2 Samuel 17-24
English Standard Version
Hushai Saves David
17 Moreover, Ahithophel said to Absalom, “Let me choose twelve thousand men, and I will arise and pursue David tonight. 2 I will come upon him while he is (A)weary and discouraged and throw him into a panic, and all the people who are with him will flee. (B)I will strike down only the king, 3 and I will bring all the people back to you as a bride comes home to her husband. You seek the life of only one man,[a] and all the people will be at peace.” 4 And the advice seemed right in the eyes of Absalom and all the elders of Israel.
5 Then Absalom said, “Call (C)Hushai the Archite also, and let us hear what he has to say.” 6 And when Hushai came to Absalom, Absalom said to him, “Thus has Ahithophel spoken; shall we do as he says? If not, you speak.” 7 Then Hushai said to Absalom, “This time the counsel that Ahithophel has given is not good.” 8 Hushai said, “You know that your father and his men are mighty men, and that they are enraged,[b] (D)like a bear robbed of her cubs in the field. Besides, your father is expert in war; he will not spend the night with the people. 9 Behold, even now he has hidden himself in one of the pits or in some other place. And as soon as some of the people fall[c] at the first attack, whoever hears it will say, ‘There has been a slaughter among the people who follow Absalom.’ 10 Then even the valiant man, whose heart is like the heart of a lion, will utterly (E)melt with fear, for all Israel knows that your father is a mighty man, and that those who are with him are valiant men. 11 But my counsel is that all Israel be gathered to you, (F)from Dan to Beersheba, (G)as the sand by the sea for multitude, and that you go to battle in person. 12 So we shall come upon him in some place where he is to be found, and we shall light upon him as the dew falls on the ground, and of him and all the men with him not one will be left. 13 If he withdraws into a city, then all Israel will bring ropes to that city, and we shall drag it into the valley, until not even a pebble is to be found there.” 14 And Absalom and all the men of Israel said, “The counsel of Hushai the Archite is better than the counsel of Ahithophel.” (H)For the Lord had ordained[d] to defeat the good counsel of Ahithophel, so that the Lord might bring harm upon Absalom.
15 (I)Then Hushai said to Zadok and Abiathar the priests, “Thus and so did Ahithophel counsel Absalom and the elders of Israel, and thus and so have I counseled. 16 Now therefore send quickly and tell David, ‘Do not stay tonight at (J)the fords of the wilderness, but by all means pass over, lest the king and all the people who are with him be (K)swallowed up.’” 17 Now (L)Jonathan and Ahimaaz were waiting at (M)En-rogel. A female servant was to go and tell them, and they were to go and tell King David, for they were not to be seen entering the city. 18 But a young man saw them and told Absalom. So both of them went away quickly and came to the house of a man at (N)Bahurim, who had a well in his courtyard. And they went down into it. 19 (O)And the woman took and spread a covering over the well's mouth and scattered grain on it, and nothing was known of it. 20 When Absalom's servants came to the woman at the house, they said, “Where are Ahimaaz and Jonathan?” And the woman said to them, “They have gone over the brook[e] of water.” And when they had sought and could not find them, they returned to Jerusalem.
21 After they had gone, the men came up out of the well, and went and told King David. They said to David, (P)“Arise, and go quickly over the water, for thus and so has Ahithophel counseled against you.” 22 Then David arose, and all the people who were with him, and they crossed the Jordan. By daybreak not one was left who had not crossed the Jordan.
23 When Ahithophel saw that his counsel was not followed, he saddled his donkey and went off home to (Q)his own city. He (R)set his house in order and (S)hanged himself, and he died and was buried in the tomb of his father.
24 Then David came to (T)Mahanaim. And Absalom crossed the Jordan with all the men of Israel. 25 Now Absalom had set (U)Amasa over the army instead of Joab. Amasa was the son of a man named Ithra the Ishmaelite,[f] who had married Abigal the daughter of (V)Nahash, sister of Zeruiah, Joab's mother. 26 And Israel and Absalom encamped in the land of Gilead.
27 When David came to Mahanaim, (W)Shobi the son of Nahash from (X)Rabbah of the Ammonites, and (Y)Machir the son of Ammiel from Lo-debar, and (Z)Barzillai the Gileadite from Rogelim, 28 brought beds, basins, and earthen vessels, wheat, barley, flour, parched grain, beans and lentils,[g] 29 honey and curds and sheep and cheese from the herd, for David and the people with him to eat, for they said, “The people are hungry and (AA)weary and thirsty (AB)in the wilderness.”
