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23 The whole countryside cried loudly as all the troops marched past. The king crossed the Kidron Valley, and all the troops passed by on the Olive road[a] into the wilderness.
24 Zadok was there too, along with all the Levites carrying the chest containing God’s covenant. They set God’s chest down, and Abiathar offered sacrifices until all the troops had finished marching out of the city. 25 Then the king said to Zadok, “Carry God’s chest back into the city. If the Lord thinks well of me, then he will bring me back and let me see it and its home again. 26 But if God says, ‘I’m not pleased with you,’ then I am ready. Let him do to me whatever pleases him.”
27 “Do you understand?” the king said to the priest Zadok. “Go back to the city in safety—you and Abiathar[b] with your two sons, your son Ahimaaz and Abiathar’s son Jonathan. 28 I will be waiting in the desert plains until you send word telling me what to do.” 29 So Zadok and Abiathar took God’s chest back to Jerusalem and stayed there.
30 But David, his head covered, walked barefoot up the slope of the Mount of Olives crying. All the people who were with him covered their heads too and cried as they went up. 31 David was told that Ahithophel was also among the conspirators with Absalom, so he prayed, “Please, Lord, make Ahithophel’s advice foolish.”
32 When David came to the summit where people used to worship God, Hushai from Erek met him. Hushai’s clothes were ripped, and dirt was on his head. 33 David said to him, “If you come with me, you will be a burden to me. 34 But if you return to the city and say to Absalom, ‘King, I am your servant![c] Please spare my life! I was your father’s servant in the past, but now I am your servant,’ then you can help me by countering Ahithophel’s advice. 35 The priests Zadok and Abiathar will be with you there. So report everything you hear in the king’s palace to the priests Zadok and Abiathar. 36 Their two sons, Zadok’s son Ahimaaz and Abiathar’s son Jonathan, are also there. Use them to report to me everything you hear.”
37 So David’s friend Hushai went into Jerusalem, just as Absalom was entering the city.
16 When David had passed a short distance beyond the summit, Ziba, Mephibosheth’s servant, met him with a pair of saddled donkeys loaded with two hundred loaves of bread, one hundred bunches of raisins, one hundred figs,[d] and a jar of wine.
2 “What is all this for?” the king asked Ziba.
“The donkeys are for the royal family to ride,” Ziba explained. “The bread and summer fruit are for the young people to eat, and the wine is for those who get exhausted in the wilderness.”
3 “Where is your master’s grandson?” the king asked.
“He is still in Jerusalem,” Ziba answered the king, “because he thinks that the Israelites are now going to give his grandfather’s kingdom back to him.”
4 “Look here,” the king said to Ziba. “Everything that belonged to Mephibosheth now belongs to you.”
Ziba said, “I bow out of respect! Please think well of me, my master and king.”
5 When King David came to Bahurim, a man from the same clan as Saul’s family came out from there. His name was Shimei; he was Gera’s son. He was cursing as he came out. 6 He threw rocks at David and at all of King David’s servants, even though the entire army and all the warriors were on either side of him.
7 This is what Shimei said as he cursed David: “Get out of here! Get out of here! You are a murderer! You are despicable! 8 The Lord has paid you back for all the blood of Saul’s family, in whose place you rule, and the Lord has handed the kingdom over to your son Absalom. You are in this trouble because you are a murderer!”
9 Zeruiah’s son Abishai said to the king, “Why should this dead dog curse my master the king? Let me go over and cut his head off!”
10 But the king said, “My problems aren’t yours, you sons of Zeruiah. If he is cursing because the Lord told him to curse David, then who is to question, ‘Why are you doing this?’”
11 Then David addressed Abishai and all his servants: “Listen! My own son, one of my very own children, wants me dead. This Benjaminite can only feel the same—only more! Leave him alone. And let him curse, because the Lord told him to. 12 Perhaps the Lord will see my distress; perhaps the Lord will repay me with good for this cursing today.”
13 So David and his men kept walking, while Shimei went along on the hillside next to him, cursing as he went, throwing rocks and dirt at him. 14 The king and all the people who were with him reached the Jordan River[e] exhausted, and he rested there.
15 Now Absalom and all the Israelites entered Jerusalem, and Ahithophel was with him. 16 Then David’s friend Hushai, who was from Erek, approached Absalom and said to him, “Long live the king! Long live the king!”
17 But Absalom said to Hushai, “Is this how you show loyal love to your friend? Why didn’t you go with him?”
18 “No,” Hushai replied to Absalom, “I will belong to the one chosen by the Lord, by this people, and by all Israel, and I will stay with him. 19 What’s more, whom should I serve if not David’s son? I served your father, and so I will serve you in the same way.”
20 Then Absalom said to Ahithophel, “Give your advice then. What should we do?”
21 “Have sex with your father’s secondary wives—the ones he left to take care of the palace,” Ahithophel told Absalom. “Then all Israel will hear that you have alienated yourself from your father, and everyone who supports you will be encouraged.”
22 So they set up a tent for Absalom on the roof, and he had sex with his father’s secondary wives in plain sight before all Israel. (23 Now in those days, the advice Ahithophel gave was like asking for a word from God. That’s why Ahithophel’s advice was valued by both David and Absalom.)
25 Meanwhile, Simon Peter was still standing with the guards, warming himself. They asked, “Aren’t you one of his disciples?”
Peter denied it, saying, “I’m not.”
