And Abimelech the son of Jerubbaalwent to Shechem unto his mother'sbrethren, and communed with them, and with all the family of the house of his mother'sfather,saying ,
2Speak , I pray you, in the ears of all the men of Shechem, Whether is bettera for you, either that all the sons of Jerubbaal, which are threescore and tenpersons,reign over you, or that onereign over you? remember also that I am your bone and your flesh.3
And his mother'sbrethrenspake of him in the ears of all the men of Shechem all these words: and their heartsinclined to followbAbimelech; for they said , He is our brother.4
And they gave him threescore and ten pieces of silver out of the house of Baalberith, wherewith Abimelechhiredvain and lightpersons, which followedhim.5
And he went unto his father'shouse at Ophrah, and slew his brethren the sons of Jerubbaal, being threescore and tenpersons, upon onestone: notwithstanding yet Jotham the youngestson of Jerubbaal was left ; for he hid himself.
And all the men of Shechem gathered together , and all the house of Millo , and went , and madeAbimelechking, by the plainc of the pillar that was in Shechem.7
And when they told it to Jotham, he went and stood in the top of mountGerizim, and lifted up his voice, and cried , and said unto them, Hearken unto me, ye men of Shechem, that God may hearken unto you.
The trees went forth on a time to anoint a king over them; and they said unto the olive tree,Reign thou over us.
But the olive treesaid unto them, Should I leave my fatness, wherewith by me they honourGod and man, and god to be promoted over the trees?10
And the treessaid to the fig tree,Come thou, and reign over us.
But the fig treesaid unto them, Should I forsake my sweetness, and my goodfruit, and go to be promoted over the trees?12
Then said the trees unto the vine,Come thou, and reign over us.
And the vinesaid unto them, Should I leave my wine, which cheerethGod and man, and go to be promoted over the trees?14
Then said all the trees unto the bramble,eCome thou, and reign over us.
And the bramblesaid unto the trees, If in truth ye anoint me king over you, then come and put your trust in my shadow: and if not, let fire come out of the bramble, and devour the cedars of Lebanon.16
Now therefore, if ye have donetruly and sincerely, in that ye have made Abimelechking , and if ye have dealtwell with Jerubbaal and his house, and have done unto him according to the deserving of his hands;17
(For my fatherfought for you, and adventuredf his lifefar, and delivered you out of the hand of Midian:18
And ye are risen up against my father'shouse this day, and have slain his sons, threescore and tenpersons, upon onestone, and have made Abimelech, the son of his maidservant,king over the men of Shechem, because he is your brother;)
If ye then have dealttruly and sincerely with Jerubbaal and with his house this day, then rejoice ye in Abimelech, and let him also rejoice in you:
But if not, let fire come out from Abimelech, and devour the men of Shechem, and the house of Millo ; and let fire come out from the men of Shechem, and from the house of Millo , and devourAbimelech.21
And Jotham ran away , and fled , and went to Beer, and dwelt there, for fear of Abimelech his brother.22
When Abimelech had reignedthreeyears over Israel,23
Then Godsent an evilspirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem; and the men of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech:24
That the cruelty done to the threescore and tensons of Jerubbaal might come , and their blood be laid upon Abimelech their brother, which slew them; and upon the men of Shechem, which aidedg him in the killing of his brethren.25
And the men of Shechemset liers in wait for him in the top of the mountains, and they robbed all that came along that way by them: and it was toldAbimelech.26
And Gaal the son of Ebedcame with his brethren, and went over to Shechem: and the men of Shechem put their confidence in him.
And they went out into the fields, and gathered their vineyards, and trode the grapes, and mademerry,h and went into the house of their god, and did eat and drink , and cursedAbimelech.28
And Gaal the son of Ebedsaid , Who is Abimelech, and who is Shechem, that we should serve him? is not he the son of Jerubbaal? and Zebul his officer?serve the men of Hamor the father of Shechem: for why should we serve him?
And would to God this people were under my hand! then would I removeAbimelech. And he said to Abimelech,Increase thine army, and come out .
And when Zebul the ruler of the cityheard the words of Gaal the son of Ebed, his anger was kindled .i31
And he sentmessengers unto Abimelechprivily,jsaying , Behold, Gaal the son of Ebed and his brethren be come to Shechem; and, behold, they fortify the city against thee.
Now therefore up by night, thou and the people that is with thee, and lie in wait in the field:33
And it shall be, that in the morning, as soon as the sun is up , thou shalt rise early , and set upon the city: and, behold, when he and the people that is with him come out against thee, then mayest thou do to them as thou shalt find occasion .
And Abimelech rose up , and all the people that were with him, by night, and they laid wait against Shechem in fourcompanies.35
And Gaal the son of Ebed went out , and stood in the entering of the gate of the city: and Abimelech rose up , and the people that were with him, from lying in wait.36
And when Gaalsaw the people, he said to Zebul, Behold, there comepeopledown from the top of the mountains. And Zebulsaid unto him, Thou seest the shadow of the mountains as if they were men.37
And Gaalspakeagain and said , See there comepeopledown by the middlek of the land, and anothercompanycome along by the plainofMeonenim .
Then saidZebul unto him, Where is now thy mouth, wherewith thou saidst , Who is Abimelech, that we should serve him? is not this the people that thou hast despised ? go out , I pray now, and fight with them.
And Gaal went outbefore the men of Shechem, and fought with Abimelech.40
And Abimelechchased him, and he fledbefore him, and many were overthrown and wounded, even unto the entering of the gate.41
And Abimelechdwelt at Arumah: and Zebul thrust outGaal and his brethren, that they should not dwell in Shechem.42
And it came to pass on the morrow, that the people went out into the field; and they toldAbimelech.43
And he took the people, and divided them into threecompanies, and laid wait in the field, and looked , and, behold, the people were come forth out of the city; and he rose up against them, and smote them.
And Abimelech, and the company that was with him, rushed forward , and stood in the entering of the gate of the city: and the two other companies ran upon all the people that were in the fields, and slew them.
And Abimelechfought against the city all that day; and he took the city, and slew the people that was therein, and beat down the city, and sowed it with salt.46
And when all the men of the tower of Shechemheard that, they entered into an hold of the house of the godBerith.47
And it was toldAbimelech, that all the men of the tower of Shechem were gathered together .
And Abimelech gat him up to mountZalmon, he and all the people that were with him; and Abimelechtook an axe in his hand, and cut down a bough from the trees, and took it, and laid it on his shoulder, and said unto the people that were with him, What ye have seen me do ,l make haste , and do as I have done.
And all the people likewise cut down every man his bough, and followedAbimelech, and put them to the hold, and set the hold on fire upon them; so that all the men of the tower of Shechemdied also, about a thousandmen and women.50
Then wentAbimelech to Thebez, and encamped against Thebez, and took it.
But there was a strongtowerwithin the city, and thither fled all the men and women, and all they of the city, and shut it to them, and gat them up to the top of the tower.52
And Abimelechcame unto the tower, and fought against it, and went hard unto the door of the tower to burn it with fire.53
And a certainwomancast a piece of a millstone upon Abimelech'shead, and all to brake his skull.54
Then he calledhastily unto the young man his armourbearer , and said unto him, Draw thy sword, and slay me, that men say not of me, A womanslew him. And his young man thrust him through , and he died .
And when the men of Israelsaw that Abimelech was dead , they departed every man unto his place.56
Thus Godrendered the wickedness of Abimelech, which he did unto his father, in slaying his seventybrethren:57
And all the evil of the men of Shechem did Godrender upon their heads: and upon them came the curse of Jotham the son of Jerubbaal.