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David said to Ahimelech the Hittite and Abishai son of Zeruiah, Joab’s brother, “Who will go down with me to Saul in the camp?” Abishai replied, “I will go down with you.”
But David said to Abishai, “Don’t kill him! Who can extend his hand against the Lord’s chosen one 1 and remain guiltless?”
When the Ammonites saw the Arameans flee, they fled before his brother Abishai and went into the city. Joab withdrew from fighting the Ammonites and returned to 1 Jerusalem. 2
Abishai son of Zeruiah replied, “For this should not Shimei be put to death? After all, he cursed the Lord’s anointed!”
Abishai said to David, “Today God has delivered your enemy into your hands. Now let me drive the spear 1 right through him into the ground with one swift jab! 2 A second jab won’t be necessary!”
Then Abishai son of Zeruiah said to the king, “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over and cut off his head!”
Then David said to Abishai and to all his servants, “My own son, my very own flesh and blood, 1 is trying to take my life. So also now this Benjaminite! Leave him alone so that he can curse, for the Lord has spoken to him.
David then sent out the army – a third under the leadership of Joab, a third under the leadership of Joab’s brother Abishai son of Zeruiah, and a third under the leadership of Ittai the Gittite. The king said to the troops, “I too will indeed march out with you.”
The king gave this order to Joab, Abishai, and Ittai: “For my sake deal gently with the young man Absalom.” Now the entire army was listening when the king gave all the leaders this order concerning Absalom.
Then David said to Abishai, “Now Sheba son of Bicri will cause greater disaster for us than Absalom did! Take your lord’s servants and pursue him. Otherwise he will secure 1 fortified cities for himself and get away from us.”
But Abishai the son of Zeruiah came to David’s aid, striking the Philistine down and killing him. Then David’s men took an oath saying, “You will not go out to battle with us again! You must not extinguish the lamp of Israel!”
The man replied to Joab, “Even if 1 I were receiving 2 a thousand pieces of silver, 3 I would not strike 4 the king’s son! In our very presence 5 the king gave this order to you and Abishai and Ittai, ‘Protect the young man Absalom for my sake.’ 6