1 Chronicles Chapter 11 to 12 : Easy-to-Read Version | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |
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David Becomes King Over Israel

11 All the people of Israel came to David at the town of Hebron. They said, to David, “We are your own flesh and blood.* 2In the past, you led us in war. You led us even though Saul was the king. The Lord said to you ‘David, you will be the shepherd of my people, the people of Israel. You will become the leader over my people.’” 3All the leaders of Israel came to King David at the town of Hebron. David made an agreement with those leaders in Hebron before the Lord. The leaders anointed* David. That made him king over Israel. The Lord promised this would happen. The Lord had used Samuel to make that promise.

David Captures Jerusalem

4David and all the people of Israel went to the city of Jerusalem. Jerusalem was called Jebus at that time. The people living in that city were named Jebusites. The people that lived in the city 5said to David, “You can’t get inside our city.” But David did defeat those people. David took over the fortress* of Zion.* This place became the City of David.* 6David said, “The person that leads the attack on the Jebusite people will become the commander over all my army.” So Joab led the attack. Joab was Zeruiah’s son. Joab became the commander of the army. 7Then David made his home in the fortress.* That is why it is named the City of David.* 8David built the city around the fort. He built it from the Millo* to the wall around the city. Joab repaired the other parts of the city. 9David continued to grow greater. And the Lord All-Powerful was with him.

The Three Heroes

10This is a list of the leaders over David’s special soldiers. These heroes became very powerful with David in his kingdom. They and all the people of Israel supported David and made him king. It happened just like God had promised. 11This is a list of David’s special soldiers: Jashobeam the Hacmonite.* Jashobeam was the leader of the chariot officers.* Jashobeam used his spear to kill 300 men at one time. 12Next, there was Eleazar son of Dodai* from Ahoah. Eleazar was one of The Three Heroes. 13Eleazar was with David at Pasdammim. The Philistines had come to that place to fight a war. There was a field full of barley at that place. The people of Israel ran away from the Philistines. 14But the {Three Heroes} stood there in that field and defended it. They defeated the Philistines. The Lord gave the people of Israel a great victory. 15Once, David was at the cave of Adullam and the Philistine army was down in the Valley of Rephaim. Three of the Thirty Heroes* crawled flat on the ground all the way to that cave to join David. 16Another time, David was in the fortress,* and a group of Philistine soldiers was in Bethlehem. 17David was thirsty {for some water from his home town}. So he said, “I wish someone could give me some water from that well near the city gate in Bethlehem.” {David did not really want this, he was only talking.} 18But the Three* fought their way through the Philistine army. These three men got some water from the well near the city gate in Bethlehem. Then the Three Heroes brought the water to David. But David refused to drink the water. He poured it out on the ground as an offering to the Lord. 19David said, “God, I can’t drink this water. It would be like drinking the blood of the men who risked their lives to get this water for me.” That is why David refused to drink the water. The Three Heroes did many brave things like that.

Other Brave Soldiers

20Joab’s brother, Abishai, was the leader of the Three Heroes. He fought 300 men with his spear and killed them. Abishai was as famous as the Three Heroes. 21Abishai was twice as famous as the Thirty Heroes. He became their leader, even though he was not one of the Three Heroes. 22Benaiah son of Jehoiada was the son of a powerful man. He was from Kabzeel. Benaiah did brave things. Benaiah killed two of the best men from the country of Moab. One day when it was snowing, Benaiah went down into a hole in the ground and killed a lion. 23And Benaiah killed a big Egyptian soldier. That man was about 7 1/2 feet* tall. The Egyptian had a spear that was very large and heavy. It was as big as the pole on a weaver’s loom.* Benaiah had only a club. Benaiah grabbed the spear in the Egyptian’s hands and took it away from him. Then Benaiah killed the Egyptian with his own spear. 24Benaiah son of Jehoiada did many brave things like that. Benaiah was as famous as the Three Heroes.* 25Benaiah was more famous than the Thirty Heroes,* but he was not one of the Three Heroes. David chose Benaiah to be the leader of his bodyguards.

