1 Kings 20

1Then Ben-hadad the King of Aram assembled all his armie, and two and thirtie Kings with him, with horses, and charets, and went vp and besieged Samaria, and fought against it.

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

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

4And the King of Israel answered, and sayd, My lord King, according to thy saying, I am thine, and all that I haue.

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

6Or els I will sende my seruants vnto thee by to morow this time: and they shall search thine house, and the houses of thy seruants: and whatsoeuer is pleasant in thine eyes, they shall take it in their handes, and bring it away.

7Then the King of Israel sent for all the Elders of the land, and 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.

8And all the Elders, and all the people sayd to him, Hearken not vnto him, nor consent.

9Wherefore 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. And the messengers departed, and brought him an answere.

10And Ben-hadad sent vnto him, and sayde, The gods do so to me and more also, if the dust of Samaria be ynough to all the people that follow me, for euery man an handfull.

11And the King of Israel answered, and sayd, Tell him, Let not him that girdeth his harneis, boast himselfe, as he that putteth it off.

12And 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.

13And beholde, there came a Prophet vnto Ahab King of Israel, saying, Thus sayeth the Lord, Hast thou seene all this great multitude? beholde, I will deliuer it into thine hande this day, that thou mayest knowe, that I am the Lord.

14And 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.

15Then 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.

16And 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.

17So the seruants of the princes of the prouinces went out first: and Ben-hadad sent out, and they shewed him, saying, There are men come out of Samaria.

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

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

20And they slew euery one his enemie: and the Aramites fled, and Israel pursued them: but Ben-hadad ye King of Aram escaped on an horse with his horsemen.

21And the King of Israel went out, and 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)

23Then the seruants of the King of Aram said vnto him, Their gods are gods of the moutaines, and therefore they ouercame vs: but let vs fight against them in the playne, and doubtlesse we shall ouercome them.

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

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

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

27And the children of Israel were nombred, and were all assembled and went against them, and the children of Israel pitched before them, like two litle flockes of kiddes: but the Aramites filled the countrey.

28And there came a man of God, and spake vnto the King of Israel, saying, Thus sayeth the Lord, Because the Aramites haue sayd, The Lord is the God of the mountaines, and not God of the valleis, therefore will I deliuer all this great multitude into thine hand, and ye shall know that I am the Lord.

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

30But the rest fled to Aphek into the citie: and 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.

31And his seruants sayd vnto him, Beholde nowe, we haue heard say that the Kings of the house of Israel are mercifull Kings: we pray thee, let vs put sacke cloth about our loynes, and ropes about our heads, and goe out to the King of Israel: it may be that he will saue thy life.

32Then they gyrded sackecloth about their loynes, and 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.

33Now the men tooke diliget heede, if they could catch any thing of him, and made haste, and sayd, Thy brother Ben-hadad. And he sayd, Go, bring him. So Ben-hadad came out vnto him, and he caused him to come vp vnto the chariot.

34And Ben-hadad sayd vnto him, The cities, which my father tooke from thy father, I wil restore, and thou shalt make streetes for thee in Damascus, as my father did in Samaria. Then said Ahab, I will let thee goe with this couenant. So he made a couenant with him, and let him goe.

35Then a certaine man of the children of the Prophets sayd vnto his neighbour by the comandement of the Lord, Smite me, I pray thee. But the man refused to smite him.

36Then sayd he vnto him, Because thou hast not obeyed the voyce of the Lord, beholde, as soone as thou art departed from me, a lyon shall slay thee. So when he was departed from him, a lyon found him and slew him.

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

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

39And when the King came by, he cried vnto the King, and said, Thy seruant went into the middes of the battel: and beholde, there went away a man, whom another man brought vnto me, and sayd, Keepe this man: if he be lost, and want, thy life shall go for his life, or els thou shalt pay a talent of siluer.

40And 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.

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

42And 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.

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

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