2 Samuel 1–2

1 After the death of Saul, when David had returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, David had remained two days in Ziklag. 2 On the third day, a man came from the camp of Saul with his clothes torn and dirt upon his head. As he approached David, he fell to the ground prostrate.

3 David asked him, “Where have you come from?”

He responded, “I fled from the camp of Israel.”

4 David said to him, “Tell me, what is the report?”

So he reported, “The people fled from battle. Many of the people have fallen and died; even Saul and his son Jonathan are dead.”

5 Then David asked the young man who was reporting to him, “How do you know that Saul and his son Jonathan are dead?”

6 The young man who was reporting to him answered, “I happened to be on Mount Gilboa when, in front of me, Saul was leaning on his spear with the chariots and horsemen drawing close. 7 When he turned around, he noticed me. He summoned me, and I responded, ‘Here I am.’

8 “He asked me, ‘Who are you?’

“I answered, ‘I am an Amalekite.’

9 “Then he said to me, ‘Stand over me and kill me, for I have been mortally wounded, yet I am still alive.’

10 “So I stood beside him and killed him because I knew that he could not live after he had fallen. Then I took the crown that was on his head and the armlet that was on his arm, and I have brought them here to my lord.”

11 Then David took hold of his clothes and tore them, as did all of the men who were with him. 12 They mourned and wept and fasted until evening for Saul, Jonathan his son, the people of the Lord, and the house of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword.

13 Then David asked the young man who was reporting to him, “Where are you from?”

He responded, “I am the son of one who sought refuge, an Amalekite.”

14 David said to him, “How is it that you did not fear raising your hand to destroy the anointed of the Lord?”

15 Then David called to one of the young men and said, “Step forward and execute him.” So he struck him and killed him. 16 But David said to him, “Your blood is upon your own head, since your mouth has testified against you, saying, ‘I put an end to the anointed of the Lord.’”

17 Then David recited this lament over Saul and Jonathan his son, 18 and he told them to teach the sons of Judah the Song of the Bow. It is written in the book of Jashar:

19 Your splendor, O Israel, has been slain upon your hills.

How the mighty ones have fallen.

20 Do not report it in Gath,

do not announce it in the streets of Ashkelon,

lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice,

or the daughters of the uncircumcised exult.

21 O mountains of Gilboa,

may there be no rain or dew upon you

or your bountiful fields;

for there the shield of the mighty was defiled!

The shield of Saul is no longer anointed with oil.

22 From the blood of the slain,

from the fat of mighty,

the bow of Jonathan did not turn back,

nor did the sword of Saul return empty.

23 Saul and Jonathan,

beloved and delightful,

neither in life nor death will they be separated.

They were swifter than eagles,

they were stronger than lions.

24 O daughters of Israel, weep over Saul,

who clothed you in scarlet and jewels,

who adorned your garments with gold jewelry.

25 How the mighty ones have fallen in the midst of battle!

Jonathan was slain on your high places.

26 I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan;

you were very dear to me;

your love was more remarkable than the love of women.

27 How the mighty have fallen,

and the weapons of war have perished.

Chapter 2

1 After this, David consulted the Lord, asking, “Shall I go to one of the cities of Judah?”

The Lord responded to him, “Go up.”

David asked, “Where should I go?”

And He said, “Hebron.”

2 So David went up there, along with his two wives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite. 3 And David brought the men who were with him, each man with his household, and they lived in the cities of Hebron. 4 Then the men of Judah came and there anointed David as king over the house of Judah, and they informed David that it was the men of Jabesh Gilead who had buried Saul.

5 So David sent messengers to the men of Jabesh Gilead saying, “May you be blessed by the Lord, you who have shown this loyalty to your lord Saul by burying him. 6 Now may the Lord show you loyalty and faithfulness, even as I deal kindly with you who have done this thing. 7 Now may your hands be strong and may you be courageous, since your lord Saul is dead and the house of Judah has anointed me as king over them.”

8 However, Abner the son of Ner, commander of the army of Saul, had taken Ish-Bosheth the son of Saul and brought him over to Mahanaim. 9 He installed him as king over Gilead, the Ashurites, Jezreel, Ephraim, and Benjamin, over Israel in its entirety.

10 Ish-Bosheth the son of Saul was forty years old when he began to reign over Israel, and he ruled for two years. However, the house of Judah followed David. 11 The length of time during which David was king in Hebron over the house of Judah was seven years and six months.

