April 9

2 Samuel 11:1 — 13:22


11 And it came about at the return of the year, at the time that kings sally forth, that David proceeded to send Joab and his servants with him and all Israel, that they might bring the sons of Ammon to ruin and lay siege to Rabbah, while David was dwelling in Jerusalem.

2 And it came about at the time of evening that David proceeded to rise from his bed and walk about on the rooftop of the king’s house; and from the rooftop he caught sight of a woman bathing herself, and the woman was very good in appearance. 3 Then David sent and inquired about the woman and someone said: “Is this not Bath-sheba the daughter of Eliam the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” 4 After that David sent messengers that he might take her. So she came in to him and he lay down with her, while she was sanctifying herself from her uncleanness. Later she returned to her house.

5 And the woman became pregnant. Consequently she sent and told David and said: “I am pregnant.” 6 At this David sent to Joab, saying: “Send to me Uriah the Hittite.” So Joab sent Uriah to David. 7 When Uriah came to him, David began to ask how Joab was getting along and how the people were getting along and how the war was getting along. 8 Finally David said to Uriah: “Go down to your house and bathe your feet.” Accordingly Uriah went out from the king’s house, and the king’s courtesy gift went out following him. 9 However, Uriah lay down at the entrance of the king’s house with all the other servants of his lord, and he did not go down to his own house. 10 So they told David, saying: “Uriah did not go down to his own house.” Upon that David said to Uriah: “It is from a journey that you have come in, is it not? Why have you not gone down to your own house?” 11 At this Uriah said to David: “The Ark and Israel and Judah are dwelling in booths, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping on the face of the field, and I—shall I go into my own house to eat and drink and to lie down with my wife? As you are living and as your soul is living, I shall not do this thing!”

12 Then David said to Uriah: “Dwell here also today, and tomorrow I shall send you away.” Therefore Uriah kept dwelling in Jerusalem on that day and the day following. 13 Further, David called him that he might eat before him and drink. So he got him drunk. Nevertheless, he went out in the evening to lie down on his bed with the servants of his lord, and to his own house he did not go down. 14 And it came about in the morning that David proceeded to write a letter to Joab and send it by the hand of Uriah. 15 So he wrote in the letter, saying: “PUT Uriah in front of the heaviest battle charges, and YOU men must retreat from behind him, and he must be struck down and die.”

16 And it came about that while Joab was keeping guard over the city he kept Uriah put in the place where he knew that there were valiant men. 17 When the men of the city came on out and went fighting against Joab, then some of the people, the servants of David, fell and Uriah the Hittite also died. 18 Joab now sent that he might report to David all the matters of the war. 19 And he went on to command the messenger, saying: “As soon as you finish speaking to the king about all the matters of the war, 20 then it must occur that if the rage of the king comes up and he does say to you, ‘Why did YOU have to go so near to the city to fight? Did YOU men not know that they would shoot from on top of the wall? 21 Who was it that struck down Abimelech the son of Jerubbesheth? Was it not a woman that pitched an upper millstone upon him from on top of the wall so that he died at Thebez? Why did YOU men have to go so close to the wall?’ you must also say, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite died too.’”

22 So the messenger went and came and told David all about which Joab had sent him. 23 And the messenger went on to say to David: “The men proved superior to us, so that they came out against us into the field; but we kept pressing them right up to the entrance of the gate. 24 And the shooters kept shooting at your servants from on top of the wall, so that some of the servants of the king died; and your servant Uriah the Hittite also died.” 25 At that David said to the messenger: “This is what you will say to Joab, ‘Do not let this matter appear bad in your eyes, for the sword eats up one as well as another. Intensify your battle against the city and throw it down.’ And encourage him.”

26 And the wife of Uriah got to hear that Uriah her husband had died, and she began to wail over her owner. 27 When the mourning period was past, David immediately sent and took her home to his house, and she came to be his wife. In time she bore to him a son, but the thing that David had done appeared bad in the eyes of Jehovah.

