1And there came to be a man of Beliya‛al, whose name was Sheḇa son of Biḵri, a Binyamite. And he blew a ram’s horn, and said, “We have no part in Dawiḏ, nor do we have inheritance in the son of Yishai – each one to his tents, O Yisra’ĕl!”
2Then all the men of Yisra’ĕl deserted Dawiḏ, to follow Sheḇa the son of Biḵri. But the men of Yehuḏah, from the Yardĕn as far as Yerushalayim, clung to their sovereign.
3And Dawiḏ came to his house at Yerushalayim. And the sovereign took the ten women, his concubines whom he had left to look after the house, and put them in a protected house and supported them, but did not go in to them. So they were shut up to the day of their death, living in widowhood.
4And the sovereign said to Amasa, “Call the men of Yehuḏah for me within three days, and be present here yourself.”
5And Amasa went to call the men of Yehuḏah. But he delayed longer than the appointed time which Dawiḏ had appointed him.
6And Dawiḏ said to Aḇishai, “Now Sheḇa son of Biḵri is going to do us more evil than Aḇshalom. Take the servants of your master, and pursue him, lest he find for himself walled cities, and escape us.”
7Then the men of Yo’aḇ went out after him, with the Kerĕthites and the Pelĕthites, and all the mighty men. And they went out of Yerushalayim to pursue Sheḇa son of Biḵri.
8When they were near the large stone which is in Giḇ‛on, Amasa came before them. And Yo’aḇ was dressed in battle armour, and on it was a girdle with a sword fastened in its sheath at his hips. And as he went forward, it fell out.
9And Yo’aḇ said to Amasa, “Peace, my brother?” And Yo’aḇ took Amasa by the beard with his right hand to kiss him.
10But Amasa was not on guard against the sword in Yo’aḇ’s hand. And he struck him with it in the stomach, and his inward parts poured out on the ground, and he did not strike him again, and he died. Then Yo’aḇ and Aḇishai his brother pursued Sheḇa son of Biḵri.
11And a man, one of Yo’aḇ’s men, stood beside him, and said, “Whoever is well pleased with Yo’aḇ and whoever is for Dawiḏ, let him follow Yo’aḇ!”
12And Amasa was rolling in his blood in the middle of the highway. And the man saw that all the people stood still, so he moved Amasa from the highway to the field and threw a garment over him, when he saw that everyone who came upon him halted.
13When he was removed from the highway, all the men passed on after Yo’aḇ to pursue Sheḇa son of Biḵri.
14And he passed over through all the tribes of Yisra’ĕl to Aḇĕl, and to Bĕyth Ma‛aḵah, and to all the Bĕrites. And they were assembled and went after him too.
15And they went and besieged him in Aḇĕl of Bĕyth Ma‛aḵah, and they cast up a siege mound against the city. And it stood in a rampart, and all the people who were with Yo’aḇ battered the wall to throw it down.
16Then a wise woman called out from the city, “Listen, listen! Please say to Yo’aḇ, ‘Come nearby, so that I speak to you.’ ”
17And he came near to her, and the woman said, “Are you Yo’aḇ?” And he answered, “I am.” Then she said to him, “Listen to the words of your female servant.” And he answered, “I am listening.”
18Then she spoke, saying, “In former times they often spoke, saying, ‘Let them inquire of Aḇĕl,’ and so they ended the matter.
19“I am of the peaceable and trustworthy ones in Yisra’ĕl. You seek to destroy a city and a mother in Yisra’ĕl. Why do you swallow up the inheritance of יהוה?”
20And Yo’aḇ answered and said, “Far be it, far be it from me to swallow up or to destroy!
21“That is not the case. But a man from the mountains of Ephrayim, Sheḇa son of Biḵri by name, has raised his hand against the sovereign, against Dawiḏ. Hand him over, him alone, and I withdraw from the city.” And the woman said to Yo’aḇ, “Look, his head is going to be thrown to you over the wall.”
22So the woman in her wisdom went to all the people. And they cut off the head of Sheḇa son of Biḵri, and threw it out to Yo’aḇ. Then he blew a ram’s horn, and they dispersed from the city, each one to his tent. And Yo’aḇ returned to the sovereign at Yerushalayim.
23Now Yo’aḇ was over all the army of Yisra’ĕl, and Benayah son of Yehoyaḏa was over the Kerĕthites and the Pelĕthites,
24and Aḏoram was over the compulsory labour, and Yehoshaphat son of Aḥiluḏ was recorder,
25and Shewa was scribe, and Tsaḏoq and Eḇyathar were the priests,
26and Ira the Ya‛irite was priest to Dawiḏ.
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