Table of Contents
The Second Book of Samuelalso called the Second Book of the Kings
The 1st Chapter
After the death of Saul, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites and had been two days in Zikeleg: Behold, there came a man the third day out of the host from Saul with his clothes rent and earth upon his head. And when he came to David, he fell to the earth and did obeisance. To whom David said: from where come you? And the other answered him: Out of the host of Israel am I escaped. And David said to him again: How has it chanced? tell me. And he said: the people fled from the battle: and many of the people are overthrown and dead: and Saul and Jonathas his son are dead thereto.
And David said unto the young man that told him: how know you that Saul and Jonathas his son be dead? and the young man that told him, said: I was by chance in mount Gelboe. And see, Saul leaned upon his spear, and the chariots and horsemen followed him at the heels. And Saul looked back and called me. And I answered: here am I. And he said unto me: what are you? and I said unto him: I am an Amalekite. And he said unto me: come on me and slay me: For anguish is come upon me and my life is yet all in me. And I went on him and slew him: for I was sure that he could not live, after that he was fallen. And I took the crown that was upon his head and the bracelet that was on his arm and have brought them unto my Lord hither.
Then David took his clothes and rent (ripped) them, and so did all the men that were with him. And they mourned, wept and fasted until evening, for Saul and Jonathas his son, and for the people of the Lord, and for the house of Israel, because they were overthrown with the sword.
Then said David unto the young man that brought him tidings. From where are you? And he said: I am the son of an alien an Amalekite. And David said unto him: How is it that you was not afraid to lay your hand on the Lords anointed, to destroy him? And David called one of his young men and said: Go and run upon him. And he smote him that he died. Then said David unto him: your blood upon your own head: for your own mouth has testified against you saying: I have slain the Lords anointed.
And David sang this song of mourning over Saul and Jonathas his son, and bade to teach the children of Israel the staves (set of verses) thereof. And behold it is written in the book of the righteous.
The glory of Israel is slain upon the high hills: Oh how were the mighty overthrown? Tell it not in Geth: nor publish it in the streets of Askalon: least the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, and that the daughters of the uncircumcised triumph thereof. you mountains of Gelboe, upon you be neither dew nor rain, nor fields from where heave offerings come. For there the shields of the mighty were cast from them: the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil. The bow of Jonathas and the sword of Saul turned never back again empty, from the blood of the wounded and from the fat of the mighty warriors.
Saul and Jonathas lovely and pleasant in their lives, were in their deaths not divided, men swifter than Eagles and stronger than Lions. you daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, which clothed you in purple and garments of pleasure, and bordered your raiment with ornaments of gold. How were the mighty slain in battle? Jonathas on the high hills was wounded to death: Woe is me for you my brother Jonathas: delectable to me was you exceeding. your love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women. How were the mighty overthrown, and how were the weapons of war forlorn.
The 2nd Chapter
After this David asked the Lord saying: shall I go up into any of the cities of Juda? And the Lord said; go. And David answered *whither shall I go? (what ever place, result, or condition) He answered, unto Hebron. And so David went over there with his two wives also, Ahinoam the Jezrahelite and Abigail Nabals wife the Carmelite. And the men that were with him, did David carry up also, every man with his house. And they dwelt in the towns of Hebron. And the men of Juda came and there anointed David King over the house of Juda. When it was told David, how the men of Jabes in Galaad had buried Saul, he sent messengers unto them and said unto them: blessed are you unto the Lord, that you have showed such kindness unto your Lord Saul, and have buried him. Wherefore the Lord show you mercy and truth again. And I will do you good also, because you have done this thing. And now let your hands stir them and play you the men, though your master Saul be dead. And finally understand that the house of Juda have anointed me king over them. But Abner the son of Ner that was captain of Sauls host, took Isboseth the son of Saul and brought him to Mahanaim and made him king over Galaad and over the Assurites, and over Jezrahel: and over Ephraim and Benjamin and over all Israel. And Isboseth Sauls son was forty years old when he began to reign over Israel, and reigned two years. But the house of Juda only followed David. And the time which David reigned in Hebron over the house of Juda was seven years and six months. And Abner the son of Ner and the servants of Isboseth the son of Saul went out of Mahanaim, to Gabaon. And Joab the son of Zaruiah and the servants of David went out and met them by the Pool (or Pole) of Gabaon. And they sat down, the one part on the one side the pool and the other on the other side. And Abner said to Joab: let the young men arise and play before us. And Joab answered: be it. Then there arose and went over: twelve of Benjamin by number which pertained to Isboseth the son of Saul, and twelve of the servants of David. And they caught each his fellow that came against him, by the head and thrust his sword in his side, and so fell down all at once. Wherefore the place was called Helath Zurim which is in Gabaon. And there began an exceeding cruel battle that same day. But Abner and the men of Israel were put to the worse of the servants of David.
