The 20th Chapter
And there happened to be an
unthrifty fellow named Seba the son of Bochri a man of *Gemini which
blew a trumpet and said: we have no part in David, nor inheritance
in the son of Isai, O Israel, let us depart therefore every man to
his tent. And all Israel went from David and followed Seba the son
of Bochri. But the men of Juda cleaved fast unto the king, from
Jordan to Jerusalem.
And when David was come to his house to Jerusalem, he took the
ten wives his concubines that he had left behind him to keep the
house, and put them in ward and ministered all things unto them: but
lay no more with them. And so they were enclosed unto the day of the
death of them, and lived a widows life.
Then said the king to Amasa: call me the men of Juda together
within three days and present thyself here. And Amasa went to gather
the men of Juda together: but tarried longer than the time which was
appointed him. Wherefore the king said to Abisai: now shall Seba the
son of Bochri be worse to us than Absalom. Take thou therefore thy
Lords servants and follow after him: lest he get him walled cities
and escape us. And there went out after him Joabs men and the
Cerethites and the Phelethites and the men of might. And they
departed out of Jerusalem to follow after Seba the son of Bochri.
And when they were come to the great stone in Gabaon, Amasa met
them. And Joab had his garment that he had about him, gird unto him,
and had girded there on a knife joined fast to his loins, in such a
sheath that as he went it fell sometimes out. And Joab said to Amasa:
are all things in rest and peace my brother? And Joab took Amasa by
the chin with the right hand, as though he would have kissed him.
And Amasa took no heed to the knife that was in Joabs hand, with
which Joab smote him in the short ribs, and shed out his bowels to
the ground and smote him but one stroke, and he died.
And then Joab and Amisai his brother followed after Seba the
son of Bochri. And one of Joabs men that stood by him said: what is
he that he would be as Joab, and what is he that would be unto David
instead of Joab? And Amasa lay wallowing in blood in the midst of
the way. And there was a man that saw all the people stand still.
And when he saw that all that came by him stood still, he rolled
Amasa out of the way into the field and cast a cloth upon him. And
as soon as he was tumbled out of the way, all the people went after
Joab to follow after Seba the son of Bochri.
And he went through all the tribes of Israel unto Abel,
Bethmaacah and all Barim. And the people gathered unto him and went
also after him. And they came and besieged him in Abel Bethmaacah.
And they cast up a bank against the city. And it was besieged. All
the people that was with Joab labored busily to overthrow the wall.
Then cried a wise woman out of the city, hear hear, bid I pray you
Joab that he come hither, that I may speak with him. When Joab was
come the woman said: art thou Joab? And Joab answered that am I. And
she said to him: hear the words of thy handmaid? And he said: I am
ready to hear. And she said: it hath been a common saying in the old
time, men must ask of Abel, and then go and finish the work. Abel is
one of the quietest and faithfullest cities that are in Israel. And
thou goest about to destroy a city that is as a mother in Israel.
Why devourest thou the inheritance of the Lord?
And Joab answered and said: God forbid, God forbid it me, that
I should either devour or destroy it. The matter is not so: But
there is a man of mount Ephraim, Seba the son of Bochri by name,
which hath lifted up his hand against king David. Deliver us him
only, and I will depart from the city. And the woman said unto Joab:
Behold, his head shall be thrown through the wall to thee. And then
the woman went unto all the people in her wisdom. And they smote off
the head of Seba son of Bochri, and cast it to Joab. And he blew a
trumpet, and they scattered from the city every man to his tent, and
Joab returned to Jerusalem unto the king.
And Joab was over all the host of Israel. And Banaiah the son
of Jehoiada was over the Cerethites and the Phelethites. And Aduram
was over the tribute. And Jehosaphat the son of Ahilud was Recorder.
Sema was scribe. And Sadock and Abiathar were priests. And Ira the
Jairite was likewise Davids priest.
