2 Samuel 14
Legacy Standard Bible►► 

The Woman of Tekoa

1Now Joab the son of Zeruiah knew that the king’s heart was inclined toward Absalom. 2So Joab sent to Tekoa and [†]brought a wise woman from there and said to her, “Please pretend to be a mourner, and put on mourning garments now, and do not anoint yourself with oil, but be like a woman who has been mourning for the dead many days; 3then you shall go to the king and speak to him in this manner.” So Joab put the words in her mouth.

4So the woman of Tekoa [†]spoke to the king, and she fell on her [†]face to the ground and prostrated herself and said, “Save, O king.” 5And the king said to her, “What is your trouble?” And she [†]answered, “Truly I am a widow; my husband has died. 6And your servant-woman had two sons, but the two of them struggled together in the field, and there was no one to deliver between them, so one struck the other and put him to death. 7And behold, the whole family has risen against your servant-woman, and they say, ‘Hand over the one who struck his brother, that we may put him to death for the life of his brother whom he killed, and destroy the heir also.’ Thus they will extinguish my coal which remains, so as to [†]leave my husband neither name nor remnant on the face of the earth.”

8Then the king said to the woman, “Go to your house, and I will give a command concerning you.” 9And the woman of Tekoa said to the king, “O my lord, the king, the iniquity is on me and my father’s house, but the king and his throne are guiltless.” 10So the king said, “Whoever speaks to you, bring him to me, and he will not touch you anymore.” 11Then she said, “Please let the king remember Yahweh your God, so that the avenger of blood will not continue to bring about ruin, so that they would not destroy my son.” And he said, “As Yahweh lives, not one hair of your son shall fall to the ground.”

12Then the woman said, “Please let your servant-woman speak a word to my lord the king.” And he said, “Speak.” 13Then the woman said, “Why then have you thought up such a thing against the people of God? For in speaking this word the king is as one who is guilty, in that the king does not bring back his banished one. 14For we will surely die and are like water spilled on the ground which cannot be gathered up again. Yet God does not take away life, but thinks up [†]ways so that the banished one will not be cast out from him. 15So now, [†]the reason I have come to speak this word to my lord the king is that the people have made me afraid; so your servant-woman said, ‘Let me now speak to the king, perhaps the king will perform the word of his maidservant. 16For the king will listen [†]and deliver his maidservant from the [†]hand of the man who would destroy [†]both me and my son from the inheritance of God.’ 17Then your servant-woman said, ‘Please let the word of my lord the king be a resting place, for as the angel of God, so is my lord the king to listen with discernment through the good and evil. And may Yahweh your God be with you.’”

18Then the king answered and said to the woman, “Please do not hide anything from me that I am about to ask you.” And the woman said, “Let my lord the king please speak.” 19So the king said, “Is the hand of Joab with you in all this?” And the woman answered and said, “As your soul lives, my lord the king, no one can turn to the right or to the left from anything that my lord the king has spoken. Indeed, it was your servant Joab who commanded me, and it was he who put all these words in the mouth of your servant-woman; 20in order to change the appearance of things your servant Joab has done this thing. But my lord is wise, like the wisdom of the angel of God, to know all that is in the earth.”

David Brings Back Absalom

21Then the king said to Joab, “Behold now, I have done this thing; go therefore, bring back the young man Absalom.” 22And Joab fell on his face to the ground, prostrated himself and blessed the king; then Joab said, “Today your servant knows that I have found favor in your sight, O my lord, the king, in that the king has performed the word of his servant.” 23So Joab arose and went to Geshur and brought Absalom to Jerusalem. 24However the king said, “Let him turn to his own house, and let him not see my face.” So Absalom turned to his own house and did not see the king’s face.

25Now in all Israel was no one as handsome as Absalom, so highly praised; from the sole of his foot to the top of his head there was no defect in him. 26When he shaved the hair of his head (and it was at the end of every year that he shaved it, for it was heavy on him so he shaved it), he weighed the hair of his head at [†]200 shekels by the king’s weight. 27And to Absalom there were born three sons, and one daughter whose name was Tamar; she was a woman of beautiful appearance.

28Now Absalom lived two full years in Jerusalem, and did not see the king’s face. 29Then Absalom sent for Joab, to send him to the king, but he was not willing to come to him. So he sent again a second time, but he was not willing to come. 30Therefore he said to his servants, “See, Joab’s portion of land is next to mine, and he has barley there; go and set it on fire.” So Absalom’s servants set the portion of land on fire. 31Then Joab arose, came to Absalom at his house and said to him, “Why have your servants set my portion of land on fire?” 32And Absalom [†]answered Joab, “Behold, I sent for you, saying, ‘Come here, that I may send you to the king, to say, “Why have I come from Geshur? It would be better for me still to be there.”’ So now, let me see the king’s face, and if there is iniquity in me, let him put me to death.” 33So Joab came to the king and told him, and he called for Absalom. Thus he came to the king and prostrated himself on his [†]face to the ground before the king, and the king kissed Absalom.

2 Lit took
4 Many mss and ancient versions came
4 Lit nose
5 Lit said
7 Lit set
14 Lit devices
15 Lit that
16 Lit to
16 Lit palm
16 Lit together
26 Approx. 5 lb. or 2.2 kg, a shekel was approx. 0.4 oz. or 11 gm
32 Lit said to
33 Lit nose

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