2 Samuel 3: 31Then David said to Joab and to all the people who were with him, “Tear your clothes and gird on sackcloth and lament before Abner.” And King David walked behind the bier…….And all the people wept again over him. 35Then all the people came to persuade David to eat bread while it was still day; but David vowed, saying, “May God do so to me, and more also, if I taste bread or anything else before the sun goes down.” 36Now all the people took note of it, and it pleased them, just as everything the king did pleased all the people……. 38Then the king said to his servants, “Do you not know that a prince and a great man has fallen this day in Israel? 39“I am weak today, though anointed king; and these men the sons of Zeruiah are too difficult for me. May the LORD repay the evildoer according to his evil.”
Like David, do not be afraid to share from your heart. As a king, or, as a leader, spouse, or parent, sharing in tough times reveals your heart, your humanity. Professing truthfully will cement your hearts together when you both need it most.
2 Samuel 1
David Learns of Saul’s Death
1Now it came about after the death of Saul, when David had returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, that David remained two days in Ziklag. 2On the third day, behold, a man came out of the camp from Saul, with his clothes torn and dust on his head. And it came about when he came to David that he fell to the ground and prostrated himself. 3Then David said to him, “From where do you come?” And he said to him, “I have escaped from the camp of Israel.” 4David said to him, “How did things go? Please tell me.” And he said, “The people have fled from the battle, and also many of the people have fallen and are dead; and Saul and Jonathan his son are dead also.” 5So David said to the young man who told him, “How do you know that Saul and his son Jonathan are dead?” 6The young man who told him said, “By chance I happened to be on Mount Gilboa, and behold, Saul was leaning on his spear. And behold, the chariots and the horsemen pursued him closely. 7“When he looked behind him, he saw me and called to me. And I said, ‘Here I am.’ 8“He said to me, ‘Who are you?’ And I answered him, ‘I am an Amalekite.’ 9“Then he said to me, ‘Please stand beside me and kill me, for agony has seized me because my life still lingers in me.’ 10“So I stood beside him and killed him, because I knew that he could not live after he had fallen. And I took the crown which was on his head and the bracelet which was on his arm, and I have brought them here to my lord.”
11Then David took hold of his clothes and tore them, and so also did all the men who were with him. 12They mourned and wept and fasted until evening for Saul and his son Jonathan and for the people of the LORD and the house of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword. 13David said to the young man who told him, “Where are you from?” And he answered, “I am the son of an alien, an Amalekite.” 14Then David said to him, “How is it you were not afraid to stretch out your hand to destroy the LORD’S anointed?” 15And David called one of the young men and said, “Go, cut him down.” So he struck him and he died. 16David said to him, “Your blood is on your head, for your mouth has testified against you, saying, ‘I have killed the LORD’S anointed.’”
David’s Dirge for Saul and Jonathan
17Then David chanted with this lament over Saul and Jonathan his son, 18and he told them to teach the sons of Judah the song of the bow; behold, it is written in the book of Jashar.
19 “Your beauty, O Israel, is slain on your high places!
How have the mighty fallen!
20 “Tell it not in Gath,
Proclaim it not in the streets of Ashkelon,
Or the daughters of the Philistines will rejoice,
The daughters of the uncircumcised will exult.
21 “O mountains of Gilboa,
Let not dew or rain be on you, nor fields of offerings;
For there the shield of the mighty was defiled,
The shield of Saul, not anointed with oil.
22 “From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty,
The bow of Jonathan did not turn back,
And the sword of Saul did not return empty.
23 “Saul and Jonathan, beloved and pleasant in their life,
And in their death they were not parted;
They were swifter than eagles,
They were stronger than lions.
24 “O daughters of Israel, weep over Saul,
Who clothed you luxuriously in scarlet,
Who put ornaments of gold on your apparel.
25 “How have the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle!
Jonathan is slain on your high places.
26 “I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan;
You have been very pleasant to me.
Your love to me was more wonderful
Than the love of women.
27 “How have the mighty fallen,
And the weapons of war perished!”
2 Samuel 2
David Made King over Judah
1Then it came about afterwards that David inquired of the LORD, saying, “Shall I go up to one of the cities of Judah?” And the LORD said to him, “Go up.” So David said, “Where shall I go up?” And He said, “To Hebron.” 2So David went up there, and his two wives also, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite. 3And David brought up his men who were with him, each with his household; and they lived in the cities of Hebron. 4Then the men of Judah came and there anointed David king over the house of Judah.
And they told David, saying, “It was the men of Jabesh-gilead who buried Saul.” 5David sent messengers to the men of Jabesh-gilead, and said to them, “May you be blessed of the LORD because you have shown this kindness to Saul your lord, and have buried him. 6“Now may the LORD show lovingkindness and truth to you; and I also will show this goodness to you, because you have done this thing. 7“Now therefore, let your hands be strong and be valiant; for Saul your lord is dead, and also the house of Judah has anointed me king over them.”
