Young's Literal Translation
The House of David Strengthened
1And the war is long between the house of Saul and the house of David, and David is going on and [is] strong, and the house of Saul are going on and [are] weak.
2And there are born to David sons in Hebron, and his first-born is Amnon, of Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, 3and his second [is] Chileab, of Abigail wife of Nabal the Carmelite, and the third [is] Absalom son of Maacah daughter of Talmai king of Geshur, 4and the fourth [is] Adonijah son of Haggith, and the fifth [is] Shephatiah son of Abital, 5and the sixth [is] Ithream, of Eglah wife of David; these have been born to David in Hebron.
Abner Joins David
6And it cometh to pass, in the war being between the house of Saul and the house of David, that Abner hath been strengthening himself in the house of Saul, 7and Saul hath a concubine, and her name [is] Rizpah daughter of Aiah, and [Ish-Bosheth] saith unto Abner, ‘Wherefore hast thou gone in unto the concubine of my father?’ 8And it is displeasing to Abner exceedingly, because of the words of Ish-Bosheth, and he saith, ‘The head of a dog [am] I — that in reference to Judah to-day I do kindness with the house of Saul thy father, unto his brethren, and unto his friends, and have not delivered thee into the hand of David — that thou chargest against me iniquity concerning the woman to-day? 9thus doth God to Abner, and thus He doth add to him, surely as Jehovah hath sworn to David — surely so I do to him: 10to cause the kingdom to pass over from the house of Saul, and to raise up the throne of David over Israel, and over Judah, from Dan even unto Beer-Sheba.’ 11And he is not able any more to turn back Abner a word, because of his fearing him.
12And Abner sendeth messengers unto David for himself, saying, ‘Whose [is] the land?’ saying, ‘Make thy covenant with me, and lo, my hand [is] with thee, to bring round unto thee all Israel.’ 13And he saith, ‘Good — I make with thee a covenant; only, one thing I am asking of thee, that is, Thou dost not see my face, except thou dost first bring in Michal, daughter of Saul in thy coming into see my face.’ 14And David sendeth messengers unto Ish-Bosheth son of Saul, saying, ‘Give up my wife Michal, whom I betrothed to myself with a hundred foreskins of the Philistines.’ 15And Ish-Bosheth sendeth, and taketh her from a man, from Phaltiel son of Laish, 16and her husband goeth with her, going on and weeping behind her, unto Bahurim, and Abner saith unto him, ‘Go, turn back;’ and he turneth back.
17And the word of Abner was with the elders of Israel, saying, ‘Heretofore ye have been seeking David for king over you, 18and now, do [it], for Jehovah hath spoken of David saying, By the hand of David my servant — to save My people Israel out of the hand of the Philistines, and out of the hand of all their enemies.’ 19And Abner speaketh also in the ears of Benjamin, and Abner goeth also to speak in the ears of David in Hebron all that [is] good in the eyes of Israel, and in the eyes of all the house of Benjamin,
20and Abner cometh in unto David, to Hebron, and with him twenty men, and David maketh for Abner, and for the men who [are] with him, a banquet. 21And Abner saith unto David, ‘I arise, and go, and gather unto my lord the king the whole of Israel, and they make with thee a covenant, and thou hast reigned over all that thy soul desireth;’ and David sendeth away Abner, and he goeth in peace.
Joab Murders Abner
22And lo, the servants of David, and Joab, have come from the troop, and much spoil have brought with them, and Abner is not with David in Hebron, for he hath sent him away, and he goeth in peace; 23and Joab and all the host that [is] with him have come, and they declare to Joab, saying, ‘Abner son of Ner hath come unto the king, and he sendeth him away, and he goeth in peace.’ 24And Joab cometh unto the king, and saith, ‘What hast thou done? lo, Abner hath come unto thee! why [is] this — thou hast sent him away, and he is really gone? 25Thou hast known Abner son of Ner, that to deceive thee he came, and to know thy going out and thy coming in, and to know all that thou art doing.’
26And Joab goeth out from David, and sendeth messengers after Abner, and they bring him back from the well of Sirah, and David knew not. 27And Abner turneth back to Hebron, and Joab turneth him aside unto the midst of the gate to speak with him quietly, and smiteth him there in the fifth [rib] — and he dieth — for the blood of Asahel his brother. 28And David heareth afterwards and saith, ‘Acquitted [am] I, and my kingdom, by Jehovah, unto the age, from the blood of Abner son of Ner; 29it doth stay on the head of Joab, and on all the house of his father, and there is not cut off from the house of Joab one having an issue, and leprous, and laying hold on a staff, and falling by a sword, and lacking bread.’ 30And Joab and Abishai his brother slew Abner because that he put to death Asahel their brother, in Gibeon, in battle.
David Mourns for Abner
31And David saith unto Joab, and unto all the people who [are] with him, ‘Rend your garments, and gird on sackcloth, and mourn before Abner;’ and king David is going after the bier. 32And they bury Abner in Hebron, and the king lifteth up his voice, and weepeth at the grave of Abner, and all the people weep;
33and the king lamenteth for Abner, and saith: — ‘As the death of a fool doth Abner die?
34Thy hands not bound, And thy feet to fetters not brought nigh! As one falling before sons of evil — Thou hast fallen!’ and all the people add to weep over him.
35And all the people come to cause David to eat bread while yet day, and David sweareth, saying, ‘Thus doth God to me, and thus He doth add, for — before the going in of the sun, I taste no bread or any other thing.’ 36And all the people have discerned [it], and it is good in their eyes, as all that the king hath done is good in the eyes of all the people; 37and all the people know, even all Israel, in that day, that it hath not been from the king — to put to death Abner son of Ner. 38And the king saith unto his servants, ‘Do ye not know that a prince and a great one hath fallen this day in Israel? 39and I to-day [am] tender, and an anointed king: and these men, sons of Zeruiah, [are] too hard for me; Jehovah doth recompense to the doer of the evil according to his evil.’