And there was three sons of Zaruiah there: Joab, Abisai and Asahel: which Asahel was as swift of foot as a wild roe, and followed after Abner and turned neither to the right hand nor to the left from Abner. Then Abner looked behind him and said: are you Asahel? And he said ye. Then said Abner: turn you either to the right hand or to the left and catch one of the young men and take you his spoil. But Asahel would not depart from him. And Abner said again to Asahel: turn from me, for I were loth to smite you to the ground. For then how should I hold up my face before Joab your brother? howbeit he would in no wise depart.
Then Abner with the hinder end of the spear smote him under the short ribs, that the spear came out behind him: that he fell down in the same place and died there. And as many as came to the place where Asahel fell down and died, stood still. But Joab and Abisai followed Abner till the *son went down. And when they were come to the hill Amah that lies before Giah in the way that goes through the wilderness of Gabaon, the children of Benjamin gathered themselves together after Abner on a plump and stood still on the top of an hill. Then Abner called to Joab and said: shall the sword devour without end? know you not that bitterness is known to come in the latter end? how long shall it be, before you bid the people return from following their brethren? And Joab answered: as truly as God lives, if you had so said, then even in the morning had the people departed, each from following his brother. And therewith Joab blew a trumpet, and all the people stood still and pursued after Israel no more nor fought no more. And Abner and his men walked all that night by the wild fields, and went over Jordan, and passed through all Bethhoron and came to Mahanaim. *sonne; exactly as in the original, else where sun is written sunne.
And Joab returned from after Abner and gathered all the people together. And there lacked of Davids servants nineteen persons and Asahel. But the servants of David had slain of Benjamin and of Abners men, three hundred and three score men. And they took up Asahel and buried him in the sepulcher of his father in Bethlehem. And Joab and his men went all night, and came in the dawning to Hebron.
The 3rd Chapter
There was long strife between the house of Saul and the house of David. But David waxed stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul waxed weaker and weaker. And David had children born him in Hebron: his eldest son was Amnon of Ahinoam the Jezrahelite: the second Cheleab of Abigail the wife of Nabal the Carmelite: the third Absalom the son of Maachah the daughter of Tholmai the King of Gessur: the fourth Adoniah the son of Hagith: the fifth Saphaitiah the son of Abital: the sixth Jethraam by Egla Davids wife. These were born to David in Hebron. And as long as there was battle between the house of Saul and the house of David, Abner held up the house of Saul. And Saul had a concubine named Riphah the daughter of Aiah. And Isboseth said to Abner: Wherefore lay you with my fathers concubine? Then was Abner very wroth for the words of Isboseth and said: Am I not a dogs head, which Against Juda have showed mercy this day unto the house of Saul your father and to his brethren and friends, and have not delivered them into the hand of David: seeing you find a fault in me this day for a woman? So do God to Abner and so thereto: except that as the Lord has sworn to David, I so do to him, and bring the kingdom from the house of Saul, and set up the throne of David over Israel and over Juda, even from Dan to Bersabe. And he could give Abner never a word to answer because he feared him.
And Abner sent messengers to David forthwith, saying: whose is the land? And he said thereto: make a bond with me, and see, my hand is with you, to bring all Israel unto you. And David answered well said, I will make a bond with you. But one thing I require of you, that you see not my face, except you first bring Michol Sauls daughter, when you come to see me.
