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2 Samuel 12


1 Jehovah sent Nathan to David. Nathan came to him and said: »There were two men in a certain city. One was rich and the other was poor.

2 »The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle.

3 But the poor man had only one little female lamb that he bought. He raised her, and she grew up in his home with his children. She would eat his food and drink from his cup. She rested in his arms and was like a daughter to him.

4 »Now, a visitor came to the rich man. The rich man thought it would be a pity to take one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler. So he took the poor man’s lamb and prepared it for the traveler.«

5 David became very angry with the rich man. He said: »I swear by the living God Jehovah that the man who did this should die!

6 »For doing such a cruel thing he should pay back four times for the lamb he took, for he had no compassion.«

7 »You are that man!« Nathan said to David. »And this is what the Lord Jehovah the God of Israel says: ‘I made you king of Israel and rescued you from Saul.

8 »‘I gave you his kingdom and his wives. Then I made you king over Israel and Judah. If this had not been enough, I would have given you twice as much.

9 »‘Why have you disobeyed my commands? Why did you do this evil thing? You had Uriah killed in battle! You let the Ammonites kill him. Then you took his wife!

10 »‘In every generation some of your descendants will die a violent death because you have disobeyed me and have taken Uriah’s wife.

11 »‘I swear to you that I will cause someone from your own family to bring trouble to you. You will see it when I take your wives from you and give them to another man. He will have intercourse with them in broad daylight.

12 »‘You did this secretly. I will make this happen in broad daylight in front of all Israel.’«

13 David said to Nathan: »I have sinned against Jehovah.« Nathan replied: »Jehovah has taken away your sin. You will not die.

14 »You have shown total contempt for Jehovah by this affair. Therefore the son that is born to you must die.«

15 Nathan went home. Jehovah struck the child that Uriah’s wife had given birth to David. The child became sick.

16 David pleaded with God for the child. He fasted and lay on the ground all night.

17 The elders in his palace stood beside him to raise him up from the ground. But he was unwilling and he would not eat with them.

18 On the seventh day the child died. David’s servants were afraid to tell him that the child was dead. They thought: »While the child was alive, we talked to him, and he would not listen to us. How can we tell him the child is dead? He may harm himself.«

19 David saw that his servants were whispering to one another. He realized discerned that the child was dead. »Is the child dead?« David asked them. »Yes, he is dead.« They answered.

20 David got up from the floor. He took a bath, combed his hair, and changed his clothes. Then he went and worshiped in the Temple of Jehovah. After that he returned to the palace and ate.

21 »We do not understand,« his servants said, »while the child was alive you would not eat. As soon as he died, you got up and ate!«

22 David replied: »I fasted and cried while the child lived. I thought Jehovah might be gracious to me and let the child live.

23 »Why should I fast now that he is dead? Can I bring him back? Someday I will go to him. However he will not come back to me.«

24 David comforted his wife Bathsheba. He went to bed with her, and she later gave birth to a son. David named him Solomon. Jehovah loved the child.

25 He sent a message through the prophet Nathan to name the baby Jedidiah Jehovah’s Beloved.

26 Meanwhile, Joab fought against the Ammonite city of Rabbah and captured its royal fortress.

27 He sent messengers to tell David: »I fought against Rabbah and captured the fortress guarding its water supply.

28 »Assemble the rest of the troops. Surround the city and capture it. Otherwise I will capture the city. Then it will be named after me.«

29 David assembled the rest of the army and attacked Rabbah. He captured the city.

30 He removed the crown of their god Milcom from off the head of their king. The crown was made of seventy-five pounds of gold. There was a valuable jewel on it. David put the jewel on his own crown. He also carried off everything else of value.

31 David made the people of Rabbah tear down the city walls with iron picks and axes. He also put them to work making bricks. He did the same thing with all the other Ammonite cities. David went back to Jerusalem. The people of Israel returned to their homes.

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