The Bible in Its Traditions

2 Samuel 3:22–39

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22  And, behold, the servants of David and Joab came from a foray, and brought in a great spoil with them; but Abner was not with David in Hebron; for he had sent him away, and he was gone in peace.

22  immediately the servants of David and of Joab arrived, after having slain robbers, with exceedingly great spoils. But Abner was not with David in Hebron. For by then he had sent him away, and he had set out in peace.

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23  When Joab and all the host that was with him were come, they told Joab, saying: 'Abner the son of Ner came to the king, and he hath sent him away, and he is gone in peace.'

23  And Joab and all his army came, and it was reported to Joab, saying, Abenner the son of Ner is come to David, and David has let him go, and he has departed in peace.

23  And Joab, and the entire army that was with him, had arrived afterward. And so, it was reported to Joab, explaining that Abner, the son of Ner, went to the king, and he dismissed him, and he went away in peace.

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24  Then Joab came to the king, and said: 'What hast thou done? behold, Abner came unto thee; why is it that thou hast sent him away, and he is quite gone?

24  And Joab entered to the king, and he said: “What have you done? Behold, Abner came to you. Why did you dismiss him, so that he has gone and departed?

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25  Thou knowest Abner the son of Ner, that he came to deceive thee, and to know thy going out and thy coming in, and to know all that thou doest.'

25  Do you not know, about Abner, the son of Ner, that he came to you for this, so that he might deceive you, and might know of your departure and your return, and so that he might know all that you do?”

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26  And when Joab was come out from David, he sent messengers after Abner, and they brought him back from Bor-sirah; but David knew it not.

26  And Joab returned from David, and sent messengers to Abenner after him; and they bring him back from the well of Seiram: but David knew it not.

26  And so, Joab, going out from David, sent messengers after Abner, and he brought him back from the cistern of Sirah, without David knowing.

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27  And when Abner was returned to Hebron, Joab took him aside into the midst of the gate to speak with him quietly, and smote him there in the groin, that he died, for the blood of Asahel his brother.

27  And he brought back Abenner to Chebron, and Joab caused him to turn aside from the gate to speak to him, laying wait for him: and he smote him there in the loins, and he died for the blood of Asael the brother of Joab.

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28  And afterward when David heard it, he said: 'I and my kingdom are guiltless before YHWH for ever from the blood of Abner the son of Ner;

28  And David heard of it afterwards, and said, I and my kingdom are guiltless before the Lord even for ever of the blood of Abenner the son of Ner.

28  And when David had heard of it, now that the matter was done, he said: “I and my kingdom are clean before the Lord, even forever, of the blood of Abner, the son of Ner.

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29  let it fall upon the head of Joab, and upon all his father's house; and let there not fail from the house of Joab one that hath an issue, or that is a leper, or that leaneth on a staff, or that falleth by the sword, or that lacketh bread.'

29  And may it fall upon the head of Joab, and upon the entire house of his father. And may there not fail to be, in the house of Joab, one who suffers from a flow of seed, or one who is leprous, or one who is effeminate, or one who falls by the sword, or one who is in need of bread.”

29  Let it rest on the head of Joab and on the head of all his father's house; and let there never fail to be in the house of Joab one who has a discharge or who is a leper or who is a beggar holding a bowl or who falls by the sword or who lacks bread.

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30  So Joab and Abishai his brother slew Abner, because he had killed their brother Asahel at Gibeon in the battle.

30  For Joab and Abessa his brother laid wait continually for Abenner, because he slew Asael their brother at Gabaon in the battle.

30  And so, Joab and his brother Abishai killed Abner, because he had killed their brother Asahel at Gibeon, during the battle.

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31  And David said to Joab, and to all the people that were with him: 'Rend your clothes, and gird you with sackcloth, and wail before Abner.' And king David followed the bier.

31  Then David said to Joab, and to all the people who were with him, “Tear your garments, and gird yourselves with sackcloth, and mourn before the funeral procession of Abner.” Moreover, king David himself was following the casket.

32  And they buried Abner in Hebron; and the king lifted up his voice, and wept at the grave of Abner; and all the people wept.

32  And when they had buried Abner in Hebron, king David lifted up his voice, and he wept over the burial mound of Abner. And all the people also wept.

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33  And the king lamented for Abner, and said: Should Abner die as a churl dieth?

33  And the king mourned over Abenner, and said, Shall Abenner die according to the death of Nabal?

33  And the king, mourning and lamenting Abner, said: “By no means has Abner died the way that cowards usually die.

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34  Thy hands were not bound, nor thy feet put into fetters; as a man falleth before the children of iniquity, so didst thou fall. And all the people wept again over him.

34  Your hands are not bound, and your feet are not weighed down with fetters. But just as men often fall before the sons of iniquity, so you have fallen.” And while repeating this, all the people wept over him.

34  Your hands were not bound nor were your feet put into fetters; as one falls before the wicked men, so have you fallen. And all the people wept again over him.

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35  And all the people came to cause David to eat bread while it was yet day; but David swore, saying: 'God do so to me, and more also, if I taste bread, or aught else, till the sun be down.'

35  And all the people assembled to weep for him. And all the people came to cause David to eat bread while it was yet day: and David swore, saying, God do so to me, and more also, if I eat bread or any thing else before the sun goes down.

35  And when the entire multitude had arrived to take food with David, while it was still broad daylight, David swore, saying, “May God do these things to me, and may he add these other things, if I taste bread or anything else before the sun sets.”

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36  And all the people took notice of it, and it pleased them; whatsoever the king did, pleased all the people.

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37  So all the people and all Israel understood that day that it was not of the king to slay Abner the son of Ner.

37  And every common person, and all of Israel, realized on that day that the killing of Abner, the son of Ner, had not been done by the king.

38  And the king said unto his servants: 'Know ye not that there is a prince and a great man fallen this day in Israel?

38  The king also said to his servants: “Could you be ignorant that a leader and a very great man has fallen today in Israel?

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39  And I am this day weak, and just anointed king; and these men the sons of Zeruiah are too hard for me; YHWH reward the evildoer according to his wickedness.'

39  And that I am this day a mere kinsman of his, and as it were a subject; but these men the sons of Saruia are too hard for me: the Lord reward the evil-doer according to his wickedness.

39  But I am still tender, and yet anointed king. And these men of the sons of Zeruiah are too harsh for me. May the Lord repay whoever does evil in accord with his malice.”