April 7

2 Samuel 3:17 — 6:23


17 Meanwhile there had come to be communication by Abner with the older men of Israel, saying: “Both yesterday and previously YOU proved yourselves seeking David as king over YOU. 18 And now act, for Jehovah himself said to David, ‘By the hand of David my servant I shall save my people Israel from the hand of the Philistines and from the hand of all their enemies.’” 19 Then Abner also spoke in the ears of Benjamin, after which Abner also went to speak in the ears of David at Hebron all that was good in the eyes of Israel and in the eyes of the whole house of Benjamin.

20 When Abner came to David at Hebron, and with him twenty men, David proceeded to make a feast for Abner and for the men that were with him. 21 Then Abner said to David: “Let me rise up and go and collect all Israel together to my lord the king, that they may conclude a covenant with you, and you will certainly become king over all that your soul craves.” So David sent Abner off, and he got on his way in peace.

22 And here David’s servants and Joab were coming from a raid, and the spoil that they brought with them was abundant. As for Abner, he was not with David in Hebron, for he had sent him off, and he was on his way in peace. 23 And Joab and all the army that was with him came in, and they now reported to Joab, saying: “Abner the son of Ner came to the king, and he proceeded to send him off, and he is on his way in peace.” 24 So Joab went in to the king and said: “What have you done? Look! Abner has come to you. Why was it that you sent him off so that he successfully went away? 25 You well know Abner the son of Ner, that it was to fool you that he came and to get to know your going out and your coming in and to get to know everything that you are doing.”

26 With that Joab went out from David and sent messengers after Abner, and they then had him return from the cistern of Sirah; and David himself did not know of it. 27 When Abner returned to Hebron, Joab now led him aside inside the gate to speak with him quietly. However, there he struck him in the abdomen, so that he died because of the blood of Asahel his brother. 28 When David heard of it afterward, he at once said: “I and my kingdom, from the standpoint of Jehovah, are innocent for time indefinite of bloodguilt for Abner the son of Ner. 29 May it whirl back upon the head of Joab and upon the entire house of his father, and let there not be cut off from Joab’s house a man with a running discharge or a leper or a man taking hold of the twirling spindle or one falling by the sword or one in need of bread!” 30 As for Joab and Abishai his brother, they killed Abner over the fact that he had put Asahel their brother to death at Gibeon in the battle.

31 Then David said to Joab and all the people that were with him: “Rip YOUR garments apart and tie on sackcloth and wail before Abner.” Even King David was walking behind the couch. 32 And they had the burial of Abner in Hebron; and the king began to raise his voice and weep at Abner’s burial place, and all the people gave way to weeping. 33 And the king went on to chant over Abner and say:

      “As with the death of a senseless person should Abner die?

34 Your hands had not been bound ones,

And your feet had not been put into fetters of copper.

As one falling before the sons of unrighteousness you have fallen.”

At that all the people wept over him again.

35 Later all the people came to give David bread for consolation while it was yet that day, but David swore, saying: “So may God do to me and so may he add to it, if before the sun sets I shall taste bread or anything at all!” 36 And all the people themselves took notice, and it was good in their eyes. Like everything that the king did, it was in the eyes of all the people good. 37 And all the people and all Israel got to know on that day that it had not originated with the king to have Abner the son of Ner put to death. 38 And the king went on to say to his servants: “Do YOU not know that it is a prince and a great man that has fallen this day in Israel? 39 And I today am weak although anointed as king, and these men, the sons of Zeruiah, are too severe for me. May Jehovah repay the doer of what is bad according to his own badness.”

4 When the son of Saul heard that Abner had died in Hebron, then his hands became feeble and all the Israelites themselves were disturbed. 2 And there were two men, chiefs of the marauding bands, that happened to belong to the son of Saul, the name of the one being Baanah and the name of the other being Rechab, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, of the sons of Benjamin; for Beeroth, too, used to be counted as part of Benjamin. 3 And the Beerothites went running away to Gittaim, and they came to be alien residents there down to this day.