Ish-bosheth Made King over Israel
8But Abner the son of Ner, commander of Saul’s army, had taken Ish-bosheth the son of Saul and brought him over to Mahanaim. 9He made him king over Gilead, over the Ashurites, over Jezreel, over Ephraim, and over Benjamin, even over all Israel. 10Ish-bosheth, Saul’s son, was forty years old when he became king over Israel, and he was king for two years. The house of Judah, however, followed David. 11The time that David was king in Hebron over the house of Judah was seven years and six months.
12Now Abner the son of Ner, went out from Mahanaim to Gibeon with the servants of Ish-bosheth the son of Saul. 13And Joab the son of Zeruiah and the servants of David went out and met them by the pool of Gibeon; and they sat down, one on the one side of the pool and the other on the other side of the pool. 14Then Abner said to Joab, “Now let the young men arise and hold a contest before us.” And Joab said, “Let them arise.” 15So they arose and went over by count, twelve for Benjamin and Ish-bosheth the son of Saul, and twelve of the servants of David. 16Each one of them seized his opponent by the head and thrust his sword in his opponent’s side; so they fell down together. Therefore that place was called Helkath-hazzurim, which is in Gibeon. 17That day the battle was very severe, and Abner and the men of Israel were beaten before the servants of David.
18Now the three sons of Zeruiah were there, Joab and Abishai and Asahel; and Asahel was as swift-footed as one of the gazelles which is in the field. 19Asahel pursued Abner and did not turn to the right or to the left from following Abner. 20Then Abner looked behind him and said, “Is that you, Asahel?” And he answered, “It is I.” 21So Abner said to him, “Turn to your right or to your left, and take hold of one of the young men for yourself, and take for yourself his spoil.” But Asahel was not willing to turn aside from following him. 22Abner repeated again to Asahel, “Turn aside from following me. Why should I strike you to the ground? How then could I lift up my face to your brother Joab?” 23However, he refused to turn aside; therefore Abner struck him in the belly with the butt end of the spear, so that the spear came out at his back. And he fell there and died on the spot. And it came about that all who came to the place where Asahel had fallen and died, stood still.
24But Joab and Abishai pursued Abner, and when the sun was going down, they came to the hill of Ammah, which is in front of Giah by the way of the wilderness of Gibeon. 25The sons of Benjamin gathered together behind Abner and became one band, and they stood on the top of a certain hill. 26Then Abner called to Joab and said, “Shall the sword devour forever? Do you not know that it will be bitter in the end? How long will you refrain from telling the people to turn back from following their brothers?” 27Joab said, “As God lives, if you had not spoken, surely then the people would have gone away in the morning, each from following his brother.” 28So Joab blew the trumpet; and all the people halted and pursued Israel no longer, nor did they continue to fight anymore. 29Abner and his men then went through the Arabah all that night; so they crossed the Jordan, walked all morning, and came to Mahanaim.
30Then Joab returned from following Abner; when he had gathered all the people together, nineteen of David’s servants besides Asahel were missing. 31But the servants of David had struck down many of Benjamin and Abner’s men, so that three hundred and sixty men died. 32And they took up Asahel and buried him in his father’s tomb which was in Bethlehem. Then Joab and his men went all night until the day dawned at Hebron.
2 Samuel 3
The House of David Strengthened
1Now there was a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David; and David grew steadily stronger, but the house of Saul grew weaker continually.
2Sons were born to David at Hebron: his firstborn was Amnon, by Ahinoam the Jezreelitess; 3and his second, Chileab, by Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite; and the third, Absalom the son of Maacah, the daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur; 4and the fourth, Adonijah the son of Haggith; and the fifth, Shephatiah the son of Abital; 5and the sixth, Ithream, by David’s wife Eglah. These were born to David at Hebron.
Abner Joins David
6It came about while there was war between the house of Saul and the house of David that Abner was making himself strong in the house of Saul. 7Now Saul had a concubine whose name was Rizpah, the daughter of Aiah; and Ish-bosheth said to Abner, “Why have you gone in to my father’s concubine?” 8Then Abner was very angry over the words of Ish-bosheth and said, “Am I a dog’s head that belongs to Judah? Today I show kindness to the house of Saul your father, to his brothers and to his friends, and have not delivered you into the hands of David; and yet today you charge me with a guilt concerning the woman. 9“May God do so to Abner, and more also, if as the LORD has sworn to David, I do not accomplish this for him, 10to transfer the kingdom from the house of Saul and to establish the throne of David over Israel and over Judah, from Dan even to Beersheba.” 11And he could no longer answer Abner a word, because he was afraid of him.
