2 Samuel 11
International Standard Version Par ▾ 

David’s Adultery

1One spring day, during the time of year when kings go off to war, David sent out Joab, along with his personal staffa and all of Israel’s army. They utterly destroyed the Ammonites and then attacked Rabbah while David remained in Jerusalem. 2Late one afternoon about dusk,b David got up from his couch and was walking around on the roof of the royal palace. From therec he watched a woman taking a bath, and shed was very beautiful to look at.

3David sent worde to inquire about her,f and someone told him, “This is Eliam’s daughter Bathsheba,g the wife of Uriah the Hittite, isn’t it?” 4So David sent some messengers, took her from her home,h and she went to him, and he had sex with her. (She had been consecrating herself following her menstrual separation.)i Then she returned to her home.

5The woman conceived, and she sent this messagej to David: “I’m pregnant.”

6So David summoned Joab, and told him,k “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” So Joab sent Uriah to David. 7When Uriah arrived, David inquired about how Joab was doing, how the army wasl doing, and how the war was progressing.

8Then David told Uriah, “Go on down to your house and relax a while.”m So Uriah left the king’s palace, and the king sent a gift along after him. 9But Uriah spent the night sleeping in the alcove of the king’s palace in the company of all his master’s staff members. He refused to go down to his own home.

10When David was told that Uriah hadn’t gone home the previous night,n he quizzed him,o “You just arrived from a long journey, so why didn’t you go down to your own house?”

11Uriah replied, “The ark, along with Israel and Judah, are encamped in tents, while my commanding officer Joab and my master’s staff members are camping out in the open fields. Should I go home, eat, drink, and have sex with my wife? Not on your life!p I won’t do something like this, will I?”

12Then David invited Uriah, “Stay here today, and tomorrow I’ll send you back.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem all that day and the next. 13Then at David’s invitation, he and Uriah dined and drank wine together, and David got him drunk. Later that evening, Uriah went out to lie on a couch in the company of his lord’s servants, and he did not go down to his house.

David Orders Uriah Killed

14The next morning, David sent a message to Joab that Uriah took with him in his hand. 15In the message, he wrote: “Assign Uriah to the most difficult fighting at the battle front, and then withdraw from him so that he will be struck down and killed.” 16So as Joab began to attack the city, he assigned Uriah to a place where he knew valiant men would be stationed.q 17When the men of the city came out to fight Joab, some of David’s army staff members fell, and Uriah the Hittite died, too.

18Then Joab sent word to David about everything that had happened at the battle. 19He instructed the courier, “When you have finished conveying all the news about the battle to the king, 20if the king starts to get angry and asks you, ‘Why did you get so near the city to fight? Didn’t you know they would shoot from the wall? 21Who killed Jerubbesheth’sr son Abimelech? Didn’t a woman kill him by throwing an upper millstone on him from the wall at Thebez? Why did you go so close to the wall?’ then tell him, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite also died.’”

22So the messenger left Joab, set out for Jerusalem,s and disclosed to David everything that Joab had sent him to say. 23The messenger told David, “The men surprised us and attacked us in the field, but we drove them back to the entrance of the city gate. 24Then the archers shot at your servants from the wall. Some of the king’s staff members are dead, and your servant Uriah the Hittite has died as well.”

25David responded to the messenger, “Here’s what you’re to tell Joab: ‘Don’t be troubled by this incident, because the battle sword consumes one or another from time to time. Consolidate your attack against the city and conquer it.’ Be sure to encourage him.”

26When Uriah’s wife heard about the death of her husbandt Uriah, she went into mourning for the head of her household.u 27When her mourning period was completed, David sent for her, brought her to his palace, and she became his wife. Later on, she bore him a son.

Meanwhile, what David had done grieved the LORD,v

a 11:1 Lit. his servants
b 11:2 Lit. It happened at the time of the evening
c 11:2 Lit. From the roof
d 11:2 Lit. and the woman
e 11:3 The Heb. lacks word
f 11:3 Lit. the woman
g 11:3 Eliam’s father was Ahithophel, Bathsheba’s grandfather; cf. 2Sam 15:12; 23:34
h 11:4 The Heb. lacks from her home
i 11:4 i.e. a week-long period of ritual exemption from participation in Israel’s social and worship community; cf. Lev 15:19, 28; 18:19
j 11:5 The Heb. lacks this message
k 11:6 The Heb. lacks and told him
l 11:7 Lit. the people were
m 11:8 Lit. and wash your feet
n 11:10 The Heb. lacks the previous night
o 11:10 Lit. Uriah
p 11:11 Lit. As you live and as your soul lives
q 11:16 The Heb. lacks stationed
r 11:21 i.e. Gideon (cf. Judg 8:30-31), also called Jerubbaal (cf. Judg 8:35)
s 11:22 The Heb. lacks for Jerusalem
t 11:26 The Heb. word for husband (isha) describes a husband with respect to his relationship with his wife.
u 11:26 Lit. for her husband; the Heb. word for husband (baal) describes a husband with respect to his role as a household leader.
v 11:27 Lit. done was grieving in the LORD’s sight; i.e., the act itself is personified here as being distressed in the LORD’s sight

The Holy Bible: International Standard Version® Release 2.1
Copyright © 1996-2012 The ISV Foundation

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