2 Samuel 12

1The Lord sent Nathan to David. Nathan went to David. Nathan said, “There were two men in a city. One man was rich. But the other man was poor. 2The rich man had very many sheep and cattle. 3But the poor man had nothing, except one little female lamb that he bought. The poor man fed the lamb. The lamb grew up with this poor man and his children. The lamb ate from the poor man’s food and drank from the poor man’s cup. The lamb slept on the poor man’s chest. The lamb was like a daughter to the poor man. 4“Then a traveler stopped to visit the rich man. ˻The rich man wanted to give food to the traveler.˼ But the rich man did not want to take anything from his own sheep or cattle to feed the traveler. No, the rich man took the lamb from the poor man. The rich man ˻killed the lamb˼ and cooked it for his visitor.” 5David became very angry against the rich man. He said to Nathan, “As the Lord lives, surely the man who did this should die! 6He must pay four times the price of the lamb because he did this terrible thing and because he had no mercy.” 7Then Nathan said to David, “You are that ˻rich˼ man! This is what the Lord God of Israel says: 'I chose you to be the king of Israel. I saved you from Saul. 8I let you take his family and his wives. And I made you king of Israel and Judah. As if that were not enough, I gave you more and more. 9So why did you ignore the Lord’s command? Why did you do the thing which he says is wrong? You let the Ammonites kill Uriah the Hittite, and you took his wife. In this way, you killed Uriah with a sword. 10So the sword will never leave your family. You took Uriah the Hittite’s wife. In this way, you showed that you did not care for me.’ 11“This is what the Lord says: 'I am bringing trouble against you. This trouble will come from your own family. I will take your wives from you and give them to a person who is very close to you. This person will sleep with your wives, and everyone will know it! 12You ˻slept with Bathsheba˼ in secret. But I will punish you so all the people of Israel can see it.’” 13Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” Nathan said to David, “The Lord will forgive you, even for this sin. You will not die. 14But you did things that made the Lord’s enemies lose their respect for him! So your new baby son will die.” 15Then Nathan went home. And the Lord caused the baby boy that was born to David and Uriah’s wife to become very sick. 16David prayed to God for the baby. David refused to eat or drink. He went into his house and stayed there. He lay on the ground all night. 17The leaders of David’s family came and tried to pull David up from the ground. But David refused to get up. He refused to eat food with these leaders. 18On the seventh day, the baby died. David’s servants were afraid to tell him that the baby was dead. They said, “Look, we tried to talk to David while the baby was alive. But he refused to listen to us. If we tell David that the baby is dead, maybe he will do something bad to himself.” 19But David saw his servants whispering. Then David understood that the baby was dead. So David asked his servants, “Is the baby dead?” The servants answered, “Yes, he is dead.” 20Then David got up from the floor. He washed himself. He changed his clothes and got dressed. Then he went into the Lord’s house to worship. Then he went home and asked for something to eat. His servants gave him some food, and he ate. 21David’s servants said to him, “Why are you doing this thing? When the baby was still living you refused to eat. You cried. But when the baby died you got up and ate food.” 22David said, “While the baby was still living, I refused to eat and I cried because I thought, 'Who knows? Maybe the Lord will feel sorry for me and let the baby live.’ 23But now the baby is dead. So why should I refuse to eat? Can I bring the baby back to life? No! Some day I will go to him, but he can’t come back to me.” 24Then David comforted Bathsheba his wife. He slept with her and had sexual relations with her. Bathsheba became pregnant again. She had another son. David named the boy Solomon. The Lord loved Solomon. 25The Lord sent word through Nathan the prophet. Nathan gave Solomon the name, Jedidiah. Nathan did this for the Lord. 26Rabbah was the capital city of the Ammonites. Joab fought against Rabbah and captured it. 27Joab sent messengers to David and said, “I have fought against Rabbah. I have captured the City of Waters. 28Now bring the other people together and attack this city ˻(Rabbah)˼. Capture this city before I capture it. If I capture this city, it will be called by my name.” 29So David gathered all of the people and went to Rabbah. He fought against Rabbah and captured the city. 30David took the crown off their king’s head. The crown was gold and weighed about 75 pounds. This crown had precious stones in it. They put the crown on David’s head. David took many valuable things out of the city. 31David also brought out the people of the city Rabbah and made them work with saws, iron picks, and axes. He also forced them to build things with bricks. David did the same thing to all of the Ammonite cities. Then David and all of his army went back to Jerusalem.

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