18 Then David mustered the men who were with him and set over them commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds. 2 And David sent out the army, one third under the command of Joab, one third under the command of Abishai the son of Zeruiah, Joab's brother, and one third under the command of (AC)Ittai the Gittite. And the king said to the men, “I myself will also go out with you.” 3 (AD)But the men said, “You shall not go out. For if we flee, they will not care about us. If half of us die, they will not care about us. But you are worth ten thousand of us. Therefore it is better that you send us help from the city.” 4 The king said to them, “Whatever seems best to you I will do.” So the king stood at the side of the gate, while all the army marched out by hundreds and by thousands. 5 And the king ordered Joab and Abishai and Ittai, “Deal gently for my sake with the young man Absalom.” (AE)And all the people heard when the king gave orders to all the commanders about Absalom.
6 So the army went out into the field against Israel, and the battle was fought in the (AF)forest of Ephraim. 7 And the men of Israel were defeated there by the servants of David, and the loss there was great on that day, twenty thousand men. 8 The battle spread over the face of all the country, and the forest devoured more people that day than the sword.
9 And Absalom happened to meet the servants of David. Absalom was riding on his mule, and the mule went under the thick branches of a great oak,[h] (AG)and his head caught fast in the oak, and he was suspended between heaven and earth, while the mule that was under him went on. 10 And a certain man saw it and told Joab, “Behold, I saw Absalom hanging in an oak.” 11 Joab said to the man who told him, “What, you saw him! Why then did you not strike him there to the ground? I would have been glad to give you ten pieces of silver and a belt.” 12 But the man said to Joab, “Even if I felt in my hand the weight of a thousand pieces of silver, I would not reach out my hand against the king's son, for (AH)in our hearing the king commanded you and Abishai and Ittai, ‘For my sake protect the young man Absalom.’ 13 On the other hand, if I had dealt treacherously against his life[i] (and there is nothing hidden from the king), then you yourself would have stood aloof.” 14 Joab said, “I will not waste time like this with you.” And he took three javelins in his hand and thrust them into the heart of Absalom while he was still alive in the oak. 15 And ten young men, Joab's armor-bearers, surrounded Absalom and struck him and killed him.
16 Then Joab blew the trumpet, and the troops came back from pursuing Israel, for Joab restrained them. 17 And they took Absalom and threw him into a great pit in the forest and raised over him (AI)a very great heap of stones. And all Israel (AJ)fled every one to his own home. 18 Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and set up for himself (AK)the pillar that is in (AL)the King's Valley, for he said, (AM)“I have no son to keep my name in remembrance.” He called the pillar after his own name, and it is called Absalom's monument[j] to this day.
David Hears of Absalom's Death
19 Then Ahimaaz the son of Zadok said, (AN)“Let me run and carry news to the king that (AO)the Lord has delivered him from the hand of his enemies.” 20 And Joab said to him, “You are not to carry news today. You may carry news another day, but today you shall carry no news, because the king's son is dead.” 21 Then Joab said to the Cushite, “Go, tell the king what you have seen.” The Cushite bowed before Joab, and ran. 22 Then Ahimaaz the son of Zadok said again to Joab, “Come what may, let me also run after the Cushite.” And Joab said, “Why will you run, my son, seeing that you will have no reward for the news?” 23 “Come what may,” he said, “I will run.” So he said to him, “Run.” Then Ahimaaz ran by the way of (AP)the plain, and outran the Cushite.
24 Now David (AQ)was sitting between the two gates, and (AR)the watchman went up to the roof of the gate by the wall, and when he lifted up his eyes and looked, he saw a man running alone. 25 The watchman called out and told the king. And the king said, “If he is alone, there is news in his mouth.” And he drew nearer and nearer. 26 The watchman saw another man running. And the watchman called to the gate and said, “See, another man running alone!” The king said, “He also brings news.” 27 The watchman said, “I think the running of the first is (AS)like the running of Ahimaaz the son of Zadok.” And the king said, (AT)“He is a good man and comes with good news.”
28 Then Ahimaaz cried out to the king, “All is well.” And he bowed before the king with his face to the earth and said, (AU)“Blessed be the Lord your God, who has delivered up the men who raised their hand against my lord the king.” 29 And the king said, (AV)“Is it well with the young man Absalom?” Ahimaaz answered, “When Joab sent the king's servant, your servant, I saw a great commotion, but I do not know what it was.” 30 And the king said, “Turn aside and stand here.” So he turned aside and stood still.
