The LORD sent Nathan1 to David.2 When he came to him,3 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."
David4 burned with anger5 against the man6 and said to Nathan, "As surely as the LORD lives,7 the man who did this deserves to die!
He must pay for that lamb four times over,8 because he did such a thing and had no pity."
Then Nathan said to David, "You are the man!9 This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'I anointed10 you11 king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul.
I gave your master's house to you,12 and your master's wives into your arms. I gave you the house of Israel and Judah. And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more.
Why did you despise13 the word of the LORD by doing what is evil in his eyes? You struck down14 Uriah15 the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own. You killed16 him with the sword of the Ammonites.
Now, therefore, the sword17 will never depart from your house, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your own.'
"This is what the LORD says: 'Out of your own household18 I am going to bring calamity upon you.19 Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will lie with your wives in broad daylight.2012
You did it in secret,21 but I will do this thing in broad daylight22 before all Israel.' "
Then David said to Nathan, "I have sinned23 against the LORD." Nathan replied, "The LORD has taken away24 your sin.25 You are not going to die.2614
But because by doing this you have made the enemies of the LORD show utter contempt,a27 the son born to you will die."
After Nathan had gone home, the LORD struck28 the child that Uriah's wife had borne to David, and he became ill.
David pleaded with God for the child. He fasted and went into his house and spent the nights lying29 on the ground.
The elders of his household stood beside him to get him up from the ground, but he refused,30 and he would not eat any food with them.3118
On the seventh day the child died. David's servants were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they thought, "While the child was still living, we spoke to David but he would not listen to us. How can we tell him the child is dead? He may do something desperate."
David noticed that his servants were whispering among themselves and he realized the child was dead. "Is the child dead?" he asked. "Yes," they replied, "he is dead."
Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed,32 put on lotions and changed his clothes,33 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.
His servants asked him, "Why are you acting this way? While the child was alive, you fasted and wept,34 but now that the child is dead, you get up and eat!"
He answered, "While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought, 'Who knows?35 The LORD may be gracious to me and let the child live.'3623
But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him,37 but he will not return to me."3824
Then David comforted his wife Bathsheba,39 and he went to her and lay with her. She gave birth to a son, and they named him Solomon.40 The LORD loved him;
and because the LORD loved him, he sent word through Nathan the prophet to name him Jedidiah.b4126
Meanwhile Joab fought against Rabbah42 of the Ammonites and captured the royal citadel.
Joab then sent messengers to David, saying, "I have fought against Rabbah and taken its water supply.
Now muster the rest of the troops and besiege the city and capture it. Otherwise I will take the city, and it will be named after me."
So David mustered the entire army and went to Rabbah, and attacked and captured it.
He took the crown43 from the head of their kingc--its weight was a talentd of gold, and it was set with precious stones--and it was placed on David's head. He took a great quantity of plunder from the city
and brought out the people who were there, consigning them to labor with saws and with iron picks and axes, and he made them work at brickmaking.e He did this to all the Ammonite44 towns. Then David and his entire army returned to Jerusalem.