Book 09 : NEVIIM - II SAMUEL - Chapter 018
And David numbered the people that were with him, and set
captains of thousands and captains of hundreds over them
And David sent forth the people, a third part under the
hand of Joab, and a third part under the hand of Abishai the son of Zeruiah,
Joab's brother, and a third part under the hand of Ittai the Gittite. And the
king said unto the people: 'I will surely go forth with you myself also.
But the people said: 'Thou shalt not go forth; for if we
flee away, they will not care for us; neither if half of us die, will they care
for us; but thou art worth ten thousand of us: therefore now it is better that
thou be ready to succour us out of the city.
And the king said unto them: 'What seemeth you best I will
do.' And the king stood by the gate-side, and all the people went out by
hundreds and by thousands
And the king commanded Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying:
'Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom.' And all the
people heard when the king gave all the captains charge concerning Absalom
So the people went out into the field against Israel; and
the battle was in the forest of Ephraim
And the people of Israel were smitten there before the
servants of David, and there was a great slaughter there that day of twenty
For the battle was there spread over the face of all the
country; and the forest devoured more people that day than the sword devoured
And Absalom chanced to meet the servants of David. And
Absalom was riding upon his mule, and the mule went under the thick boughs of a
great terebinth, and his head caught hold of the terebinth, and he was taken up
between the heaven and the earth; and the mule that was under him went on
And a certain man saw it, and told Joab, and said:
'Behold, I saw Absalom hanging in a terebinth.
And Joab said unto the man that told him: 'And, behold,
thou sawest it, and why didst thou not smite him there to the ground? and I
would have had to give thee ten pieces of silver, and a girdle.
And the man said unto Joab: 'Though I should receive a
thousand pieces of silver in my hand, yet would I not put forth my hand against
the king's son; for in our hearing the king charged thee and Abishai and Ittai,
saying: Beware that none touch the young man Absalom
Otherwise if I had dealt falsely against mine own
life--and there is no matter hid from the king--then thou thyself wouldest have
Then said Joab: 'I may not tarry thus with thee.' And he
took three darts in his hand, and thrust them through the heart of Absalom,
while he was yet alive in the midst of the terebinth
And ten young men that bore Joab's armour compassed about
and smote Absalom, and slew him
And Joab blew the horn, and the people returned from
pursuing after Israel; for Joab held back the people
And they took Absalom, and cast him into the great pit in
the forest, and raised over him a very great heap of stones; and all Israel fled
every one to his tent.-
Now Absalom in his life-time had taken and reared up for
himself the pillar, which is in the king's dale; for he said: 'I have no son to
keep my name in remembrance'; and he called the pillar after his own name; and
it is called Absalom's monument unto this day
Then said Ahimaaz the son of Zadok: 'Let me now run, and
bear the king tidings, how that HaShem hath avenged him of his enemies.
And Joab said unto him: 'Thou shalt not be the bearer of
tidings this day, but thou shalt bear tidings another day; but this day thou
shalt bear no tidings, forasmuch as the king's son is dead.
Then said Joab to the Cushite: 'Go tell the king what thou
hast seen.' And the Cushite bowed down unto Joab, and ran
Then said Ahimaaz the son of Zadok yet again to Joab: 'But
come what may, let me, I pray thee, also run after the Cushite.' And Joab said:
'Wherefore wilt thou run, my son, seeing that thou wilt have no reward for the
'But come what may, said he, I will run.' And he said unto
him: 'Run.' Then Ahimaaz ran by the way of the Plain, and overran the Cushite
Now David sat between the two gates; and the watchman went
up to the roof of the gate unto the wall, and lifted up his eyes, and looked,
and behold a man running alone
And the watchman cried, and told the king. And the king
said: 'If he be alone, there is tidings in his mouth.' And he came apace, and
And the watchman saw another man running; and the watchman
called unto the porter, and said: 'Behold another man running alone.' And the
king said: 'He also bringeth tidings.
And the watchman said: 'I think the running of the
foremost is like the running of Ahimaaz the son of Zadok.' And the king said:
'He is a good man, and cometh with good tidings.
And Ahimaaz called, and said unto the king: 'All is well.'
And he bowed down before the king with his face to the earth, and said: 'Blessed
be HaShem thy G-d, who hath delivered up the men that lifted up their hand
against my lord the king.
And the king said: 'Is it well with the young man Absalom?'
And Ahimaaz answered: 'When Joab sent the king's servant, and me thy servant, I
saw a great tumult, but I knew not what it was.
And the king said: 'Turn aside, and stand here.' And he
turned aside, and stood still
And, behold, the Cushite came; and the Cushite said:
'Tidings for my lord the king; for HaShem hath avenged thee this day of all them
that rose up against thee.
And the king said unto the Cushite: 'Is it well with the
young man Absalom?' And the Cushite answered: 'The enemies of my lord the king
and all that rise up against thee to do thee hurt, be as that young man is.
Book 09 : NEVIIM - II SAMUEL - Chapter 018