And David sent messengers to Isboseth Sauls son saying: deliver me my wife Michol which I married with an hundred foreskins of the Philistines. And Isboseth sent and took her from her husband Phaltiel the son of Lais. And her husband went with her, and came weeping behind her, till they came to Bathurim. Then said Abner unto him go and return. And he returned. And Abner had communication with the elders of Israel, saying: you have long gone about that David should be king over you. Now then do it: for the Lord has said of David, by the hand of my servant David, I will save my people Israel, out of the hands of the Philistines, and out of the hand of all their enemies. And like words had he with Benjamin, and then went to tell in the ears of David in Hebron all that Israel was content with and the whole house of Benjamin. And when Abner was come to David to Hebron and twenty men with him: David made him and the men that were with him a feast. Then Abner said unto David: I will up and go gather all Israel unto my Lord the king, that they may make an appointment with you, that you may be king over all that your heart desires. And so David let Abner depart, and he went in peace.
And see, the servants of David and Joab came from chasing robbers and brought a great prey with them. But Abner was not with David in Hebron: for he had sent him away to depart in peace. When Joab and all the host that was with him were come, men told Joab saying: Abner the son of Ner came to the king, and he has sent him away that he is gone in peace. Then Joab went to the king and said: what have you done? See, Abner came unto you, why have you sent him away, that he should escape quite? You might know Abner the son of Ner, that he came to flatter with you, and to know your conversation and behavior, and to know all that you do. And when Joab was come out from the king, he sent messengers after Abner, which brought him again from the well of Sirah unwitting to David. And when Abner was come again to Hebron, Joab took him aside in the gate, to speak with him guilefully, and there smote him under the short ribs that he died, for the blood of Asahel his brother. And when it afterward came to Davids ear, he said: I and my kingdom are guiltless before the Lord for ever, concerning the blood of Abner the son of Ner. It fall therefore on the head of Joab and on all his fathers house: that the house of Joab be never without one or other that has running issues or without lepers and goers on crutches, and that fall on the sword and that lack bread. And the cause why Joab and Abisai slew Abner was, that Abner had slain their brother Asahel at Gabaon in battle. And David said to Joab and to all the people that were with him, rent (rip) your clothes and put on sackcloth and mourn before Abner. And king David himself followed the *bere. And when they had buried Abner in Hebron, the king lifted up his voice and wept over the sepulcher of Abner, and so did all the people. And the king lamented over Abner and said: Abner died not as a wretch dies. your hands were not manacled nor your feet brought into *gyves: but as men fall before wicked children, so fell you. And all the people wept yet more over him. *bere (bury, or bearer) *gyves (gives, punishment)
And when all the people came to eat meat with David, while it was yet day, David swore saying: so do God to me and so thereto, if I taste bread or anything else, till the *son be down. And the people knew it, and it pleased them, as well as all other good things which the king did in the sight of the people. And all the people and all Israel thereto understood that day how that it was not the kings mind, to slay Abner the son of Ner. And the king said unto his servants: know you not, how that there is a Lord and that a great fallen this day in Israel? And I am this day tender, though I be anointed king. And these men the sons of Zaruiah be too good for me to rule? But the Lord reward the doer of evil according to his wickedness.*sonne; exactly as in the original, else where sun is written sunne.
The 4th Chapter
When Sauls son heard that Abner was dead in Hebron, his hands fainted and all Israel was troubled. Now this Sauls son had two men that were become captains over the soldiers, the one called Baanah and the other Rechab, the sons of Remon a Berothite, and of the children of Benjamin: for Beroth was reckoned to pertain to Benjamin. And these Berothites fled to Gethaim and sojourned there until the same time. And Jonathas Sauls son had a son that was lame on his feet: five years old was he when the tidings came of Saul and Jonathas out of Jezrahel. And his nurse took him up and fled away. And as she made haste to flee and was amazed, the child fell and became halt and was called Miphiboseth. And these sons of Remon the Berothite, Rechab and Baanah went, and came in the heat of the day to the house of Isboseth, as he slept on a bed at noon. And behold they came into the house as though they would have bought wheat, and smote him under the short ribs and fled. For they came into the house as he slept on his bed in his resting chamber, and smote him and slew him and beheaded him and took his head and got them away through the wild fields all night. And they brought the head of Isboseth unto David, to Hebron and said to the king: behold there the head of Isboseth Sauls son your enemy, which sought your soul. But the Lord has avenged my lord the king this day of Saul and of his seed.
And David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Remon the Berothite and said unto them: as surely as the Lord lives which has delivered my soul out of all adversities: him that told me how that Saul was dead, thinking to have brought me good tidings, I caught and slew in Zikeleg, to give him a reward for his tidings bringing. And how much more ought I to deal with wicked men that have slain a righteous person in his own house upon his bed? Now therefore think you that I will not require his blood of your hands and take you from the earth? And David commanded his young men, and they slew them and cut off their hands and their feet and hanged them up by the pole (or pool) in Hebron. And they took the head of Isboseth and buried it in the sepulcher of Abner in Hebron.
