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1 Reis 20

1 And Benhadad the king of Syria gathered all his host together: and [there were] thirty and twoThat is, governors and rulers of provinces.kings with him, and horses, and chariots: and he went up and besieged Samaria, and warred against it.

2 And he sent messengers to Ahab King of Israel, into the citie,

3 And sayd vnto him, Thus sayth Ben-hadad, Thy siluer & thy golde is mine: also thy women, and thy fayre children are mine.

4 And the king of Israel answered and said, My lord, O king, according to thy saying,I am content to obey and pay tribute.I [am] thine, and all that I have.

5 And when the messengers came againe, they said, Thus commandeth Ben-hadad, & saith, When I shal send vnto thee, and command, thou shalt deliuer me thy siluer and thy golde, and thy women, and thy children,

6 He would not accept his answer unless he out of hand delivered whatever he asked, for he sought an opportunity to make war against him.Yet I will send my servants unto thee to morrow about this time, and they shall search thine house, and the houses of thy servants; and it shall be, [that] whatsoever is pleasant in thine eyes, they shall put [it] in their hand, and take [it] away.

7 Then the King of Israel sent for all the Elders of the land, & sayd, Take heede, I pray you, and see how he seeketh mischiefe: for he sent vnto me for my wiues, and for my children, and for my siluer, and for my golde, and I denyed him not.

8 And all the elders and all the people said unto him, HearkenThey thought it their duty to risk their lives, rather than grant that thing which was not lawful, only to satisfy the lust of a tyrant.not [unto him], nor consent.

9 Wherefore hee sayde vnto the messengers of Ben-hadad, Tell my lorde the King, All that thou didddest sende for to thy seruant at the first time, that I will doe, but this thing I may not do; the messengers departed, and brought him an answere.

10 And Benhadad sent unto him, and said, The gods do so unto me, and more also, if theMuch less will there be found any prey that is worth anything, when they are so many.dust of Samaria shall suffice for handfuls for all the people that follow me.

11 And the king of Israel answered and said, Tell [him], Let not him that girdeth on [his harness] boast himself as he thatDo not boast before the victory is won.putteth it off.

12 And when he heard that tidings, as he was with the Kings drinking in the pauilions, he sayd vnto his seruants, Bring forth your engines, and they set them against the citie.

13 And, behold, there came a prophet unto Ahab king of Israel, saying, Thus saith the LORD, Hast thou seen all this great multitude? behold, I will deliver it into thine hand this day; and thou shalt knowBefore God went about with signs and miracles to pull Ahab from his impiety, and now again with wonderful victories.that I [am] the LORD.

14 And Ahab sayd, By whome? And he sayde, Thus sayth the Lord, By the seruants of the princes of the prouinces. He sayde againe, Who shall order the battel? And he answered, Thou.

15 Then he nombred the seruantes of the princes of the prouinces, and they were two hundreth, two and thirtie: and after them he nombred the whole people of all the children of Israel, euen seuen thousand.

16 And they went out at noone: but Ben-hadad did drinke till he was drunken in the tentes, both he and the Kings: for two and thirtie Kings helped him.

17 And theThat is, young men trained in the service of princes.young men of the princes of the provinces went out first; and Benhadad sent out, and they told him, saying, There are men come out of Samaria.

18 And he sayde, Whether they be come out for peace, take them aliue: or whether they bee come out to fight, take them yet aliue.

19 So they came out of the citie, to wit, the seruants of the princes of the prouinces, and the hoste which followed them.

20 And they slew every one his man: and the Syrians fled; and Israel pursued them: and Benhadad the king of Syria escaped on an horse with theThey who were appointed for the preservation of his person.horsemen.