The 21st Chapter
Then there fell
an hunger in the days of David three years, year by year. And David
enquired of the Lord. And the Lord answered: it is for Sauls sake
and the house of blood, because he slew the Gabeonites. And the king
called the Gabeonites and said unto them. Now these Gabeonites are
not of the children of Israel, but a remnant of the Ammonites, and
the children of Israel sware unto them. And yet Saul sought to slay
them, for a zeal that he had to the children of Israel and of Juda.
Wherefore David said unto them: what shall I do for you? and
wherewith shall I content you that ye may bless the inheritance of
And the Cabaonites said unto him: we have no matter of silver
or of gold with Saul or with his house: neither have we any man that
we would kill in Israel. Then he said: what say ye that I shall do
for you? and they said unto the king: the man that consumed and
imagined to bring us to nought, him we ought to destroy, that nought
of him continue in any of the coasts of Israel, let seven men of his
sons be delivered unto us, that we may hang them up unto the Lord,
in Gabaah of Saul the lords elect. And David said: I will give them
But the king had compassion on Miphiboseth the son of Jonathas,
the son of Saul, because of the Lords oath that was between them:
that is to say between David and Jonathas the son of Saul. But he
took the two sons of Rezphah the daughter of Aiah which she bare
unto Saul, Armoni and Miphiboseth, and the five sons of Michol the
daughter of Saul which she bare to Adriel the son of Berselai the
Molathite, and delivered them unto the hands of the Gabeonites,
which hanged them in the hill before the Lord. And they fell all
seven together in the first days of harvest: even in the beginning
of barley harvest.
And Rezphah the daughter of Aiah took Sackcloth and spread it
under her upon the Rock, even from the beginning of harvest until
rain dropped upon them out of heaven, and suffered neither the birds
of the Air to fall on them by day nor beasts of the field by night.
And when it was told David what Rezphah the daughter of Aiah the
concubine of Saul had done, he went and took the bones of Saul, and
of Jonathas his son, and of the men of Jabes in Galaad, which they
had stolen from the street of Bethsan, where the Philistines had
hanged them in the days when the Philistines had slain Saul in
Gelboe. And he brought thence the bones of Saul and the bones of
Jonathas his son, and they fetched away the bones of them that were
hanged, and buried them with the bones of Saul and Jonathas his son
in the country of Benjamin, in Zela, in the sepulcher of Cis his
father. And when they had performed all that the King commanded, God
was then at one with the land.
And the Philistines had yet again war with Israel. And David
went down and his servants with him, and fought with the
Philistines. And David waxed fainty, and Jesbi of Nob one of the
sons of Haraphah whose spear head weighed three hundred sickles of
brass, and was girded with a new sword, thought to have slain David.
But Abisai the son of Zaruiah succoured him and smote the Philistine
and killed him. Then the servants of David sware unto him saying:
Thou shalt go no more out with us to battle, that the light of
Israel be not put out. And there was yet after this battle with the
Philistines at Nob, in which Sobochai the Husathite slew Saph of the
sons of Haraphah.
And there was yet the third battle in Gob, with the
Philistines, where Elhanan the son of the Jaere Orgim, a
Bethlehemite slew one Goliath a Gethite: the staff of whose spear
was as great as a weavers cloth beam.
And there was yet battle in Geth, where was a man of a size
and had on every hand six fingers and on every foot six toes: twenty
four in all. And was also of the kindred of Haraphah, and defied
Israel. And Jonathas the son of Samach the brother of David slew
him. These four were of the sons of Haraphah in Geth, and were
overthrown by the hand of David and by the hands of his servants.
The 22nd Chapter
And David spake the words of
this song unto the Lord, what time the Lord had delivered him out of
the hands of all his enemies, and out of the hands of Saul.
And he said: The Lord is my *rock, my castle and my deliverer.
