2 Samuel 14
Now Joab the son of Zeruiah perceived that the king's heart was toward
And Joab sent to Tekoah, and fetched thence a wise woman, and said unto
her, I pray thee, feign thyself to be a mourner, and put on now mourning
apparel, and anoint not thyself with oil, but be as a woman that had a long
time mourned for the dead:
Joab could see that David's heart was on Absalom.
So he fetched a wise woman from Tekoah.
He told her to pretend to have been mourning for a long time.
And come to the king, and speak on this manner unto him. So Joab put the
words in her mouth.
Joab told the woman to go see the king. He told her what to say.
And when the woman of Tekoah spake to the king, she fell on her face to
the ground, and did obeisance, and said, Help, O king.
So the woman of Tekoah visited King David.
Before saying anything, she fell on her face.
Then she said, "Help."
And the king said unto her, What aileth thee? And she answered, I am
indeed a widow woman, and mine husband is dead.
And thy handmaid had two sons, and they two strove together in the field,
and there was none to part them, but the one smote the other, and slew him.
David said, "What's wrong with you?"
I am a widow with two sons. One of my sons killed the other.
And, behold, the whole family is risen against thine handmaid, and they
said, Deliver him that smote his brother, that we may kill him, for the life
of his brother whom he slew; and we will destroy the heir also: and so they
shall quench my coal which is left, and shall not leave to my husband
neither name nor remainder upon the earth.
And my whole family has demanded that I deliver my son to them, so they can kill him for killing his brother.
But that would leave my husband no heir to carry on his name.
And the king said unto the woman, Go to thine house, and I will give
charge concerning thee.
And the woman of Tekoah said unto the king, My lord, O king, the iniquity
be on me, and on my father's house: and the king and his throne be
Go home. I'll take care of it for you.
And the king said, Whoever saith ought unto thee, bring him to me, and he
shall not touch thee any more.
Whoever said this to you won't bother you anymore.
Then said she, I pray thee, let the king remember the LORD thy God, that
thou wouldest not suffer the revengers of blood to destroy any more, lest
they destroy my son. And he said, As the LORD liveth, there shall not one
hair of thy son fall to the earth.
The woman said to David, "Remember that God doesn't want any more revengers of blood."
David said, "Your son will be safe."
Then the woman said, Let thine handmaid, I pray thee, speak one word unto
my lord the king. And he said, Say on.
Then she said, "May I say something more."
David said, "Sure, go ahead."
And the woman said, Wherefore then hast thou thought such a thing against
the people of God? for the king doth speak this thing as one which is
faulty, in that the king doth not fetch home again his banished.
For we must needs die, and are as water spilt on the ground, which cannot
be gathered up again; neither doth God respect any person: yet doth he
devise means, that his banished be not expelled from him.
Now therefore that I am come to speak of this thing unto my lord the king,
it is because the people have made me afraid: and thy handmaid said, I will
now speak unto the king; it may be that the king will perform the request of
For the king will hear, to deliver his handmaid out of the hand of the man
that would destroy me and my son together out of the inheritance of God.
Then thine handmaid said, The word of my lord the king shall now be
comfortable: for as an angel of God, so is my lord the king to discern good
and bad: therefore the LORD thy God will be with thee.
So why are you doing this very same thing yourself, by not restoring your son who has been banished?
Then the king answered and said unto the woman, Hide not from me, I pray
thee, the thing that I shall ask thee. And the woman said, Let my lord the
king now speak.
And the king said, Is not the hand of Joab with thee in all this? And the
woman answered and said, As thy soul liveth, my lord the king, none can turn
to the right hand or to the left from ought that my lord the king hath
spoken: for thy servant Joab, he bade me, and he put all these words in the
mouth of thine handmaid:
To fetch about this form of speech hath thy servant Joab done this thing:
and my lord is wise, according to the wisdom of an angel of God, to know all
things that are in the earth.
David said to her, "Did Joab put you up to this?"
The woman said, "Yes, he put the words in my mouth."
Absalom comes home to Jerusalem
And the king said unto Joab, Behold now, I have done this thing: go
therefore, bring the young man Absalom again.
David said to Joab, "Go get Absalom."
And Joab fell to the ground on his face, and bowed himself, and thanked
the king: and Joab said, To day thy servant knoweth that I have found grace
in thy sight, my lord, O king, in that the king hath fulfilled the request
of his servant.
So Joab arose and went to Geshur, and brought Absalom to Jerusalem.
And the king said, Let him turn to his own house, and let him not see my
face. So Absalom returned to his own house, and saw not the king's face.
David said to Joab, "Let Absalom stay in his own house. I don't want to see his face."
So Absalom went to his house and didn't see David's face.
But in all Israel there was none to be so much praised as Absalom for his
beauty: from the sole of his foot even to the crown of his head there was no
blemish in him.
Absalom was the best looking guy in all of Israel. He didn't have a blemish on his whole body
And when he polled his head, (for it was at every year's end that he
polled it: because the hair was heavy on him, therefore he polled it:) he
weighed the hair of his head at two hundred shekels after the king's weight.
When Absalom cut his hair (he had to cut it every year because his hair became so heavy), his hair weighed 200 shekels.
(Since a shekel is about 11.5 grams, Absalom's hair weighed 2.3 kilograms!)
And unto Absalom there
were born three sons, and one daughter, whose name was Tamar: she was a
woman of a fair countenance.
So Absalom dwelt two full years in Jerusalem, and saw not the king's face.
He lived two years in Jerusalem. During that time he never saw his father's face.
Therefore Absalom sent for Joab, to have sent him to the king; but he
would not come to him: and when he sent again the second time, he would not
He twice sent Joab to talk to David. But David wouldn't come to see him.
Therefore he said unto his servants, See, Joab's field is near mine, and
he hath barley there; go and set it on fire. And Absalom's servants set the
field on fire.
Absalom said to his servants, "Go set Joab's barley field on fire."
So his servants did that.
Then Joab arose, and came to Absalom unto his house, and said unto him,
Wherefore have thy servants set my field on fire?
Joab said to Absalom, "Why did you set my field on fire?"
And Absalom answered Joab, Behold, I sent unto thee, saying, Come hither,
that I may send thee to the king, to say, Wherefore am I come from Geshur?
it had been good for me to have been there still: now therefore let me see
the king's face; and if there be any iniquity in me, let him kill me.
So Joab came to the king, and told him: and when he had called for
Absalom, he came to the king, and bowed himself on his face to the ground
before the king: and the king kissed Absalom.
Because I sent you to my father to ask him to come see me.
Why did I even come here? I'd have been better off where I was.
Let me see the king's face. If I did anything wrong, he can kill me.
So Joab went to David and told him what Absalom said.
Absalom came to the king, and bowed his face to the ground. Then David kissed Absalom.