12Then Abner sent messengers to David in his place, saying, “Whose is the land? Make your covenant with me, and behold, my hand shall be with you to bring all Israel over to you.” 13He said, “Good! I will make a covenant with you, but I demand one thing of you, namely, you shall not see my face unless you first bring Michal, Saul’s daughter, when you come to see me.” 14So David sent messengers to Ish-bosheth, Saul’s son, saying, “Give me my wife Michal, to whom I was betrothed for a hundred foreskins of the Philistines.” 15Ish-bosheth sent and took her from her husband, from Paltiel the son of Laish. 16But her husband went with her, weeping as he went, and followed her as far as Bahurim. Then Abner said to him, “Go, return.” So he returned.
17Now Abner had consultation with the elders of Israel, saying, “In times past you were seeking for David to be king over you. 18“Now then, do it! For the LORD has spoken of David, saying, ‘By the hand of My servant David I will save My people Israel from the hand of the Philistines and from the hand of all their enemies.’” 19Abner also spoke in the hearing of Benjamin; and in addition Abner went to speak in the hearing of David in Hebron all that seemed good to Israel and to the whole house of Benjamin.
20Then Abner and twenty men with him came to David at Hebron. And David made a feast for Abner and the men who were with him. 21Abner said to David, “Let me arise and go and gather all Israel to my lord the king, that they may make a covenant with you, and that you may be king over all that your soul desires.” So David sent Abner away, and he went in peace.
22And behold, the servants of David and Joab came from a raid and brought much spoil with them; but Abner was not with David in Hebron, for he had sent him away, and he had gone in peace. 23When Joab and all the army that was with him arrived, they told Joab, saying, “Abner the son of Ner came to the king, and he has sent him away, and he has gone in peace.” 24Then Joab came to the king and said, “What have you done? Behold, Abner came to you; why then have you sent him away and he is already gone? 25“You know Abner the son of Ner, that he came to deceive you and to learn of your going out and coming in and to find out all that you are doing.”
Joab Murders Abner
26When Joab came out from David, he sent messengers after Abner, and they brought him back from the well of Sirah; but David did not know it. 27So when Abner returned to Hebron, Joab took him aside into the middle of the gate to speak with him privately, and there he struck him in the belly so that he died on account of the blood of Asahel his brother. 28Afterward when David heard it, he said, “I and my kingdom are innocent before the LORD forever of the blood of Abner the son of Ner. 29“May it fall on the head of Joab and on all his father’s house; and may there not fail from the house of Joab one who has a discharge, or who is a leper, or who takes hold of a distaff, or who falls by the sword, or who lacks bread.” 30So Joab and Abishai his brother killed Abner because he had put their brother Asahel to death in the battle at Gibeon.
David Mourns Abner
31Then David said to Joab and to all the people who were with him, “Tear your clothes and gird on sackcloth and lament before Abner.” And King David walked behind the bier. 32Thus they buried Abner in Hebron; and the king lifted up his voice and wept at the grave of Abner, and all the people wept. 33The king chanted a lament for Abner and said,
“Should Abner die as a fool dies?
34 “Your hands were not bound, nor your feet put in fetters;
As one falls before the wicked, you have fallen.”
And all the people wept again over him. 35Then all the people came to persuade David to eat bread while it was still day; but David vowed, saying, “May God do so to me, and more also, if I taste bread or anything else before the sun goes down.” 36Now all the people took note of it, and it pleased them, just as everything the king did pleased all the people. 37So all the people and all Israel understood that day that it had not been the will of the king to put Abner the son of Ner to death. 38Then the king said to his servants, “Do you not know that a prince and a great man has fallen this day in Israel? 39“I am weak today, though anointed king; and these men the sons of Zeruiah are too difficult for me. May the LORD repay the evildoer according to his evil.”
Praise for God’s Mighty Deeds and for His Answer to Prayer.
FOR THE CHOIR DIRECTOR. A SONG. A PSALM.
1 Shout joyfully to God, all the earth;
2 Sing the glory of His name;
Make His praise glorious.
3 Say to God, “How awesome are Your works!
Because of the greatness of Your power Your enemies will give feigned obedience to You.
4 “All the earth will worship You,
And will sing praises to You;
They will sing praises to Your name.”
5 Come and see the works of God,
Who is awesome in His deeds toward the sons of men.
6 He turned the sea into dry land;
They passed through the river on foot;
There let us rejoice in Him!
7 He rules by His might forever;
His eyes keep watch on the nations;
Let not the rebellious exalt themselves.
8 Bless our God, O peoples,
And sound His praise abroad,
9 Who keeps us in life
And does not allow our feet to slip.
10 For You have tried us, O God;
You have refined us as silver is refined.