Nathan the Prophet Confronts David
1So the Lord sent Nathan to David. When he came to David, Nathan said, “There were two men in a certain city, one rich and the other poor. 2The rich man had a great many flocks and herds. 3But the poor man had nothing except for a little lamb he had acquired. He raised it, and it grew up alongside him and his children. It used to eat his food, drink from his cup, and sleep in his arms. It was just like a daughter to him.
4“When a traveler arrived at the rich man’s home, he did not want to use one of his own sheep or cattle to feed the traveler who had come to visit him. Instead, he took the poor man’s lamb and cooked it for the man who had come to visit him.”
5Then David became very angry at this man. He said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the man who did this deserves to die! 6Because he committed this cold-hearted crime, he must pay for the lamb four times over!”
7Nathan said to David, “You are that man! This is what the Lord God of Israel says: ‘I chose you to be king over Israel and I rescued you from the hand of Saul. 8I gave you your master’s house, and put your master’s wives into your arms. I also gave you the house of Israel and Judah. And if all that somehow seems insignificant, I would have given you so much more as well! 9Why have you shown contempt for the word of the Lord by doing evil in my sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and you have taken his wife as your own! You have killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. 10So now the sword will never depart from your house. For you have despised me by taking the wife of Uriah the Hittite as your own!’ 11This is what the Lord says: ‘I am about to bring disaster on you from inside your own household! Right before your eyes I will take your wives and hand them over to your companion. He will have sexual relations with your wives in broad daylight! 12Although you have acted in secret, I will do this thing before all Israel, and in broad daylight.’”
13Then David exclaimed to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord!” Nathan replied to David, “Yes, and the Lord has forgiven your sin. You are not going to die. 14Nonetheless, because you have treated the Lord with such contempt in this matter, the son who has been born to you will certainly die.”
15Then Nathan went to his home. The Lord struck the child that Uriah’s wife had borne to David, and the child became very ill. 16Then David prayed to God for the child and fasted. He would even go and spend the night lying on the ground. 17The elders of his house stood over him and tried to lift him from the ground, but he was unwilling, and refused to eat food with them.
18On the seventh day the child died. But the servants of David were afraid to inform him that the child had died, for they said, “While the child was still alive he would not listen to us when we spoke to him. How can we tell him that the child is dead? He will do himself harm!”
19When David saw that his servants were whispering to one another, he realized that the child was dead. So David asked his servants, “Is the child dead?” They replied, “Yes, he’s dead.” 20So David got up from the ground, bathed, put on oil, and changed his clothes. He went to the house of the Lord and worshiped. Then, when he entered his palace, he requested that food be brought to him, and he ate.
21His servants said to him, “What is this that you have done? While the child was still alive, you fasted and wept. Once the child was dead you got up and ate food!” 22He replied, “While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept because I thought, ‘Perhaps the Lord will show pity and the child will live. 23But now he is dead. Why should I fast? Am I able to bring him back? I will go to him, but he cannot return to me!’”
24So David comforted his wife Bathsheba. He went to her and had marital relations with her. She gave birth to a son, and David named him Solomon. Now the Lord loved the child 25and sent word through Nathan the prophet that he should be named Jedidiah for the Lord’s sake.
David’s Forces Defeat the Ammonites
26So Joab fought against Rabbah of the Ammonites and captured the royal city. 27Joab then sent messengers to David, saying, “I have fought against Rabbah and have captured the water supply of the city. 28So now assemble the rest of the army and besiege the city and capture it. Otherwise I will capture the city and it will be named for me.”
29So David assembled all the army and went to Rabbah and fought against it and captured it. 30He took the crown of their king from his head – it was gold, weighed about seventy-five pounds, and held a precious stone – and it was placed on David’s head. He also took from the city a great deal of plunder. 31He removed the people who were in it and made them do hard labor with saws, iron picks, and iron axes, putting them to work at the brick kiln. This was his policy with all the Ammonite cities. Then David and all the army returned to Jerusalem.