31 And behold, the Cushite came, and the Cushite said, “Good news for my lord the king! For (AW)the Lord has delivered you this day from the hand of all who rose up against you.” 32 The king said to the Cushite, (AX)“Is it well with the young man Absalom?” And the Cushite answered, (AY)“May the enemies of my lord the king and all who rise up against you for evil be like that young man.” 33 [k] And the king was deeply moved and went up (AZ)to the chamber over the gate and wept. And as he went, he said, (BA)“O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!”
Joab Rebukes David
19 It was told Joab, “Behold, the king is weeping and mourning for Absalom.” 2 So the victory that day was turned into mourning for all the people, for the people heard that day, “The king is grieving for his son.” 3 And the people stole into the city that day as people steal in who are ashamed when they flee in battle. 4 The king (BB)covered his face, and the king cried with a loud voice, (BC)“O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son!” 5 Then Joab came into the house to the king and said, “You have today covered with shame the faces of all your servants, who have this day saved your life and the lives of your sons and your daughters and the lives of your wives and your concubines, 6 because you love those who hate you and hate those who love you. For you have made it clear today that commanders and servants are nothing to you, for today I know that if Absalom were alive and all of us were dead today, then you would be pleased. 7 Now therefore arise, go out and speak (BD)kindly to your servants, for I swear by the Lord, if you do not go, not a man will stay with you this night, and this will be worse for you than all the evil that has come upon you from your youth until now.” 8 Then the king arose and took his (BE)seat in the gate. And the people were all told, “Behold, the king is sitting in the gate.” And all the people came before the king.
David Returns to Jerusalem
Now Israel had (BF)fled every man to his own home. 9 And all the people were arguing throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, (BG)“The king delivered us from the hand of our enemies and (BH)saved us from the hand of the Philistines, and now (BI)he has fled out of the land from Absalom. 10 But Absalom, whom we anointed over us, is dead in battle. Now therefore why do you say nothing about bringing the king back?”
11 And King David sent this message to (BJ)Zadok and Abiathar the priests: “Say to the elders of Judah, ‘Why should you be the last to bring the king back to his house, when the word of all Israel has come to the king?[l] 12 You are my brothers; (BK)you are my bone and my flesh. Why then should you be the last to bring back the king?’ 13 And say to Amasa, (BL)‘Are you not my bone and my flesh? (BM)God do so to me and more also, if you are not (BN)commander of my army from now on in place of Joab.’” 14 And he swayed the heart of all the men of Judah (BO)as one man, so that they sent word to the king, “Return, both you and all your servants.” 15 So the king came back to the Jordan, and Judah came to Gilgal to meet the king and to bring the king over the Jordan.
David Pardons His Enemies
16 And (BP)Shimei the son of Gera, the Benjaminite, from Bahurim, hurried to come down with the men of Judah to meet King David. 17 And with him were a thousand men from Benjamin. And (BQ)Ziba the servant of the house of Saul, with his fifteen sons and his twenty servants, rushed down to the Jordan before the king, 18 and they crossed the ford to bring over the king's household and to do his pleasure. And Shimei the son of Gera fell down before the king, as he was about to cross the Jordan, 19 and said to the king, (BR)“Let not my lord hold me guilty or remember how your servant (BS)did wrong on the day my lord the king left Jerusalem. Do not let the king take it to heart. 20 For your servant knows that I have sinned. Therefore, behold, I have come this day, the first (BT)of all the house of Joseph to come down to meet my lord the king.” 21 Abishai the son of Zeruiah answered, “Shall not Shimei be put to death for this, because (BU)he cursed the Lord's anointed?” 22 But David said, (BV)“What have I to do with you, you sons of Zeruiah, that you should this day be as an adversary to me? (BW)Shall anyone be put to death in Israel this day? For do I not know that I am this day king over Israel?” 23 (BX)And the king said to Shimei, “You shall not die.” And the king gave him his oath.
24 And (BY)Mephibosheth the son of Saul came down to meet the king. He had neither taken care of his feet nor trimmed his beard nor washed his clothes, from the day the king departed until the day he came back in safety. 25 And when he came to Jerusalem to meet the king, the king said to him, (BZ)“Why did you not go with me, Mephibosheth?” 26 He answered, “My lord, O king, my servant deceived me, for your servant said to him, ‘I will saddle a donkey for myself,[m] that I may ride on it and go with the king.’ For (CA)your servant is lame. 27 (CB)He has slandered your servant to my lord the king. But my lord the king is (CC)like the angel of God; do therefore what seems good to you. 28 For all my father's house were but men doomed to death before my lord the king, but (CD)you set your servant among those who eat at your table. What further right have I, then, to cry to the king?” 29 And the king said to him, “Why speak any more of your affairs? I have decided: you and Ziba shall divide the land.” 30 And Mephibosheth said to the king, “Oh, let him take it all, since my lord the king has come safely home.”