God is my strength, and in him will I trust: my shield and the horn
that defendeth me: mine high hold and refuge: O' my Saviour, save me
I will praise and call on the Lord, and so shall be saved
from mine enemies. For the waves of death have closed me about, and
the floods of Belial have feared me. The cords of hell have
compassed me about, and the snares of death have overtaken me. In my
tribulation I called to the Lord, and cried to my God. And he heard
my voice out of his temple, and my cry entered into his ears. And
the earth trembled and quake, and the foundations of heaven moved
and shook, because he was angry.
Smoke went up out of his nostrils, and consuming fire out of
his mouth, that coals were kindled of him. And he bowed heaven and
came down, and darkness underneath his feet. And he rode upon Cherub
and flew: and appeared upon the wings of the wind. And he made
darkness a tabernacle round about him, with water gathered together
in thick clouds. Of the brightness, that was before him, coals were
set on fire.
The Lord thundered from heaven, and the most high put out his
voice. And he shot arrows and scattered them, and hurled lightning
and turmoiled them. And the bottom of the sea appeared, and the
foundations of the world were seen, by the reason of the rebuking of
the Lord, and through the blasting of the breath of his nostrils. He
sent from on high and fetched me, and plucked me out of mighty
He delivered me from my mighty enemy, and from them that hated
me and were too strong for me. When they had compassed me in the day
of my tribulation, the Lord stayed me up. And he brought me out into
roomth, and delivered me, because he delighted in me.
The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness, and
according to the pureness of my hands he dealt with me. For I kept
the ways of the Lord, and did no wickedness forsaking my God. But I
had all his laws in my sight, and I turned my face from none of his
ordinances. But was pure unto him ward, and kept myself from
And the Lord did to me again, according to my righteousness,
and after my pureness that I had in his sight. With the holy thou
shalt be holy, and with the man that is uncorrupt, thou shalt be
uncorrupt. With the pure thou shalt be pure, and with the froward
thou shalt be froward also. And the people that are in adversity,
thou shalt help. And on the proud shalt thou cast thine eyes. Thou
art my light, O' Lord, and the Lord shall light my darkness.
With thy help I will run through an Host of men, and by the
aid of my God will spring over a wall. The way of God is undefiled,
and the word of the Lord fined as gold, and he a shield to all that
trust in him.
Who is a God save the Lord, and who mighty save our God? God
is my strength in war, and riddeth the way clear before me. And
maketh my feet as swift as an hinds, and setteth me fast upon my
And teacheth my hands to fight, that a bow of brass is too
weak for mine arms.
And thou hast saved me with thy shield, and keptest me ever in
meekness. And thou madest me space to walk in, that my feet should
not stumble. I followed mine enemies and destroyed them, and turned
not again until I had consumed them.
I wasted them and so clouted them, that they could not arise:
but fell under my feet.
And thou compassed me about with might to battle, and madest
them that rose against me to stoop under me.
And thou madest mine enemies to turn their backs to me, and
them that hated me, and I destroyed them. They looked for help: But
none came to save them: unto the Lord they cried, but he heard them
And I will beat them as small as the dust of the earth, and
will stamp them as the dirt of the street, and will spread them
And thou delivered me from the dissension of my people, and
keepest me to be an head over nations, for the people which I knew
not became my servants.
And the aliens crouched unto me, and obeyed me at a word.
And the aliens that shrink away shall tremble for fear in
their defended places.
The Lord live, and blessed be he that is my strength: and
exalted be God the strength that saveth me. It is God that avengeth
me, and bringeth down the people under me. And delivereth me from
mine enemies: thou liftest me up on high from them that rise against
me, and deliverest me from the wicked men.
And therefore I will praise thee O' Lord among the heathen,
and will sing unto thy name. For thy great and manifold saving of
thy king, and showing mercy unto thine anointed, even to David, and
his seed for ever.
*this word rock appears to be in very bold face in the original.