12 And Jehovah proceeded to send Nathan to David. So he came in to him and said to him: “There were two men that happened to be in one city, the one rich and the other of little means. 2 The rich man happened to have very many sheep and cattle; 3 but the man of little means had nothing but one female lamb, a small one, that he had bought. And he was preserving it alive, and it was growing up with him and with his sons, all together. From his morsel it would eat, and from his cup it would drink, and in his bosom it would lie, and it came to be as a daughter to him. 4 After a while a visitor came to the rich man, but he spared taking some from his own sheep and his own cattle to get such ready for the traveler that had come in to him. So he took the female lamb of the man of little means and got it ready for the man that had come in to him.”

5 At this David’s anger grew very hot against the man, so that he said to Nathan: “As Jehovah is living, the man doing this deserves to die! 6 And for the female lamb he should make compensation with four, as a consequence of the fact that he has done this thing and because he did not have compassion.”

7 Then Nathan said to David: “You yourself are the man! This is what Jehovah the God of Israel has said, ‘I myself anointed you as king over Israel, and I myself delivered you out of the hand of Saul. 8 And I was willing to give you the house of your lord and the wives of your lord into your bosom, and to give you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if it were not enough, I was willing to add to you things like these as well as other things. 9 Why did you despise the word of Jehovah by doing what is bad in his eyes? Uriah the Hittite you struck down with the sword, and his wife you took as your wife, and him you killed by the sword of the sons of Ammon. 10 And now a sword will not depart from your own house to time indefinite, as a consequence of the fact that you despised me so that you took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to become your wife.’ 11 This is what Jehovah has said, ‘Here I am raising up against you calamity out of your own house; and I will take your wives under your own eyes and give them to your fellowman, and he will certainly lie down with your wives under the eyes of this sun. 12 Whereas you yourself acted in secret, I, for my part, shall do this thing in front of all Israel and in front of the sun.’”

13 David now said to Nathan: “I have sinned against Jehovah.” At this Nathan said to David: “Jehovah, in turn, does let your sin pass by. You will not die. 14 Notwithstanding this, because you have unquestionably treated Jehovah with disrespect by this thing, also the son himself, just born to you, will positively die.”

15 Then Nathan went to his own house.

And Jehovah proceeded to deal a blow to the child that the wife of Uriah had borne to David so that it took sick. 16 And David began to seek the [true] God in behalf of the boy, and David went on a strict fast and came in and spent the night and lay down on the earth. 17 So the older men of his house stood up over him to raise him up from the earth, but he did not consent and did not take bread in company with them. 18 And it came about on the seventh day that the child gradually died. And the servants of David were afraid to tell him that the child had died; for they said: “Look! While the child continued alive we did speak to him, and he did not listen to our voice; so how can we say to him, ‘The child has died’? Then he will certainly do something bad.”

19 When David got to see that his servants were whispering together, David began to discern that the child had died. So David said to his servants: “Has the child died?” To this they said: “He has died.” 20 Then David got up from the earth and washed and rubbed himself with oil and changed his mantles and came to the house of Jehovah and prostrated himself; after which he came into his own house and asked, and they promptly set bread before him and he began to eat. 21 Consequently his servants said to him: “What does this thing mean that you have done? For the sake of the child while alive you fasted and kept weeping; and just as soon as the child had died you got up and began to eat bread.” 22 To this he said: “While the child was yet alive I did fast and I kept weeping, because I said to myself, ‘Who is there knowing whether Jehovah may show me favor, and the child will certainly live?’ 23 Now that he has died, why is it I am fasting? Am I able to bring him back again? I am going to him, but, as for him, he will not return to me.”

24 And David began to comfort Bath-sheba his wife. Further, he came in to her and lay down with her. In time she bore a son, and his name came to be called Solomon. And Jehovah himself did love him. 25 So he sent by means of Nathan the prophet and called his name Jedidiah, for the sake of Jehovah.

26 And Joab continued to fight against Rabbah of the sons of Ammon and got to capture the city of the kingdom. 27 So Joab sent messengers to David and said: “I have fought against Rabbah. I have also captured the city of waters. 28 And now gather the rest of the people and encamp against the city, and capture it; that I myself may not be the one to capture the city, and my name should not have to be called upon it.”

