This is the complete family tree for all Israel, recorded in the Royal Annals of the Kings of Israel and Judah at the time they were exiled to Babylon because of their unbelieving and disobedient lives.
The first Israelites to return from exile to their homes and cities were the priests, the Levites, and the temple support staff.
Returning to Jerusalem from the families of Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, and Manasseh were the following:
Uthai son of Ammihud, the son of Omri, the son of Imri, the son of Bani, from the line of Perez son of Judah;
from the Shilonites were Asaiah the firstborn and his sons;
from the family of Zerah there was Jeuel. There were 690 in the Judah group.
From the family of Benjamin were Sallu son of Meshullam, the son of Hodaviah, the son of Hassenuah,
and Ibneiah son of Jeroham, and Elah son of Uzzi, the son of Micri, and Meshullam son of Shephatiah, the son of Reuel, the son of Ibnijah.
There were 956 in the Benjamin group. All these named were heads of families.
From the company of priests there were Jedaiah; Jehoiarib; Jakin;
Azariah son of Hilkiah, the son of Meshullam, the son of Zadok, the son of Meraioth, the son of Ahitub, who was in charge of taking care of the house of God;
Adaiah son of Jeroham, the son of Pashhur, the son of Malkijah; also Maasai son of Adiel, the son of Jahzerah, the son of Meshullam, the son of Meshillemith, the son of Immer.
The priests, all of them heads of families, numbered 1,760, skilled and seasoned servants in the work of worshiping God.
From the Levites were Shemaiah son of Hasshub, the son of Azrikam, the son of Hashabiah, a Merarite;
then Bakbakkar, Heresh, Galal, Mattaniah son of Mica, the son of Zicri, the son of Asaph;
also Obadiah son of Shemaiah, the son of Galal, the son of Jeduthun; and finally Berekiah son of Asa, the son of Elkanah, who lived in the villages of the Netophathites.
The security guards were Shallum, Akkub, Talmon, Ahiman, and their brothers. Shallum was the chief
and up to now the security guard at the King's Gate on the east. They also served as security guards at the camps of Levite families.
Shallum son of Kore, the son of Ebiasaph, the son of Korah, along with his brothers in the Korahite family, were in charge of the services of worship as doorkeepers of the Tent, as their ancestors had guarded the entrance to the camp of God.
In the early days, Phinehas son of Eleazar was in charge of the security guards - God be with him!
Now Zechariah son of Meshelemiah was the security guard at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting.
The number of those who had been chosen to be security guards was 212 - they were officially registered in their own camps. David and Samuel the seer handpicked them for their dependability.
They and their sons had the permanent responsibility for guarding the gates of God's house, the house of worship;
the main security guards were posted at the four entrances, east, west, north, and south;
their brothers in the villages were scheduled to give them relief weekly - the four main security guards were responsible for round-the-clock surveillance.
Being Levites, they were responsible for the security of all supplies and valuables in the house of God.
They kept watch all through the night and had the key to open the doors each morning.
Some were in charge of the articles used in The Temple worship - they counted them both when they brought them in and when they took them out.
Others were in charge of supplies in the sanctuary - flour, wine, oil, incense, and spices.
And some of the priests were assigned to mixing the oils for the perfume.
The Levite Mattithiah, the firstborn son of Shallum the Korahite, was responsible for baking the bread for the services of worship.
Some of the brothers, sons of the Kohathites, were assigned to preparing the bread set out on the table each Sabbath.
And then there were the musicians, all heads of Levite families. They had permanent living quarters in The Temple; because they were on twenty-four-hour duty,
they were exempt from all other duties. These were the heads of Levite families as designated in their family tree. They lived in Jerusalem.
Jeiel the father of Gibeon lived at Gibeon; his wife was Maacah.
His firstborn son was Abdon, followed by Zur, Kish, Baal, Ner, Nadab,
Gedor, Ahio, Zechariah, and Mikloth.
Mikloth had Shimeam. They lived in the same neighborhood as their relatives in Jerusalem.
Ner had Kish, Kish had Saul, Saul had Jonathan, Malki-Shua, Abinadab, and Esh-Baal.
Merib-Baal was the son of Jonathan and Merib-Baal had Micah.
Micah's sons were Pithon, Melech, and Tahrea.
Ahaz had Jarah, Jarah had Alemeth, Azmaveth, and Zimri; Zimri had Moza,
Moza had Binea, Rephaiah was his son, Eleasah was his son, and Azel was his son.
Azel had six sons: Azrikam, Bokeru, Ishmael, Sheariah, Obadiah, and Hanan - the sons of Azel.
The Philistines went to war against Israel; the Israelites ran for their lives from the Philistines but fell, slaughtered on Mount Gilboa.
The Philistines zeroed in on Saul and his sons and killed his sons Jonathan, Abinadab, and Malki-Shua.
The battle went hard against Saul - the archers found him and wounded him.
Saul said to his armor bearer, "Draw your sword and finish me off before these pagan pigs get to me and make a sport of my body." But his armor bearer, restrained by both reverence and fear, wouldn't do it.
The armor bearer, panicked because Saul was dead, then killed himself.
So Saul and his three sons - all four the same day - died.
When all the Israelites in the valley saw that the army had fled and that Saul and his sons were dead, they abandoned their cities and ran off; the Philistines came and moved in.
The next day the Philistines came to plunder the dead bodies and found Saul and his sons dead on Mount Gilboa.
