21[1-6] There was a famine in the days of David for three years in a row; and David asked Yahweh for answers. Yahweh said, “It’s for Saul, and for his bloody house, because he put to death the Gibeonites.”The ruler called the Gibeonites, saying to them (now the Gibeonites weren’t of the people of Israel, but of what was left of the Amorites; and the people of Israel had promised to them; and Saul killed them in his passion for the people of Israel and Judah); and David said to the Gibeonites, “What can I do for you? And how can I ask forgiveness, that you may bless the inheritance of Yahweh?”The Gibeonites said to him, It’s not a matter of silver or gold between us and Saul, or his house; neither is it for us to put anyone to death in Israel.” He said, Whatever you say, I’ll do for you.”They said to the ruler, “The one who destroyed us, and who planned against us, that we would be destroyed from all of the borders of Israel,let seven people of his sons be given to us, and we’ll hang them up to Yahweh in Gibeah of Saul, the chosen of Yahweh.” The ruler said, “I’ll give them.”
[7-9] But the ruler spared Mephibosheth, son of Jonathan, of Saul, because of Yahweh’s promise between them, that was between David and Jonathan.But the ruler took the two sons of Rizpah, the daughter of Aiah, whom she had with Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Michal, the daughter of Saul, whom she had to Adriel of Barzillai, the Meholathite; He gave them to the Gibeonites, and they hanged them in the mountain before Yahweh, and they all seven died together. They were put to death in the days of harvest, in the first days, at the beginning of the barley harvest.
[10-14] Rizpah, the daughter of Aiah, took mourning clothes, and spread them out on a rock, from the beginning of harvest until it rained on them. She neither let the birds of the sky rest on them by day, nor the animals of the field by night.David was told what Rizpah, the mistress of Saul, had done.David went and took the bones of Saul and Jonathan his son from the people of Jabesh Gilead, who had stolen them from the street of Beth Shan, where the Philistines had hanged them, in the day that the Philistines killed Saul in Gilboa; and he brought them up from there; and they gathered the bones of those who were hanged. They buried the bones of Saul and Jonathan his son in the country of Benjamin in Zela, in the tomb of Kish his father; and they did what the ruler told them. After that God was asked about the land.
[15-22] The Philistines went to war again with Israel; and David went down with his soldiers, and fought against the Philistines. David grew faint; and Ishbibenob, who was of the descendants of the giant, whose spear weighed the same as 300 coins of brass, having a new sword, thought to have killed David. But Abishai of Zeruiah helped him, and fought the Philistine, and killed him. Then the people of David promised him, saying, “You won’t go out with us to fight anymore, so that you don’t outshine David, the lamp of Israel.After this, there was again war with the Philistines at Gob; then Sibbecai, the Hushathite killed Saph, who was of the descendants of the giant.There was again war with the Philistines at Gob; and Elhanan, of Jaareoregim, the Bethlehemite killed Goliath the Gittite’s brother, whose spear was as long as a weaver’s beam.There was war at Gath again, where there was a giant who had six fingers on each hand, and six toes on each foot, 24 in all; and he was born to the giant also. When he defied Israel, Jonathan of Shimei, David’s brother, killed him. These four were born to the giant in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David and his soldiers.
22[1-4] David said to Yahweh the words of this song when Yahweh saved him from Saul and all his enemies; he said, Yahweh is my rock, my refuge which surrounds me, and my own Savior; God, my strength, in whom I trust; My shield that protects me, and the horn I blow to save me, my safe haven; my savior, who saves me from violent people. I’ll call on Yahweh, Who is worthy to be praised; So I’ll be saved from my enemies.
[5-7] The sorrows of death overtook me and the rush of ungodly people made me afraid.The sorrows of Hell overtook me. The traps of death caught me. In my trouble I called on Yahweh. Yes, I called to my God, Who heard me in the Place of Worship and listened to my cry.
[8-11] Then the earth quaked. The foundations of the hills were opened and shaken, because You were angry.Then You exhaled smoke and fire, in which the flames burned everything started by them. You opened the heavens also, coming down with dark smoke underneath You, riding on a heavenly thing, and flying on the wind. Yes, You were seen riding on the wings of the wind.
[12-15] You made darkness the hiding place of God; with a cloak of dark waters, and the thick clouds of the skies all around. The brightness that surrounded You, was followed by flashes of lightning.Yahweh thundered in the heavens. The Most High spoke through the flashes of lightning, and You scattered and confused them with Your lightning.
[16-19] Then the outlets of water were opened. The heart of the earth was uncovered by the Word of Yahweh, from the blast of Your exhaust. Yousent from above, taking hold of me, pulling me up out of deep water. You saved me from my strong enemies, from those who hated me and were too strong for me. They came on me in the day of my trouble, but Yahweh helped me.
