I Chronicles 19
Listen to this chapter in Hebrew:
1Sometime afterward, Nahash the king of the Ammonites died, and his son succeeded him as king.
אוַיְהִי אַחֲרֵי־כֵן וַיָּמָת נָחָשׁ מֶלֶךְ בְּנֵי־עַמּוֹן וַיִּמְלֹךְ בְּנוֹ תַּחְתָּיו׃
2David said, “I will keep faith with Hanun son of Nahash, since his father kept faith with me.” David sent messengers with condolences to him over his father. But when David's courtiers came to the land of Ammon to Hanun, with condolences,
va-YO-mer da-VEED e-e-seh KHE-sed im kha-NUN ben na-KHASH kee a-SAH a-VEEV i-MEE KHE-sed va-yish-LAKH da-VEED mal-a-KHEEM l'-na-kha-MO al a-VEEV va-ya-vo-U av-DAY da-VEED el E-retz b'-NAY a-MON el kha-NUN l'-na-kha-MO
בוַיֹּאמֶר דָּוִיד אֶעֱשֶׂה־חֶסֶד עִם־חָנוּן בֶּן־נָחָשׁ כִּי־עָשָׂה אָבִיו עִמִּי חֶסֶד וַיִּשְׁלַח דָּוִיד מַלְאָכִים לְנַחֲמוֹ עַל־אָבִיו וַיָּבֹאוּ עַבְדֵי דָוִיד אֶל־אֶרֶץ בְּנֵי־עַמּוֹן אֶל־חָנוּן לְנַחֲמוֹ׃
19:2 I will keep faith with Hanun son of Nahash
David sends messages to comfort Hanun over the death of his father, even though he is a rival king. With this action, David shows that he understood that when it comes to relations between nations, there are considerations that go beyond mere politics. By disgracing David’s emissaries, though, Hanun shows that he does not believe in the possibility of friendship or gratitude between kings. David’s first instinct, however, is that statecraft doesn’t nullify the necessity for kindness. By behaving in this manner, David shows what makes the kings of Israel who reign in Yerushalayim unique. After all, Yerushalayim is called “City of Righteousness, Faithful City” (Isaiah 1:26).
3the Ammonite officials said to Hanun, “Do you think David is really honoring your father just because he sent you men with condolences? Why, it is to explore, to subvert, and to spy out the land that his courtiers have come to you.”
גוַיֹּאמְרוּ שָׂרֵי בְנֵי־עַמּוֹן לְחָנוּן הַמְכַבֵּד דָּוִיד אֶת־אָבִיךָ בְּעֵינֶיךָ כִּי־שָׁלַח לְךָ מְנַחֲמִים הֲלֹא בַּעֲבוּר לַחְקֹר וְלַהֲפֹךְ וּלְרַגֵּל הָאָרֶץ בָּאוּ עֲבָדָיו אֵלֶיךָ׃
4So Hanun seized David's courtiers, shaved them, and cut away half of their garments up to the buttocks, and sent them off.
דוַיִּקַּח חָנוּן אֶת־עַבְדֵי דָוִיד וַיְגַלְּחֵם וַיִּכְרֹת אֶת־מַדְוֵיהֶם בַּחֵצִי עַד־הַמִּפְשָׂעָה וַיְשַׁלְּחֵם׃
5When David was told about the men, he dispatched others to meet them, for the men were greatly embarrassed. And the king gave orders, “Stay in Yericho until your beards grow back; then you can return.”
הוַיֵּלְכוּ וַיַּגִּידוּ לְדָוִיד עַל־הָאֲנָשִׁים וַיִּשְׁלַח לִקְרָאתָם כִּי־הָיוּ הָאֲנָשִׁים נִכְלָמִים מְאֹד וַיֹּאמֶר הַמֶּלֶךְ שְׁבוּ בִירֵחוֹ עַד אֲשֶׁר־יְצַמַּח זְקַנְכֶם וְשַׁבְתֶּם׃
6The Ammonites realized that they had incurred the wrath of David; so Hanun and the Ammonites sent 1,000 silver kikarim to hire chariots and horsemen from Aram-Naharaim, Aram-maacah, and Zobah.
ווַיִּרְאוּ בְּנֵי עַמּוֹן כִּי הִתְבָּאֲשׁוּ עִם־דָּוִיד וַיִּשְׁלַח חָנוּן וּבְנֵי עַמּוֹן אֶלֶף כִּכַּר־כֶּסֶף לִשְׂכֹּר לָהֶם מִן־אֲרַם נַהֲרַיִם וּמִן־אֲרַם מַעֲכָה וּמִצּוֹבָה רֶכֶב וּפָרָשִׁים׃
7They hired 32,000 chariots, the king of Maacah, and his army, who came and encamped before Medeba. The Ammonites were mobilized from their cities and came to do battle.
זוַיִּשְׂכְּרוּ לָהֶם שְׁנַיִם וּשְׁלֹשִׁים אֶלֶף רֶכֶב וְאֶת־מֶלֶךְ מַעֲכָה וְאֶת־עַמּוֹ וַיָּבֹאוּ וַיַּחֲנוּ לִפְנֵי מֵידְבָא וּבְנֵי עַמּוֹן נֶאֶסְפוּ מֵעָרֵיהֶם וַיָּבֹאוּ לַמִּלְחָמָה׃
8On learning this, David sent out Yoav and the whole army, [including] the professional fighters.
