And David numbered4 the people that [were] with him, and set4 captains of thousands and captains of hundreds over them.
And David sent forth17 a third part of the people under the hand of Joab, and a third part under the hand of Abishai the son of Zeruiah, Joab's brother, and a third part under the hand of Ittai the Gittite. And the king said4 unto the people, I will surely2 go forth4 with you myself also.
But the people answered,4 Thou shalt not go forth:4 for if we flee4 away,2 they will not care4 3820 for us; neither if half of us die,4 will they care4 3820 for us: but now [thou art] worth ten thousand of us: therefore now [it is] better that thou succour2 5826 53 us out of the city.
And the king said4 unto them, What seemeth you best4 I will do.4 And the king stood4 by the gate side, and all the people came out1 by hundreds and by thousands.
And the king commanded17 Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying,2 [Deal] gently for my sake with the young man, [even] with Absalom. And all the people heard1 when the king gave all the captains charge15 concerning Absalom.
So the people went out4 into the field against2 Israel: and the battle was in the wood of Ephraim;
Where the people of Israel were slain11 before the servants of David, and there was there a great slaughter that day of twenty thousand [men].
For the battle was there scattered12 over the face of all the country: and the wood devoured2 more55 people that day than the sword devoured.1
And Absalom met11 the servants 5650 of David. And Absalom rode6 upon a mule, and the mule went4 under the thick boughs of a great oak, and his head caught hold4 of the oak, and he was taken up93 between the heaven and the earth; and the mule that [was] under him went away.1
And a certain man saw4 [it], and told55 Joab, and said,4 Behold, I saw1 Absalom hanged7 in an oak.
And Joab said4 unto the man that told56 him, And, behold, thou sawest1 [him], and why didst thou not smite52 him there to the ground? and I would have given2 thee ten [shekels] of silver, and a girdle.
And the man said4 unto Joab, Though I should receive6 a thousand [shekels] of silver in mine hand, [yet] would I not put forth4 mine hand against the king's son: for in our hearing the king charged14 thee and Abishai and Ittai, saying,2 Beware3 that none [touch] the young man Absalom.
Otherwise I should have wrought1 falsehood against mine own life: for there is no matter hid11 from the king, and thou thyself wouldest have set101 thyself against [me].
Then said4 Joab, I may not tarry55 thus with thee. And he took4 three darts in his hand, and thrust4 them through the heart of Absalom, while he [was] yet alive in the midst of the oak.
And ten young men that bare6 Joab's armour compassed about4 and smote55 Absalom, and slew55 him.
And Joab blew4 the trumpet, and the people returned4 from pursuing2 after Israel: for Joab held back1 the people.
And they took4 Absalom, and cast55 him into a great pit in the wood, and laid55 a very great heap of stones upon him: and all Israel fled1 every one to his tent.
Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken1 and reared up55 for himself a pillar, which [is] in the king's dale: for he said,1 I have no son to keep my name in remembrance:53 and he called4 the pillar after his own name: and it is called11 unto this day, Absalom's place.
Then said1 Ahimaaz the son of Zadok, Let me now run,4 and bear the king tidings,17 how that the LORD hath avenged1 him of his enemies.6
And Joab said4 unto him, Thou shalt not bear tidings 376 this day, but thou shalt bear tidings14 another day: but this day thou shalt bear no tidings,17 because the king's son is dead.1
Then said4 Joab to Cushi, Go3 tell54 the king what thou hast seen.1 And Cushi bowed101 himself unto Joab, and ran.4
Then said4 Ahimaaz the son of Zadok yet again55 to Joab, But howsoever, let me, I pray thee, also run4 after Cushi. And Joab said,4 Wherefore wilt thou run,5 my son, seeing that thou hast no tidings ready?6
But howsoever, [said he], let me run.4 And he said4 unto him, Run.3 Then Ahimaaz ran4 by the way of the plain, and overran4 Cushi.
And David sat6 between the two gates: and the watchman6 went up4 to the roof over the gate unto the wall, and lifted up4 his eyes, and looked,4 and behold a man running5 alone.
And the watchman6 cried,4 and told55 the king. And the king said,4 If he [be] alone, [there is] tidings in his mouth. And he came4 apace,2 and drew near.
And the watchman6 saw4 another man running:5 and the watchman6 called4 unto the porter, and said,4 Behold [another] man running5 alone. And the king said,4 He also bringeth tidings.18
And the watchman6 said,4 Me thinketh6 the running of the foremost is like the running of Ahimaaz the son of Zadok. And the king said,4 He [is] a good man, and cometh4 with good tidings.
And Ahimaaz called,4 and said4 unto the king, All is well. And he fell down101 to the earth upon his face before the king, and said,4 Blessed7 [be] the LORD thy God, which hath delivered up14 the men that lifted up1 their hand against my lord the king.
And the king said,4 Is the young man Absalom safe? And Ahimaaz answered,4 When Joab sent2 the king's servant, and [me] thy servant, I saw1 a great tumult, but I knew1 not what [it was].
And the king said4 [unto him], Turn aside,3 [and] stand100 here. And he turned aside,11 and stood still.4
And, behold, Cushi came;6 and Cushi said,4 Tidings,101 my lord the king: for the LORD hath avenged1 thee this day of all them that rose up5 against thee.
And the king said4 unto Cushi, Is the young man Absalom safe? And Cushi answered,4 The enemies6 of my lord the king, and all that rise1 against thee to do [thee] hurt, be as [that] young man [is].
And the king was much moved,4 and went up4 to the chamber over the gate, and wept:4 and as he went,2 thus he said,1 O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God4 I had died2 for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!