[20-25] You brought me out into a large place and saved me, because You were happy with me.Yahweh rewarded me according to my goodness. You rewarded me according to the cleanness of my heart. I’ve kept the ways of Yahweh, and haven’t done evil by not worshipping my God.All Your words were with me. As for Your laws, I didn’t break them.I was also good before You and I kept myself from sin. So Yahweh, You have rewarded me for my goodness, according to the cleanness of my heart in Your eyes.
[26-28] With the merciful You show yourself to be merciful. With those who do what’s right, You show Yourself to be perfectly good.With the blameless, You show yourself to be blameless. With those who won’t change their evil ways, You’ll show yourself to be unmercifully just.You’ll save the people who are abused, and bring down those who think they’re better than others.
[29-31] You burn like a candle in my soul! Yahweh, My God, brightens my darkness. By you, I run through many enemies. By my God, I jump over many barriers. The way of God is perfect. The Words of Yahweh have been tested. You are a shield to all those who trust in You.
[32-37] Who is God but Yahweh? Who is a rock but our God?God gives me strength, and makes me go the right way. You make my feet like a deer’s hoofs, and keep me safe on the mountaintops. You teach my hands to fight, so that my arms are strong. You cover me with your saving grace. You help me and have made me great. You’ve enlarged my steps under me, so that my feet haven’t slipped.
[38-43] I’ve chased my enemies and overtaken them. I didn’t turn back until they were all gone.I’ve wounded those that they couldn’t get up. Yes, they’ve fallen under my feet. You’ve given me strength for all my struggles. You’ve put under me those who came against me. You’ve also given me power over my enemies, that I could stop those who hate me. They looked, but there wasn’t anyone to save them; even to Yahweh, but You didn’t answer them. Then I beat them as small as the dust of the earth. I crushed and scattered them as dust in the street.
[44-46] You also have saved me from the fighting of My people. You’ve made me the head of the nations. A people whom I haven’t known serve me. The foreigners do what I say. As soon as they hear, they obey me. The foreigners will run away, and come shaking out of their hiding places.
[47-51] Yahweh lives! Praise to my rock! Let the God who saved me be praised! Praise the God who takes revenge for me, who puts the people under me, who saves me from my enemies. Yes, you lift me up above those who come against me. You save me from violent people. So I’ll give thanks to You, Yahweh, among the people. I’ll sing praises to Your Name. You give great victory, and show loving kindness to Your chosen ruler, David and my descendants, forevermore.
23[1-7] Now these are the last words of David. David, son of Jesse, the man who was made a ruler, the chosen of the God of Jacob, the sweet song writer of Israel says, “The Spirit of Yahweh spoke by me, Whose word was on my tongue. The God of Israel, the Rock of Israel said to me, one who rules over people rightly, who rules with respect to God, will be as the light of the morning sun when it rises, a morning with no clouds when the new grass grows out of the ground, through clear sunshine after the rain. Most certainly my family has failed God in this, still God has made an everlasting promised agreement with me, ordered in all things, and sure, for it’s my saving grace, and all I want, so won’t God make it happen. But all of the ungodly people will be as thorns to be thrown away, because they can’t be uprooted with the hand, but the one who touches them must have strong armor and a long stick. They’ll be completely burned with fire wherever they are.”
[8-12] These are the names of the soldiers whom David had; Josheb Basshebeth, a Tahchemonite, leader of the captains; who was called Adino, the Eznite, because he fought against 800 soldiers killed at one time.After him was Eleazar, son of Dodai, of an Ahohite, one of the three soldiers with David when they challenged the Philistines who were gathered together to fight, and the people of Israel had run away. He got up, and fought the Philistines until his hand was tired, and had stuck to the sword; and Yahweh won a great victory that day; and the people went back after him only to take stuff.After him was Shammah,son of Agee, a Hararite. The Philistines were gathered together into a troop, where was a plot of ground full of lentils (flat peas); and the people ran from the Philistines. But he stood in the middle of the plot, and defended it, and killed the Philistines; and Yahweh won a great victory.
[13-17] Three of the 30 leaders went down, and came to David in the harvest time to the cave of Adullam; and the troop of the Philistines was camped in the valley of Rephaim. David was then in the stronghold; and the fort of the Philistines was then in Bethlehem. David longed, saying, “Oh, I wish that someone would give me a drink of water from the well by the gate from Bethlehem! The three soldiers broke through the troops of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well from Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David; but he wouldn’t drink it, but poured it out to Yahweh. He said, Far be it from me, Yahweh, that I should do this; I’d be drinking the blood of the men who risked their lives? So he wouldn’t drink it. The three soldiers did these things.
[18-23] Abishai, the brother of Joab, of Zeruiah was leader of the three. He fought against 300 and killed them, and had a name among the three. He was the most praiseworthy of the three, so he was made their captain; but he didn’t belong to the first three. Benaiah, son of Jehoiada, son of a brave man of Kabzeel, who had done heroic acts, killed the two sons of Ariel of Moab; he went down also and killed a lion in the middle of a pit when it was snowing!He killed an Egyptian, a famous man; and the Egyptian had a spear in his hand; but he went down to him with a walking stick, and knocked the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand, and killed him with his own spear. Benaiah did these things and had a name among the three soldiers.He was more honorable than the 30, but he didn’t belong to the first three. David set him over his guard.
