It happened after this, that David inquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up into any of the cities of Yehudah? the LORD said to him, Go up. David said, Where shall I go up? He said, To Hevron.
So David went up there, and his two wives also, Achino'am the Yizre`elite, and Avigayil the wife of Naval the Karmelite.
His men who were with him did David bring up, every man with his household: and they lived in the cities of Hevron.
The men of Yehudah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Yehudah. They told David, saying, The men of Yavesh-Gil`ad were those who buried Sha'ul.
David sent messengers to the men of Yavesh-Gil`ad, and said to them, Blessed be you of the LORD, that you have shown this kindness to your lord, even to Sha'ul, and have buried him.
Now the LORD show lovingkindness and truth to you: and I also will requite you this kindness, because you have done this thing.
Now therefore let your hands be strong, and be you valiant; for Sha'ul your lord is dead, and also the house of Yehudah have anointed me king over them.
Now Aviner the son of Ner, captain of Sha'ul's host, had taken Ish-Boshet the son of Sha'ul, and brought him over to Machanayim;
and he made him king over Gil`ad, and over the Ashuri, and over Yizre`el, and over Efrayim, and over Binyamin, and over all Yisra'el.
Ish-Boshet, Sha'ul's son, was forty years old when he began to reign over Yisra'el, and he reigned two years. But the house of Yehudah followed David.
The time that David was king in Hevron over the house of Yehudah was seven years and six months.
Aviner the son of Ner, and the servants of Ish-Boshet the son of Sha'ul, went out from Machanayim to Giv`on.
Yo'av the son of Tzeru'yah, and the servants of David, went out, and met them by the pool of Giv`on; and they sat down, the one on the one side of the pool, and the other on the other side of the pool.
Aviner said to Yo'av, Please let the young men arise and play before us. Yo'av said, Let them arise.
Then they arose and went over by number: twelve for Binyamin, and for Ish-Boshet the son of Sha'ul, and twelve of the servants of David.
They caught everyone his fellow by the head, and [thrust] his sword in his fellow's side; so they fell down together: therefore that place was called Helkat-Hatztzurim, which is in Giv`on.
The battle was very severe that day: and Aviner was beaten, and the men of Yisra'el, before the servants of David.
The three sons of Tzeru'yah were there, Yo'av, and Avishai, and `Asa'el: and `Asa'el was as light of foot as a wild roe.
`Asa'el pursued after Aviner; and in going he didn't turn to the right hand nor to the left from following Aviner.
Then Aviner looked behind him, and said, Is it you, `Asa'el? He answered, It is I.
Aviner said to him, Turn you aside to your right hand or to your left, and lay you hold on one of the young men, and take you his armor. But `Asa'el would not turn aside from following him.
Aviner said again to `Asa'el, Turn you aside from following me: why should I strike you to the ground? how then should I hold up my face to Yo'av your brother?
However he refused to turn aside: therefore Aviner with the hinder end of the spear struck him in the body, so that the spear came out behind him; and he fell down there, and died in the same place: and it happened, that as many as came to the place where `Asa'el fell down and died stood still.
But Yo'av and Avishai pursued after Aviner: and the sun went down when they were come to the hill of Ammah, that lies before Giach by the way of the wilderness of Giv`on.
The children of Binyamin gathered themselves together after Aviner, and became one band, and stood on the top of a hill.
Then Aviner called to Yo'av, and said, "Shall the sword devour forever? Don't you know that it will be bitterness in the latter end? How long shall it be then, before you bid the people return from following their brothers?"
Yo'av said, As God lives, if you had not spoken, surely then in the morning the people had gone away, nor followed everyone his brother.
So Yo'av blew the shofar; and all the people stood still, and pursued after Yisra'el no more, neither fought they any more.
Aviner and his men went all that night through the `Aravah; and they passed over the Yarden, and went through all Bitron, and came to Machanayim.
Yo'av returned from following Aviner: and when he had gathered all the people together, there lacked of David's servants nineteen men and `Asa'el.
But the servants of David had struck of Binyamin, and of Aviner's men, [so that] three hundred sixty men died.
They took up `Asa'el, and buried him in the tomb of his father, which was in Beit-Lechem. Yo'av and his men went all night, and the day broke on them at Hevron.