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Abner Defects to David’s Camp

3:6 As the war continued between the house of Saul and the house of David, Abner was becoming more influential4 in the house of Saul. 3:7 Now Saul had a concubine named Rizpah daughter of Aiah. Ish-bosheth5 said to Abner, “Why did you have sexual relations with6 my father’s concubine?”7

3:8 These words of Ish-bosheth really angered Abner and he said, “Am I the head of a dog that belongs to Judah? This very day I am demonstrating8 loyalty to the house of Saul your father and to his relatives9 and his friends! I have not betrayed you into the hand of David. Yet you have accused me of sinning with this woman today!10 3:9 God will severely judge Abner11 if I do not do for David exactly what the Lord has promised him,12 3:10 namely, to transfer the kingdom from the house of Saul and to establish the throne of David over Israel and over Judah all the way from Dan to Beer Sheba!” 3:11 Ish-bosheth13 was unable to answer Abner with even a single word because he was afraid of him.

3:12 Then Abner sent messengers14 to David saying, “To whom does the land belong? Make an agreement15 with me, and I will do whatever I can16 to cause all Israel to turn to you.” 3:13 So David said, “Good! I will make an agreement with you. I ask only one thing from you. You will not see my face unless you bring Saul’s daughter Michal when you come to visit me.”17

3:14 David sent messengers to Ish-bosheth son of Saul with this demand:18 “Give me my wife Michal whom I acquired19 for a hundred Philistine foreskins.” 3:15 So Ish-bosheth took her20 from her husband Paltiel21 son of Laish. 3:16 Her husband went along behind her, weeping all the way to Bahurim. Finally Abner said to him, “Go back!”22 So he returned home.

3:17 Abner advised23 the elders of Israel, “Previously you were wanting David to be your king.24 3:18 Act now! For the Lord has said to David, ‘By the hand of my servant David I will save25 my people Israel from26 the Philistines and from all their enemies.’ ”

3:19 Then Abner spoke privately27 with the Benjaminites. Abner also went to Hebron to inform David privately28 of all that Israel and the entire house of Benjamin had agreed to.29 3:20 When Abner, accompanied by twenty men, came to David in Hebron, David prepared a banquet for Abner and the men who were with him. 3:21 Abner said to David, “Let me leave so that I may go and gather all Israel to my lord the king so that they may make an agreement30 with you. Then you will rule over all that you desire.” So David sent Abner away, and he left in peace.


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