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2 Samuel 8Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

David Wins Many Wars

Later David defeated the Philistines and took control of a large area of land around Gath.[a] He also defeated the Moabites. He forced them to lie on the ground in a long row. Using a rope to measure, those within two lengths of the rope were killed and those within every third length were allowed to live. So the Moabites became servants of David and paid tribute to him.

David went to an area near the Euphrates to set up a monument for himself.[b] At that time he defeated the king of Zobah, Hadadezer son of Rehob. David took 1000 chariots, 7000 horse soldiers,[c] and 20,000 foot soldiers from Hadadezer. He crippled all but 100 of the chariot horses.[d]

Arameans from Damascus came to help King Hadadezer of Zobah, but David defeated those 22,000 Arameans. Then David put his soldiers in Damascus, Aram. The Arameans became David’s servants and brought tribute. The Lord gave victory to David wherever he went.

David took the gold shields[e] that had belonged to Hadadezer’s servants and brought them to Jerusalem. David also took many things made of bronze from Tebah[f] and Berothai. (Tebah and Berothai were cities that had belonged to Hadadezer.)

King Toi of Hamath heard that David had defeated Hadadezer’s whole army. 10 Hadadezer had fought against Toi in the past, so Toi sent his son Joram to King David. Joram greeted him and blessed him because David had fought against Hadadezer and defeated him. Joram brought gifts of silver, gold, and bronze. 11 David took these things and dedicated them to the Lord, as he had done with all the other things he had taken from the nations he had defeated: 12 Aram, Moab, Ammon, Philistia, and Amalek. He had also defeated Hadadezer son of Rehob, king of Zobah. 13 David had defeated 18,000 Edomites[g] in Salt Valley. He was famous when he came home. 14 He put teams of soldiers throughout Edom, and the whole nation became his servants. The Lord gave victory to him wherever he went.

David’s Rule

15 David ruled over all Israel, and he made good and fair decisions for all of his people. 16 Joab son of Zeruiah was the captain over the army. Jehoshaphat son of Ahilud was the historian. 17 Zadok son of Ahitub and Ahimelech son of Abiathar were priests. Seraiah was secretary. 18 Benaiah son of Jehoiada was in charge of the Kerethites and Pelethites,[h] and David’s sons were priests.[i]


  1. 2 Samuel 8:1 area of land around Gath Or “villages controlled by the mother city” or “Metheg-Ammah.” See 1 Chron. 18:1.
  2. 2 Samuel 8:3 David went … for himself Or “David went to take control of the area near the Euphrates River.”
  3. 2 Samuel 8:4 David … soldiers This is found in the ancient Greek version and a Hebrew scroll from Qumran. The standard Hebrew text has “1700 horse soldiers.”
  4. 2 Samuel 8:4 He crippled … horses Or “He destroyed all but 100 chariots.”
  5. 2 Samuel 8:7 shields Or “bow cases.”
  6. 2 Samuel 8:8 Tebah This is found in some ancient Greek copies. The standard Hebrew text has “Betah.” See 1 Chron. 18:8.
  7. 2 Samuel 8:13 Edomites This is found in the ancient Greek and Syriac versions and a few Hebrew copies. The standard Hebrew text has “Arameans.”
  8. 2 Samuel 8:18 Kerethites and Pelethites These were David’s special bodyguards. An ancient Aramaic version has “the archers and stone throwers.” This would mean these men were specially trained in using bows and arrows and slings.
  9. 2 Samuel 8:18 priests Or “important leaders.”
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Copyright © 2006 by Bible League International


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