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2 Samuel 9:1–20:26

David Cares for Mephibosheth

9 Then David said, “Is there still anyone who is left for the house of Saul that I may show loyal love to him for the sake of Jonathan?” Now Saul’s household had a servant whose name was Ziba, so they summoned him to David, and the king asked him, “Are you Ziba?” He said, “At your service!”a Then the king said, “But is there still anyone of Saul’s household that I may show the loyal love of God with him?” And Ziba said to the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan who is lame in the feet.” The king said to him, “Where is he?” And Ziba said to the king, “He is hereb in the house of Makir the son of Ammiel in Lo Debar.” So King David sent and brought him from the house of Makir the son of Ammiel from Lo Debar. So Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David. And he fell on his face and did obeisance. David said, “Mephibosheth,” and he said, “I am ready to serve you.”c Then David said to him, “Don’t be afraid, for I will certainly showd loyal love to you for the sake of Jonathan your father, and I will restore to you all the lands of Saul your father. And you shall always eat food at my table.” Then hee did obeisance and said, “What is your servant that you have paid attention to the dead dog like me?”

David summoned Ziba the servant of Saul and said to him, “All that was Saul’s and all his household I have given to the son of your master. 10 You shall till the land for him, you and your sons and your servants; you shall bring in the produce and it shall be food for the son of your master that he may eat. But Mephibosheth the son of your master may always eat food at my table.” (Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty slaves.) 11 Ziba said to the king, “According to all that my master the king commands his servant, so your servant will do.” So Mephibosheth was eating at his table as one of the sons of the king. 12 Now Mephibosheth had a young son whose name was Micah, and all of the dwelling of the household of Ziba became servants for Mephibosheth. 13 And Mephibosheth was living in Jerusalem, because he was continually eating at the table of the king, even though he was lame in both of his feet.

The Ammonites Refuse David’s Loyal Love

10 Afterwards the king of the Ammonites died,a and his son Hanun ruled in his place. David said, “I will show loyal love with Hanun, the son of Nahash, as his father showed loyal love with me.” So David sent to console him concerning his father, by the hand of his servants. And the servants of David came to the land of the Ammonites.b But the commanders of the Ammonitesc said to Hanun their master, “In your opinion,d is David honoring your father because he has sent condolences to you? Is it not in order to search the city, to spy it out, and to overthrow it that David sent his servants to you?” Then Hanun took the servants of David, and he shaved off half of their beards and cut their garments off in the middle up to their buttocks, then sent them away. When they told David, he sent to meet them, for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, “Remain in Jericho until your beards have grown, and then you can return.”

Israel Fights Ammon and Aram

When the Ammonitese saw that they had become odious to David, the Ammonitesf sent word and hired Aram Beth-Rehob and Aram-Zobah, twenty thousand infantry; and they also hired the king of Maacah, a thousand men, and the men of Tob, twelve thousand men. When David heard, he sent Joab and all the army of mighty warriors. The Ammonitesg came out and drew up a battle formationh at the entrance of the gate, but Aram-Zobah and Rehob and the men of Tob and Maacah were alone in the open field. When Joab saw that the battle was to be fought on two fronts,i he chose from all the members of the elite troops of Israel and lined them up for battlej to meet Aram. 10 The rest of the army he placed into the hand of his brother Abishai, who arranged them in battle linesk to meet the Ammonites.l 11 Then he said, “If Aram is stronger than I am, you must become my deliverer; but if the Ammonitesm are too strong for you, then I will come to rescue you. 12 Be strong, and let us strengthen ourselves for the sake of the people and for the sake of the cities of our God. May Yahweh do what is good in his eyes. 13 Joab and all the people who were with him moved forward into the battle against Aram, and they fled from before him. 14 When the Ammonitesn saw that Aram had fled, they fled from before Abishai and entered the city. Then Joab returned from fighting against the Ammoniteso and came to Jerusalem.