26 A servant of the high priest, a relative of the one whose ear Peter had cut off, said to him, “Didn’t I see you in the garden with him?” 27 Peter denied it again, and immediately a rooster crowed.
28 The Jewish leaders led Jesus from Caiaphas to the Roman governor’s palace.[a] It was early in the morning. So that they could eat the Passover, the Jewish leaders wouldn’t enter the palace; entering the palace would have made them ritually impure.
29 So Pilate went out to them and asked, “What charge do you bring against this man?”
30 They answered, “If he had done nothing wrong, we wouldn’t have handed him over to you.”
31 Pilate responded, “Take him yourselves and judge him according to your Law.”
The Jewish leaders replied, “The Law doesn’t allow us to kill anyone.” (32 This was so that Jesus’ word might be fulfilled when he indicated how he was going to die.)
33 Pilate went back into the palace. He summoned Jesus and asked, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
34 Jesus answered, “Do you say this on your own or have others spoken to you about me?”
35 Pilate responded, “I’m not a Jew, am I? Your nation and its chief priests handed you over to me. What have you done?”
36 Jesus replied, “My kingdom doesn’t originate from this world. If it did, my guards would fight so that I wouldn’t have been arrested by the Jewish leaders. My kingdom isn’t from here.”
37 “So you are a king?” Pilate said.
Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. I was born and came into the world for this reason: to testify to the truth. Whoever accepts the truth listens to my voice.”
38 “What is truth?” Pilate asked.
After Pilate said this, he returned to the Jewish leaders and said, “I find no grounds for any charge against him. 39 You have a custom that I release one prisoner for you at Passover. Do you want me to release for you the king of the Jews?”
40 They shouted, “Not this man! Give us Barabbas!” (Barabbas was an outlaw.)
19 Then Pilate had Jesus taken and whipped. 2 The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head, and dressed him in a purple robe. 3 Over and over they went up to him and said, “Greetings, king of the Jews!” And they slapped him in the face.
4 Pilate came out of the palace again and said to the Jewish leaders, “Look! I’m bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no grounds for a charge against him.” 5 When Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe, Pilate said to them, “Here’s the man.”
6 When the chief priests and their deputies saw him, they shouted out, “Crucify, crucify!”
Pilate told them, “You take him and crucify him. I don’t find any grounds for a charge against him.”
7 The Jewish leaders replied, “We have a Law, and according to this Law he ought to die because he made himself out to be God’s Son.”
8 When Pilate heard this word, he was even more afraid. 9 He went back into the residence and spoke to Jesus, “Where are you from?” Jesus didn’t answer. 10 So Pilate said, “You won’t speak to me? Don’t you know that I have authority to release you and also to crucify you?”
11 Jesus replied, “You would have no authority over me if it had not been given to you from above. That’s why the one who handed me over to you has the greater sin.” 12 From that moment on, Pilate wanted to release Jesus.
However, the Jewish leaders cried out, saying, “If you release this man, you aren’t a friend of the emperor! Anyone who makes himself out to be a king opposes the emperor!”
13 When Pilate heard these words, he led Jesus out and seated him on the judge’s bench at the place called Stone Pavement (in Aramaic, Gabbatha). 14 It was about noon on the Preparation Day for the Passover. Pilate said to the Jewish leaders, “Here’s your king.”
15 The Jewish leaders cried out, “Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!”
Pilate responded, “What? Do you want me to crucify your king?”
“We have no king except the emperor,” the chief priests answered. 16 Then Pilate handed Jesus over to be crucified.
The soldiers took Jesus prisoner. 17 Carrying his cross by himself, he went out to a place called Skull Place (in Aramaic, Golgotha). 18 That’s where they crucified him—and two others with him, one on each side and Jesus in the middle. 19 Pilate had a public notice written and posted on the cross. It read “Jesus the Nazarene, the king of the Jews.” 20 Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city and it was written in Aramaic, Latin, and Greek. 21 Therefore, the Jewish chief priests complained to Pilate, “Don’t write, ‘The king of the Jews’ but ‘This man said, “I am the king of the Jews.”’”
22 Pilate answered, “What I’ve written, I’ve written.”
113 I hate fickle people,
but I love your Instruction.
114 You are my shelter and my shield—
I wait for your promise.
115 Get away from me, you evildoers;
I want to guard my God’s commandments!
116 Sustain me according to your word so I can live!
Don’t let me be put to shame because of hope.
117 Support me so I can be saved
and so I can focus constantly on your statutes.
118 You discard everyone who strays from your statutes
because they are dishonest and false.
119 You dispose of all the wicked people on earth like waste—
that’s why I love your laws.
120 My body shudders because I fear you;
I’m in awe of your rules.
121 I’ve done what is just and right.
Don’t just hand me over to my oppressors.
122 Guarantee good things for your servant.
Please don’t let the arrogant oppress me.
123 My eyes are worn out looking for your saving help—
looking for your word that will set things right.
124 Act toward your servant according to your faithful love.
Teach me your statutes!
125 I’m your servant!
Help me understand so I can know your laws.
126 It is time for the Lord to do something!
Your Instruction has been broken.
127 But I love your commandments
more than gold, even more than pure gold.
128 That’s why I walk straight by every single one of your precepts.
That’s why I hate every false path.
10 A king’s speech is like an oracle;
in a judgment, one can’t go against his words.
11 Honest balances and scales are the Lord’s;
all the weights in the bag are his doing.