29 Accordingly David gathered all the people and went to Rabbah and fought against it and captured it. 30 And he got to take the crown of Malcam off its head, the weight of which was a talent of gold, along with precious stones; and it came to be upon David’s head. And the spoil of the city that he brought out was very much. 31 And the people that were in it, he brought out that he might put them at sawing stones and at sharp instruments of iron and at axes of iron, and he made them serve at brickmaking. And that was the way he proceeded to do to all the cities of the sons of Ammon. Finally David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.

13 And it came about after such things that Absalom the son of David had a beautiful sister whose name was Tamar, and Amnon the son of David fell in love with her. 2 And it was so distressing to Amnon that he felt sick on account of Tamar his sister, because she was a virgin, and it was difficult in the eyes of Amnon to do anything at all to her. 3 Now Amnon had a companion whose name was Jehonadab, the son of Shimeah, David’s brother; and Jehonadab was a very wise man. 4 So he said to him: “Why are you, the son of the king, so downcast as this, morning by morning? Will you not tell me?” At this Amnon said to him: “With Tamar the sister of Absalom my brother I am in love.” 5 Upon that Jehonadab said to him: “Lie down on your bed and play sick. And your father will certainly come to see you, and you must say to him, ‘Please, let Tamar my sister come in and give me bread as a patient, and she will have to make the bread of consolation under my eyes in order that I may see it, and I shall have to eat from her hand.’”

6 Accordingly Amnon lay down and played sick, and so the king came in to see him. Then Amnon said to the king: “Please, let Tamar my sister come in and bake two heart-shaped cakes under my eyes, that I may take bread as a patient from her hand.” 7 At that David sent to Tamar at the house, saying: “Go, please, to the house of Amnon your brother and make the bread of consolation for him.” 8 So Tamar went to the house of Amnon her brother while he was lying down. Then she took the flour dough and kneaded it and made the cakes under his eyes and cooked the heart-shaped cakes. 9 Finally she took the deep pan and poured it out before him, but Amnon refused to eat and said: “HAVE everybody go out from me!” Then everybody went out from him.

10 Amnon now said to Tamar: “Bring the bread of consolation to the interior room, that I may take it as a patient from your hand.” So Tamar took the heart-shaped cakes that she had made and brought them in to Amnon her brother in the interior room. 11 When she came near to him for him to eat, he at once grabbed hold of her and said to her: “Come, lie down with me, my sister.” 12 However, she said to him: “No, my brother! Do not humiliate me; for it is not usual to do that way in Israel. Do not do this disgraceful folly. 13 And I—where shall I cause my reproach to go? And you—you will become like one of the senseless men in Israel. And now speak, please, to the king; for he will not withhold me from you.” 14 And he did not consent to listen to her voice, but used strength superior to hers and humiliated her and lay down with her. 15 And Amnon began hating her with a very great hatred, because the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her, so that Amnon said to her: “Get up, go away!” 16 At this she said to him: “No, my brother; for this badness in sending me away is greater than the other that you have done with me!” And he did not consent to listen to her.

17 With that he called his attendant who waited upon him and said: “Send this person away from me, please, to the outside, and lock the door behind her.” 18 (Now upon her there was a striped robe; for that was the way the daughters of the king, the virgins, used to dress with sleeveless coats.) So his waiter proceeded to lead her clear outside, and he locked the door behind her. 19 Then Tamar placed ashes upon her head, and the striped robe that was upon her she ripped apart; and she kept her hands put upon her head and went walking away, crying out as she walked.

20 At this Absalom her brother said to her: “Was it Amnon your brother that happened to be with you? And now, my sister, keep silent. He is your brother. Do not set your heart on this matter.” And Tamar began to dwell, while being kept from association [with others], at the house of Absalom her brother. 21 And King David himself heard about all these things, and he became very angry. 22 And Absalom did not speak with Amnon either bad or good; for Absalom hated Amnon over the fact that he had humiliated Tamar his sister.