The 5th Chapter
Then came all the tribes of Israel to David to Hebron and said: see, we are your bones and your flesh. And thereto in time past when Saul was king over us, you led Israel in and out. And the Lord has said to you: you shall feed my people Israel, and you shall be a captain over Israel. And so all the elders of Israel came to the king to Hebron. And King David made a covenant with them in Hebron before the Lord. And they anointed David King over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. In Hebron he reigned over Juda seven years and six months. And in Jerusalem he reigned thirty and three years over all Israel and Juda.
Then went the King and his men to Jerusalem, unto the Jebusites the inhabiters of the land. And they said unto David: except you take away the blind and the lame you shall not come in hither, meaning thereby that David should not have come in over there. Nevertheless David took the hold of Sion, which is in the city of David. Then said David the same day: whosoever wins the walls and the lame and the blind hated of Davids soul. Wherefore the blind and the lame shall not come into the house. And David dwelt in the tower and called it the city of David. And David built round about it from Mello inward. And David waxed great and the Lord God of hosts was with him. And Hiram King of Tyre sent messengers to David with Cedar trees and carpenters and Masons, to build David an house. Whereby David perceived that the Lord had stablished him King over Israel and had exalted his kingdom for his people Israels sake. And David took him more concubines and wives out of Jerusalem, after he was come from Hebron, and more sons and daughters were yet born to David. And these be the names of the sons that were born him in Jerusalem: Samua, Sobab, Nathan, Salamon, Jebahar, Elisua, Nepheg, Japhia, Elisama, Eliada, and Eliphalet.
But when the Philistines heard that they had anointed David King over Israel, they came all up to seek David. And as soon as David heard of it, he got him to an hold. And the Philistines came and laid them along in the valley of Raphaim. And David asked of the Lord saying: shall I go to the Philistines? and will you deliver them into my hands? And the Lord said unto David: go for I will deliver the Philistines into your hands. And David came to Baal Pharazim and smote them there and said: the Lord has divided mine enemies asunder before me, as a man would divide water. And therefore he called the name of the said place, Baal Pharazim. And there they left their Images and David and his men took them up. And the Philistines came yet again and laid them in the valley Raphaim. And David asked the Lord, and he said go not. But compass them on the back side and come down upon them from the Peretrees (pear trees). And when you hear the noise of a thing going in the tops of the Peretrees (pear trees), then move. For then the Lord is gone out before you, to smite the host of the Philistines. And David did as the Lord commanded him and smote the Philistines from Gabaah to Gezer.
The 6th Chapter
After that, David chose out all the chief young men in Israel to the sum of thirty thousand, and arose and went and all the folk that were with him of the men of Juda, to fetch away the Ark of God upon which is called the name of the Lord of hosts that dwells between the cherubins. And they put the Ark of God upon a new cart and brought it out of the house of Abinadab that dwelt at Gabaah. And Ozah and Ahio the sons of Abinadab drove the new cart. And when they brought it out of that house of Abinadab that dwelt at Gabaah with the Ark of God, Ahio went before the ark. And David and all the house of Israel played before the Lord with all manner instruments of fir wood, with harps, psalteries, timbrels, fiddles and cymbals.
And when they came to Nachons threshing floor, Ozah put his hand to the ark of God and held it, for the oxen stumbled. And the Lord was wrath with Ozah and God smote him in the same place for his fault, and there he died by the ark of God. And David was displeased because the Lord had rent Ozah. And the name of the place was called Perez Ozah until this day. And David was then afraid of the Lord and said: how should the Ark of the Lord come to my house? And so David would not bring the Ark of the Lord with him into the city of David. But carried it into the house of Obed Edom a Gethite. And the Ark of the Lord continued in the house of Obed Edom the Gethite, three months, and the Lord blessed Obed Edom and all his household. And when it was told King David how that the Lord had blessed the house of Obed Edom and all that pertained unto him, because of the Ark of God, he went and brought the Ark of God from the house of Obed Edom unto the city of David with gladness. And ever when they that bare the Ark of the Lord, had gone six passes (paces), he offered an ox and a fat sheep. And David danced before the Lord with all his might in a linen Ephod gird unto him. And David and all the house of Israel brought the ark of the Lord with shouting and trumpet blowing.
