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Ish-bosheth Is Killed

When Saul’s son Ish-bosheth heard that Abner had died in Hebron, he lost his strength of heart. All Israel was troubled. Saul’s son had two men who were captains of small armies. The name of one was Baanah, and the name of the other was Rechab. They were sons of Rimmon the Beerothite of Benjamin. (For Beeroth is thought of as part of Benjamin. The people of Beeroth ran to Gittaim, and have been strangers there to this day.)

Now Saul’s son Jonathan had a son who could not walk because of his feet. He was five years old when the news of Saul and Jonathan came from Jezreel. His nurse had picked him up and ran. In her hurry to get away, he fell and hurt his feet so he could not walk. His name was Mephibosheth.

The sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, Rechab and Baanah, left and came to the family of Ish-bosheth. It was during the heat of the day, while Ish-bosheth was taking his noon rest. They came to the center of the house as if to get wheat, and they hit Ish-bosheth in the stomach. Then Rechab and his brother Baanah ran away. They had come into the house while he was lying on his bed in his room. And they had hit him and killed him and cut off his head. They took his head and traveled by the way of Arabah all night. Then they brought Ish-bosheth’s head to David at Hebron, and said to the king, “See, the head of Ish-bosheth, the son of Saul, who hated you and tried to kill you. So this day the Lord has punished Saul and his children for the king.”

David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, sons of Rimmon the Beerothite. He said to them, “As the Lord lives, Who has saved my life from all trouble, 10 when one told me, ‘See, Saul is dead,’ he thought he was bringing good news. But I took hold of him and killed him in Ziklag. This was the reward I gave him for his news. 11 How much worse it is when sinful men have killed a man who is right and good, on his bed in his own house! Should I not now punish you for his blood and destroy you from the earth?” 12 Then David had the young men kill them and cut off their hands and feet. They hung them up beside the pool in Hebron. But they took the head of Ish-bosheth and buried it in Abner’s grave in Hebron.