David Extends His Kingdom
18 1 After this David defeated the Philistines and subdued them, and he took Gath and its villages out of the hand of the Philistines. 2 And he defeated Moab, and the Mo'abites became servants to David and brought tribute. 3 David also defeated Hadade'zer king of Zobah, toward Hamath, as he went to set up his monument at the river Euphra'tes. 4 And David took from him a thousand chariots, seven thousand horsemen, and twenty thousand foot soldiers; and David hamstrung all the chariot horses, but left enough for a hundred chariots. 5 And when the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadade'zer king of Zobah, David slew twenty-two thousand men of the Syrians. 6 Then David put garrisons in Syria of Damascus; and the Syrians became servants to David, and brought tribute. And the Lord gave victory to David wherever he went. 7 And David took the shields of gold which were carried by the servants of Hadade'zer, and brought them to Jerusalem. 8 And from Tibhath and from Cun, cities of Hadade'zer, David took very much bronze; with it Solomon made the bronze sea and the pillars and the vessels of bronze.
9 When To'u king of Hamath heard that David had defeated the whole army of Hadade'zer, king of Zobah, 10 he sent his son Hador'am to King David, to greet him, and to congratulate him because he had fought against Hadade'zer and defeated him; for Hadade'zer had often been at war with To'u. And he sent all sorts of articles of gold, of silver, and of bronze; 11 these also King David dedicated to the Lord, together with the silver and gold which he had carried off from all the nations, from Edom, Moab, the Ammonites, the Philistines, and Am'alek. 12 And Abi'shai, the son of Zeru'iah, slew eighteen thousand E'domites in the Valley of Salt. 13 And he put garrisons in Edom; and all the E'domites became David's servants. And the Lord gave victory to David wherever he went.
14 So David reigned over all Israel; and he administered justice and equity to all his people. 15 And Jo'ab the son of Zeru'iah was over the army; and Jehosh'aphat the son of Ahi'lud was recorder; 16 and Zadok the son of Ahi'tub and Ahim'elech the son of Abi'athar were priests; and Shavsha was secretary; 17 and Benai'ah the son of Jehoi'ada was over the Cher'ethites and the Pel'ethites; and David's sons were the chief officials in the service of the king.
The Defeat of the Ammonites and Syrians
19 1 Now after this Nahash the king of the Ammonites died, and his son reigned in his stead. 2 And David said, "I will deal loyally with Hanun the son of Nahash, for his father dealt loyally with me." So David sent messengers to console him concerning his father. And David's servants came to Hanun in the land of the Ammonites, to console him. 3 But the princes of the Ammonites said to Hanun, "Do you think, because David has sent comforters to you, that he is honoring your father? Have not his servants come to you to search and to overthrow and to spy out the land?" 4 So Hanun took David's servants, and shaved them, and cut off their garments in the middle, at their hips, and sent them away; 5 and they departed. When David was told concerning the men, he sent to meet them, for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, "Remain at Jericho until your beards have grown, and then return."
6 When the Ammonites saw that they had made themselves odious to David, Hanun and the Ammonites sent a thousand talents of silver to hire chariots and horsemen from Mesopota'mia, from Aram-ma'acah, and from Zobah. 7 They hired thirty-two thousand chariots and the king of Ma'acah with his army, who came and encamped before Med'eba. And the Ammonites were mustered from their cities and came to battle. 8 When David heard of it, he sent Jo'ab and all the army of the mighty men. 9 And the Ammonites came out and drew up in battle array at the entrance of the city, and the kings who had come were by themselves in the open country. 10 When Jo'ab saw that the battle was set against him both in front and in the rear, he chose some of the picked men of Israel, and arrayed them against the Syrians; 11 the rest of his men he put in the charge of Abi'shai his brother, and they were arrayed against the Ammonites. 12 And he said, "If the Syrians are too strong for me, then you shall help me; but if the Ammonites are too strong for you, then I will help you. 13 Be of good courage, and let us play the man for our people, and for the cities of our God; and may the Lord do what seems good to him." 14 So Jo'ab and the people who were with him drew near before the Syrians for battle; and they fled before him. 15 And when the Ammonites saw that the Syrians fled, they likewise fled before Abi'shai, Jo'ab's brother, and entered the city. Then Jo'ab came to Jerusalem. 16 But when the Syrians saw that they had been defeated by Israel, they sent messengers and brought out the Syrians who were beyond the Euphra'tes, with Shophach the commander of the army of Hadade'zer at their head. 17 And when it was told David, he gathered all Israel together, and crossed the Jordan, and came to them, and drew up his forces against them. And when David set the battle in array against the Syrians, they fought with him. 18 And the Syrians fled before Israel; and David slew of the Syrians the men of seven thousand chariots, and forty thousand foot soldiers, and killed also Shophach the commander of their army. 19 And when the servants of Hadade'zer saw that they had been defeated by Israel, they made peace with David, and became subject to him. So the Syrians were not willing to help the Ammonites any more.
