2 Samuel 13:23-39

Absalom kills Amnon

23 Two years later, Absalom's men were cutting the wool from his sheep. They were in Baal Hazor, near to Ephraim's land. Absalom asked all the king's sons to meet him there. 24 Then he went to the king and he said, ‘My men have started to cut the wool from my sheep. Please will your and your officers come and join us at this happy time?’

25 King David replied to Absalom, ‘No, my son, we should not all go. It would cause you too much trouble.’

Absalom asked him again, but the king still refused to go. Instead, he asked God to bless Absalom.

26 So Absalom said, ‘If you will not come with me, please let my brother Amnon come.’

The king said, ‘Why do you want him to go with you?’ 27 But Absalom asked the king more strongly. So the king agreed to send Amnon and all his other sons.

28 Absalom then told his servants, ‘When Amnon has drunk a lot of wine I will tell you, “Knock him down!” Then you must kill him immediately. Do not be afraid. I am the one who is commanding you to do this. So be strong and brave.’

29 So Absalom's men killed Amnon, as Absalom had told them to do. Then all the king's other sons got on their mules. They quickly rode away.

30 While they were still on the way home, David heard news about what had happened. Someone told him, ‘Absalom has attacked all the king's sons. Not one son is still alive.’ 31 The king was very upset. He stood up and he tore his clothes. Then he lay down on the ground. All his servants were standing around him. They had torn their clothes, too.

32 But Jonadab, the son of David's brother Shimeah, said, ‘My lord, do not think that they have killed all your sons. Only Amnon is dead. Absalom has decided to do this since Amnon brought shame on his sister Tamar. 33 My lord the king, you should not believe the report that all your sons are dead. Only Amnon is dead.’

34 While this was happening, Absalom had run away.

There was an officer standing on the wall of Jerusalem to watch. When he looked, he saw a big group of people who were coming from the west. They were coming down the hill on the road from Horonaim. He went to the king and he told him the news.

35 Jonadab said to the king, ‘See, the king's sons are coming now, as I said they would.’

36 As he said that, the king's sons arrived. They were weeping loudly. The king and all his servants were also weeping. King David continued to weep for his son Amnon every day.

37 Absalom ran away to Ammihud's son, Talmai, the king of Geshur. 38 He stayed in Geshur for three years.

39 By this time, King David had stopped being so upset about Amnon's death. He wanted very much to see Absalom again.