And Davidnumbered the people that were with him, and setcaptains of thousands and captains of hundreds over them.
And David sent forth a third part of the people under the hand of Joab, and a third part under the hand of Abishai the son of Zeruiah,Joab'sbrother, and a third part under the hand of Ittai the Gittite. And the kingsaid unto the people, I will surely go forth with you myself also.
But the peopleanswered , Thou shalt not go forth : for if we fleeaway , they will not carea for us; neither if half of us die , will they care for us: but now thou art worthtenthousand of us: therefore now it is better that thou succour us out of the city.4
And the kingsaid unto them, What seemeth you best I will do . And the kingstood by the gateside, and all the people came out by hundreds and by thousands.5
And the kingcommandedJoab and Abishai and Ittai,saying , Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom. And all the peopleheard when the king gave all the captainschargeconcerningAbsalom.6
So the people went out into the fieldagainstIsrael: and the battle was in the wood of Ephraim;7
Where the people of Israel were slainbefore the servants of David, and there was there a greatslaughter that day of twentythousand men.
For the battle was there scattered over the face of all the country: and the wooddevouredbmorepeople that day than the sworddevoured .
And Absalommet the servantsofDavid. And Absalomrode upon a mule, and the mulewent under the thick boughs of a greatoak, and his head caught hold of the oak, and he was taken up between the heaven and the earth; and the mule that was under him went away .
And a certainmansaw it, and toldJoab, and said , Behold, I sawAbsalomhanged in an oak.11
And Joabsaid unto the man that told him, And, behold, thou sawest him, and why didst thou not smite him there to the ground? and I would have given thee ten shekels of silver, and agirdle.12
And the mansaid unto Joab,Though I should receivec a thousand shekels of silver in mine hand, yet would I not put forth mine hand against the king'sson: for in our hearing the kingcharged thee and Abishai and Ittai,saying , Beware that none touch the young manAbsalom.13Otherwise I should have wroughtfalsehood against mine own life: for there is no matterhid from the king, and thou thyself wouldest have set thyself against me.
Then saidJoab, I may not tarry thus with thee. And he tookthreedarts in his hand, and thrust them through the heart of Absalom, while he was yet alive in the midst of the oak.15
And ten young men that bareJoab'sarmour compassed about and smoteAbsalom, and slew him.
And Joabblew the trumpet, and the peoplereturned from pursuingafterIsrael: for Joab held back the people.17
And they tookAbsalom, and cast him into a greatpit in the wood, and laid a verygreatheap of stones upon him: and all Israelfled every one to his tent.18
Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and reared up for himself a pillar, which is in the king'sdale: for he said , I have no son to keep my name in remembrance : and he called the pillar after his own name: and it is called unto this day,Absalom'splace.19
Then saidAhimaaz the son of Zadok, Let me now run , and bear the kingtidings , how that the LORD hath avengedd him of his enemies .
And Joabsaid unto him, Thou shalt not bear tidings this day, but thou shalt bear tidingsanotherday: but this day thou shalt bear no tidings , because the king'sson is dead .
Then saidJoab to Cushi,Gotell the king what thou hast seen . And Cushibowed himself unto Joab, and ran .
Then saidAhimaaz the son of Zadok yet again to Joab, But howsoever,e let me, I pray thee, also runafterCushi. And Joabsaid , Wherefore wilt thou run , my son, seeing that thou hast no tidingsready ?
But howsoever, said he, let me run . And he said unto him, Run . Then Ahimaazran by the way of the plain, and overranCushi.24
And Davidsat between the twogates: and the watchman went up to the roof over the gate unto the wall, and lifted up his eyes, and looked , and behold a manrunning alone.
And the watchmancried , and told the king. And the kingsaid , If he be alone, there is tidings in his mouth. And he cameapace , and drew near.26
And the watchmansawanothermanrunning : and the watchmancalled unto the porter, and said , Behold another manrunning alone. And the kingsaid , He also bringeth tidings .
And the watchmansaid , Me thinketh the running of the foremost is like the running of Ahimaaz the son of Zadok. And the kingsaid , He is a goodman, and cometh with goodtidings.28
And Ahimaazcalled , and said unto the king, All is well. And he fell down to the earth upon his face before the king, and said , Blessed be the LORD thy God, which hath delivered up the men that lifted up their hand against my lord the king.29
And the kingsaid , Is the young manAbsalomsafe? And Ahimaazanswered , When Joabsent the king'sservant, and me thy servant, I saw a greattumult, but I knew not what it was.
And the kingsaid unto him, Turn aside , and standhere. And he turned aside , and stood still .
And, behold, Cushicame ; and Cushisaid , Tidings ,f my lord the king: for the LORD hath avenged thee this day of all them that rose up against thee.
And the kingsaid unto Cushi, Is the young manAbsalomsafe? And Cushianswered , The enemies of my lord the king, and all that rise against thee to do thee hurt, be as that young man is.
And the king was much moved , and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept : and as he went , thus he said , O my sonAbsalom, my son, my sonAbsalom! would God I had died for thee , O Absalom, my son, my son!