31 Now (CE)Barzillai the Gileadite had come down from Rogelim, and he went on with the king to the Jordan, to escort him over the Jordan. 32 Barzillai was a very aged man, eighty years old. (CF)He had provided the king with food while he stayed at Mahanaim, for he was a very wealthy man. 33 And the king said to Barzillai, “Come over with me, and I will provide for you with me in Jerusalem.” 34 But Barzillai said to the king, (CG)“How many years have I still to live, that I should go up with the king to Jerusalem? 35 I am this day (CH)eighty years old. Can I discern what is pleasant and what is not? Can your servant taste what he eats or what he drinks? Can I still listen to the voice of singing men and singing women? Why then should your servant be (CI)an added burden to my lord the king? 36 Your servant will go a little way over the Jordan with the king. Why should the king repay me with such a reward? 37 Please let your servant return, that I may die in my own city near the grave of my father and my mother. But here is your servant (CJ)Chimham. Let him go over with my lord the king, and do for him whatever seems good to you.” 38 And the king answered, “Chimham shall go over with me, and I will do for him whatever seems good to you, and all that you desire of me I will do for you.” 39 Then all the people went over the Jordan, and the king went over. And (CK)the king kissed Barzillai and blessed him, and he returned to his own home. 40 The king went on to Gilgal, and Chimham went on with him. All the people of Judah, and also half the people of Israel, brought the king on his way.
41 Then all the men of Israel came to the king and said to the king, “Why have our brothers the men of Judah stolen you away and (CL)brought the king and his household over the Jordan, and all David's men with him?” 42 All the men of Judah answered the men of Israel, “Because the king is (CM)our close relative. Why then are you angry over this matter? Have we eaten at all at the king's expense? Or has he given us any gift?” 43 And the men of Israel answered the men of Judah, “We have (CN)ten shares in the king, and in David also we have more than you. Why then did you despise us? Were we not the first to speak of bringing back our king?” (CO)But the words of the men of Judah were fiercer than the words of the men of Israel.
The Rebellion of Sheba
20 Now there happened to be there (CP)a worthless man, whose name was Sheba, the son of Bichri, a Benjaminite. And he blew the trumpet and said,
2 So all the men of Israel withdrew from David and followed Sheba the son of Bichri. But the men of Judah followed their king steadfastly from the Jordan to Jerusalem.
3 And David came to his house at Jerusalem. And the king took (CS)the ten concubines whom he had left to care for the house and put them in a house under guard and provided for them, but did not go in to them. So they were shut up until the day of their death, living as if in widowhood.
4 Then the king said to (CT)Amasa, “Call the men of Judah together to me within three days, and be here yourself.” 5 So Amasa went to summon Judah, but he delayed beyond the set time that had been appointed him. 6 And David said to Abishai, “Now Sheba the son of Bichri will do us more harm than Absalom. Take (CU)your lord's servants and pursue him, lest he get himself to fortified cities and escape from us.”[n] 7 And there went out after him Joab's men and the (CV)Cherethites and the Pelethites, and all the mighty men. They went out from Jerusalem to pursue Sheba the son of Bichri. 8 When they were at the great stone that is in Gibeon, Amasa came to meet them. Now Joab was wearing a soldier's garment, and over it was a belt with a sword in its sheath fastened on his thigh, and as he went forward it fell out. 9 And Joab said to Amasa, “Is it well with you, my brother?” And Joab took Amasa by the beard with his right hand (CW)to kiss him. 10 But Amasa did not observe the sword that was in Joab's hand. (CX)So Joab struck him with it (CY)in the stomach and spilled his entrails to the ground without striking a second blow, and he died.
Then Joab and Abishai his brother pursued Sheba the son of Bichri. 11 And one of Joab's young men took his stand by Amasa and said, “Whoever favors Joab, and whoever is for David, let him follow Joab.” 12 And Amasa lay wallowing in his blood in the highway. And anyone who came by, seeing him, stopped. And when the man saw that all the people stopped, he carried Amasa out of the highway into the field and threw a garment over him. 13 When he was taken out of the highway, all the people went on after Joab to pursue Sheba the son of Bichri.