The 23rd Chapter
These be the last sayings of
David. David the son of Isai said: And the man is lifted up on high,
the anointed of the God of Jacob and pleasant Psalmist of Israel
said: the spirit of the Lord spake in me, and his words were on my
tongue. The God of Israel spake unto me, and the strength of Israel
said: he that beareth rule over men, he that ruleth justly in the
fear of God. And he shall be as the morning light, when the *son
shineth in a morning in which are no clouds to let the brightness,
and as the grass of the earth is by the virtue of the rain. And is
not mine house so with God? in that he hath made with me an
everlasting covenant perfect in all points: and in that he shall
fulfil all that is healthsome unto me, and all my desires thereto.
When the unthrifty men are all of them as thorns taken out of their
places, which cannot be taken with hands. But the man that shall
touch them, must be armed with iron on a long helve. And then shall
they be burned with fire to sit thereby.
These be the names of the mighty men that were about David:
Joseb of Sebeth the Thachmonite, first of three, otherwise called
Adino the Azonite, which slew eight hundred at one time. And next to
him Eleazar the son of Dodi the son of Ahohi, one of the three
principal that were with David, which when they defied the
Philistines that were there gathered together in battle (and the men
of Israel were gone up) arose and laid on the Philistines until his
hand ached and cleaved unto the sword. And the Lord made a great
victory the same day. And the people returned and went after him
only to spoil. After him was Sema the son of Ageh the Hararite
(which when the Philistines were gathered together in Lahaia where
was a parcel of land full of rice, and the people were fled for fear
of the Philistines) stood in the midst of the said ground, and
defended it and slew the Philistines. And the Lord gave him a great
And these three of the thirty of the Lords went down and came
to David in the harvest time unto the cave Odolom. And the Host of
the Philistines had pitched in the valley of Giants. And David was
then in an hold. And the Soldiers of the Philistines were then in
Bethlehem. And David longed and said: Oh, that I had of the water
that is in the well in the gate of Bethlehem for to drink. And anon
the three mighty brake through the Host of the Philistines and
fetched water out of the well of Bethlehem that was in the gate, and
took and brought it to David: Nevertheless he would not drink
thereof, but offered it unto the Lord and said: the Lord forbid that
I should do so, should I drink the blood of men that were in
jeopardy of their lives? and so he would not drink it. These things
did these three mighty men. Then Abisai the brother of Joab, the son
of Saruiah: he was a captain over the three, and he lifted up his
spear against three hundred and slew them, and was named with the
three. For he was nobler man than the three and was their captain.
How be it he attained not unto those three in acts.
Then Banaiah the son of Jehoiada the son of a lusty man
valiant in acts of Rabzeel, he slew two lions of Moab. He went down
and slew a lion in a pit in time of Snow. And he slew an Egyptian a
goodly man, which had a spear in his hand. And Banaiah went down to
him with a staff and plucked the spear out of the Egyptians hand and
slew him with his own spear: Such things did Banaiah the son of
Jehoiada and was the noblest of thirty: But not like to any of the
three in facts of war. And David made him of his counsel. Asahel the
brother of Joab was one of the thirty. Then Elehanan the son of Dodo
of Bethlehem: Semah the Harodite: Elica the Harodite: Helez the
Palitite: Ira the son of Akes the Thekoite: Abiezer of Anathoth:
Mobonai the Husathite: Zelmon an Ahohite: Maharai the Netophathite:
Heleb the son of Baanah an Netophathite: Ithai the son of Ribai of
Gabaah a city of the children of Benjamin: Banaiah the Pharathonite:
Hedai of the river of Gaas: Abialbon the Arbathite: Asmaueth a
Berhomite: Elithaba a Salabonite: Of the sons of Jasen Jonathas:
Semah the Harorite: Ahiam the son of Sarar an Ararite: Eliphelet the
son of Aasbai the son of a Maachathite: Eliam the son of Ahitophel
the Gilonite: Hezrai the Carmelite: Pharai the Arbite: Igaal the son
of Nathan of Zobah: Bani the Gadite: Zelec an Ammonite: Naharai a
Berothite the Harnessbearer of Joab the son of Zaruiah: Ira the
Jethrite: Gareb the Jethrite: Uriah the Hethite: in all thirty and
*sonne; exactly as in the original,
else where sun is written sunne.