4 Now Jonathan, the son of Saul, had a son lame in the feet. Five years old he happened to be when the report about Saul and Jonathan came from Jezreel; and his nurse began to carry him and flee, but it came about that as she was running in panic to flee, he then had a fall and was lamed. And his name was Mephibosheth.

5 And the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, Rechab and Baanah, proceeded to go and come to the house of Ish-bosheth about when the day had heated up, as he was taking his noonday siesta. 6 And here they came into the middle of the house as men fetching wheat, and then struck him in the abdomen; and Rechab and Baanah his brother themselves escaped detection. 7 When they went into the house, he was lying upon his couch in his inner bedroom, and then they struck him so that they put him to death, after which they removed his head and took his head and walked on the road to the Arabah all night long. 8 Eventually they came bringing the head of Ish-bosheth to David at Hebron and said to the king: “Here is the head of Ish-bosheth the son of Saul your enemy who looked for your soul; but Jehovah gives to my lord the king revenge this day upon Saul and his offspring.”

9 However, David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, and said to them: “As Jehovah who redeemed my soul out of all distress is living, 10 when there was one reporting to me, saying, ‘Here Saul is dead,’ and he himself in his own eyes became like a bringer of good news, I, however, took hold of him and killed him in Ziklag when it was due [for me] to give him the messenger’s fee; 11 how much more so when wicked men themselves have killed a righteous man in his own house upon his bed? And now should I not require his blood from YOUR hands, and must I not clear YOU out of the earth?” 12 With that David commanded the young men and they killed them and cut off their hands and their feet and hanged them by the pool in Hebron; and the head of Ish-bosheth they took and then buried in the burial place of Abner in Hebron.

5 In time all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and said: “Look! We ourselves are your bone and your flesh. 2 Both yesterday and previously while Saul happened to be king over us, you yourself became the one leading Israel out and bringing it in. And Jehovah proceeded to say to you, ‘You yourself will shepherd my people Israel, and you yourself will become leader over Israel.’” 3 So all the older men of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David concluded a covenant with them in Hebron before Jehovah; after which they anointed David as king over Israel.

4 Thirty years old was David when he became king. For forty years he ruled as king. 5 In Hebron he ruled as king over Judah for seven years and six months; and in Jerusalem he ruled as king for thirty-three years over all Israel and Judah. 6 Consequently the king and his men went to Jerusalem against the Jebusites inhabiting the land, and they began to say to David: “You will not come in here, but the blind and the lame ones will certainly turn you away,” they thinking: “David will not come in here.” 7 Just the same, David proceeded to capture the stronghold of Zion, that is, the City of David. 8 So David said on that day: “Anyone striking the Jebusites, let him, by means of the water tunnel, make contact with both the lame and the blind, hateful to the soul of David!” That is why they say: “The blind one and the lame one will not come into the house.” 9 And David took up dwelling in the stronghold, and it came to be called the City of David; and David began to build all around from the Mound and inward. 10 Thus David went on getting greater and greater, and Jehovah the God of armies was with him.

11 And Hiram the king of Tyre proceeded to send messengers to David, and also cedar trees and workers in wood and workers in stone for walls, and they began to build a house for David. 12 And David came to know that Jehovah had firmly established him as king over Israel and that he had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.

13 Meantime, David went on taking more concubines and wives out of Jerusalem after he came from Hebron; and more sons and daughters continued to be born to David. 14 And these are the names of those born to him in Jerusalem: Shammua and Shobab and Nathan and Solomon, 15 and Ibhar and Elishua and Nepheg and Japhia, 16 and Elishama and Eliada and Eliphelet.

17 And the Philistines got to hear that they had anointed David as king over Israel. At that all the Philistines came up to look for David. When David heard of it, then he went down to the place hard to approach. 18 And the Philistines, for their part, came in and kept tramping about in the low plain of Rephaim. 19 And David began to inquire of Jehovah, saying: “Shall I go up against the Philistines? Will you give them into my hand?” At this Jehovah said to David: “Go up, for I shall without fail give the Philistines into your hands.” 20 So David came to Baal-perazim, and David got to strike them down there. At that he said: “Jehovah has broken through my enemies ahead of me, like a gap made by waters.” That is why he called the name of that place Baal-perazim. 21 Consequently they left their idols there, and so David and his men took them away.

