David Made King over Judah
1And it came to pass after this, that David inquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah? And the Lord said unto him, Go up. And David said, Whither shall I go up? And he said, Unto Hebron. 2#1 Sam 25.42,43. So David went up thither, and his two wives also, Ahin´o-am the Jez´reelitess, and Ab´igail Nabal's wife the Car´melite. 3And his men that were with him did David bring up, every man with his household: and they dwelt in the cities of Hebron. 4#1 Sam 31.11-13. And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah.
And they told David, saying, That the men of Ja´besh–gil´e-ad were they that buried Saul. 5And David sent messengers unto the men of Ja´besh–gil´e-ad, and said unto them, Blessed be ye of the Lord, that ye have showed this kindness unto your lord, even unto Saul, and have buried him. 6And now the Lord show kindness and truth unto you: and I also will requite you this kindness, because ye have done this thing. 7Therefore now let your hands be strengthened, and be ye valiant: for your master Saul is dead, and also the house of Judah have anointed me king over them.
David Fights against the Forces of Saul
8But Abner the son of Ner, captain of Saul's host, took Ish–bo´sheth the son of Saul, and brought him over to Mahana´im; 9and made him king over Gil´e-ad, and over the Ash´urites, and over Jezreel, and over E´phra-im, and over Benjamin, and over all Israel. 10Ish–bo´sheth Saul's son was forty years old when he began to reign over Israel, and reigned two years. But the house of Judah followed David. 11And the time that David was king in Hebron over the house of Judah was seven years and six months.
12And Abner the son of Ner, and the servants of Ish–bo´sheth the son of Saul, went out from Mahana´im to Gibeon. 13And Jo´ab the son of Zeru-i´ah, and the servants of David, went out, and met together by the pool of Gibeon: and they sat down, the one on the one side of the pool, and the other on the other side of the pool. 14And Abner said to Jo´ab, Let the young men now arise, and play before us. And Jo´ab said, Let them arise. 15Then there arose and went over by number twelve of Benjamin, which pertained to Ish–bo´sheth the son of Saul, and twelve of the servants of David. 16And they caught every one his fellow by the head, and thrust his sword in his fellow's side; so they fell down together: wherefore that place was called Hel´kath–haz´zurim,#2.16 That is, The field of strong men. which is in Gibeon. 17And there was a very sore battle that day; and Abner was beaten, and the men of Israel, before the servants of David.
18And there were three sons of Zeru-i´ah there, Jo´ab, and Ab´ishai, and As´ahel: and As´ahel was as light of foot as a wild roe. 19And As´ahel pursued after Abner; and in going he turned not to the right hand nor to the left from following Abner. 20Then Abner looked behind him, and said, Art thou As´ahel? And he answered, I am. 21And Abner said to him, Turn thee aside to thy right hand or to thy left, and lay thee hold on one of the young men, and take thee his armor. But As´ahel would not turn aside from following of him. 22And Abner said again to As´ahel, Turn thee aside from following me: wherefore should I smite thee to the ground? how then should I hold up my face to Jo´ab thy brother? 23Howbeit he refused to turn aside: wherefore Abner with the hinder end of the spear smote him under the fifth rib, that the spear came out behind him; and he fell down there, and died in the same place: and it came to pass, that as many as came to the place where As´ahel fell down and died stood still.
24Jo´ab also and Ab´ishai pursued after Abner: and the sun went down when they were come to the hill of Ammah, that lieth before Gi´ah by the way of the wilderness of Gibeon. 25And the children of Benjamin gathered themselves together after Abner, and became one troop, and stood on the top of a hill. 26Then Abner called to Jo´ab, and said, Shall the sword devour for ever? knowest thou not that it will be bitterness in the latter end? how long shall it be then, ere thou bid the people return from following their brethren? 27And Jo´ab said, As God liveth, unless thou hadst spoken, surely then in the morning the people had gone up every one from following his brother. 28So Jo´ab blew a trumpet, and all the people stood still, and pursued after Israel no more, neither fought they any more.
29And Abner and his men walked all that night through the plain, and passed over Jordan, and went through all Bithron, and they came to Mahana´im. 30And Jo´ab returned from following Abner: and when he had gathered all the people together, there lacked of David's servants nineteen men and As´ahel. 31But the servants of David had smitten of Benjamin, and of Abner's men, so that three hundred and threescore men died. 32And they took up As´ahel, and buried him in the sepulchre of his father, which was in Bethlehem. And Jo´ab and his men went all night, and they came to Hebron at break of day.