And as the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michol Sauls daughter looked through a window and saw King David spring and dance before the Lord, and therefore despised him in her heart. And when they had brought in the Ark of the Lord, and had set it even in his place, even in the tabernacle that David had prepared for it: David offered burntofferings and peaceofferings before the Lord, and as soon as David had made and end of offering burntofferings and peaceofferings he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of Hosts, and gave among all the folk, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men every one a Cake of bread and a piece of flesh and a flacket of wine. And so the people departed every man to his house.
Then David returned to salute his household. And Michol the daughter of Saul came out against him and said: Oh how glorious was the king of Israel today, which stripped himself today before the eyes of the maidens of his servants, as a light brained fellow is wont to strip himself. But David said again to Michol, I will make sport before the Lord which chose me before your father and before all his kin, commanding me to be ruler over all his people Israel. And I will be yet more vile than so, and will be meek in mine own sight: and shall for all that of the very same maidservants which you speak of, be had in honor. But the said Michol daughter to Saul had no child unto the day of her death.
The 7th Chapter
And in process as the king dwelt in his house after that the Lord had given him rest round about from all his enemies, he said unto Nathan the prophet: behold, I dwell in a house of Cedar trees, but the Ark of God dwells in the midst of curtains. Then said Nathan unto the King: go and do all that is in your heart, for the Lord is with you.
But that same night the word of the Lord came unto Nathan saying: go and tell my servant David, thus says the Lord: shall you go build me an house for the Lord to dwell in? For I have not dwelt in any house since the time I brought the children of Israel out of Egypt, unto this day: but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle. In any way where I went among the children of Israel, spoke I one word with any of the tribes of Israel which I commanded to feed my people Israel saying: why build you not me an house of Cedar tree? Now therefore so say unto my servant David, thus says the Lord of Hosts I took you out of a shepherds *cote (small shelter) from following sheep to be a ruler over my people Israel. And I was with you in all that you went to, and have destroyed all your enemies out of your sight, and have made you a great name, like unto the name of the great men of the world. And I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant it and they shall continue in one place and shall move no more, neither shall wicked people trouble them any more as they did at the beginning, and since the time I commanded Judges to be over my people Israel, and I will give you rest from all your enemies. And the Lord tells you that he will build you an household.
And when your days be fulfilled and you laid to rest with your fathers, then I will set up your seed after you, which shall proceed out of your body, and will stablish his kingdom. And he shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the seat of his kingdom for ever: I will be his father and he shall be my son: insomuch that if he sin, I will but rebuke him with such a rod as men be rebuked with and with such plagues as the children of men be plagued with. But my mercy will I not take away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put down before you. And your house and your kingdom shall endure without end after you, and your seat shall be stablished for ever. And when Nathan had told David all these words and all this vision: Then went king David and set him down before the Lord and said: what am I Lord Jehovah, and what is my kin, that you should have brought me this far forth? And is this a small thing in your sight Lord Jehovah, but that you should speak also of your servants house for a great while to come? is this a law among men Lord Jehovah? And what can David say more unto you, seeing you know your servant Lord Jehovah? Even for your words sake and according to your own heart have you done all these great things to make them known unto your servant.
Wherefore you are great O' Lord God and there is none like you, neither is there any God save you, according to all that we have heard with our ears. And what one people in the earth is like your people Israel, which God went and delivered to be his people, and to make him a name, and to show them great and terrible things in the earth, before your people which you redeemed to you out of Egypt, even from the people and from their Gods. And you have ordained your people Israel to be your people for ever. And you Lord are their God. And now Lord God the thing you have said of your servant and of his house make it good for ever and do as you have said. And let your name be great for ever, that men may say, the Lord of Hosts is the God of Israel: and let the house of your servant David be stablished before you. For you Lord of Hosts God of Israel have told in the ear of your servant saying: I will build you an house. And therefore has your servant found in his heart to pray this prayer unto you. And now Lord Jehovah you are the God, and your words must be true: for you have told this goodness unto your servant. And now go to and bless the household of your servant, that it may continue for ever before you. For you Lord Jehovah have said that of your blessing the house of your servant shall be blessed for ever.
Table of Contents