14 And Sheba passed through all the tribes of Israel to (CZ)Abel of (DA)Beth-maacah,[o] and all (DB)the Bichrites[p] assembled and followed him in. 15 And all the men who were with Joab came and besieged him in (DC)Abel of Beth-maacah. (DD)They cast up a mound against the city, and it stood against the rampart, and they were battering the wall to throw it down. 16 Then a wise woman called from the city, “Listen! Listen! Tell Joab, ‘Come here, that I may speak to you.’” 17 And he came near her, and the woman said, “Are you Joab?” He answered, “I am.” Then she said to him, “Listen to the words of your servant.” And he answered, “I am listening.” 18 Then she said, “They used to say in former times, ‘Let them but ask counsel at (DE)Abel,’ and so they settled a matter. 19 I am one of those who are peaceable and faithful in Israel. You seek to destroy a city that is a mother in Israel. Why will you (DF)swallow up (DG)the heritage of the Lord?” 20 Joab answered, “Far be it from me, far be it, that I should (DH)swallow up or destroy! 21 That is not true. But a man of (DI)the hill country of Ephraim, called Sheba the son of Bichri, has lifted up his hand against King David. Give up him alone, and I will withdraw from the city.” And the woman said to Joab, “Behold, his head shall be thrown to you over the wall.” 22 Then the woman went to all the people (DJ)in her wisdom. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri and threw it out to Joab. So he blew the trumpet, and they dispersed from the city, (DK)every man to his home. And Joab returned to Jerusalem to the king.
23 (DL)Now Joab was in command of all the army of Israel; and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was in command of the Cherethites and the Pelethites; 24 and (DM)Adoram was in charge of the forced labor; and Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was the recorder; 25 and Sheva was secretary; and (DN)Zadok and Abiathar were priests; 26 and (DO)Ira the Jairite was also David's priest.
David Avenges the Gibeonites
21 Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year. And David (DP)sought the face of the Lord. And the Lord said, “There is bloodguilt on Saul and on his house, because he put the Gibeonites to death.” 2 So the king called the Gibeonites and spoke to them. Now the Gibeonites were not of the people of Israel but (DQ)of the remnant of the Amorites. Although the people of Israel had sworn to spare them, Saul had sought to strike them down in his zeal for the people of Israel and Judah. 3 And David said to the Gibeonites, “What shall I do for you? And how shall I make atonement, that you may bless (DR)the heritage of the Lord?” 4 The Gibeonites said to him, “It is not a matter of silver or gold between us and Saul or his house; neither is it for us to put any man to death in Israel.” And he said, “What do you say that I shall do for you?” 5 They said to the king, “The man who consumed us and planned to destroy us, so that we should have no place in all the territory of Israel, 6 let seven of his sons be given to us, so that we may hang them before the Lord at (DS)Gibeah of Saul, (DT)the chosen of the Lord.” And the king said, “I will give them.”
7 But the king spared Mephibosheth, the son of Saul's son Jonathan, because of (DU)the oath of the Lord that was between them, between David and Jonathan the son of Saul. 8 The king took the two sons of (DV)Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bore to Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Merab[q] the daughter of Saul, whom (DW)she bore to (DX)Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite; 9 and he gave them into the hands of the Gibeonites, and they hanged them on the mountain before the Lord, and the seven of them perished together. They were put to death in the first days of harvest, (DY)at the beginning of barley harvest.
10 (DZ)Then Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth and spread it for herself on the rock, from the beginning of harvest until rain fell upon them from the heavens. And she did not allow the birds of the air to come upon them by day, or the beasts of the field by night. 11 When David was told what Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, the concubine of Saul, had done, 12 David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of his son Jonathan from the men of Jabesh-gilead, (EA)who had stolen them from the public square of (EB)Beth-shan, where the Philistines had hanged them, on the day the Philistines killed Saul on Gilboa. 13 And he brought up from there the bones of Saul and the bones of his son Jonathan; and they gathered the bones of those who were hanged. 14 And they buried the bones of Saul and his son Jonathan in the land of Benjamin in (EC)Zela, in the tomb of Kish his father. And they did all that the king commanded. And after that (ED)God responded to the plea for the land.
War with the Philistines
15 There was war again between the Philistines and Israel, and David went down together with his servants, and they fought against the Philistines. And David grew weary. 16 And Ishbi-benob, one of the descendants (EE)of the giants, whose spear weighed three hundred shekels[r] of bronze, and who was armed with a new sword, thought to kill David. 17 But Abishai the son of Zeruiah came to his aid and attacked the Philistine and killed him. Then David's men swore to him, (EF)“You shall no longer go out with us to battle, lest you quench (EG)the lamp of Israel.”
