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Ziba Brings Provisions

16 Now David passed a little from beyond the summit, and suddenly Ziba the servant of Mephibosheth was there to meet him with a pair of saddled donkeys; on them were two hundred loaves of bread and a hundred raisin cakes, with a hundred summer fruits and a skin of wine. The king said to Ziba, “What do you want to accomplish by bringing these?”[a] And Ziba said, “The donkeys are for the king’s household to ride on; the bread and the summer fruit are for the young men to eat, and the wine is for the faint in the wilderness to drink. Then the king said, “Where is the son of your lord?” And Ziba said to the king, “He is living in Jerusalem for he said, ‘Today the house of Israel shall return the kingdom of my father to me.’” The king said to Ziba, “Look, all that was Mephibosheth’s is yours.” Ziba said, “I hereby do obeisance; may I find favor in your eyes, my lord the king.”

Shimei Curses David

King David came up to Bahurim and suddenly a man from there was coming out from the family of the house of Saul, and his name was Shimei the son of Gera. He was cursing as he came out.[b] And he threw stones at David and at all the servants of King David and at all the people and at all the mighty warriors on his right and on his left. Shimei said while cursing him, “Go out, go out, you man of bloodshed,[c] you man of wickedness.[d] Yahweh has returned on you all the blood of the household of Saul whom you have supplanted as king,[e] and Yahweh has given the kingship into the hand of Absalom your son. Look, you are in disaster for you are a man of blood.” Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Please let me go over and take off his head.” 10 The king said, “What do we have in common,[f] sons of Zeruiah? If[g] he curses because Yahweh has said to him ‘Curse David,’ who can say, “Why have you done this?” 11 David said to Abishai and to all his servants, “Look, my son who came out of my loins[h] is seeking my life. Now as far as[i] this Benjaminite, leave him alone and let him curse, for Yahweh has spoken to him. 12 Perhaps Yahweh will look in my eye[j] and repay good for me in place of his curse this day. 13 Then David and his men went on the road, with Shimei going on the side of the hill beside him, cursing as he went.[k] He threw stones beside him and threw[l] dust in the air. 14 When the king and all of the people who were with him arrived, he was weary, so he recovered there.

Hushai Comes to Absalom

15 Now Absalom and all the people, the men of Israel, had come to Jerusalem, and Ahithophel was with him. 16 When Hushai the Arkite the friend of David came to Absalom, Hushai said to Absalom, “Long live the king, long live the king!” 17 Absalom said to Hushai, “This is your loyal love with your friend? Why did you not go with your friend?” 18 Then Hushai said to Absalom, “No, rather, whom Yahweh and this people and all the men of Israel have chosen, to him[m] I will be, and with him I will remain. 19 Furthermore,[n] for whom have I served? Is it not in the presence of his son that I have served before your father? So shall I serve you!”[o] 20 Then Absalom said to Ahithophel, “Give your advice. What shall we do?” 21 And Ahithophel said to Absalom, “Go to the concubines of your father whom he left behind to watch over the house, then all of Israel will hear that you made yourself odious to your father, and all of your followers will be motivated!”[p] 22 Then they pitched a tent for Absalom on the roof, and he went in to the concubines of his father before the eyes of all Israel. 23 The counsel that Ahithophel gave in those days was regarded as when a man[q] inquired of the word of God, so all the counsel of Ahithophel was esteemed both by David and by Absalom.


  1. 2 Samuel 16:2 Literally “What are these to you?”
  2. 2 Samuel 16:5 Literally “He was coming out, coming out and cursing”
  3. 2 Samuel 16:7 Literally “man of bloods”
  4. 2 Samuel 16:7 Literally “and man of the wickedness”
  5. 2 Samuel 16:8 Literally “who you have reigned in place of him”
  6. 2 Samuel 16:10 Literally “What is for me and what is for you”
  7. 2 Samuel 16:10 Hebrew “Because”
  8. 2 Samuel 16:11 Hebrew “intestines”
  9. 2 Samuel 16:11 Literally “and even that now”
  10. 2 Samuel 16:12 According to the reading tradition (Qere); Kethib has “at my guilt”
  11. 2 Samuel 16:13 Literally “going and cursing”
  12. 2 Samuel 16:13 Hebrew “flung”
  13. 2 Samuel 16:18 According to the reading tradition (Qere); Kethib has “no”
  14. 2 Samuel 16:19 Literally “And the second thing
  15. 2 Samuel 16:19 Literally “So shall I be in your presence”
  16. 2 Samuel 16:21 Literally “the hands of all who are with you will be strengthened”
  17. 2 Samuel 16:23 Qere reads “a man inquired”; Kethib omits “a man”