2 Kingdoms 8-11
1 After this, David attacked the Philistines and put them to flight. And David took the border country from the hand of the Philistines. 2 Then David defeated Moab, and after forcing them down to the ground, he measured them off with lines. With two lines he measured off those to be put to death, and with two lines those to be kept alive. So the Moabites became David’s servants and brought tribute.
3 David also defeated Hadadezer the son of Rehob, king of Zobah, as he went to extend his power to the River Euphrates. 4 David took from him one thousand chariots, seven thousand horsemen, and twenty thousand foot soldiers. Also David hamstrung all the chariot horses, except that he spared enough of them for one hundred chariots.
5 When the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadadezer king of Zobah, David killed twenty-two thousand men in Syria. 6 Then David put garrisons in Syria of Damascus, and the Syrians became David’s servants and brought tribute. The Lord saved David wherever he went. 7 And David took the shields of gold that had belonged to the servants of Hadadezer, king of Zobah, and brought them to Jerusalem. Sousakim, king of Egypt, took them when he went up to Jerusalem in the days of Rehoboam, the son of Solomon. 8 Also from the Mazbak, from the choice cities of Hadadezer, King David took a large amount of bronze with which Solomon made the bronze Sea and the pillars and the basins and all the implements.
9 When Toi, king of Hamath, heard that David had defeated all the army of Hadadezer, 10 Toi sent his son Joram to King David, to greet him in peace and bless him because he had fought against Hadadezer and defeated him. For he had been at war with Hadadezer. And in his hands he brought with him articles of silver, articles of gold, and articles of bronze. 11 King David consecrated these to the Lord along with the silver and gold that he had consecrated from all the cities he had subdued— 12 from Idumea, from Moab, from the sons of Ammon, from the Philistines, from Amalek, and from the spoil of Hadadezer the son of Rehob, king of Zobah.
13 And David made himself a name when he returned from killing eighteen thousand Idumeans in Gaimele. 14 He also put garrisons in Idumea, throughout all Idumea, and all the Idumeans became the king’s servants. And the Lord preserved David wherever he went.
15 So David reigned over Israel, and David administered judgment and justice to all his people. 16 Joab the son of Zeruiah was over the army; Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was recorder; 17 Zadok the son of Ahitub and Ahimelech the son of Abiathar were the priests; Asa was the scribe; 18 Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was an advisor, as were the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and David’s sons were chief ministers.
David’s Mercy on Mephibosheth
1 Now David said, “Is there anyone still left of the house of Saul, so that I may show him mercy for Jonathan’s sake?” 2 And there was a servant of the house of Saul whose name was Ziba, and they called him to David. And the king said to him, “Are you Ziba?” And he said, “I am your servant!” 3 Then the king said, “Is there not still someone left of the house of Saul, to whom I may show the mercy of God?”
And Ziba said to the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan who is wounded in his feet.” 4 So the king said to him, “Where is he?” And Ziba said to the king, “See, he is in the house of Machir the son of Ammiel, in Lo Debar.” 5 Then King David sent and brought him out of the house of Machir the son of Ammiel from Lo Debar.
6 When Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, had come to King David, he fell on his face and prostrated before him. Then David said, “Mephibosheth?” And he answered, “Here is your servant!” 7 So David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will surely show you mercy for the sake of Jonathan your father. I will restore to you all the land of Saul your grandfather, and you shall always eat bread at my table.” 8 Then Mephibosheth bowed and said, “Who am I, your servant, that you should look upon a dead dog like me?”
9 And the king called to Ziba, Saul’s servant, and said to him, “I have given your master’s son everything that belonged to Saul and to all his house. 10 You therefore, and your sons and your servants, shall work the land for him, and you shall bring in bread for your master’s son, and he will eat it. But Mephibosheth your master’s son shall always eat bread at my table.” Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants. 11 Then Ziba said to the king, “Your servant will do everything my lord the king commanded his servant.”
And Mephibosheth ate at David’s table like one of the king’s sons. 12 Mephibosheth had a young son whose name was Micha. And all who dwelt in the house of Ziba were servants of Mephibosheth. 13 So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem, for he always ate at the king’s table. And he was lame in both his feet.
