2 Samuel 16; 2 Samuel 17; 2 Samuel 18

1 And when David was a little past the top of the hill, behold Siba the servant of Miphiboseth came to meet him with two asses, laden with two hundred loaves of bread, and a hundred bunches of raisins, a hundred cakes of figs, and a vessel of wine. 2 And the king said to Siba: What mean these things? And Siba answered: The asses are for the king’s household to sit on: and the loaves and the figs for thy servants to eat, and the wine to drink if any man be faint in the desert. 3 And the king said: Where is thy master’s son? And Siba answered the king: He remained in Jerusalem, saying: To day, will the house of Israel restore me the kingdom of my father. 4 And the king said to Siba: I give thee all that belonged to Miphiboseth. And Siba said: I beseech thee let me find grace before thee, my lord, O king. 5 And king David came as far as Bahurim: and behold there came out from thence a man of the kindred of the house of Saul named Semei, the son of Gera, and coming out he cursed as he went on, 6 And he threw stones at David, and at all the servants of king David: and all the people, and all the warriors walked on the right, and on the left side of the king. 7 And thus said Semei when he cursed the king: Come out, come out, thou man of blood, and thou man of Belial. 8 The Lord hath repaid thee for all the blood of the house of Saul: because thou hast usurped the kingdom in his stead, and the Lord hath given the kingdom into the hand of Absalom thy son: and behold thy evils press upon thee, because thou art a man of blood. 9 And Abisai the son of Sarvia said to the king: Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? I will go, and cut off his head. 10 And the king said: What have I to do with you, ye sons of Sarvia? Let him alone and let him curse: for the Lord hath bid him curse David: and who is he that shall dare say, why hath he done so? 11 And the king said to Abisai, and to all his servants: Behold my son, who came forth from my bowels, seeketh my life: how much more now a son of Jemini? let him alone that he may curse as the Lord hath bidden him. 12 Perhaps the Lord may look upon my affliction, and the Lord may render me good for the cursing of this day. 13 And David and his men with him went by the way. And Semei by the hill’s side went over against him, cursing, and casting stones at him, and scattering earth. 14 And the king and all the people with him came weary, and refreshed themselves there. 15 But Absalom and all his people came into Jerusalem, and Achitophel was with him. 16 And when Chusai the Arachite, David’s friend, was come to Absalom, he said to him: God save thee, O king, God save thee, O king. 17 And Absalom said to him, Is this thy kindness to thy friend? Why wentest thou not with thy friend? 18 And Chusai answered Absalom: Nay: for I will be his, whom the Lord hath chosen, and all this people, and all Israel, and with him will I abide. 19 Besides this, whom shall I serve? is it not the king’s son? as I have served thy father, so will I serve thee also. 20 And Absalom said to Achitophel: Consult what we are to do. 21 And Achitophel said to Absalom: Go in to the concubines of thy father, whom he hath left to keep the house: that when all Israel shall hear that thou hast disgraced thy father, their hands may be strengthened with thee. 22 So they spread a tent for Absalom on the top of the house, and he went in to his father’s concubines before all Israel. 23 Now the counsel of Achitophel, which he gave in those days, was as if a man should consult God: so was all the counsel of Achitophel, both when he was with David, and when he was with Absalom.