18 (EH)After this there was again war with the Philistines at Gob. Then (EI)Sibbecai (EJ)the Hushathite struck down Saph, who was one of the descendants (EK)of the giants. 19 And there was again war with the Philistines at Gob, and (EL)Elhanan the son of Jaare-oregim, the Bethlehemite, struck down Goliath the Gittite, (EM)the shaft of whose spear was like a weaver's beam.[s] 20 And there was again war at Gath, where there was a man of great stature, who had six fingers on each hand, and six toes on each foot, twenty-four in number, and he also was descended (EN)from the giants. 21 And when (EO)he taunted Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimei, David's brother, struck him down. 22 These four were descended (EP)from the giants in Gath, and they fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.
David's Song of Deliverance
(ES)“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
3 (ET)my[t] God, my rock, (EU)in whom I take refuge,
(EV)my shield, and (EW)the horn of my salvation,
(EX)my stronghold and (EY)my refuge,
my savior; you save me from violence.
4 I call upon the Lord, who is (EZ)worthy to be praised,
and I am saved from my enemies.
8 “Then (FE)the earth reeled and rocked;
(FF)the foundations of the heavens trembled
and quaked, because he was angry.
9 Smoke went up from his nostrils,[v]
and devouring fire from his mouth;
(FG)glowing coals flamed forth from him.
10 (FH)He bowed the heavens and (FI)came down;
(FJ)thick darkness was under his feet.
11 He rode on a cherub and flew;
he was seen on (FK)the wings of the wind.
12 He made (FL)darkness around him (FM)his canopy,
thick clouds, a gathering of water.
13 Out of the brightness before him
(FN)coals of fire flamed forth.
14 (FO)The Lord thundered from heaven,
and the Most High uttered his voice.
15 And he sent out (FP)arrows and scattered them;
lightning, and routed them.
16 Then the channels of the sea were seen;
the foundations of the world were laid bare,
at the rebuke of the Lord,
at the (FQ)blast of the breath of his nostrils.
17 (FR)“He sent from on high, he took me;
he drew me out of many waters.
18 He rescued me from my strong enemy,
from those who hated me,
for they were too mighty for me.
19 They confronted me in the day of my calamity,
but the Lord was my support.
20 (FS)He brought me out into a broad place;
he rescued me, because (FT)he delighted in me.
21 “The Lord (FU)dealt with me according to my righteousness;
according to the (FV)cleanness of my hands he rewarded me.
22 (FW)For I have kept the ways of the Lord
and have not wickedly departed from my God.
23 (FX)For all his rules were before me,
and from his statutes I did not turn aside.
24 I was (FY)blameless before him,
and I kept myself from guilt.
25 (FZ)And the Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness,
according to my cleanness in his sight.
26 (GA)“With the merciful you show yourself merciful;
with the (GB)blameless man you show yourself blameless;
27 with the purified you deal purely,
and with the crooked you make yourself seem tortuous.
28 (GC)You save a humble people,
(GD)but your eyes are on the haughty to bring them down.
29 (GE)For you are my lamp, O Lord,
and my God lightens my darkness.
30 For by you I can run against a troop,
and by my God I can leap over a wall.
31 This God—(GF)his way is perfect;
the (GG)word of the Lord proves true;
he is (GH)a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
32 “For who is God, but the Lord?
(GI)And who is a rock, except our God?
33 This God is my (GJ)strong refuge
and has made my[w] way blameless.[x]
34 (GK)He made my feet like the feet of a deer
and set me secure (GL)on the heights.
35 (GM)He trains my hands for war,
so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
36 You have given me the shield of your salvation,
and your gentleness made me great.
37 (GN)You gave a wide place for my steps under me,
and my feet[y] did not slip;
38 I pursued my enemies and destroyed them,
and did not turn back until they were consumed.
39 I consumed them; I thrust them through, so that they did not rise;
they fell (GO)under my feet.
40 For you equipped me with strength for the battle;
you made (GP)those who rise against me sink under me.
41 You (GQ)made my enemies turn their backs to me,[z]
those who hated me, and I destroyed them.
42 They looked, but there was none to save;
they cried to the Lord, but (GR)he did not answer them.
43 I beat them fine (GS)as the dust of the earth;
I crushed them and stamped them down (GT)like the mire of the streets.
44 “You delivered me from strife with my people;[aa]
you kept me as the head of (GU)the nations;
(GV)people whom I had not known served me.
45 Foreigners came cringing to me;
as soon as they heard of me, they obeyed me.
46 Foreigners lost heart
and came trembling[ab] (GW)out of their fortresses.
47 “The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock,
and exalted be (GX)my God, (GY)the rock of my salvation,
48 the God who gave me vengeance
and (GZ)brought down peoples under me,
49 who brought me out from my enemies;
you exalted me above (HA)those who rose against me;
you delivered me from (HB)men of violence.