The 24rd Chapter
And the Lord was
wrath again against Israel, and stirred up David against them
saying: go and number both Israel and Juda. And forthwith the king
said to Joab the captain of his Host: go abroad I pray thee,
throughout all the tribes of Israel, even from Dan to Bersabe, and
number the people that I may know the number of them. And Joab said
unto the king: I beseech that the Lord thy God make the people as
many more as they be: yea and an hundred times so many more, and
that the eyes of my Lord the king may see them. But how is it that
my Lord the king hath a lust in this thing? Notwithstanding the
kings words prevailed against Joab and against all the captains of
Then Joab and the captains of the Host went out from the king,
to view the people of Israel. And they passed over Jordan and
pitched in Aroer on the right side of the city that lieth in the
midst of the valley of Gad and so forth to Jazer. And then they went
to Galaad and to the nether land of Hodesi, and from thence to Dan
Jaan, and about to Sidon, and came to the strong town of Tyre, and
to all the cities of the Hevites and of the Cananites, and then went
out to the South of Juda even to Bersabe. And so when they had been
abroad throughout all the land they returned to Jerusalem again at
the end of nine months and twenty days. And then Joab delivered up
the reckoning of the number of the people unto the king. And there
were found in Israel nine hundred thousand men of might that drew
swords. And the men of Juda were five hundred thousand men.
And Davids heart smote him after that he had numbered the
people. And he said unto the Lord: I have sinned exceedingly in that
I have done. And now Lord take away the trespass of thy servant: for
I have done foolishly. And when David was up in a morning, the word
of the Lord came unto the prophet Gad Davids sear, saying: go and
say unto David, thus saith the Lord: I offer thee three things,
choose which of them I shall do to thee.
And Gad came to David and showed him and said unto him:
whether wilt thou have seven years hunger in thy land, or that thou
flee three months before thine enemies and they following thee, or
that there be three days of pestilence in thy land. Now understand
and see, what word I shall bring again to him that sent me. Then
said David unto Gad: I am in a marvelous strait. But let me fall I
pray thee, into the hands of the Lord, for much is his mercy, and
let me not fall into the hands of men.
And the Lord sent a pestilence in Israel from the morning unto
the end of the time appointed. And there died of the people between
Dan and Bersabe seventy thousand men. And when the Angel stretched
out his hand unto Jerusalem to have destroyed it, the Lord had
compassion to do that evil, and said to the Angel that destroyed the
people: it is sufficient: let thine hand cease. And the Angel was at
the threshing place of Areunah the Jebusite. Then spake David unto
the Lord when he saw the Angel that smote the people, and said: lo,
it is I that have sinned, and I that have done wickedly. But these
sheep what have they done? let I pray thee thine hand be on me and
on my fathers house.
And Gad came the same day to David and said unto him: go up
and rear an altar unto the Lord in the threshing floor of Areunah
the Jebusite. And David according to the saying of Gad went up as
the Lord commanded. And when Areunah looked and saw the king and his
servants coming toward him, he went out: and bowed himself to the
king flat on his face to the ground, and said: wherefore is my Lord
the king come to his servant? And David said: to buy the threshing
floor of thee, for to make an altar unto the Lord that the plague
may cease from the people.
And Areunah said unto the king: let my Lord the king take and
offer what seemeth him good in his eyes: Behold oxen for sacrifice,
and sleds and the other instruments of the oxen for wood. And
Areunah the kings friend gave all to the king, and said moreover
unto the king: the Lord: the Lord thy God accept thee. But the king
said unto Areunah: not so, but I will buy it of thee at a price, and
will not offer sacrifice unto the Lord my God that shall cost me
nought. And so David bought the threshing floor, and the oxen for
fifty sickles of silver. And David built there an altar unto the
Lord and offered burnt sacrifices and peace offerings. And so the
Lord was agreed with the land. And the plague ceased from Israel.
The end of the
Second Book of Samuel: which they commonly call the second of the