Defeat of the Ammonites and Syrians
1 It happened after this that the king of the children of Ammon died, and Hanun his son reigned in his place. 2 Then David said, “I will show mercy to Hanun the son of Nahash, as his father showed mercy to me.” So David sent by the hand of his servants to comfort him concerning his father. And David’s servants came into the land of the children of Ammon. 3 And the princes of the sons of Ammon said to Hanun their lord, “Do you think David really honors your father because he sent comforters to you? Did David not rather send his servants to you to search the city, to spy it out, and to survey it?” 4 Therefore Hanun took David’s servants, shaved off their beards, cut off their garments at the middle of their haunches, and sent them away. 5 When they told David about the men, of how they were greatly dishonored, he sent to meet them. And the king said, “Wait at Jericho until your beards have grown, and then return.”
6 The people of Ammon saw that the people of David were put to shame, so the people of Ammon sent and hired from the Syrians of Beth Rehob twenty thousand foot soldiers; and from the king of Maacah one thousand men, and from Ish-Tob twelve thousand men. 7 Now when David heard of it, he sent Joab and all the army of the mighty men. 8 Then the sons of Ammon came out and put themselves in battle array at the entrance of the gate. And the Syrians of Zoba, Beth Rehob, Ish-Tob, and Maacah were by themselves in the field.
9 When Joab saw that the battle line was against him before and behind, he chose some of Israel’s young men and put them in battle array against the Syrians. 10 And he put the rest of the people under the command of Abishai his brother, and they were placed in battle array against the sons of Ammon. 11 Then he said, “If the Syrians are too strong for me, then you shall deliver me, but if the sons of Ammon are too strong for you, then we will come and deliver you. 12 Be of good courage and let us be strong for our people and for the cities of our God; for the Lord will do what is good in His sight.” 13 So Joab and the people with him went into battle against the Syrians, and they fled before him. 14 When the sons of Ammon saw that the Syrians fled, they also fled before Abishai and entered the city. And Joab returned from the sons of Ammon and went to Jerusalem.
15 When the Syrians saw that they were defeated by Israel, they gathered together. 16 Then Hadadezer sent and gathered the Syrians beyond the river Chalamak, and they came to Helam. And Shobach the commander of Hadadezer’s army went before them. 17 When it was reported to David, he gathered all Israel, crossed the Jordan, and came to Helam. Here the Syrians set themselves in battle array against David and fought with him. 18 And Syria fled from before Israel, and David killed seven hundred charioteers and forty thousand horsemen of the Syrians. David also struck Shobach, the commander of their army, who died there. 19 And when all the kings who were servants to Hadadezer saw they were defeated by Israel, they changed allegiance and served Israel. Syria was afraid to help rescue the people of Ammon.
David and Bathsheba
1 Then at the appointed time when kings go out to battle, David sent Joab and his guards, and all Israel with him. They destroyed the sons of Ammon and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem.
2 Then one evening David arose from his bed and went up on the roof of the king’s house. From the roof, he saw a woman bathing, and she was very beautiful in appearance. 3 So David sent and asked about the woman. And someone said, “Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” 4 David sent messengers and took her. And she came to him, and he lay with her, for she was purified from her uncleanness. And she returned to her house. 5 And the woman conceived, so she sent and told David and said, “I am with child.”
6 Then David sent to Joab, saying, “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” And Joab sent Uriah to David. 7 When Uriah had come to him, David asked how Joab was doing, and how the people were doing, and how the war prospered. 8 And David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and wash your feet.” So Uriah departed from the king’s house, and a gift from the king followed him. 9 But Uriah slept at the door of the king’s house with all the servants of his lord and did not go down to his house. 10 So when they told David, saying, “Uriah did not go down to his house,” David said to Uriah, “Didn’t you come from a journey? Why didn’t you go down to your house?”
11 And Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are dwelling in tents, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are encamped in the open fields. Shall I go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? How should I do this? As your soul lives, I will not do this.” 12 Then David said to Uriah, “Wait here today, and tomorrow I will send you away.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next. 13 The next day, David invited him, and he ate and drank with him, and he got him drunk. In the evening, he left to sleep on his bed with the servants of his lord, but he did not go down to his house.
