10 Later the king of the Ammonites died and his son Hanun succeeded him. 1 2 David said, “I will express my loyalty 2 to Hanun son of Nahash just as his father was loyal 3 to me.” So David sent his servants with a message expressing sympathy over his father’s death. 4 When David’s servants entered the land of the Ammonites, 3 the Ammonite officials said to their lord Hanun, “Do you really think David is trying to honor your father by sending these messengers to express his sympathy? 5 No, David has sent his servants to you to get information about the city and spy on it so they can overthrow it!” 6
4 So Hanun seized David’s servants and shaved off half of each one’s beard. He cut the lower part of their robes off so that their buttocks were exposed, 7 and then sent them away. 5 Messengers 8 told David what had happened, 9 so he summoned them, for the men were thoroughly humiliated. The king said, “Stay in Jericho 10 until your beards have grown again; then you may come back.”
6 When the Ammonites realized that David was disgusted with them, 11 they 12 sent and hired 20,000 foot soldiers from Aram Beth Rehob and Aram Zobah, 13 in addition to 1,000 men from the king of Maacah and 12,000 men from Ish-tob. 14
7 When David heard the news, he sent Joab and the entire army to meet them. 15 8 The Ammonites marched out and were deployed for battle at the entrance of the city gate, while the men from Aram Zobah, Rehob, Ish-tob, and Maacah were by themselves in the field.
9 When Joab saw that the battle would be fought on two fronts, he chose some of Israel’s best men and deployed them against the Arameans. 16 10 He put his brother Abishai in charge of the rest of the army 17 and they were deployed 18 against the Ammonites. 11 Joab 19 said, “If the Arameans start to overpower me, 20 you come to my rescue. If the Ammonites start to overpower you, 21 I will come to your rescue. 12 Be strong! Let’s fight bravely for the sake of our people and the cities of our God! The Lord will do what he decides is best!” 22
13 So Joab and his men 23 marched out to do battle with the Arameans, and they fled before him. 14 When the Ammonites saw the Arameans flee, they fled before his brother Abishai and went into the city. Joab withdrew from fighting the Ammonites and returned to 24 Jerusalem. 25
15 When the Arameans realized that they had been defeated by Israel, they consolidated their forces. 26 16 Then Hadadezer sent for Arameans from 27 beyond the Euphrates River, 28 and they came to Helam. Shobach, the general in command of Hadadezer’s army, led them. 29
17 When David was informed, he gathered all Israel, crossed the Jordan River, 30 and came to Helam. The Arameans deployed their forces against David and fought with him. 18 The Arameans fled before Israel. David killed 700 Aramean charioteers and 40,000 foot soldiers. 31 He also struck down Shobach, the general in command of the army, who died there. 19 When all the kings who were subject to Hadadezer 32 saw they were defeated by Israel, they made peace with Israel and became subjects of Israel. 33 The Arameans were no longer willing to help the Ammonites.
11 In the spring of the year, at the time when kings 1 normally conduct wars, 2 David sent out Joab with his officers 3 and the entire Israelite army. 4 They defeated the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David stayed behind in Jerusalem. 5 2 One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of his palace. 6 From the roof he saw a woman bathing. Now this woman was very attractive. 7 3 So David sent someone to inquire about the woman. The messenger 8 said, “Isn’t this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?”
4 David sent some messengers to get her. 9 She came to him and he had sexual relations with her. 10 (Now at that time she was in the process of purifying herself from her menstrual uncleanness.) 11 Then she returned to her home. 5 The woman conceived and then sent word to David saying, “I’m pregnant.”
6 So David sent a message to Joab that said, “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” So Joab sent Uriah to David. 7 When Uriah came to him, David asked about how Joab and the army were doing and how the campaign was going. 12 8 Then David said to Uriah, “Go down to your home and relax.” 13 When Uriah left the palace, the king sent a gift to him. 14 9 But Uriah stayed at the door of the palace with all 15 the servants of his lord. He did not go down to his house.
10 So they informed David, “Uriah has not gone down to his house.” So David said to Uriah, “Haven’t you just arrived from a journey? Why haven’t you gone down to your house?” 11 Uriah replied to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah reside in temporary shelters, and my lord Joab and my lord’s soldiers are camping in the open field. Should I go to my house to eat and drink and have marital relations 16 with my wife? As surely as you are alive, 17 I will not do this thing!” 12 So David said to Uriah, “Stay here another day. Tomorrow I will send you back.” So Uriah stayed in Jerusalem both that day and the following one. 18 13 Then David summoned him. He ate and drank with him, and got him drunk. But in the evening he went out to sleep on his bed with the servants of his lord; he did not go down to his own house.
14 In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. 15 In the letter he wrote: “Station Uriah in the thick of the battle and then withdraw from him so he will be cut down and killed.”
16 So as Joab kept watch on the city, he stationed Uriah at the place where he knew the best enemy soldiers 19 were. 17 When the men of the city came out and fought with Joab, some of David’s soldiers 20 fell in battle. Uriah the Hittite also died.
18 Then Joab sent a full battle report to David. 21 19 He instructed the messenger as follows: “When you finish giving the battle report to the king, 20 if the king becomes angry and asks you, ‘Why did you go so close to the city to fight? Didn’t you realize they would shoot from the wall? 21 Who struck down Abimelech the son of Jerub-Besheth? Didn’t a woman throw an upper millstone 22 down on him from the wall so that he died in Thebez? Why did you go so close to the wall?’ just say to him, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite is also dead.’”
22 So the messenger departed. When he arrived, he informed David of all the news that Joab had sent with him. 23 The messenger said to David, “The men overpowered us and attacked us 23 in the field. But we forced them to retreat all the way 24 to the door of the city gate. 24 Then the archers shot at your servants from the wall and some of the king’s soldiers 25 died. Your servant Uriah the Hittite is also dead.” 25 David said to the messenger, “Tell Joab, ‘Don’t let this thing upset you. 26 There is no way to anticipate whom the sword will cut down. 27 Press the battle against the city and conquer 28 it.’ Encourage him with these words.” 29
26 When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband Uriah was dead, she mourned for him. 30 27 When the time of mourning passed, David had her brought to his palace. 31 She became his wife and she bore him a son. But what David had done upset the Lord. 32