The Thirty Heroes

26The Heroic Soldiers (The Thirty Heroes) were: Asahel, the brother of Joab; Elhanan, son of Dodai from Bethlehem; 27Shammoth the Harodite; Helez the Pelonite; 28Ira son of Ikkesh from Tekoa; Abiezer from Anathoth; 29Sibbecai the Hushathite; Ilai from Ahoah; 30Maharai from Netophah; Heled son of Baanah from Netophah; 31Ithai son of Ribai from Gibeah in Benjamin; Benaiah, the Pirathonite; 32Hurai from the Brooks of Gaash; Abiel the Arbathite; 33Azmaveth the Baharumite; Eliahba the Shaalbonite; 34the sons of Hashem the Gizonite; Jonathan son of Shagee the Hararite; 35Ahiam son of Sacar the Hararite; Eliphal son of Ur; 36Hepher the Mekerathite; Ahijah the Pelonite; 37Hezro the Carmelite; Naarai son of Ezbai; 38Joel, Nathan’s brother; Mibhar son of Hagri; 39Zelek the Ammonite; Naharai from Beeroth (Naharai carried the armor for Joab son of Zeruiah.); 40Ira the Ithrite; Gareb the Ithrite; 41Uriah the Hittite; Zabad son of Ahlai; 42Adina son of Shiza from the family group of Reuben. (Adina was the leader of the family group of Reuben, but he was also one of the Thirty Heroes.*); 43Hanan son of Maacah; Joshaphat the Mithnite; 44Uzzia the Ashterathite; Shama and Jeiel sons of Hotham from Aroer; 45Jediael son of Shimri and his brother Joha the Tizite; 46Eliel the Mahavite; Jeribai and Joshaviah the sons of Elnaam; Ithmah the Moabite; 47Eliel; Obed; and Jaasiel the Mezobaite.

We are ... blood A way of saying they were David’s relatives. anointed To pour olive oil on a person’s head to show he was chosen by God to be a king, priest, or prophet. fortress A building or city with tall, strong walls for protection. Zion The southeast part of the mountain Jerusalem is built on. Sometimes it means the people of God living in Jerusalem. City of David The southeastern and oldest part of the city of Jerusalem. fortress A building or city with tall, strong walls for protection. City of David The southeastern and oldest part of the city of Jerusalem. Millo The Millo was probably a raised platform of land southeast of the temple area in Jerusalem. Jashobeam the Hacmonite This is “Josheb Basshebeth the Tahkemonite” in 2 Sam. 23:8. chariot officers Or, “The Thirty” or “The Three.” See 2 Sam. 23:8. Eleazar son of Dodai Or, “Eleazar his cousin.” Thirty Heroes These men were David’s famous group of very brave soldiers. Three The Three Heroes, David’s three bravest soldiers. 7 1/2 feet Or, “2.25m.” Literally, “5 {short} cubits.” loom A machine used for making cloth.

The Brave Men Who Joined David

12 This is a list of the men who came to David while he was at Ziklag. This was when David was hiding from Saul son of Kish. These men helped David in battle. 2These men could shoot arrows from their bows with their right or left hand. They could also throw stones from their slings* with their right or left hand. They were Saul’s relatives from the family group of Benjamin. Their names were: 3Ahiezer, their leader, and Joash (Ahiezer and Joash were sons of Shemaah the Gibeathite.); Jeziel and Pelet (Jeziel and Pelet were Azmaveth’s sons); Beracah and Jehu from the town of Anathoth. 4Ishmaiah from the town of Gibeon (Ishmaiah was a hero with the Three Heroes and he was also a leader of the Three Heroes); Jeremiah, Jahaziel, Johanan, and Jozabad from the Gederathite people; 5Eluzai, Jerimoth, Bealiah, and Shemariah; Shephatiah from Haripha; 6Elkanah, Isshiah, Azarel, Joezer, and Jashobeam, all from the family group of Korah; 7Joelah and Zebadiah, the sons of Jeroham from the town of Gedor.