14 In the morning, David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by the hand of Uriah. 15 And he wrote in the letter, saying, “Set Uriah in the forefront of the fiercest battle and retreat from him, so that he may be struck down and die.” 16 So when Joab besieged the city, he assigned Uriah to a place where he knew there were valiant men. 17 Then the men of the city came out and fought with Joab. And some of the people of the servants of David fell, and Uriah the Hittite died as well.
18 Then Joab sent and told David everything concerning the war, 19 and charged the messenger, saying, “When you have finished telling the king the matters of the war, 20 if the king’s wrath rises and he says to you, ‘Why did you approach so near to the city when you fought? Did you not know that they would shoot from the wall? 21 Who struck Abimelech the son of Jerubbesheth? Was it not a woman who cast a piece of a millstone on him from the wall, so that he died in Thebez? Why did you go near the wall?’—then you shall say, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead as well.’ ”
22 So Joab’s messenger went to the king in Jerusalem and came and told David everything Joab had told him, all the news of the battle. Now David was angry with Joab and said to the messenger, “Why did you go near to the city to fight? Did you not know that you would be wounded from the wall? Who struck Abimelech the son of Jerubbaal? Was it not a woman who cast a piece of millstone on him from the wall, so that he died in Thamsi? Why did you go near the wall?” 23 And the messenger said to David, “Because the men prevailed against us and came out to us in the field. Then we drove them back as far as the entrance of the gate. 24 The archers shot from the wall at your servants, and some of the king’s servants are dead, and your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also.”
25 Then David said to the messenger, “Thus you shall say to Joab, ‘Do not let this thing seem evil in your eyes, for the sword sometimes devours in this way and sometimes in that. Strengthen your attack against the city and overthrow it. So strengthen the war.’ ” 26 When the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband. 27 And when her mourning was over, David sent and brought her to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But what David did was evil in the Lord’s eyes.
1 The praise of an ode by David.
He who dwells in the help of the Most High
Shall lodge in the shelter of the God of heaven.
2 He shall say to the Lord, “You are my protector and my refuge,
My God; I will hope in Him;
3 For He shall free me from the snare of the hunters,
And from every troubling word.”
4 He shall overshadow you with His shoulders,
And under His wings you shall hope;
His truth shall encircle you with a shield.
5 You shall not be frightened by fear at night,
Nor from an arrow that flies by day,
6 Nor by a thing moving in darkness,
Nor by mishap and a demon of noonday.
7 A thousand shall fall at your side
And ten thousand at your right hand,
Yet it shall not come near you;
8 But you shall observe with your eyes,
And you shall see the reward of sinners.
9 For You, O Lord, are my hope;
You made the Most High your refuge.
10 Evils shall not come to you,
And a scourge shall not draw near your dwelling;
11 For He shall command His angels concerning you,
To keep you in all your ways;
12 In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you strike your foot against a stone;
13 You shall tread upon the asp and the basilisk,
And you shall trample the lion and the dragon.
14 “For he hoped in Me, and I will deliver him;
I will shelter him, because he knew My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will hear him;
I am with him in affliction,
And I will deliver and glorify him.
16 With length of days I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”
19 A malicious man shall be punished severely,
And if he commits injury, he will also add this to his soul.
20 Hear, my son, the instruction of your father,
That you may become wise in your last days.
21 There are many thoughts in the heart of a man,
But the counsel of the Lord abides forever.
22 Mercy is fruit to a man,
And a poor righteous man is better than a rich liar.
23 The fear of the Lord is unto life for a man,
And he shall lodge without fear in places where knowledge is not examined.
24 A man who hides his hands in his bosom unrighteously,
He will not even bring them up to his mouth.
25 Now great multitudes went with Him. And He turned and said to them,
26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.
27 “And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.
28 “For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it—
29 “lest, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him,
30 “saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’
31 “Or what king, going to make war against another king, does not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand?
32 “Or else, while the other is still a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks conditions of peace.
33 “So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple.
Tasteless Salt Is Worthless
(Matt. 5:13; Mark 9:50)
34 “Salt is good; but if the salt has lost its flavor, how shall it be seasoned?
35 “It is neither fit for the land nor for the dunghill, but men throw it out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”