servants are encamped in the open field. Can I go home to eat and to drink and to sleep with my wife? As the Lord lives and as you live, I will do no such thing.” 12 Then David said to Uriah, “Stay here today also, and tomorrow I will send you back.” So Uriah stayed in Jerusalem that day. On the following day, 13 David summoned him, and he ate and drank with David, who got him drunk. But in the evening he went out to sleep on his bed among his lord’s servants, and did not go down to his house. 14 The next morning David wrote a letter to Joab which he sent by Uriah. 15 This is what he wrote in the letter: “Place Uriah up front, where the fighting is fierce. Then pull back and leave him to be struck down dead.” 16 So while Joab was besieging the city, he assigned Uriah to a place where he knew the defenders were strong. 17 When the men of the city made a sortie against Joab, some officers of David’s army fell, and Uriah the Hittite also died.

18 Then Joab sent David a report of all the details of the battle, 19 instructing the messenger, “When you have finished giving the king all the details of the battle, 20 the king may become angry and say to you: ‘Why did you go near the city to fight? Did you not know that they would shoot from the wall above? 21 Who killed Abimelech, son of Jerubbaal? Was it not a woman who threw a millstone down on him from the wall above, so that he died in Thebez? Why did you go near the wall?’ Then you in turn are to say, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite is also dead.’” 22 The messenger set out, and on his arrival he reported to David everything Joab had sent him to tell.[d] 23 He told David: “The men had the advantage over us and came out into the open against us, but we pushed them back to the entrance of the city gate. 24 Then the archers shot at your servants from the wall above, and some of the king’s servants died; and your servant Uriah the Hittite is also dead.” 25 David said to the messenger: “This is what you shall say to Joab: ‘Do not let this be a great evil in your sight, for the sword devours now here and now there. Strengthen your attack on the city and destroy it.’ Encourage him.”

26 When the wife of Uriah heard that her husband had died, she mourned her lord. 27 But once the mourning was over, David sent for her and brought her into his house. She became his wife and bore him a son. But in the sight of the Lord what David had done was evil.

Chapter 12

Nathan’s Parable.[e] The Lord sent Nathan to David, and when he came to him, he said: “Tell me how you judge this case: In a certain town there were two men, one rich, the other poor. The rich man had flocks and herds in great numbers. But the poor man had nothing at all except one little ewe lamb that he had bought. He nourished her, and she grew up with him and his children. Of what little he had she ate; from his own cup she drank; in his bosom she slept; she was like a daughter to him. Now, a visitor came to the rich man, but he spared his own flocks and herds to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him: he took the poor man’s ewe lamb and prepared it for the one who had come to him.” David grew very angry with that man and said to Nathan: “As the Lord lives, the man who has done this deserves death! He shall make fourfold restitution[f] for the lamb because he has done this and was unsparing.” Then Nathan said to David: “You are the man!

Nathan’s Indictment. “Thus says the Lord God of Israel: I anointed you king over Israel. I delivered you from the hand of Saul. I gave you your lord’s house and your lord’s wives for your own. I gave you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if this were not enough, I could count up for you still more. Why have you despised the Lord and done what is evil in his sight? You have cut down Uriah the Hittite with the sword; his wife you took as your own, and him you killed 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 Uriah the Hittite to be your wife. 11 Thus says the Lord: I will bring evil upon you out of your own house. I will take your wives before your very eyes, and will give them to your neighbor: he shall lie with your wives in broad daylight.[g] 12 You have acted in secret, but I will do this in the presence of all Israel, in the presence of the sun itself.”

David’s Repentance. 13 Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” Nathan answered David: “For his part, the Lord has removed your sin. You shall not die, 14 but since you have utterly spurned the Lord by this deed, the child born to you will surely die.” 15 Then Nathan returned to his house.

