1And it cometh to pass afterwards, that Absalom prepareth for himself a chariot, and horses, and fifty men are running before him;
2and Absalom hath risen early, and stood by the side of the way of the gate, and it cometh to pass, every man who hath a pleading to come unto the king for judgment, that Absalom calleth unto him, and saith, ‘Of what city [art] thou?’ and hesaith, ‘Of one of the tribes of Israel [is] thy servant.’
3And Absalom saith unto him, ‘See, thy matters [are] good and straightforward — and there is none hearkening to thee from the king.’
4And Absalom saith, ‘Who doth make me a judge in the land, that unto me doth come every man who hath a plea and judgment? — then I have declared him righteous.’
5And it hath come to pass, in the drawing nearing of any one to bow himself to him, that he hath put forth his hand, and laid hold on him, and given a kiss to him;
6and Absalom doth according to this thing to all Israel who come in for judgment unto the king, and Absalom stealeth the heart of the men of Israel.
7And it cometh to pass, at the end of forty years, that Absalom saith unto the king, ‘Let me go, I pray thee, and I complete my vow, that I vowed to Jehovah in Hebron,
8for a vow hath thy servant vowed in my dwelling in Geshur, in Aram, saying, If Jehovah doth certainly bring me back to Jerusalem, then I have served Jehovah.’
9And the king saith to him, ‘Go in peace;’ and he riseth and goeth to Hebron,
10and Absalom sendeth spies through all the tribes of Israel, saying, ‘At your hearing the voice of the trumpet, then ye have said, Absalom hath reigned in Hebron.’
11And with Absalom have gone two hundred men, out of Jerusalem, invited ones, and they are going in their simplicity, and have not known anything;
12and Absalom sendeth Ahithophel the Gilonite, a counsellor of David, out of his city, out of Gilo, in his sacrificing sacrifices; and the conspiracy is strong, and the people are going and increasing with Absalom.
13And he who is declaring tidings cometh in unto David, saying, ‘The heart of the men of Israel hath been after Absalom.’
14And David saith to all his servants who [are] with him in Jerusalem, ‘Rise, and we flee, for we have no escape from the face of Absalom; haste to go, lest he hasten, and have overtaken us, and forced on us evil, and smitten the city by themouth of the sword.’
15And the servants of the king say unto the king, ‘According to all that my lord the king chooseth — lo, thy servants [do].’
16And the king goeth out, and all his household at his feet, and the king leaveth ten women — concubines — to keep the house.
17And the king goeth out, and all the people at his feet, and they stand still at the farthest off house.
18And all his servants are passing on at his side, and all the Cherethite, and all the Pelethite, and all the Gittites, six hundred men who came at his feet from Gath, are passing on at the front of the king.
19And the king saith unto Ittai the Gittite, ‘Why dost thou go — thou also — with us? turn back — and abide with the king, for thou [art] a stranger, and also an exile thou — to thy place.
20Yesterday [is] thy coming in, and to-day I move thee to go with us, and I am going on that which I am going! — turn back, and take back thy brethren with thee, — kindness and truth.’
21And Ittai answereth the king and saith, ‘Jehovah liveth, and my lord the king liveth, surely in the place where my lord the king is — if for death, if for life, surely there is thy servant.’
22And David saith unto Ittai, ‘Go and pass over;’ and Ittai the Gittite passeth over, and all his men, and all the infants who [are] with him.
23And all the land are weeping — a great voice, and all the people are passing over; and the king is passing over through the brook Kidron, and all the people are passing over on the front of the way of the wilderness;
24and lo, also Zadok, and all the Levites with him, bearing the ark of the covenant of God, and they make the ark of God firm, and Abiathar goeth up, till the completion of all the people to pass over out of the city.
25And the king saith to Zadok, ‘Take back the ark of God to the city; if I find grace in the eyes of Jehovah, then He hath brought me back, and shewn me it and His habitation;
26and if thus He say, I have not delighted in thee; here [am] I, He doth to me as [is] good in His eyes.’
27And the king saith unto Zadok the priest, ‘Art thou a seer? turn back to the city in peace, and Ahimaaz thy son, and Jonathan son of Abiathar, your two sons with you;
28see ye, I am tarrying in the plains of the wilderness till the coming in of a word from you to declare to me.’
29And Zadok taketh back — and Abiathar — the ark of God to Jerusalem, and they abide there.
30And David is going up in the ascent of the olives, going up and weeping, and he hath the head covered, and he is going barefooted, and all the people who [are] with him have covered each his head, and have gone up, going up and weeping;
31and David declared, saying, ‘Ahithophel [is] among the conspirators with Absalom;’ and David saith, ‘Make foolish, I pray Thee, the counsel of Ahithophel, O Jehovah.’
32And it cometh to pass, David hath come unto the top, where he boweth himself to God, and lo, to meet him [is] Hushai the Archite, his coat rent, and earth on his head;
33and David saith to him, ‘If thou hast passed on with me then thou hast been on me for a burden,
34and if to the city thou dost turn back, and hast said to Absalom, Thy servant I am, O king; servant of thy father I [am] also hitherto, and now, I [am] also thy servant; then thou hast made void for me the counsel of Ahithophel;
35and are there not with thee there Zadok and Abiathar the priests? and it hath been, the whole of the matter that thou hearest from the house of the king thou dost declare to Zadok and to Abiathar the priests.
36Lo, there with them [are] their two sons, Ahimaaz to Zadok, and Jonathan to Abiathar, and ye have sent by their hand unto me anything that ye hear.’
37And Hushai, David's friend, cometh in to the city, and Absalom cometh in to Jerusalem.