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2 Samuel 10:1–19

David Defeats the Ammonites

10:1–19pp—1Ch 19:1–19

10 In the course of time, the king of the Ammonites died, and his son Hanun succeeded him as king. David thought, “I will show kindness to Hanun son of Nahash,t just as his father showed kindness to me.” So David sent a delegation to express his sympathy to Hanun concerning his father.

When David’s men came to the land of the Ammonites, the Ammonite commanders said to Hanun their lord, “Do you think David is honoring your father by sending envoys to you to express sympathy? Hasn’t David sent them to you only to explore the city and spy it outu and overthrow it?” So Hanun seized David’s envoys, shaved off half of each man’s beard,v cut off their garments at the buttocks,w and sent them away.

When David was told about this, he sent messengers to meet the men, for they were greatly humiliated. The king said, “Stay at Jericho till your beards have grown, and then come back.”

When the Ammonites realized that they had become obnoxiousx to David, they hired twenty thousand Arameany foot soldiers from Beth Rehobz and Zobah,a as well as the king of Maakahb with a thousand men, and also twelve thousand men from Tob.c

On hearing this, David sent Joabd out with the entire army of fighting men. The Ammonites came out and drew up in battle formation at the entrance of their city gate, while the Arameans of Zobah and Rehob and the men of Tob and Maakah were by themselves in the open country.

Joab saw that there were battle lines in front of him and behind him; so he selected some of the best troops in Israel and deployed them against the Arameans. 10 He put the rest of the men under the command of Abishaie his brother and deployed them against the Ammonites. 11 Joab said, “If the Arameans are too strong for me, then you are to come to my rescue; but if the Ammonites are too strong for you, then I will come to rescue you. 12 Be strong,f and let us fight bravely for our people and the cities of our God. The Lord will do what is good in his sight.”g

13 Then Joab and the troops with him advanced to fight the Arameans, and they fled before him. 14 When the Ammonitesh realized that the Arameans were fleeing, they fled before Abishai and went inside the city. So Joab returned from fighting the Ammonites and came to Jerusalem.

15 After the Arameans saw that they had been routed by Israel, they regrouped. 16 Hadadezer had Arameans brought from beyond the Euphrates River; they went to Helam, with Shobak the commander of Hadadezer’s army leading them.

17 When David was told of this, he gathered all Israel, crossed the Jordan and went to Helam. The Arameans formed their battle lines to meet David and fought against him. 18 But they fled before Israel, and David killed seven hundred of their charioteers and forty thousand of their foot soldiers.a He also struck down Shobak the commander of their army, and he died there. 19 When all the kings who were vassals of Hadadezer saw that they had been routed by Israel, they made peace with the Israelites and became subjecti to them.

So the Arameansj were afraid to help the Ammonites anymore.

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2 Samuel 11:1–27

David and Bathsheba

11 In the spring,k at the time when kings go off to war, David sent Joabl out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army.m They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah.n But David remained in Jerusalem.

One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roofo of the palace. From the roof he sawp a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, “She is Bathsheba,q the daughter of Eliamr and the wife of Uriahs the Hittite.” Then David sent messengers to get her.t She came to him, and he sleptu with her. (Now she was purifying herself from her monthly uncleanness.)v Then she went back home. The woman conceived and sent word to David, saying, “I am pregnant.”

So David sent this word to Joab: “Send me Uriahw the Hittite.” And Joab sent him to David. When Uriah came to him, David asked him how Joab was, how the soldiers were and how the war was going. Then David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and wash your feet.”x So Uriah left the palace, and a gift from the king was sent after him. But Uriah slept at the entrance to the palace with all his master’s servants and did not go down to his house.

10 David was told, “Uriah did not go home.” So he asked Uriah, “Haven’t you just come from a military campaign? Why didn’t you go home?”

11 Uriah said to David, “The arky and Israel and Judah are staying in tents,a and my commander Joab and my lord’s men are camped in the open country. How could I go to my house to eat and drink and make lovez to my wife? As surely as you live, I will not do such a thing!”

12 Then David said to him, “Stay here one more day, and tomorrow I will send you back.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next. 13 At David’s invitation, he ate and drank with him, and David made him drunk. But in the evening Uriah went out to sleep on his mat among his master’s servants; he did not go home.

14 In the morning David wrote a lettera to Joab and sent it with Uriah. 15 In it he wrote, “Put Uriah out in front where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck downb and die.c

16 So while Joab had the city under siege, he put Uriah at a place where he knew the strongest defenders were. 17 When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David’s army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died.

18 Joab sent David a full account of the battle. 19 He instructed the messenger: “When you have finished giving the king this account of the battle, 20 the king’s anger may flare up, and he may ask you, ‘Why did you get so close to the city to fight? Didn’t you know they would shoot arrows from the wall? 21 Who killed Abimelekd son of Jerub-Beshethb? Didn’t a woman drop an upper millstone on him from the wall,e so that he died in Thebez? Why did you get so close to the wall?’ If he asks you this, then say to him, ‘Moreover, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.’ ”

22 The messenger set out, and when he arrived he told David everything Joab had sent him to say. 23 The messenger said to David, “The men overpowered us and came out against us in the open, but we drove them back to the entrance of the city gate. 24 Then the archers shot arrows at your servants from the wall, and some of the king’s men died. …

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2 Samuel 12:1–31

Nathan Rebukes David

11:1; 12:29–31pp—1Ch 20:1–3

12 The Lord sent Nathanh to David.i When he came to him,j he said, “There were two men in a certain town, one rich and the other poor. The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle, but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.

“Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it for the one who had come to him.”

Davidk burned with angerl against the manm and said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives,n the man who did this must die! He must pay for that lamb four times over,o because he did such a thing and had no pity.”

Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man!p This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘I anointedq your king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. I gave your master’s house to you,s and your master’s wives into your arms. I gave you all Israel and Judah. And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more. Why did you despiset the word of the Lord by doing what is evil in his eyes? You struck downu Uriahv the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own. You killedw him with the sword of the Ammonites. 10 Now, therefore, the swordx will never depart from your house, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your own.’

11 “This is what the Lord says: ‘Out of your own householdy I am going to bring calamity on you.z Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will sleep with your wives in broad daylight.a 12 You did it in secret,b but I will do this thing in broad daylightc before all Israel.’ ”

13 Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinnedd against the Lord.”

Nathan replied, “The Lord has taken awaye your sin.f You are not going to die.g 14 But because by doing this you have shown utter contempt fora the Lord,h the son born to you will die.”

15 After Nathan had gone home, the Lord strucki the child that Uriah’s wife had borne to David, and he became ill. 16 David pleaded with God for the child. He fasted and spent the nights lyingj in sackclothb on the ground. 17 The elders of his household stood beside him to get him up from the ground, but he refused,k and he would not eat any food with them.l

18 On the seventh day the child died. David’s attendants were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they thought, “While the child was still living, he wouldn’t listen to us when we spoke to him. How can we now tell him the child is dead? He may do something desperate.”

19 David noticed that his attendants were whispering among themselves, and he realized the child was dead. “Is the child dead?” he asked.

“Yes,” they replied, “he is dead.”

20 Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed,m put on lotions and changed his clothes,n he went into the house of the Lord and worshiped. Then he went to his own house, and at his request they served him food, and he ate.

21 His attendants …

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