The Gadites

8Part of the family group of Gad joined David at his fortress* in the desert. They were brave soldiers trained for war. They were skilled with the shield and spear. They looked as fierce as lions. And they could run as fast as gazelles* in the mountains. 9Ezer was the leader of the army from the family group of Gad. Obadiah was the second in command. Eliab was the third in command. 10Mishmannah was the fourth in command. Jeremiah was the fifth in command. 11Attai was the sixth in command. Eliel was the seventh in command. 12Johanan was the eighth in command. Elzabad was the ninth in command. 13Jeremiah was the tenth in command. Macbannai was the eleventh in command. 14Those men were leaders of the Gadite army. The weakest from that group could fight 100 enemy soldiers. The strongest from that group could fight 1,000 enemy soldiers. 15The people from the family group of Gad were the soldiers that went across the Jordan River in the first month of the year. That was a time of year when the Jordan River was flooding. They chased away all the people living in the valleys. They chased those people to the east and to the west.

Other Soldiers Join David

16Other men from the family groups of Benjamin and Judah also came to David at the fortress.* 17David went out to meet them. David said to them, “If you have come in peace to help me, I welcome you. Join me. But if you have come to spy on me when I have done nothing wrong, then may the God of our ancestors see what you did and punish you.” 18Amasai was the leader of the Thirty Heroes.* Then the Spirit came over Amasai {and he said}, “We are yours, David! We are with you, son of Jesse! Peace, peace to you! Peace to the people who help you. Why? Because your God helps you!” So David welcomed these men into his group and put them in charge of the troops. 19Some of the men from the family group of Manasseh also joined David. They joined David when he went with the Philistines to fight Saul. But David and his men did not really help the Philistines. The Philistine leaders talked about David helping them, but then they decided to send him away. Those rulers said, “If David goes back to his master Saul, then our heads will be cut off!” 20These were the men from Manasseh that joined David when he went to the town of Ziklag: Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu, and Zillethai. All of them were generals* from the family group of Manasseh. 21They helped David fight against bad men. Those bad men were going around the country and stealing things from people. All these men of Manasseh were brave soldiers. They became leaders in David’s army. 22More and more men came every day to help David. So David had a large and powerful army.

Other Men Join David at Hebron

23These are the numbers of the men that came to David at the town of Hebron. These men were ready for war. They came to give Saul’s kingdom to David. That is what the Lord said would happen. This is their number: 24From the family group of Judah there were 6,800 men ready for war. They carried shields and spears. 25From the family group of Simeon there were 7,100 men. They were brave soldiers ready for war. 26From the family group of Levi there were 4,600 men. 27Jehoiada was in that group. He was a leader from Aaron’s family. There were 3,700 men with Jehoiada. 28Zadok was also in that group. He was a brave young soldier. He came with 22 officers from his family. 29From the family group of Benjamin there were 3,000 men. They were Saul’s relatives. Most of those men stayed faithful to Saul’s family until that time. 30From the family group of Ephraim there were 20,800 men. They were brave soldiers. They were famous men in their own families. 31From half of Manasseh’s family group there were 18,000 men. They were called by name to come and make David king. 32From the family of Issachar there were 200 wise leaders. Those men understood the right thing for Israel to do at the right time. Their relatives were with them and under their command. 33From the family group of Zebulun there were 50,000 trained soldiers. They were trained to use all kinds of weapons. They were very loyal to David. 34From the family group of Naphtali there were 1,000 officers. They had 37,000 men with them. Those men carried shields and spears. 35From the family group of Dan there were 28,600 men ready for war. 36From the family group of Asher there were 40,000 trained soldiers ready for war. 37From the east side of the Jordan River, there were 120,000 men from the family groups of Reuben, Gad, and half of Manasseh. Those men had all kinds of weapons. 38All those men were brave fighters. They came to the town of Hebron fully agreed to make David king of all Israel. All the other people of Israel also agreed that David should be king. 39The men spent three days at Hebron with David. They ate and drank, because their relatives had prepared food for them. 40Also, their neighbors from the areas where the family groups of Issachar, Zebulun, and Naphtali live brought food on donkeys, camels, mules, and cattle. They brought much flour, fig cakes, raisins, wine, oil, cattle, and sheep. The people in Israel were very happy.

slings A strip of leather for throwing rocks. fortress A building or city with tall, strong walls for protection. gazelles Animals like deer. Thirty Heroes Or, “The Three” or “the chariot officers.” generals Literally, “leaders over 1,000 men.”

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