David Captures Rabbah
20 1 In the spring of the year, the time when kings go forth to battle, Jo'ab led out the army, and ravaged the country of the Ammonites, and came and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem. And Jo'ab smote Rabbah, and overthrew it. 2 And David took the crown of their king from his head; he found that it weighed a talent of gold, and in it was a precious stone; and it was placed on David's head. And he brought forth the spoil of the city, a very great amount. 3 And he brought forth the people who were in it, and set them to labor with saws and iron picks and axes; and thus David did to all the cities of the Ammonites. Then David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.
The Giants Slain by David's Men
4 And after this there arose war with the Philistines at Gezer; then Sib'becai the Hu'shathite slew Sip'pai, who was one of the descendants of the giants; and the Philistines were subdued. 5 And there was again war with the Philistines; and Elha'nan the son of Ja'ir slew Lahmi the brother of Goliath the Gittite, the shaft of whose spear was like a weaver's beam. 6 And there was again war at Gath, where there was a man of great stature, who had six fingers on each hand, and six toes on each foot, twenty-four in number; and he also was descended from the giants. 7 And when he taunted Israel, Jonathan the son of Shim'e-a, David's brother, slew him. 8 These were descended from the giants in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.
David Numbers Israel and Judah
21 1 Satan stood up against Israel, and incited David to number Israel. 2 So David said to Jo'ab and the commanders of the army, "Go, number Israel, from Beer-sheba to Dan, and bring me a report, that I may know their number." 3 But Jo'ab said, "May the Lord add to his people a hundred times as many as they are! Are they not, my lord the king, all of them my lord's servants? Why then should my lord require this? Why should he bring guilt upon Israel?" 4 But the king's word prevailed against Jo'ab. So Jo'ab departed and went throughout all Israel, and came back to Jerusalem. 5 And Jo'ab gave the sum of the numbering of the people to David. In all Israel there were one million one hundred thousand men who drew the sword, and in Judah four hundred and seventy thousand who drew the sword. 6 But he did not include Levi and Benjamin in the numbering, for the king's command was abhorrent to Jo'ab.
7 But God was displeased with this thing, and he smote Israel. 8 And David said to God, "I have sinned greatly in that I have done this thing. But now, I pray thee, take away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly." 9 And the Lord spoke to Gad, David's seer, saying, 10 "Go and say to David, 'Thus says the Lord, Three things I offer you; choose one of them, that I may do it to you.'" 11 So Gad came to David and said to him, "Thus says the Lord, 'Take which you will: 12 either three years of famine; or three months of devastation by your foes, while the sword of your enemies overtakes you; or else three days of the sword of the Lord, pestilence upon the land, and the angel of the Lord destroying throughout all the territory of Israel.' Now decide what answer I shall return to him who sent me." 13 Then David said to Gad, "I am in great distress; let me fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is very great; but let me not fall into the hand of man." 14 So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel; and there fell seventy thousand men of Israel. 15 And God sent the angel to Jerusalem to destroy it; but when he was about to destroy it, the Lord saw, and he repented of the evil; and he said to the destroying angel, "It is enough; now stay your hand." And the angel of the Lord was standing by the threshing floor of Ornan the Jeb'usite. 16 And David lifted his eyes and saw the angel of the Lord standing between earth and heaven, and in his hand a drawn sword stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces. 17 And David said to God, "Was it not I who gave command to number the people? It is I who have sinned and done very wickedly. But these sheep, what have they done? Let thy hand, I pray thee, O Lord my God, be against me and against my father's house; but let not the plague be upon thy people."
18 Then the angel of the Lord commanded Gad to say to David that David should go up and rear an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jeb'usite. 19 So David went up at Gad's word, which he had spoken in the name of the Lord. 20 Now Ornan was threshing wheat; he turned and saw the angel, and his four sons who were with him hid themselves. 21 As David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David and went forth from the threshing floor, and did obeisance to David with his face to the ground. 22 And David said to Ornan, "Give me the site of the threshing floor that I may build on it an altar to the Lord--give it to me at its full price--that the plague may be averted from the people." 23 Then Ornan said to David, "Take it; and let my lord the king do what seems good to him; see, I give the oxen for burnt offerings, and the threshing sledges for the wood, and the wheat for a cereal offering. I give it all." 24 But King David said to Ornan, "No, but I will buy it for the full price; I will not take for the Lord what is yours, nor offer burnt offerings which cost me nothing." 25 So David paid Ornan six hundred shekels of gold by weight for the site. 26 And David built there an altar to the Lord and presented burnt offerings and peace offerings, and called upon the Lord, and he answered him with fire from heaven upon the altar of burnt offering. 27 Then the Lord commanded the angel; and he put his sword back into its sheath.
The Site for the Temple
28 At that time, when David saw that the Lord had answered him at the threshing floor of Ornan the Jeb'usite, he made his sacrifices there. 29 For the tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses had made in the wilderness, and the altar of burnt offering were at that time in the high place at Gibeon; 30 but David could not go before it to inquire of God, for he was afraid of the sword of the angel of the Lord.