1 And Achitophel said to Absalom: I will choose me twelve thousand men, and I will arise and pursue after David this night. 2 And coming upon him (for he is now weary, and weak handed) I will defeat him: and when all the people is put to flight that is with him, I will kill the king who will be left alone. 3 And I will bring back all the people, as if they were but one man: for thou seekest but one man: and all the people shall be in peace. 4 And his saying pleased Absalom, and all the ancients of Israel. 5 But Absalom said: Call Chusai the Arachite, and let us hear what he also saith. 6 And when Chusai was come to Absalom, Absalom said to him: Achitophel hath spoken after this manner: shall we do it or not? what counsel dost thou give? 7 And Chusai said to Absalom: The counsel that Achitophel hath given this time is not good. 8 And again Chusai said: Thou knowest thy father, and the men that are with him, that they are very valiant, and bitter in their mind, as a bear raging in the wood when her whelps are taken away: and thy father is a warrior, and will not lodge with the people. 9 Perhaps he now lieth hid in pits, or in some other place where he liest: and when any one shall fall at the first, every one that heareth it shall say: There is a slaughter among the people that followed Absalom. 10 And the most valiant man whose heart is as the heart of a lion, shall melt for fear: for all the people of Israel know thy father to be a valiant man, and that all who are with him are valiant. 11 But this seemeth to me to be good counsel: Let all Israel be gathered to thee, from Dan to Bersabee, as the sand of the sea which cannot be numbered: and thou shalt be in the midst of them. 12 And we shall come upon him in what place soever he shall be found: and we shall cover him, as the dew falleth upon the ground, and we shall not leave of the men that are with him, not so much as one. 13 And if he shall enter into any city, all Israel shall cast ropes round about that city, and we will draw it into the river, so that there shall not be found so much as one small stone thereof. 14 And Absalom, and all the men of Israel said: The counsel of Chusai the Arachite is better than the counsel of Achitophel: and by the will of the Lord the profitable counsel of Achitophel was defeated, that the Lord might bring evil upon Absalom. 15 And Chusai said to Sadoc and Abiathar the priests: Thus and thus did Achitophel counsel Absalom, and the ancients of Israel: and thus and thus did I counsel them. 16 Now therefore send quickly, and tell David, saying: Tarry not this night in the plains of the wilderness, but without delay pass over: lest the king be swallowed up, and all the people that is with him. 17 And Jonathan and Achimaas stayed by the fountain Rogel: and there went a maid and told them: and they went forward, to carry the message to king David, for they might not be seen, nor enter into the city. 18 But a certain boy saw them, and told Absalom: but they making haste went into the house of a certain man in Bahurim, who had a well in his court, and they went down into it. 19 And a woman took, and spread a covering over the mouth of the well, as it were to dry sodden barley and so the thing was not known. 20 And when Absalom’s servants were come into the house, they said to the woman: Where is Achimaas and Jonathan? and the woman answered them: They passed on in haste, after they had tasted a little water. But they that sought them, when they found them not, returned into Jerusalem. 21 And when they were gone, they came up out of the well, and going on told king David, and said: Arise, and pass quickly over the river: for this manner of counsel has Achitophel given against you. 22 So David arose, and all the people that were with him, and they passed over the Jordan, until it grew light, and not one of them was left that was not gone ever the river. 23 But Achitophel seeing that his counsel was not followed, saddled his ass, and arose and went home to his house and to his city, and putting his house in order, hanged himself, and was buried in the sepulchre of his father. 24 But David came to the camp, and Absalom passed over the Jordan, he and all the men of Israel with him. 25 Now Absalom appointed Amasa in Joab’s stead over the army: and Amasa was the son of a man who was called Jethra, of Jezrael, who went in to Abigail the daughter of Naas, the sister of Sarvia who was the mother of Joab. 26 And Israel camped with Absalom in the land of Galaad. 27 And when David was come to the camp, Sobi the son of Naas of Rabbath of the children of Ammon, and Machir the son of Ammihel of Lodabar and Berzellai the Galaadite of Rogelim, 28 Brought him beds, and tapestry, and earthen vessels, and wheat, and barley, and meal, and parched corn, and beans, and lentils, and fried pulse, 29 And honey, and butter, and sheep, and fat calves, and they gave to David and the people that were with him, to eat: for they suspected that the people were faint with hunger and thirst in the wilderness.