[24-39] Asahel, the brother of Joab, was one of the 30; Elhanan, son of Dodo, from Bethlehem,Shammah, the Harodite, Elika, the Harodite,Helez, the Paltite, Ira, son of Ikkesh, the Tekoite, Abiezer, the Anathothite, Mebunnai, the Hushathite, Zalmon, the Ahohite, Maharai, the Netophathite, Heleb, son of Baanah, the Netophathite, Ittai, son of Ribai, of Gibeah, of the people from Benjamin, Benaiah, a Pirathonite, Hiddai, from the rivers of Gaash.Abialbon, the Arbathite, Azmaveth, the Barhumite, Eliahba, the Shaalbonite, of the descendants of Jashen, Jonathan,Shammah, the Hararite, Ahiam, son of Sharar the Ararite, Eliphelet, son of Ahasbai, of the Maacathite, Eliam, son of Ahithophel, the Gilonite, Hezro, the Carmelite, Paarai, the Arbite, Igal, son of Nathan of Zobah, Bani, the Gadite, Zelek, the Ammonite, Naharai, the Beerothite, armor bearer to Joab, son of Zeruiah, Ira, the Ithrite, Gareb, the Ithrite, and Uriah, the Hittite; 37 in all.
24[1-4] Again Yahweh was angry at Israel, and moved David against them, saying, “Go, count Israel and Judah.” The ruler said to Joab, the captain of the troops, who was with him, “Go now through all the family groups of Israel, from Dan to Beersheba, and count the people, that I may know how many people there are.” Joab said to the ruler, “May Yahweh, your God, add to the people a hundred times more; and may your eyes see it; but why does the ruler want this thing?” But the ruler’s word overcame Joab’s doubts, and the leaders of the troops. Joab and the leaders of the troops left the presence of the ruler, to count the people of Israel.
[5-9] They crossed over the Jordan, and camped in Aroer, on the right side of the city that is in the middle of the valley of Gad, and to Jazer; then they came to Gilead, and to the land of Tahtim Hodshi; and they came to Dan Jaan, and around to Sidon, and came to the stronghold of Tyre, and to all the cities of the Hivites, and of the Canaanites; and they went out to the south of Judah, at Beersheba. So when they had gone through all the land, they came to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and twenty days.Joab gave the sum of the number of the people to the ruler; and there were in Israel 800,000 brave soldiers; and the people of Judah were 500,000 soldiers.
[10-14] David’s heart troubled him after he had counted the people. David said to Yahweh, “I’ve sinned greatly in what I’ve done; but now, Yahweh, forgive, I beg you, the sin of Your follower. I was so wrong.” When David got up in the morning, the word of Yahweh came to the preacher Gad, David’s preacher, saying, “Go tell David, Yahweh says, ‘I give you three choices; choose one of them, which I’ll do to you.” So Gad came to David, and told him, “Will seven years of no food come to you in your land? or will you run three months before your enemies while they chase you? or will there be three days’ disease in your land? Now tell me, and think about what I’ll say to God, who sent me. David said to Gad, I’m greatly troubled; but we’ll put ourselves into the power of Yahweh, whose mercy is great; and don’t let me fall into the power of human beings.
[15-17] So Yahweh sent a disease on Israel from the morning to the set time; and 70,000 men of the people died from Dan to Beersheba. When the angel pointed toward Jerusalem to destroy it, Yahweh stopped the deadly disease, saying to the angel who destroyed the people, “It’s enough; stop now.” The angel of Yahweh was by the place of harvest of Araunah, the Jebusite.David said to Yahweh, when he saw the angel who destroyed the people, “See, I’ve sinned, and I’ve done wrong; but what have these people done? Please let your hand be against me, and against my family.”
[18-25] Gad came that day to David, saying to him, “Go up, build an altar to Yahweh in the place of harvest of Araunah, the Jebusite. David went to do what Gad had told him, as Yahweh had said.Araunah looked up, and saw the ruler and his soldiers coming toward him; and Araunah went out, and bowed down before the ruler to the ground. Araunah said, “Why has the ruler come to me?” David said, “To buy the place of harvest from you, to build an altar to Yahweh, that the disease will come to an end in the people. Araunah said to David, “Let the ruler take and offer up whatever seems good to him; see, the cows for the burnt offering, and the plows, and the yokes, of the cows for the wood; all this, ruler, does Araunah give to you.” Araunah said to the ruler, “May Yahweh, your God, accept you.” The ruler said to Araunah, “No; but I’ll most certainly buy it from you for what it’s worth. Nor will I offer anything to Yahweh, my God, which cost me nothing.” So David bought the place of harvest and the cows for 50 silver coins. David built there an altar to Yahweh, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So Yahweh was asked for mercy on the land, and the disease came to an end in Israel.