Absalom Is Killed
Absalom met the servants of David.
He was riding a horse, and the horse went under a great oak,
and Absalom's head was caught up in the thick boughs of the oak,
so that he dangled between heaven and earth,
and his horse galloped away from beneath him.
A man saw him there and told Joab, saying: "I have seen Absalom hanging in an oak."
Joab said: "Since you saw why did you not strike him to ground? I would have given you shekels of silver."
The man said: "Not for a thousand shekels of silver would I raise my hand against the king's son, for I heard the king telling you and Abishar and Ittai not to touch the young man Absalom.
It would have been as much as my life was worth,
for nothing can be hidden from the king, and you yourself would have blamed me."
"I cannot tarry thus with you," said Joab.
He took three darts in his hand and thrust them into the heart of Absalom,
who was still alive and hanging from the oak.
And ten of Joab's young men surrounded Absalom and stabbed him to death.
DAVID RECEIVES THE NEWS
David sat between the two gates and the watchman went up to the roof over the gate by the wall, and saw a man running toward the city.
The watchman told the king, and the king said: "If he is alone, he must be coming with news."
Then the watchman saw another man and he said to the king: "The first man runs very much like Ahimaaz the son of Zadok."
The king said: "He is a good man; he will be coming with good news."
Ahimaaz called up to the king and said: "All is well."
Then he fell on his face before the king and said: "Blessed be the Lord
God which has delivered up the men who lifted their hand against my lord the king."
The king said: "Is the young man Absalom safe?"
Ahimaaz said: "When Joab sent me and the other messenger,
everything was in great confusion, and I do not know what was happening."
The king said: "Go, and stand aside."
Then the other messenger, Cushi, arrived,
and he said: "News, my lord king.
The Lord has avenged you on those who rebelled against you."
And the king said to Cushi: "Is the young man Absalom safe?"
Cushi said: "May the enemies of my lord the king and all that seek to harm you,
be as Absalom is now!"
The king was greatly distressed, and he went up to the chamber over the gate,
weeping and saying: "O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom.
Would to God I had died for you, O Absalom, my son, my son!"
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