The Captains - 2 Samuel 18

2 Samuel 18:1 And David numbered the people that were with  him, and set captains of thousands and captains of hundreds  over them. 

2 Samuel 18:2 And David sent forth a third part of the  people under the hand of Joab, and a third part under the  hand of Abishai the son of Zeruiah, Joab’s brother, and a  third part under the hand of Ittai the Gittite. And the king  said unto the people, I will surely go forth with you myself  also. 

2 Samuel 18:3 But the people answered, Thou shalt not go  forth: for if we flee away, they will not care for us; neither if  half of us die, will they care for us: but now thou art worth  ten thousand of us: therefore now it is better that thou  succour us out of the city. 

2 Samuel 18:4 And the king said unto  them, What seemeth you best I will do. And the king stood  by the gate side, and all the people came out by hundreds  and by thousands. 

2 Samuel 18:5 And the king commanded Joab  and Abishai and Ittai, saying, Deal gently for my sake  with the young man, even with Absalom. And all the  people heard when the king gave all the captains charge  concerning Absalom.   

2 Samuel 18:6 So the people went out into the field against Israel:  and the battle was in the wood of Ephraim; 

2 Samuel 18:7 Where  the people of Israel were slain before the servants of David,  and there was there a great slaughter that day of twenty  thousand men. 

2 Samuel 18:8 For the battle was there scattered  over the face of all the country: and the wood devoured  more people that day than the sword devoured.  


2 Samuel 18:9 And Absalom met the servants of David. And  Absalom rode upon a mule, and the mule went under the  thick boughs of a great oak, and his head caught hold of the  oak, and he was taken up between the heaven and the earth;  and the mule that was under him went away. 

2 Samuel 18:10 And  a certain man saw it, and told Joab, and said, Behold, I saw  Absalom hanged in an oak. 

2 Samuel 18:11 And Joab said unto the  man that told him, And, behold, thou sawest him, and why  didst thou not smite him there to the ground? and I would  have given thee ten shekels of silver, and a girdle. 

2 Samuel 18:12  And the man said unto Joab, Though I should receive a  thousand shekels of silver in mine hand, yet would I not  put forth mine hand against the king’s son: for in our  hearing the king charged thee and Abishai and Ittai, saying,  Beware that none touch the young man Absalom. 

2 Samuel 18:13  Otherwise I should have wrought falsehood against mine  own life: for there is no matter hid from the king, and thou  thyself wouldest have set thyself against me. 

2 Samuel 18:14  Then said Joab, I may not tarry thus with thee. And he took  three darts in his hand, and thrust them through the heart of  Absalom, while he was yet alive in the midst of the oak.  

2 Samuel 18:15 And ten young men that bare Joab’s armour  compassed about and smote Absalom, and slew him.  

2 Samuel 18:16 And Joab blew the trumpet, and the people  returned from pursuing after Israel: for Joab held back the  people. 

2 Samuel 18:17 And they took Absalom, and cast him into  a great pit in the wood, and laid a very great heap of stones  upon him: and all Israel fled every one to his tent.  

2 Samuel 18:18 Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and  reared up for himself a pillar, which is in the king’s dale:  for he said, I have no son to keep my name in remembrance:  and he called the pillar after his own name: and it is called  unto this day, Absalom’s place.  

2 Samuel 18:19 Then said Ahimaaz the son of Zadok, Let me  now run, and bear the king tidings, how that the LORD hath  avenged him of his enemies. 

2 Samuel 18:20 And Joab said unto  him, Thou shalt not bear tidings this day, but thou shalt bear  tidings another day: but this day thou shalt bear no tidings,  because the king’s son is dead. 

2 Samuel 18:21 Then said Joab to  Cushi, Go tell the king what thou hast seen. And Cushi  bowed himself unto Joab, and ran. 

2 Samuel 18:22 Then said Ahimaaz the son of Zadok yet again to Joab, But  howsoever, let me, I pray thee, also run after Cushi. And  Joab said, Wherefore wilt thou run, my son, seeing that thou  hast no tidings ready? 

2 Samuel 18:23 But howsoever, said he, let  me run. And he said unto him, Run. Then Ahimaaz ran by  the way of the plain, and overran Cushi. 

2 Samuel 18:24 And David  sat between the two gates: and the watchman went up to the  roof 
over the gate unto the wall, and lifted up his eyes, and  looked, and behold a man running alone. 

2 Samuel 18:25 And the  watchman cried, and told the king. And the king said, If he  be alone, there is tidings in his mouth. And he came  apace, and drew near. 

2 Samuel 18:26 And the watchman saw  another man running: and the watchman called unto the  porter, and said, Behold another man running alone. And  the king said, He also bringeth tidings. 

2 Samuel 18:27 And the  watchman said, Me thinketh the running of the foremost is  like the running of Ahimaaz the son of Zadok. And the king  said, He is a good man, and cometh with good tidings.   

2 Samuel 18:28 And Ahimaaz called, and said unto the king, All is  well. And he fell down to the earth upon his face before the  king, and said, Blessed be the LORD thy God, which hath  delivered up the men that lifted up their hand against my  lord the king. 

2 Samuel 18:29 And the king said, Is the young man  Absalom safe? And Ahimaaz answered, When Joab sent the  king’s servant, and me thy servant, I saw a great tumult,  but I knew not what it was. 

2 Samuel 18:30 And the king said  unto him, Turn aside, and stand here. And he turned  aside, and stood still. 

2 Samuel 18:31 And, behold, Cushi came;  and Cushi said, Tidings, my lord the king: for the LORD  hath avenged thee this day of all them that rose up against  thee. 

2 Samuel 18:32 And the king said unto Cushi, Is the young  man Absalom safe? And Cushi answered, The enemies of  my lord the king, and all that rise against thee to do thee  hurt, be as that young man is.  

2 Samuel 18:33 And the king was much moved, and went up to  the chamber over the gate, and wept: and as he went, thus  he said, O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom!  would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!   KJV