1As David's life drew to its close he laid this charge on his son Solomon, 2'I am going the way of all the earth. Be strong and show yourself a man. 3Observe the injunctions of Yahweh your God, following his ways and keeping his laws, hiscommandments, his ordinances and his decrees, as stands written in the Law of Moses, so that you may besuccessful in everything you do and undertake, 4and that Yahweh may fulfil the promise which he made me, "If your sons are careful how they behave,and walk loyal y before me with all their heart and soul, you wil never want for a man on the throne of Israel." 5'You know too what Joab son of Zeruiah did to me, and what he did to the two commanders of the armyof Israel, Abner son of Ner and Amasa son of Jether; how he murdered them, shedding the blood of war in timeof peace and staining the belt round my waist and the sandals on my feet with the blood of war. 6You wil be wise not to let his grey head go down to Sheol in peace. 7As regards the sons of Barzil ai of Gilead, treat them with faithful love, let them be among those who eatat your table, for they were as kind to me when I was fleeing from your brother Absalom. 8You also have with you Shimei son of Gera, the Benjaminite from Bahurim. He called down a terriblecurse on me the day I left for Mahanaim, but he came down to meet me at the Jordan and I swore to him byYahweh that I would not put him to death. 9But you, you must not let him go unpunished; you are a wise man and wil know how to deal with him, tobring his grey head down to Sheol in blood.' 10So David fell asleep with his ancestors and was buried in the City of David. 11David was king of Israel for a period of forty years: he reigned at Hebron for seven years, and inJerusalem for thirty-three. 12Solomon then sat on the throne of David, and his sovereignty was securely established. 13Adonijah son of Haggith went to Bathsheba mother of Solomon. 'Do you bring peace?' she asked. Hereplied, 'Yes, peace.' 14Then he said, 'I have something to say to you.' 'Say on,' she replied. 15'You know', he said, 'that the kingdom should have come to me, and that al Israel expected me to beking; but the crown eluded me and fell to my brother, since it came to him from Yahweh. 16Now I have one request to make you; do not refuse me.' 'Go on,' she said. 17He went on, 'Please ask King Solomon -- for he wil not refuse you -- to give me Abishag of Shunem inmarriage.' 18'Very wel ,' Bathsheba replied, 'I shal speak to the king about you.' 19So Bathsheba went to King Solomon to speak to him about Adonijah; the king got up to meet her andbowed before her; he then sat down on his throne; a seat was brought for the king's mother, and she sat downon his right. 20She said, 'I have one smal request to make you; do not refuse me.' 'Mother,' the king replied, 'makeyour request, for I shal not refuse you.' 21'Let Abishag of Shunem', she said, 'be given in marriage to your brother Adonijah.' 22King Solomon replied to his mother, 'And why do you request Abishag of Shunem for Adonijah? Youmight as wel request the kingdom for him, since he is my elder brother and Abiathar the priest and Joab son ofZeruiah are on his side.' 23And King Solomon swore by Yahweh: 'May God bring unnameable il s on me, and worse ills, too,' hesaid, 'if Adonijah does not pay for these words of his with his life! 24As Yahweh lives who has set me securely on the throne of my father David, and who, as he promised,has given him a dynasty, Adonijah shal be put to death this very day.' 25And King Solomon commissioned Benaiah son of Jehoiada to strike him down, and that was how hedied. 26As for Abiathar the priest, the king said to him, 'Go to Anathoth to your estate. You deserve to die, but Iam not going to put you to death now, since you carried the ark of Yahweh in the presence of my father Davidand shared al my father's hardships.' 27Solomon deprived Abiathar of the priesthood of Yahweh, thus fulfil ing the prophecy which Yahweh haduttered against the House of Eli at Shiloh. 28When the news reached Joab -- for Joab had lent his support to Adonijah, though he had notsupported Absalom -- he fled to the Tent of Yahweh and clung to the horns of the altar. 29King Solomon was told, 'Joab has fled to the Tent of Yahweh; he is there beside the altar.' On this,Solomon sent word to Joab, 'What reason did you have for fleeing to the altar?' Joab replied, 'I was afraid of youand fled to Yahweh.' Solomon then sent Benaiah son of Jehoiada. 'Go', he said, 'and strike him down.' 30Accordingly Benaiah went to the Tent of Yahweh. 'By order of the king,' he said, 'come out!' 'No,' hesaid, 'I will die here.' So Benaiah brought word back to the king, 'This is what Joab said, and the answer he gaveme.' 31'Do as he says,' the king replied. 'Strike him down and bury him, and so rid me and my family today ofthe innocent blood which Joab has shed. 32Yahweh wil bring his blood down on his own head, because he struck down two more upright andbetter men than he, and, without my father David's knowledge, put to the sword Abner son of Ner, commander ofthe army of Israel, and Amasa son of Jether, commander of the army of Judah. 33May their blood come down on the head of Joab and his descendants for ever, but may David, hisdescendants, his dynasty, his throne, have peace for ever from Yahweh.' 34Whereupon Benaiah son of Jehoiada went out, struck Joab down and put him to death; he was buriedat his home in the desert. 35In his place as head of the army the king appointed Benaiah son of Jehoiada and, in place of Abiathar,the priest Zadok. 36The king had Shimei summoned to him. 'Build yourself a house in Jerusalem,' he told him. 'You are tolive there; do not leave it to go anywhere at all. 37The day you go out and cross the ravine of the Kidron, be sure you wil certainly die. Your blood wil beon your own head.' 38'That is a fair demand,' Shimei replied to the king, 'your servant wil do as my lord the king orders.' Andfor a long time Shimei lived in Jerusalem. 39But when three years had gone by, it happened that two of Shimei's slaves ran away to Achish son ofMaacah, king of Gath; Shimei was told, 'Your slaves are in Gath.' 40On this, Shimei got up and saddled his donkey and went to Akish at Gath to find his slaves. He went offand brought his slaves back from Gath. 41Solomon was informed that Shimei had left Jerusalem for Gath and come back again. 42The king had Shimei summoned to him. 'Did I not make you swear by Yahweh,' he said, 'and did I notwarn you, "The day you leave to go anywhere at all, be sure you wil certainly die"? To which you replied, "That is a fair demand." 43Why did you not keep the oath to Yahweh and the order which I imposed on you?' 44The king then said to Shimei, 'You know wel al the evil you did to my father David. Yahweh is about tobring your wickedness down on your own head. 45But may King Solomon be blessed, and may the throne of David be kept secure before Yahweh forever!' 46The king gave orders to Benaiah son of Jehoiada; he went out and struck Shimei down; and that washow he died. And now the kingdom was securely in Solomon's hands.
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