The Arameans Regroup for Attack

15 When the Arameans saw that they were defeated before Israel, they gathered themselves together. 16 Then Hadadezer sent and brought out the Arameans who were beyond the Euphrates, and they came to Helam. Now Shobach, the commander of the army of Hadadezer, was at their head.p 17 David was told, so he gathered all Israel and crossed over the Jordan and came to Helam. Aram arranged themselves in battle linesq to meet David, and they fought with him. 18 And Aram fled before Israel, and David killed from the Arameans seven hundred chariot teams and forty thousand horsemen. He struck down Shobach, the commander of his army, and he died there. 19 When all the kings, the servants of Hadadezer, saw that he had been defeated before Israel, they made peace with Israel and served them, and Aram was afraid to help the Ammonitesr any longer.

David Commits Adultery with Bathsheba

11 It came about in the spring,a at the time kingsb go out, David sent Joab and his servants with him and all of Israel. They ravaged all of the Ammonitesc and besieged Rabbah, but David was remaining in Jerusalem. It happened late one afternoond that David got up from his bed and walked about on the roof of the king’s house, and he saw a woman bathing on here roof. Now the woman was very beautiful.f David sent and inquired about the woman, and someone said, “Is this not Bathsheba the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” Then David sent messengers and took her, and she came to him, and he slept with her. (Now she had been purifying herself from her uncleanness.) And she returned to her house. The woman became pregnant, and she sent and told David, and she said, “I am pregnant.” So David sent to Joab, “Send Uriah the Hittite to me.” So Joab sent Uriah to David. Uriah came to him, and David asked how Joab and the army fared and how the war was going.g David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house, and wash your feet.” So Uriah went out from the king’s house, and a gift from the king went out after him. But Uriah slept at the entrance of the king’s house with all the servants of his master and did not go down to his house. 10 They told David, “Uriah did not go down to his house.” David said to Uriah, “Are you not coming from a journey? Why did you not go down to your house?” 11 Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are living in the booths; and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping on the surface of the open field; and I, shall I go to my house to eat and to drink and to sleep with my wife? By your life and the life of your soul, I surely will not do this thing.” 12 David said to Uriah, “Remain here today,h and tomorrow I will send you away.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem on that day and the next. 13 David invited him, and he ate and drank in his presence so that he became drunk,i and he went out in the evening to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but he did not go down to his house. 14 And it happened in the morning, David wrote a letter to Joab, and he sent it by the hand of Uriah. 15 He had written in the letter, “Put Uriah in the front, in the face of the fiercest fighting, then draw back from behind him so that he may be struck down and die.”

16 When Joab was besiegingj the city, he put Uriah toward the place which he knew there were valiant warriors.k 17 The men of the city came out and fought with Joab. Some from the army from the servants of David fell; Uriah the Hittite also died. 18 Joab sent and told David all of the news of the battle. 19 He instructed the messenger, saying, “As you are finishing to speak all the news of the battle to the king, 20 if the anger of the king rises and he says to you, ‘Why did you go near the city to fight? Did you not know that they would shoot from atop the wall? 21 Who killed Abimelech the son of Jerub-bosheth,l if not a woman who threw an upper millstone on him from atop the wall and he died at Thebez? Why did you go near the wall?’ Then you shall say, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite also died.’ ” 22 Then the messenger left, and he came and told David all that Joab had sent him to say. 23 The messenger said to David, “Because the men overpowered us,m the men came out to us in the field, but we forced them backn to the entrance of the gate. 24 The archers shot at your servant from atop the wall, and some of the servants of the king died; your servant Uriah the Hittite also died.” 25 Then David said to the messenger, “Thus you shall say to Joab, ‘Do not feel badly about this matter;o now one and then anotherp the sword will devour. Intensify your attack on the city and overthrow it.’ ” And he encouraged him. 26 When the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned over her husband. 27 When the mourning was over, David sent and brought her to his household, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing which David had done was evil in the eyes of Yahweh.

Nathan Reproves David

12 So Yahweh sent Nathan to David, and he came to him and said, “Two men were in a certain city; one was rich and the other was poor. The rich man had very many flocks and herds, but the poor man had nothing except for one small ewe lamb which he had bought. He had nurtured her, and she grew up with him and …

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