22 Later the Philistines came up once again and tramped about in the low plain of Rephaim. 23 At that David inquired of Jehovah, but he said: “You must not go up. Go around to the rear of them, and you must come against them in front of the baca bushes. 24 And let it occur that, when you hear the sound of a marching in the tops of the baca bushes, at that time you act with decision, because at that time Jehovah will have gone out ahead of you to strike down the camp of the Philistines.” 25 Accordingly David did that way, just as Jehovah had commanded him, and he went striking down the Philistines from Geba to as far as Gezer.

6 And David proceeded again to gather all the choice men in Israel, thirty thousand. 2 Then David and all the people that were with him rose up and went to Baale-judah to bring up from there the ark of the [true] God, where a name is called on, the name of Jehovah of armies, sitting on the cherubs. 3 However, they had the ark of the [true] God ride upon a new wagon, that they might carry it from the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill; and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, were leading the new wagon.

4 So they carried it from Abinadab’s house, which was on the hill—with the ark of the [true] God; and Ahio was walking ahead of the Ark. 5 And David and all the house of Israel were celebrating before Jehovah with all sorts of instruments of juniper wood and with harps and with stringed instruments and with tambourines and with sistrums and with cymbals. 6 And they came gradually as far as the threshing floor of Nacon, and Uzzah now thrust [his hand] out to the ark of the [true] God and grabbed hold of it, for the cattle nearly caused an upset. 7 At that Jehovah’s anger blazed against Uzzah and the [true] God struck him down there for the irreverent act, so that he died there close by the ark of the [true] God. 8 And David became angry over the fact that Jehovah had broken through in a rupture against Uzzah, and that place came to be called Perez-uzzah down to this day. 9 And David became afraid of Jehovah on that day and began to say: “How will the ark of Jehovah come to me?” 10 And David was not willing to remove the ark of Jehovah to him at the City of David. So David had it carried aside to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite.

11 And the ark of Jehovah kept dwelling at the house of Obed-edom the Gittite three months; and Jehovah kept blessing Obed-edom and all his household. 12 Finally the report was made to King David, saying: “Jehovah has blessed the house of Obed-edom and all that is his on account of the ark of the [true] God.” At that David proceeded to go and bring the ark of the [true] God out of the house of Obed-edom up to the City of David with rejoicing. 13 And it came about that when the carriers of the ark of Jehovah had marched six steps, he immediately sacrificed a bull and a fatling.

14 And David was dancing around before Jehovah with all his power, all the while David being girded with an ephod of linen. 15 And David and all the house of Israel were bringing up the ark of Jehovah with joyful shouting and sound of horn. 16 And it occurred that when the ark of Jehovah came into the City of David, Michal, Saul’s daughter, herself looked down through the window and got to see King David leaping and dancing around before Jehovah; and she began to despise him in her heart. 17 So they brought the ark of Jehovah in and set it in its place inside the tent that David had pitched for it; after which David offered up burnt sacrifices and communion sacrifices before Jehovah. 18 When David was finished with offering up the burnt sacrifices and the communion sacrifices, he then blessed the people in the name of Jehovah of armies. 19 Further, he apportioned to all the people, to the whole crowd of Israel, man as well as woman, to each one a ring-shaped cake of bread and a date cake and a raisin cake, after which all the people went each to his own house.

20 David now returned to bless his own household, and Michal, Saul’s daughter, came on out to meet David and then said: “How glorious the king of Israel made himself today when he uncovered himself today to the eyes of the slave girls of his servants, just as one of the empty-headed men uncovers himself outright!” 21 At this David said to Michal: “It was before Jehovah, who chose me rather than your father and all his household to put me in command as leader over Jehovah’s people Israel, and I will celebrate before Jehovah. 22 And I will make myself even more lightly esteemed than this, and I will become low in my eyes; and with the slave girls whom you mentioned, with them I am determined to glorify myself.” 23 So, as regards Michal, Saul’s daughter, she came to have no child down to the day of her death.