2 Samuel 20 ©

Wicked Sheba, by occasion of this strife, stirs up Israel to sedition and revolt from David, v. 1, etc. How David dealt with the concubines who were abused by Absalom, 3. David sends forth Amasa to assemble Judah against Sheba, 4. But while this man lingers somewhat too long, he dispatches forth Abishai with forces and men, 6. Amasa meets them by the way, and is treacherously thrust through by Joab, 8. Joab and Abishai pursue after Sheba, and besiege him in Abel of Beth-maachah, 15. Where the citizens, by the advice of a wise woman, cut off Sheba’s head, and cast it over the wall unto Joab, whereby this sedition and war is ended, 16. A register of the most important officers and commanders in David’s kingdom, 23.


AND there happened to be there a man of 1Belial, whose name was 2Sheba, the son of Bichri, a 3Benjamite: and he blew a trumpet, and said, We have no part in David, neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: 4every man to his tents, O 5Israel.


So every man of Israel went up 6from after David, and followed Sheba the son of Bichri: but the men of Judah 7clave unto their king, from Jordan even to Jerusalem.


¶And David came to his house at Jerusalem; and the king took the 8ten women his concubines, whom he had left to keep the house, and 9put them in ward, and fed them, but 10went not in unto them. So they were 11shut up unto the day of their death, 12living in widowhood.


¶Then said the king to Amasa, Assemble me the men of Judah 13within three days, and be thou here 14present.


So Amasa went to assemble the men of Judah: but he 15tarried longer than the set time which 16he had appointed him.


And David said to 17Abishai, Now shall Sheba the son of Bichri do us more harm than did Absalom: take thou 18thy lord’s servants, and pursue after him, lest he get him fenced cities, and escape us.


And there went out after him 19Joab’s men, and the 20Cherethites, and the Pelethites, and all the mighty men: and they went out of Jerusalem, to pursue after Sheba the son of Bichri.


When they were at the great stone which is in 21Gibeon, Amasa went 22before them. And Joab’s 23garment 24that he had put on was girded unto him, and upon it a girdle with a sword fastened upon his loins in the sheath thereof; and as 25he went forth it 26fell out.


And Joab said to Amasa, 27Art thou in health, my 28brother? And 29Joab took Amasa by the beard with the right hand to 30kiss him.


But Amasa took no heed to the sword that was in Joab's hand: soa he 31smote him therewith in the 32fifth rib, and shed out his bowels to the ground, and struck him not 33again; and he died. So Joab and Abishai his brother pursued after Sheba the son of Bichri.


And one of Joab’s 34men stood by him, and said, 35He that favoureth Joab, and he that is for David, 36let him go after Joab.


And Amasa wallowed in blood in the midst of the highway. And when 37the man saw that all 38the people stood still, he removed Amasa out of the highway into the field, and cast a cloth upon him, when he saw that every one that came by him stood still.


When he was removed out of the highway, all the people went on after Joab, to pursue after Sheba the son of Bichri.


¶And 39he went through all the tribes of Israel unto Abel, and to 40Beth-maachah, and all the 41Berites: and 42they were gathered together, and went also after him.


And they came and besieged 43him in Abel of Beth-maachah, and they 44cast up a 45bank against the city, and it stood in the trench: and all the people that were with Joab 46battered the wall, to throw it down.


¶Then cried a wise woman 47out of the city, Hear, hear; say, I pray you, unto Joab, Come near hither, that I may speak with thee.


And when he was come near unto her, the woman said, Art thou Joab? And he answered, I am he. Then she said unto him, Hear the words of thine handmaid. And he answered, I do hear.


Then she spake, saying, They were 48wont to speak in old time, saying, They shall 49surely ask counsel at Abel: and 50so they ended the matter.


51I am one of them that are peaceable and faithful in Israel: thou seekest to destroy a 52city and a mother in Israel: why wilt thou swallow up the 53inheritance of the LORD?


And Joab answered and said, Far be it, far be it from me, 54that I should swallow up or destroy.


55The matter is not so: but a man of mount Ephraim, Sheba the son of Bichri by name, hath lifted up his 56hand against the king, even against David: deliver him only, and I will depart from the city. And the woman said unto Joab, Behold, his head shall be thrown to thee over the wall.


Then the woman went unto all the people 57in her wisdom. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and cast it out to Joab. And he blew a trumpet, and 58they retired from the city, every man to his tent. And Joab returned to Jerusalem unto the king.


¶Now Joabbwas 59over all the host of Israel: and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was over the 60Cherethites and over the Pelethites:


And Adoram was over the 61tribute: and Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was 62recorder:


And 63Sheva was scribe: and Zadok and Abiathar were the 64priests:


And Ira also the Jairite was a 65chief ruler about David.