The Lord struck the child that the wife of Uriah had borne to David, and it became desperately ill. 16 David pleaded with God on behalf of the child. He kept a total fast, and spent the night lying on the ground clothed in sackcloth. 17 The elders of his house stood beside him to get him to rise from the ground; but he would not, nor would he take food with them. 18 On the seventh day, the child died. David’s servants were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they said: “When the child was alive, we spoke to him, but he would not listen to what we said. How can we tell him the child is dead? He may do some harm!” 19 But David noticed his servants whispering among themselves and realized that the child was dead. He asked his servants, “Is the child dead?” They said, “Yes.” 20 Rising from the ground, David washed and anointed himself, and changed his clothes. Then he went to the house of the Lord and worshiped. He returned to his own house and asked for food; they set it before him, and he ate. 21 His servants said to him: “What is this you are doing? While the child was living, you fasted and wept and kept vigil; now that the child is dead, you rise and take food.” 22 He replied: “While the child was living, I fasted and wept, thinking, ‘Who knows? The Lord may grant me the child’s life.’ 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 consoled Bathsheba his wife. He went and slept with her; and she conceived and bore him a son, who was named Solomon. The Lord loved him 25 and sent the prophet Nathan to name him Jedidiah,[h] on behalf of the Lord.

End of the Ammonite War. 26 Joab fought against Rabbah of the Ammonites and captured that royal city. 27 He sent messengers to David to say: “I have fought against Rabbah and have taken the water-city. 28 Therefore, assemble the rest of the soldiers, join the siege against the city, and capture it, lest I be the one to capture the city and mine be the name people mention, not yours.” 29 So David assembled the rest of the soldiers, went to Rabbah, fought against it, and captured it. 30 He took the crown of Milcom from the idol’s head, a talent[i] of gold in weight, with precious stones; this crown David wore on his own head. He also brought out a great amount of spoil from the city. 31 He deported the people of the city and set them to work with saws, iron picks, and iron axes, or put them to work at the brickmold. He dealt thus with all the cities of the Ammonites. Then David and his whole army returned to Jerusalem.

Footnotes:

  1. 10:1 After this: early in the reign of David, since Hanun’s father Nahash (1 Chr 19:1) had been ruling in Ammon at the beginning of Saul’s reign (1 Sm 11) and Solomon was not yet born (2 Sm 11:1; 12:24).
  2. 10:6–9 A Hebrew text from Qumran (4QSama) comes closer in these verses to what is given in 1 Chr 19:6–9. The scene of the conflict is more likely the Ammonite capital, Rabbath-Ammon (v. 8; cf. Josephus Ant., vii, 123), than Medeba (1 Chr 19:7).
  3. 11:1 At the turn of the year: in the spring.
  4. 11:22–24 In these verses the Greek text has David, angry with Joab, repeat exactly the questions Joab had foreseen in vv. 20–21. In v. 24 of our oldest Greek text, the messenger specifies that about eighteen men were killed. The Greek is considerably longer than the transmitted Hebrew text, suggesting that the Hebrew may have lost some sentences.
  5. 12:1–7 David has committed adultery with Bathsheba and arranged the death of her husband. Instead of directly indicting the king for this criminal abuse of his royal authority, the prophet Nathan tells David a story. In the story, a parable of David’s own actions, a powerful man takes cruel advantage of his vulnerable neighbor. Hearing the story, David is outraged and denounces the rich man—thus unwittingly pronouncing judgment on himself (“You are the man,” v. 7).
  6. 12:6 Fourfold restitution: David’s judgment foreshadows the deaths of four of his own sons: the child born of his adulterous union with Bathsheba (v. 18); Amnon (13:28–29); Absalom (18:15; 19:1); and Adonijah (1 Kgs 2:24–25).
  7. 12:11 In broad daylight: lit., “before the eyes of the sun”; the phrase echoes “before your very eyes” and anticipates “in the presence of the sun itself” (v. 12). The reference is to Absalom’s action in appropriating his father’s harem (16:22).
  8. 12:25 Jedidiah: the name means “beloved of Yhwh.”
  9. 12:30 A talent: since this would normally be more than seventy-five pounds, the report may have been embellished.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Psalm 136 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Psalm 136[a]

Hymn of Thanksgiving for God’s Everlasting Mercy

I

Praise the Lord, for he is good;
    for his mercy endures forever;
Praise the God of gods;
    for his mercy endures forever;
Praise the Lord of lords;
    for his mercy endures forever;

