David’s desert army
1The following persons came to David at Ziklag while he was banished from the presence of Saul, Kish’s son. They were some of the warriors who helped him in battle, 2armed with bows, and they could use either hand to shoot arrows or sling stones. They were Saul’s relatives from Benjamin:
3Ahiezer was the leader, then Joash, both Shemaah’s sons from Gibeah; Jeziel and Pelet, Azmaveth’s sons; Beracah; Jehu of Anathoth; 4Ishmaiah from Gibeon, a warrior in the Thirty and a leader over the Thirty;#12:5 in Heb Jeremiah; Jahaziel; Johanan; Jozabad from Gederah; 5#12:6 in Heb Eluzai; Jerimoth; Bealiah; Shemariah; Shephatiah the Haruphite; 6Elkanah, Isshiah, Azarel, Joezer, and Jashobeam the Korahites; 7Joelah; and Zebadiah, Jeroham’s son from Gedor.
8Some left Gad to join David at the desert fortress, brave warriors trained for battle, armed with shield and spear, who looked like lions and who were swift as gazelles on the mountains: 9Ezer the leader, Obadiah second, Eliab third, 10Mishmannah fourth, Jeremiah fifth, 11Attai sixth, Eliel seventh, 12Johanan eighth, Elzabad ninth, 13Jeremiah tenth, Machbannai eleventh.
14These Gadites were military officers, the least of them ready to fight a hundred and the greatest a thousand. 15These are the ones who crossed the Jordan in the first month, when it was overflowing all its banks, and chased away everyone living in the valleys to the east and the west.
16Some Benjaminites and Judahites also came to David at the fortress. 17David went out to meet them and said to them, "If you’ve come to me with good intentions in order to help me, then we will join forces. But if you’ve come to betray me to my enemies, though I’ve done no wrong, then may our ancestors’ God see it and punish you."
18Then a spirit took hold of Amasai, the leader of the Thirty:
David, we are yours;
and on your side, Jesse’s son!
May it go very well for you,
and may it go well for whoever helps you!
Yes, your God has helped you.
Then David received them, and put them at the head of his troops.
19Some of the Manassites also joined David when he came with the Philistines for the battle against Saul. But he#LXX; MT they didn’t help them, because after considering the matter, the Philistine rulers sent him away. "He’ll rejoin his master Saul," they said, "and it will cost us our heads." 20When he went to Ziklag some joined him from Manasseh: Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu, and Zillethai, leaders of units of a thousand in Manasseh. 21They helped David against the raiding bands because they were all warriors and officers in the army. 22Reinforcements came to David daily until there was an army as mighty as God’s army.
23These are the numbers of the commanders of those armed for battle who came to David in Hebron to make sure he took over Saul’s kingdom, according to the Lord’s word:
24from Judah, carrying shield and spear, 6,800 troops armed for battle;
25from Simeon, mighty warriors, 7,100;
26from Levi, 4,600;
27also Jehoiada, leader of Aaron’s line, and with him 3,700;
28and Zadok, a young man, a mighty warrior, and 22 officers from his household;
29from Benjamin, Saul’s relatives, 3,000, most of whom had been loyal to Saul’s household;
30from Ephraim, 20,800, mighty warriors, famous in their households;
31from half the tribe of Manasseh, 18,000, designated by name to come and make David king;
32from Issachar, those who understood the times and what Israel should do, 200 chiefs, with all their relatives under their command;
33from Zebulun, 50,000 experienced troops, armed for battle with all the weapons of war, to help with undivided loyalty;
34from Naphtali, 1,000 officers, as well as 37,000 armed with shield and spear;
35from Dan, 28,600 armed for battle;
36from Asher, 40,000 experienced troops armed for battle;
37from the other side of the Jordan, the Reubenites, Gadites, and the other half of the tribe of Manasseh, 120,000 armed with all the weapons of war.
38All these men of war, armed#LXX; MT helpers for battle, came to Hebron determined to make David king over all Israel, and all the rest of Israel were fully agreed to make David king. 39They were there with David for three days, eating and drinking, while their relatives provided food for them. 40Even their neighbors from as far away as Issachar, Zebulun, and Naphtali were bringing food by donkeys, camels, mules, and oxen. There was an abundance of flour, fig cakes, clusters of raisins, wine, oil, oxen, and sheep, because Israel was joyful.