50 (HC)“For this I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations,
and sing praises to your name.
51 (HD)Great salvation he brings[ac] to his king,
and shows steadfast love to (HE)his anointed,
to David and his offspring (HF)forever.”
The Last Words of David
23 Now these are the last words of David:
2 (HI)“The Spirit of the Lord speaks by me;
his word is on my tongue.
3 The God of Israel has spoken;
(HJ)the Rock of Israel has said to me:
When one rules justly over men,
ruling (HK)in the fear of God,
4 he (HL)dawns on them like the morning light,
like the sun shining forth on a cloudless morning,
like rain[ae] that makes grass to sprout from the earth.
5 “For does not my house stand so with God?
(HM)For he has made with me an everlasting covenant,
ordered in all things and secure.
For will he not cause to prosper
all my help and my desire?
6 But worthless men[af] are all like thorns that are thrown away,
for they cannot be taken with the hand;
7 but the man who touches them
arms himself with iron and the shaft of a spear,
and they are utterly consumed with fire.”[ag]
David's Mighty Men
8 (HN)These are the names of the mighty men whom David had: (HO)Josheb-basshebeth a Tahchemonite; he was chief of the three.[ah] He wielded his spear[ai] against eight hundred whom he killed at one time.
9 And next to him among the three mighty men was Eleazar the son of (HP)Dodo, son of (HQ)Ahohi. He was with David when they defied the Philistines who were gathered there for battle, and the men of Israel withdrew. 10 He rose and struck down the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand clung to the sword. And the Lord brought about a great victory that day, and the men returned after him only to strip the slain.
11 And next to him was Shammah, the son of Agee the (HR)Hararite. The Philistines gathered together at Lehi,[aj] where there was a plot of ground full of lentils, and the men fled from the Philistines. 12 But he took his stand in the midst of the plot and defended it and struck down the Philistines, and the Lord worked a great victory.
13 And three of the thirty chief men went down and came about harvest time to David at the (HS)cave of Adullam, when a band of Philistines was encamped (HT)in the Valley of Rephaim. 14 David was then (HU)in the stronghold, and (HV)the garrison of the Philistines was then at Bethlehem. 15 And David said longingly, “Oh, that someone would give me water to drink from the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate!” 16 Then the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate and carried and brought it to David. But he would not drink of it. He poured it out to the Lord 17 and said, “Far be it from me, O Lord, that I should do this. Shall I drink (HW)the blood of the men who went at the risk of their lives?” Therefore he would not drink it. These things the three mighty men did.
18 Now Abishai, the brother of Joab, the son of Zeruiah, was chief of the thirty.[ak] And he wielded his spear against three hundred men[al] and killed them and won a name beside the three. 19 He was the most renowned of the thirty[am] and became their commander, but he did not attain to (HX)the three.
20 And (HY)Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was a valiant man[an] of (HZ)Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds. He struck down two ariels[ao] of Moab. He also went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen. 21 And he struck down an Egyptian, a handsome man. The Egyptian had a spear in his hand, but Benaiah went down to him with a staff and snatched the spear out of the Egyptian's hand and killed him with his own spear. 22 These things did Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and won a name beside the three mighty men. 23 He was renowned among the thirty, but he did not attain to the three. And David set him over his bodyguard.
24 (IA)Asahel the brother of Joab was one of the thirty; Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem, 25 (IB)Shammah of Harod, Elika of Harod, 26 Helez the Paltite, Ira the son of Ikkesh (IC)of Tekoa, 27 Abiezer (ID)of Anathoth, Mebunnai (IE)the Hushathite, 28 Zalmon (IF)the Ahohite, Maharai (IG)of Netophah, 29 Heleb the son of Baanah (IH)of Netophah, Ittai the son of Ribai of (II)Gibeah of the people of Benjamin, 30 Benaiah (IJ)of Pirathon, Hiddai of the brooks of (IK)Gaash, 31 Abi-albon the Arbathite, Azmaveth of (IL)Bahurim, 32 Eliahba the Shaalbonite, the sons of Jashen, Jonathan, 33 (IM)Shammah the Hararite, Ahiam the son of Sharar the Hararite, 34 Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai (IN)of Maacah, (IO)Eliam the son of (IP)Ahithophel the Gilonite, 35 Hezro[ap] (IQ)of Carmel, Paarai the Arbite, 36 Igal the son of Nathan (IR)of Zobah, Bani the Gadite, 37 Zelek the Ammonite, Naharai (IS)of Beeroth, the armor-bearer of Joab the son of Zeruiah, 38 (IT)Ira the (IU)Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite, 39 (IV)Uriah the Hittite: thirty-seven in all.