II

Who alone has done great wonders,
    for his mercy endures forever;
Who skillfully made the heavens,
    for his mercy endures forever;
Who spread the earth upon the waters,
    for his mercy endures forever;
Who made the great lights,
    for his mercy endures forever;
The sun to rule the day,
    for his mercy endures forever;
The moon and stars to rule the night,
    for his mercy endures forever;

III

10 Who struck down the firstborn of Egypt,
    for his mercy endures forever;
11 And led Israel from their midst,
    for his mercy endures forever;
12 With mighty hand and outstretched arm,
    for his mercy endures forever;
13 Who split in two the Red Sea,
    for his mercy endures forever;
14 And led Israel through its midst,
    for his mercy endures forever;
15 But swept Pharaoh and his army into the Red Sea,
    for his mercy endures forever;
16 Who led the people through the desert,
    for his mercy endures forever;

IV

17 Who struck down great kings,
    for his mercy endures forever;
18 Slew powerful kings,
    for his mercy endures forever;
19 Sihon, king of the Amorites,
    for his mercy endures forever;
20 Og, king of Bashan,
    for his mercy endures forever;
21 And made their lands a heritage,
    for his mercy endures forever;
22 [b]A heritage for Israel, his servant,
    for his mercy endures forever.

V

23 The Lord remembered us in our low estate,
    for his mercy endures forever;
24 Freed us from our foes,
    for his mercy endures forever;
25 And gives bread to all flesh,
    for his mercy endures forever.

VI

26 Praise the God of heaven,
    for his mercy endures forever.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 136 The hymn praises Israel’s God (“the God of gods,” Ps 136:2), who has created the world in which Israel lives. The refrain occurring after every line suggests that a speaker and chorus sang the Psalm in antiphonal fashion. A single act of God is described in Ps 136:4–25. God arranges the heavens and the earth as the environment for human community, and then creates the community by freeing them and giving them land. In the final section (Ps 136:23–25) God, who created the people and gave them land, continues to protect and nurture them.
  2. 136:22 A heritage for Israel: the land was given to Israel by God to be handed on to future generations.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Mark 13:14-37 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

The Great Tribulation. 14 “When you see the desolating abomination standing[a] where he should not (let the reader understand), then those in Judea must flee to the mountains, 15 [and] a person on a housetop must not go down or enter to get anything out of his house, 16 and a person in a field must not return to get his cloak. 17 Woe to pregnant women and nursing mothers in those days. 18 Pray that this does not happen in winter. 19 For those times will have tribulation such as has not been since the beginning of God’s creation until now, nor ever will be. 20 If the Lord had not shortened those days, no one would be saved; but for the sake of the elect whom he chose, he did shorten the days. 21 If anyone says to you then, ‘Look, here is the Messiah! Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 False messiahs and false prophets will arise and will perform signs and wonders in order to mislead, if that were possible, the elect. 23 Be watchful! I have told it all to you beforehand.

The Coming of the Son of Man. 24 “But in those days after that tribulation

the sun will be darkened,
    and the moon will not give its light,
25 and the stars will be falling from the sky,
    and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.

26 [b]And then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in the clouds’ with great power and glory, 27 and then he will send out the angels and gather [his] elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.

The Lesson of the Fig Tree. 28 “Learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves, you know that summer is near. 29 In the same way, when you see these things happening, know that he is near, at the gates. 30 Amen, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. 31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

Need for Watchfulness. 32 “But of that day or hour, no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come. 34 It is like a man traveling abroad. He leaves home and places his servants in charge, each with his work, and orders the gatekeeper to be on the watch. 35 Watch, therefore; you do not know when the lord of the house is coming, whether in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning. 36 May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping. 37 What I say to you, I say to all: ‘Watch!’”

Footnotes:

  1. 13:14 The participle standing is masculine, in contrast to the neuter at Mt 24:15.
  2. 13:26 Son of Man…with great power and glory: Jesus cites this text from Dn 7:13 in his response to the high priest, Are you the Messiah? (Mk 14:61). In Ex 34:5; Lv 16:2; and Nm 11:25 the clouds indicate the presence of the divinity. Thus in his role of Son of Man, Jesus is a heavenly being who will come in power and glory.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

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