חוַיִּשְׁמַע דָּוִיד וַיִּשְׁלַח אֶת־יוֹאָב וְאֵת כָּל־צָבָא הַגִּבּוֹרִים׃
9The Ammonites marched out and took up their battle position at the entrance of the city, while the kings who came [took their stand] separately in the open.
טוַיֵּצְאוּ בְּנֵי עַמּוֹן וַיַּעַרְכוּ מִלְחָמָה פֶּתַח הָעִיר וְהַמְּלָכִים אֲשֶׁר־בָּאוּ לְבַדָּם בַּשָּׂדֶה׃
10Yoav saw that there was a battle line against him both front and rear. So he made a selection from all the picked men of Yisrael and arrayed them against the Arameans,
יוַיַּרְא יוֹאָב כִּי־הָיְתָה פְנֵי־הַמִּלְחָמָה אֵלָיו פָּנִים וְאָחוֹר וַיִּבְחַר מִכָּל־בָּחוּר בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל וַיַּעֲרֹךְ לִקְרַאת אֲרָם׃
11and the rest of the troops he put under the command of his brother Abishai and arrayed them against the Ammonites.
יאוְאֵת יֶתֶר הָעָם נָתַן בְּיַד אַבְשַׁי אָחִיו וַיַּעַרְכוּ לִקְרַאת בְּנֵי עַמּוֹן׃
12Yoav said, “If the Arameans prove too strong for me, you come to my aid; and if the Ammonites prove too strong for you, I will come to your aid.
יבוַיֹּאמֶר אִם־תֶּחֱזַק מִמֶּנִּי אֲרָם וְהָיִיתָ לִּי לִתְשׁוּעָה וְאִם־בְּנֵי עַמּוֹן יֶחֶזְקוּ מִמְּךָ וְהוֹשַׁעְתִּיךָ׃
13Let us be strong and resolute for the sake of our people and the towns of our God; and Hashem will do what He deems right.”
יגחֲזַק וְנִתְחַזְּקָה בְּעַד־עַמֵּנוּ וּבְעַד עָרֵי אֱלֹהֵינוּ וַיהֹוָה הַטּוֹב בְּעֵינָיו יַעֲשֶׂה׃
14Yoav and the troops with him marched into battle against the Arameans, who fled before him.
ידוַיִּגַּשׁ יוֹאָב וְהָעָם אֲשֶׁר־עִמּוֹ לִפְנֵי אֲרָם לַמִּלְחָמָה וַיָּנוּסוּ מִפָּנָיו׃
15And when the Ammonites saw that the Arameans had fled, they too fled before his brother Abishai, and withdrew into the city. So Yoav went to Yerushalayim.
טווּבְנֵי עַמּוֹן רָאוּ כִּי־נָס אֲרָם וַיָּנוּסוּ גַם־הֵם מִפְּנֵי אַבְשַׁי אָחִיו וַיָּבֹאוּ הָעִירָה וַיָּבֹא יוֹאָב יְרוּשָׁלָ ִם׃
16When the Arameans saw that they had been routed by Yisrael, they sent messengers to bring out the Arameans from across the Euphrates; Shophach, Hadadezer's army commander, led them.
טזוַיַּרְא אֲרָם כִּי נִגְּפוּ לִפְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיִּשְׁלְחוּ מַלְאָכִים וַיּוֹצִיאוּ אֶת־אֲרָם אֲשֶׁר מֵעֵבֶר הַנָּהָר וְשׁוֹפַךְ שַׂר־צְבָא הֲדַדְעֶזֶר לִפְנֵיהֶם׃
17David was informed of it; he assembled all Yisrael, crossed the Yarden, and came and took up positions against them. David drew up his forces against Aram; and they fought with him.
יזוַיֻּגַּד לְדָוִיד וַיֶּאֱסֹף אֶת־כָּל־יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיַּעֲבֹר הַיַּרְדֵּן וַיָּבֹא אֲלֵהֶם וַיַּעֲרֹךְ אֲלֵהֶם וַיַּעֲרֹךְ דָּוִיד לִקְרַאת אֲרָם מִלְחָמָה וַיִּלָּחֲמוּ עִמּוֹ׃
18But the Arameans were put to flight by Yisrael. David killed 7,000 Aramean charioteers and 40,000 footmen; he also killed Shophach, the army commander.
יחוַיָּנָס אֲרָם מִלִּפְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיַּהֲרֹג דָּוִיד מֵאֲרָם שִׁבְעַת אֲלָפִים רֶכֶב וְאַרְבָּעִים אֶלֶף אִישׁ רַגְלִי וְאֵת שׁוֹפַךְ שַׂר־הַצָּבָא הֵמִית׃
19And when all the vassals of Hadadezer saw that they had been routed by Yisrael, they submitted to David and became his vassals. And the Arameans would not help the Ammonites anymore.
יטוַיִּרְאוּ עַבְדֵי הֲדַדְעֶזֶר כִּי נִגְּפוּ לִפְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיַּשְׁלִימוּ עִם־דָּוִיד וַיַּעַבְדֻהוּ וְלֹא־אָבָה אֲרָם לְהוֹשִׁיעַ אֶת־בְּנֵי־עַמּוֹן עוֹד׃