Nathan Reproves David
1So Yahweh sent Nathan to David, and he came to him and said, “Two men were in a certain city; one was rich and the other was poor. 2The rich man had very many flocks and herds, 3but the poor man had nothing except for one small ewe lamb which he had bought. He had nurtured her, and she grew up with him and with his children together. She used to eat from his morsel and drink from his cup, and she used to lie in his lap and became like a daughter for him. 4And a visitor came to the rich man, but he was reluctant#Literally “felt sorry” to take from his flocks or from his herds to prepare a meal for the traveler when he came to him. So he took the ewe lamb of the poor man and prepared it for the man who had come to him.” 5Then the anger of David was kindled#Literally “the nose of David became very hot” against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As Yahweh lives,#Literally “The life of Yahweh” the man who has done this deserves to die!#Literally “is a son of death” 6He shall restore the ewe lamb fourfold because he has done this thing, and because he had no pity.” 7Then Nathan said to him, “You are the man! Thus says Yahweh the God of Israel: ‘I anointed you as king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. 8I gave you the household of your master and the women of your master into your lap. I also gave you the house of Israel and Judah; if that had been too little, I would have added to you much more.#Literally “as here and as here” 9Why have you despised the word of Yahweh by doing evil in his eyes?#Thus Kethib; the reading tradition (Qere) reads “my eyes” Uriah the Hittite you have struck down with the sword, and his wife you have taken to yourself as wife! You have killed him with the sword of the Ammonites!#Literally “sons/children of Ammon” 10So then, a sword will not turn away from your house forever, because you have despised me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife!’ 11Thus says Yahweh, ‘Look, I am going to raise up evil against you from within your house, and I will take your women before your eyes, and I will give them to your neighbor, and he shall sleep with your wives in broad daylight.#Literally “before the eyes of this sun” 12Though you did this in secret, I will do this thing before all of Israel in broad daylight!’ ”#Literally “before the sun”
David Repents, But the Child Dies
13Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against Yahweh!”#See Pss 32:1–5; 51:1–13 Nathan said to David, “Yahweh has also forgiven your sin; you shall not die. 14But because you have utterly scorned#Literally “scorning you have scorned.” The term “enemies of” in the MT is likely a textual corruption and is deleted here Yahweh in this matter, the son born for you will certainly die.”#Literally “dying will die” (compare Gen 2:17) 15Then Nathan went to his house, and Yahweh struck the child that the wife of Uriah bore for David, and he became ill. 16David pleaded with God on behalf of the boy and David fasted. He went to spend the night and lay upon the ground. 17The elders of his household stood over him to lift him up from the ground, but he was not willing, and he did not eat any food with them. 18It happened on the seventh day that the child died, and the servants of David were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they said, “Look, when the child was alive, we spoke to him, but he would not listen to our voice. How can we tell him, ‘The child is dead’? He may do something evil.” 19When David saw that his servants were whispering together, he realized that the child was dead. Then David said to his servants, “Is the child dead?” And they said, “He is dead.” 20David stood up from the ground and washed and anointed himself and changed his clothing. Then he went to the house of Yahweh and worshiped, and he went to his own house. He asked, so they served him food, and he ate. 21Then his servants said to him, “What is this thing that you have done? While the child was alive, you fasted and wept; now that the child has died, you get up and eat food!” 22He said, “When the child was still alive, I fasted and I wept because I thought, ‘Who knows? Yahweh may have mercy on me that the child will live.’ 23But now he is dead. Why should I be fasting? Am I able to return him again? I am going to him, but he cannot return to me.” 24David consoled Bathsheba his wife, and he went to her and slept with her. She bore a son, and he called#So Kethib; Qere reads “she called” him Solomon, and Yahweh loved him. 25He sent word by the hand of Nathan the prophet, so he called him Jedidiah#Jedidiah means “beloved of Yahweh” because of Yahweh.
Battle with the Ammonites
26And Joab fought against Rabbah of the Ammonites,#Literally “sons/children of Ammon” and he captured the royal city.#Literally “city of the kingship” 27Then Joab sent messengers to David and said, “We have fought against Rabbah, and we captured the city of the waters. 28So then, gather the remainder of the army and encamp against the city and capture it, lest I capture the city and my name be proclaimed over it.” 29So David gathered all of the army, and he went to Rabbah and fought against it and captured it. 30He took the crown of their king from his head. (Now its weight was a talent of gold, and there was a precious stone in it and it was put on David’s head.) He brought out the plunder of the city in great abundance.#Literally “very many” 31He also brought out the people who were in it and put them to the saws and to the iron picks and to the iron axes, and he sent them to the place of the brickmakers. Thus he used to do to all the cities of the Ammonites,#Literally “sons/children of Ammon” and he and all of the army returned to Jerusalem.
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