24 (IW)(IX)Again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, (IY)“Go, number Israel and Judah.” 2 So the king said to Joab, the commander of the army,[aq] who was with him, “Go through all the tribes of Israel, (IZ)from Dan to Beersheba, and number the people, that I may know the number of the people.” 3 But Joab said to the king, (JA)“May the Lord your God add to the people a hundred times as many as they are, while the eyes of my lord the king still see it, but why does my lord the king delight in this thing?” 4 But the king's word prevailed against Joab and the commanders of the army. So Joab and the commanders of the army went out from the presence of the king to number the people of Israel. 5 They crossed the Jordan and began from (JB)Aroer,[ar] and from the city that is in the middle of the (JC)valley, toward Gad and on to (JD)Jazer. 6 Then they came to Gilead, and to Kadesh in the land of the Hittites;[as] and they came to Dan, and from Dan[at] they went around to (JE)Sidon, 7 and came to the fortress of Tyre and to all the cities of the (JF)Hivites and (JG)Canaanites; and they went out to the Negeb of Judah at Beersheba.
- 2 Samuel 17:3 Septuagint; Hebrew back to you. Like the return of the whole is the man whom you seek
- 2 Samuel 17:8 Hebrew bitter of soul
- 2 Samuel 17:9 Or And as he falls on them
- 2 Samuel 17:14 Hebrew commanded
- 2 Samuel 17:20 The meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain
- 2 Samuel 17:25 Compare 1 Chronicles 2:17; Hebrew Israelite
- 2 Samuel 17:28 Hebrew adds and parched grain
- 2 Samuel 18:9 Or terebinth; also verses 10, 14
- 2 Samuel 18:13 Or at the risk of my life
- 2 Samuel 18:18 Or Absalom's hand
- 2 Samuel 18:33 Ch 19:1 in Hebrew
- 2 Samuel 19:11 Septuagint; Hebrew to the king, to his house
- 2 Samuel 19:26 Septuagint, Syriac, Vulgate Saddle a donkey for me
- 2 Samuel 20:6 Hebrew and snatch away our eyes
- 2 Samuel 20:14 Compare 20:15; Hebrew and Beth-maacah
- 2 Samuel 20:14 Hebrew Berites
- 2 Samuel 21:8 Two Hebrew manuscripts, Septuagint; most Hebrew manuscripts Michal
- 2 Samuel 21:16 A shekel was about 2/5 ounce or 11 grams
- 2 Samuel 21:19 Contrast 1 Chronicles 20:5, which may preserve the original reading
- 2 Samuel 22:3 Septuagint (compare Psalm 18:2); Hebrew lacks my
- 2 Samuel 22:5 Or terrified me
- 2 Samuel 22:9 Or in his wrath
- 2 Samuel 22:33 Or his; also verse 34
- 2 Samuel 22:33 Compare Psalm 18:32; Hebrew he has blamelessly set my way free, or he has made my way spring up blamelessly
- 2 Samuel 22:37 Hebrew ankles
- 2 Samuel 22:41 Or You gave me my enemies' necks
- 2 Samuel 22:44 Septuagint with the peoples
- 2 Samuel 22:46 Compare Psalm 18:45; Hebrew equipped themselves
- 2 Samuel 22:51 Or He is a tower of salvation
- 2 Samuel 23:1 Or the favorite of the songs of Israel
- 2 Samuel 23:4 Hebrew from rain
- 2 Samuel 23:6 Hebrew worthlessness
- 2 Samuel 23:7 Hebrew consumed with fire in the sitting
- 2 Samuel 23:8 Or of the captains
- 2 Samuel 23:8 Compare 1 Chronicles 11:11; the meaning of the Hebrew expression is uncertain
- 2 Samuel 23:11 Or gathered together as a camp
- 2 Samuel 23:18 Two Hebrew manuscripts, Syriac; most Hebrew manuscripts three
- 2 Samuel 23:18 Or slain ones
- 2 Samuel 23:19 Compare 1 Chronicles 11:21; Hebrew Was he the most renowned of the three?
- 2 Samuel 23:20 Or the son of Ishhai
- 2 Samuel 23:20 The meaning of the word ariel is unknown
- 2 Samuel 23:35 Or Hezrai
- 2 Samuel 24:2 Septuagint to Joab and the commanders of the army
- 2 Samuel 24:5 Septuagint; Hebrew encamped in Aroer
- 2 Samuel 24:6 Septuagint; Hebrew to the land of Tahtim-hodshi
- 2 Samuel 24:6 Septuagint; Hebrew they came to Dan-jaan and