12 Abner the son of Ner, with the servants of Ish-Bosheth the son of Saul, went out from Mahanaim toward Gibeon. 13 And Joab the son of Zeruiah, with the servants of David, went out in order to meet together at the pool of Gibeon. They sat down, one group on one side of the pool and the other group on the side of the pool opposite them.

14 Abner suggested to Joab, “Let the young men come forward and compete before us.”

And Joab replied, “Let them come.”

15 So they stepped forward and were counted, twelve from Benjamin and Ish-Bosheth and twelve from the servants of David. 16 Each one grabbed his opponent by the head and thrust his sword in his opponent’s side; so they fell down together. Therefore that place was called Helkath Hazzurim, which is at Gibeon.

17 The fighting was very fierce that day, but Abner and the men of Israel were defeated by the servants of David.

18 Now the three sons of Zeruiah were there: Joab, Abishai, and Asahel; and Asahel was as fast as a wild gazelle. 19 So Asahel pursued Abner, and as he went, he did not turn to the right hand or to the left from following Abner. 20 Abner looked behind him and said, “Is that you, Asahel?”

He answered, “It is I.”

21 Abner said to him, “Turn aside to your right or left, overtake one of the young men, and take his equipment for yourself,” but Asahel was not willing to desist.

22 Abner continued still to reason with Asahel, “Abandon your pursuit. Why should I strike you down? How then could I show my face to your brother Joab?”

23 But he refused to desist. So Abner struck him in the abdomen with the butt of his spear, so that the spear came out of his back. He fell there and died on the spot. When all of the others came to the place where Asahel fell and died, they halted.

24 But Joab and Abishai pursued Abner. As the sun was setting, they came to the hill of Ammah, which is next to Giah on the way to the Wilderness of Gibeon. 25 The sons of Benjamin gathered to the rear of Abner into a single formation, and they took their stand atop one of the hills.

26 Abner called to Joab, “Must the sword consume forever? Do you not understand that a bitter taste will result in the end? How long will you refuse to command the people to withdraw from chasing their brothers?”

27 Joab responded, “As God lives, I assure you that if you had not said this, the people would have each pursued his brother throughout the night.”

28 So Joab blew a trumpet, and all the people stood still. They pursued Israel no longer, nor did they continue to fight anymore.

29 So Abner and his men traveled through the Arabah all that night, crossed the Jordan, and marched all morning until they returned to Mahanaim.

30 Joab refrained from pursuing Abner, but instead mustered all of the people. There were nineteen men besides Asahel missing from among the servants of David. 31 But the servants of David routed Benjamin and the men of Abner; three hundred and sixty of their men died. 32 They carried Asahel back and interred him in his father’s tomb, which was at Bethlehem. Then Joab and his men traveled throughout the night and reached Hebron at dawn.

Luke 14:1–24

1 On the Sabbath they watched Him as He went into the house of one of the leaders of the Pharisees to eat bread. 2 There before Him was a man who had edema. 3 Jesus said to the lawyers and Pharisees, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?” 4 But they remained silent. So He took him and healed him, and let him go.

5 Then He said, “Which of you having a donkey or an ox that has fallen into a pit will not immediately pull him out on the Sabbath day?” 6 And they could not answer Him regarding these things.

7 When He marked how they chose the seats of honor, He told a parable to those who were invited, saying to them, 8 “When you are invited by any man to a wedding banquet, do not sit down in a seat of honor, lest a more honorable man than you be invited by him; 9 and he who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Give this man the seat,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest seat. 10 But when you are invited, go and sit down in the lowest seat, so that when he who invited you comes, he may say to you, ‘Friend, go up higher.’ Then you will have respect in the presence of those who sit at dinner with you. 11 For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

12 Then He said also to the one who invited Him, “When you prepare a dinner or a supper, do not call your friends or your brothers or your kinsmen or your rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return, and you be repaid. 13 But when you prepare a banquet, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind, 14 and you will be blessed, for they cannot repay you. You shall be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”

15 When one of those who sat at dinner with Him heard this, he said to Him, “Blessed is he who shall eat bread in the kingdom of God!”

16 Then He said to him, “A man prepared a banquet and invited many, 17 and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now prepared.’

18 “But they all with one mind began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of land, and I must go and see it. I ask you to excuse me.’

19 “Another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to prove them. I ask you to excuse me.’

20 “Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’

21 “The servant came and reported this to his master. Then the master of the house in anger said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’

22 “The servant said, ‘Master, what you commanded has been done, and yet there is room.’

23 “Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, so that my house may be filled. 24 For I tell you, none of those men who were invited shall taste my supper.’”