David mustered the men who were with him and appointed over them commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds.
David sent the troops out1--a third under the command of Joab, a third under Joab's brother Abishai2 son of Zeruiah, and a third under Ittai3 the Gittite. The king told the troops, "I myself will surely march out with you."
But the men said, "You must not go out; if we are forced to flee, they won't care about us. Even if half of us die, they won't care; but you are worth ten4 thousand of us.a It would be better now for you to give us support from the city."5