1 And David, having reviewed his people, appointed over them captains of thousands and of hundreds, 2 And sent forth a third part of the people under the hand of Joab, and a third part under the hand of Abisai the son of Sarvia Joab’s brother, and a third part under the hand of Ethai, who was of Geth: and the king said to the people: I also will go forth with you. 3 And the people answered: Thou shalt not go forth: for if we flee away, they will not much mind us: or if half of us should fall, they will not greatly care: for thou alone art accounted for ten thousand: it is better therefore that thou shouldst be in the city to succour us. 4 And the king said to them: What seemeth good to you, that will I do. And the king stood by the gate: and all the people went forth by their troops, by hundreds and by thousands. 5 And the king commanded Joab, and Abisai, and Ethai, saying: Save me the boy Absalom. And all the people heard the king giving charge to all the princes concerning Absalom. 6 So the people went out into the field against Israel, and the battle was fought in the forest of Ephraim. 7 And the people of Israel were defeated there by David’s army, and a great slaughter was made that day of twenty thousand men. 8 And the battle there was scattered over the face of all the country, and there were many more of the people whom the forest consumed, than whom the sword devoured that day. 9 And it happened that Absalom met the servants of David, riding on a mule: and as the mule went under a thick and large oak, his head stuck in the oak: and while he hung between the heaven and the earth, the mule on which he rode passed on. 10 And one saw this and told Joab, saying: I saw Absalom hanging upon an oak. 11 And Joab said to the man that told him: If thou sawest him, why didst thou not stab him to the ground, and I would have given thee ten sicles of silver, and a belt? 12 And he said to Joab: If thou wouldst have paid down in my hands a thousand pieces of silver, I would not lay my hands upon the king’s son for in our hearing the king charged thee, and Abisai, and Ethai, saying: Save me the boy Absalom. 13 Yea and if I should have acted boldly against my own life, this could not have been hid from the king, and wouldst thou have stood by me? 14 And Joab said: Not as thou wilt, but I will set upon him in thy sight. So he took three lances in his hand, and thrust them into the heart of Absalom: and whilst he yet panted for life, sticking on the oak, 15 Ten young men, armourbearers of Joab, ran up, and striking him slew him. 16 And Joab sounded the trumpet, and kept back the people from pursuing after Israel in their flight, being willing to spare the multitude. 17 And they took Absalom, and cast him into a great pit in the forest, and they laid an exceeding great heap of stones upon him: but all Israel fled to their own dwellings. 18 Now Absalom had reared up for himself, in his lifetime, a pillar, which is in the king’s valley: for he said: I have no son, and this shall be the monument of my name. And he called the pillar by his own name, and it is called the hand of Absalom, to this day. 19 And Achimaas the son of Sadoc said: I will run and tell the king, that the Lord hath done judgment for him from the hand of his enemies. 20 And Joab said to him: Thou shalt not be the messenger this day, but shalt bear tidings another day: this day I will not have thee bear tidings, because the king’s son is dead. 21 And Joab said to Chusai: Go, and tell the king what thou hast seen. Chusai bowed down to Joab, and ran. 22 Then Achimaas the son of Sadoc said to Joab again: Why might not I also run after Chusai? And Joab said to him: Why wilt thou run, my son? thou wilt not be the bearer of good tidings. 23 He answered: But what if I run? And he said to him: Run. Then Achimaas running by a nearer way passed Chusai. 24 And David sat between the two gates: and the watchman that was on the top of the gate upon the wall, lifting up his eyes, saw a man running alone. 25 And crying out he told the king: and the king said: If he be alone, there are good tidings in his mouth. And as he was coming apace, and drawing nearer, 26 The watchman saw another man running, and crying aloud from above, he said: I see another man running alone. And the king said: He also is a good messenger. 27 And the watchman said: The running of the foremost seemeth to me like the running of Achimaas the son of Sadoc. And the king said: He is a good man: and cometh with good news. 28 And Achimaas crying out, said to the king: God save thee, O king. And falling down before the king with his face to the ground, he said: Blessed be the Lord thy God, who hath shut up the men that have lifted up their hands against the lord my king. 29 And the king said: Is the young man Absalom safe? And Achimaas said: I saw a great tumult, O king, when thy servant Joab sent me thy servant: I know nothing else. 30 And the king said to him: Pass, and stand here. 31 And when he had passed, and stood still, Chusai appeared and coming up he said: I bring good tidings, my lord, the king, for the Lord hath judged for thee this day from the hand of all that have risen up against thee. 32 And the king said to Chusai: Is the young man Absalom safe? And Chusai answering him, said: Let the enemies of my lord, the king, and all that rise against him unto evil, be as the young man is. 33 The king therefore being much moved, went up to the high chamber over the gate, and wept. And as he went he spoke in this manner: My son Absalom, Absalom my son: would to God that I might die for thee, Absalom my son, my son Absalom.
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