21 And the King of Israel went out, & smote the horses and charets, and with a great slaughter slew he the Aramites.

22 (For there had come a Prophet to the King of Israel, and had sayd vnto him, Goe, be of good courage, and consider, and take heede what thou doest: for when the yeere is gone about, the King of Aram wil come vp against thee)

23 And the servants of the king of Syria said unto him, TheirThus the wicked blaspheme God in their fury, who nonetheless he does not permit to go unpunished.gods [are] gods of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we; but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

24 And this doe, Take the Kings away, euery one out of his place, & place captaines for them.

25 And nomber thy selfe an armie, like the armie that thou hast lost, with such horses, & such charets, & we wil fight against them in the plaine, and doubtlesse we shall ouercome them: and he hearkened vnto their voyce, and did so.

26 And after the yeere was gone about, Ben-hadad nombred the Aramites, and went vp to Aphek to fight against Israel.

27 And the children of Israel were numbered, and were allAll those who were in the battle of the previous years, (1Ki_20:15).present, and went against them: and the children of Israel pitched before them like two little flocks of kids; but the Syrians filled the country.

28 And there came a man of God, and spake unto the king of Israel, and said, Thus saith the LORD, Because the Syrians have said, The LORD [is] God of the hills, but he [is] not God of the valleys, therefore will I deliver all this great multitude into thine hand, and ye shall know thatWho has the same power in the valley as on the hills and can also destroy a multitude with few as with many.I [am] the LORD.

29 And they pitched one ouer against the other seuen dayes, & in the seuenth day the battel was ioyned: and the children of Israel slew of the Aramites an hundreth thousand footemen in one day.

30 But the rest fled to Aphek into the citie: & there fel a wall vpon seuen and twentie thousand men that were left: and Ben-hadad fled into the citie, and came into a secret chamber.

31 And his servants said unto him, Behold now, we have heard that the kings of the house of Israel [are] merciful kings: let us, I pray thee, put sackcloth on ourIn sign of submission and that we have deserved death, if he will punish us with rigour.loins, and ropes upon our heads, and go out to the king of Israel: peradventure he will save thy life.

32 Then they gyrded sackecloth about their loynes, & put ropes about their heads, and came to the King of Israel, and sayd, Thy seruant Ben-hadad sayth, I pray thee, let me liue: and he sayd, Is he yet aliue? he is my brother.

33 Now the men did diligently observe whether [any thing would come] from him, and did hastily catch [it]: and they said, Thy brotherHe is alive.Benhadad. Then he said, Go ye, bring him. Then Benhadad came forth to him; and he caused him to come up into the chariot.

34 And [Benhadad] said unto him, The cities, which my father took from thy father, I will restore; and thou shalt make streets for thee inYou shall appoint in my chief city what you will, and I will obey you.Damascus, as my father made in Samaria. Then [said Ahab], I will send thee away with this covenant. So he made a covenant with him, and sent him away.

35 And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour in the word of the LORD,By this external sign he would more likely touch the king's heart.Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.

36 Then said he unto him, Because thou hast not obeyed the voice of the LORD, behold, as soon as thou art departed from me, a lion shallBecause you have transgressed the commandment of the Lord.slay thee. And as soon as he was departed from him, a lion found him, and slew him.

37 Then he founde another man, and sayde, Smite mee, I pray thee; the man smote him, and in smiting wounded him.

38 So the Prophet departed, & wayted for the King by the way, & disguised himselfe with ashes vpon his face.

39 And as the king passed by, he cried unto the king: and he said,By this parable he makes Ahab condemn himself who made a covenant with God's enemy, and let him escape whom God had appointed to be slain.Thy servant went out into the midst of the battle; and, behold, a man turned aside, and brought a man unto me, and said, Keep this man: if by any means he be missing, then shall thy life be for his life, or else thou shalt pay a talent of silver.

40 And as thy seruant had here and there to do, he was gone: And the King of Israel said vnto him, So shall thy iudgement be: thou hast giuen sentence.

41 And hee hasted, and tooke the ashes away from his face: and the King of Israel knewe him that he was of the Prophets:

42 And he said vnto him, Thus saith the Lord, Because thou hast let goe out of thine handes a man whom I appoynted to dye, thy life shall goe for his life, and thy people for his people.

43 And the King of Israel went to his house heauie and in displeasure, & came to Samaria.

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