They stripped Saul, removed his head and his armor, and put them on exhibit throughout Philistia, reporting the victory news to their idols and the people.
Then they put Saul's armor on display in the temple of their gods and placed his skull as a trophy in the temple of their god Dagon.
The people of Jabesh Gilead heard what the Philistines had done to Saul.
All of their fighting men went into action - retrieved the bodies of Saul and his sons and brought them to Jabesh, gave them a dignified burial under the oak at Jabesh, and mourned their deaths for seven days.
Saul died in disobedience, disobedient to God. He didn't obey God's words. Instead of praying, he went to a witch to seek guidance.
Because he didn't go to God for help, God took his life and turned the kingdom over to David son of Jesse.
Then all Israel assembled before David at Hebron. "Look at us," they said. "We're your very flesh and blood.
In the past, yes, even while Saul was king, you were the real leader of Israel. God told you, 'You will shepherd my people Israel; you are to be the ruler of my people Israel.'"
When all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, David made a covenant with them in the presence of God at Hebron. Then they anointed David king over Israel exactly as God had commanded through Samuel.
David and all Israel went to Jerusalem (it was the old Jebus, where the Jebusites lived).
The citizens of Jebus told David, "No trespassing - you can't come here." David came on anyway and captured the fortress of Zion, the City of David.
David had said, "The first person to kill a Jebusite will be commander-in-chief." Joab son of Zeruiah was the first; and he became the chief.
David took up residence in the fortress city; that's how it got its name, "City of David."
David fortified the city all the way around, both the outer bulwarks (the Millo) and the outside wall. Joab rebuilt the city gates.
David's stride became longer, his embrace larger - yes, God-of-the-Angel-Armies was with him!
These are the chiefs of David's Mighty Men, the ones who linked arms with him as he took up his kingship, with all Israel joining in, helping him become king in just the way God had spoken regarding Israel.
The list of David's Mighty Men: Jashobeam son of Hacmoni was chief of the Thirty. Singlehandedly he killed three hundred men, killed them all in one skirmish.
Next was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite, one of the Big Three of the Mighty Men.
He was with David at Pas Dammim, where the Philistines had mustered their troops for battle. It was an area where there was a field of barley. The army started to flee from the Philistines
and then took its stand right in that field - and turned the tide! They slaughtered the Philistines, God helping them - a huge victory.
The Big Three from the Thirty made a rocky descent to David at the Cave of Adullam while a company of Philistines was camped in the Valley of Rephaim.
David was holed up in the Cave while the Philistines were prepared for battle at Bethlehem.
David had a sudden craving: "What I wouldn't give for a drink of water from the well in Bethlehem, the one at the gate!"
The Three penetrated the Philistine camp, drew water from the well at the Bethlehem gate, shouldered it, and brought it to David. And then David wouldn't drink it! He poured it out as a sacred offering to God,
saying, "I'd rather be damned by God than drink this! It would be like drinking the lifeblood of these men - they risked their lives to bring it." So he refused to drink it. These are the kinds of things that the Big Three of the Mighty Men did.
Abishai brother of Joab was the chief of the Thirty. Singlehandedly he fought three hundred men, and killed the lot, but he never made it into the circle of the Three.
He was highly honored by the Thirty - he was their chief - still, he didn't measure up to the Three.
Benaiah son of Jehoiada was a Mighty Man from Kabzeel with many exploits to his credit: he killed two famous Moabites; he climbed down into a pit and killed a lion on a snowy day;
and he killed an Egyptian, a giant seven and a half feet tall. The Egyptian had a spear like a ship's boom but Benaiah went at him with a mere club, tore the spear from the Egyptian's hand, and killed him with it.
These are some of the things Benaiah son of Jehoiada did. But he was never included with the Three.
He was highly honored among the Thirty, but didn't measure up to the Three. David put him in charge of his personal bodyguard.
The Mighty Men of the military were Asahel brother of Joab, Elhanan son of Dodo of Bethlehem,
Shammoth the Harorite, Helez the Pelonite,
Ira son of Ikkesh the Tekoite, Abiezer the Anathothite,
Sibbecai the Hushathite, Ilai the Ahohite,
Maharai the Netophathite, Heled son of Baanah the Netophathite,
Ithai son of Ribai from Gibeah of the Benjaminite, Benaiah the Pirathonite,
Hurai from the ravines of Gaash, Abiel the Arbathite,
Azmaveth the Baharumite, Eliahba the Shaalbonite,
the sons of Hashem the Gizonite, Jonathan son of Shagee the Hararite,
Ahiam son of Sacar the Haranite, Eliphal son of Ur,
Hepher the Mekerathite, Ahijah the Pelonite,
Hezro the Carmelite, Naarai son of Ezbai,
Joel brother of Nathan, Mibhar son of Hagri,
Zelek the Ammonite, Naharai the Berothite, the armor bearer of Joab son of Zeruiah,
Ira the Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite,
Uriah the Hittite, Zabad son of Ahlai,
Adina son of Shiza the Reubenite, the Reubenite chief of the Thirty,
Hanan son of Maacah, Joshaphat the Mithnite,
Uzzia the Ashterathite, Shama and Jeiel the sons of Hotham the Aroerite,
Jediael son of Shimri, Joha the Tizite his brother,
Eliel the Mahavite, Jeribai and Joshaviah the sons of Elnaam, Ithmah the Moabite,
Eliel, Obed, and Jaasiel the Mezobaite.
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)