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Jehovah’s Witnesses


Online Bible


2 Samuel 3:1-39

3  And the war between the house of Saul and the house of David came to be long drawn out;+ and David kept getting stronger,+ and the house of Saul kept declining more and more.+  Meantime, sons+ were born to David in He′bron,+ and his firstborn came to be Am′non+ by A·hin′o·am+ the Jez′re·el·i·tess.  And his second was Chil′e·ab+ by Ab′i·gail+ the wife of Na′bal the Car′mel·ite, and the third was Ab′sa·lom+ the son of Ma′a·cah the daughter of Tal′mai+ the king of Gesh′ur.  And the fourth was Ad·o·ni′jah+ the son of Hag′gith,+ and the fifth was Sheph·a·ti′ah+ the son of A·bi′tal.  And the sixth was Ith′re·am+ by Eg′lah, David’s wife. These were the ones born to David in He′bron.  And it came about that while the war between the house of Saul and the house of David kept up, Ab′ner+ himself was continually strengthening his position in the house of Saul.  Now Saul had had a concubine whose name was Riz′pah,+ the daughter of A′iah.+ Later Ish-bo′sheth*+ said to Ab′ner: “Why was it that you had relations with the concubine+ of my father?”  And Ab′ner got very angry+ at the words of Ish-bo′sheth and went on to say: “Am I a dog’s+ head that belongs to Judah? Today I keep exercising loving-kindness toward the house of Saul your father, to his brothers and his personal friends, and I have not let you find yourself in the hand of David; and yet you call me to account for an error concerning a woman today.  So may God do to Ab′ner and so may he add to it,+ if, just as Jehovah swore to David,+ that is not the way that I shall do to him, 10  so as to transfer the kingdom from the house of Saul and to establish the throne of David over Israel and over Judah from Dan to Be′er-she′ba.”+ 11  And he was not able to say one word more in reply to Ab′ner because of being afraid of him.+ 12  Accordingly Ab′ner sent messengers to David on the spot, saying: “To whom does the land belong?” adding: “Do conclude your covenant with me, and, look! my hand will be with you to turn to your side the whole of Israel.”+ 13  To this he said: “Good! I myself shall conclude a covenant with you. Only one thing there is that I am asking of you, saying, ‘You may not see my face+ except first you bring Mi′chal,+ Saul’s daughter, when you come to see my face.’” 14  Further, David sent messengers to Ish-bo′sheth,+ Saul’s son, saying: “Do give over my wife Mi′chal, whom I engaged to myself for a hundred foreskins+ of the Phi·lis′tines.” 15  So Ish-bo′sheth sent and took her from her husband,* Pal′ti·el*+ the son of La′ish. 16  But her husband kept walking with her, weeping as he walked after her as far as Ba·hu′rim.+ Then Ab′ner said to him: “Go, return!” At that he returned. 17  Meanwhile there had come to be communication by Ab′ner with the older men of Israel, saying: “Both yesterday and previously+ YOU proved yourselves seeking David as king over YOU. 18  And now act, for Jehovah himself said to David, ‘By the hand of David+ my servant I shall save my people Israel from the hand of the Phi·lis′tines and from the hand of all their enemies.’” 19  Then Ab′ner also spoke in the ears of Benjamin,+ after which Ab′ner also went to speak in the ears of David at He′bron all that was good in the eyes of Israel and in the eyes of the whole house of Benjamin. 20  When Ab′ner came to David at He′bron, and with him twenty men, David proceeded to make a feast+ for Ab′ner and for the men that were with him. 21  Then Ab′ner said to David: “Let me rise up and go and collect all Israel together to my lord the king, that they may conclude a covenant with you, and you will certainly become king over all that your soul craves.”+ So David sent Ab′ner off, and he got on his way in peace.+ 22  And here David’s servants and Jo′ab were coming from a raid, and the spoil+ that they brought with them was abundant. As for Ab′ner, he was not with David in He′bron, for he had sent him off, and he was on his way in peace. 23  And Jo′ab+ and all the army that was with him came in, and they now reported to Jo′ab, saying: “Ab′ner+ the son of Ner+ came to the king, and he proceeded to send him off, and he is on his way in peace.” 24  So Jo′ab went in to the king and said: “What have you done?+ Look! Ab′ner has come to you. Why was it that you sent him off so that he successfully went away? 25  You well know Ab′ner the son of Ner,* that it was to fool you that he came and to get to know your going out and your coming in+ and to get to know everything that you are doing.”+ 26  With that Jo′ab went out from David and sent messengers after Ab′ner, and they then had him return+ from the cistern of Si′rah; and David himself did not know of it. 27  When Ab′ner returned to He′bron,+ Jo′ab now led him aside inside the gate to speak with him quietly.+ However, there he struck him in the abdomen,+ so that he died because of the blood of As′a·hel+ his brother. 28  When David heard of it afterward, he at once said: “I and my kingdom, from the standpoint of Jehovah, are innocent for time indefinite of bloodguilt+ for Ab′ner the son of Ner. 29  May it whirl back upon the head+ of Jo′ab and upon the entire house of his father, and let there not be cut off from Jo′ab’s house+ a man with a running discharge+ or a leper+ or a man taking hold of the twirling spindle+ or one falling by the sword or one in need of bread!”+ 30  As for Jo′ab and A·bish′ai+ his brother, they killed Ab′ner+ over the fact that he had put As′a·hel their brother to death at Gib′e·on in the battle.+ 31  Then David said to Jo′ab and all the people that were with him: “Rip YOUR garments apart+ and tie on sackcloth+ and wail before Ab′ner.” Even King David was walking behind the couch. 32  And they had the burial of Ab′ner in He′bron; and the king began to raise his voice and weep at Ab′ner’s burial place, and all the people gave way to weeping.+ 33  And the king went on to chant over Ab′ner and say: “As with the death of a senseless+ person should Ab′ner die? 34  Your hands had not been bound ones,+ And your feet had not been put into fetters of copper.+ As one falling before the sons of unrighteousness+ you have fallen.” At that all the people wept+ over him again. 35  Later all the people came to give David bread+ for consolation while it was yet that day, but David swore, saying: “So may God do to me+ and so may he add to it, if before the sun sets+ I shall taste bread or anything at all!” 36  And all the people themselves took notice, and it was good in their eyes. Like everything that the king did, it was in the eyes of all the people good.+ 37  And all the people and all Israel got to know on that day that it had not originated with the king to have Ab′ner the son of Ner put to death.+ 38  And the king went on to say to his servants: “Do YOU not know that it is a prince and a great man that has fallen this day in Israel?+ 39  And I today am weak although anointed+ as king, and these men, the sons of Ze·ru′iah,+ are too severe for me.+ May Jehovah repay the doer of what is bad according to his own badness.”+


“Ish-bosheth,” LXXBagsterSyVg; M, “he.”
“Her husband,” LXXSyVg; M, “a man.”
“Palti” in 1Sa 25:44.
“You sent him off that he might go in peace? (25) Or do you not really know the badness of Abner the son of Ner?” LXX.