2 Samuel 14:5-7; Judges 9:8-15; 1 Kings 20:35-41

And the king said to her, What is your trouble? She answered, aAlas, I am a widow; my husband is dead. And your servant had two sons, and they quarreled with one another in the field. There was no one to separate them, and one struck the other and killed him. And now the whole clan has risen against your servant, and they say, Give up the man who struck his brother, that we may put him to death for the life of his brother whom he killed. And so they would bdestroy the heir also. Thus they would quench my coal that is left and leave to my husband neither name nor cremnant on the face of the earth.


zThe trees once went out to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, aReign over us. But the olive tree said to them, Shall I leave my abundance, by which gods and men are honored, and go hold sway over the trees? 10 And the trees said to the fig tree, You come and reign over us. 11 But the fig tree said to them, Shall I leave my sweetness and my good fruit and go hold sway over the trees? 12 And the trees said to the vine, You come and reign over us. 13 But the vine said to them, Shall I leave my wine that bcheers God and men and go hold sway over the trees? 14 Then all the trees said to the bramble, You come and reign over us. 15 And the bramble said to the trees, If in good faith you are anointing me king over you, then come and ctake refuge in my shade, but if not, dlet fire come out of the bramble and devour ethe cedars of Lebanon.


A Prophet Condemns Ben-hadad's Release

35 And a certain man of kthe sons of the prophets said to his fellow lat the command of the Lord, Strike me, please. But the man refused to strike him. 36 Then he said to him, Because you have not obeyed the voice of the Lord, behold, as soon as you have gone from me, a lion shall strike you down. And as soon as he had departed from him, ma lion met him and struck him down. 37 Then he found another man and said, Strike me, please. And the man struck himstruck him and wounded him. 38 So the prophet departed and waited for the king by the way, ndisguising himself with a bandage over his eyes. 39 And as the king passed, he cried to the king and said, Your servant went out into the midst of the battle, and behold, a soldier turned and brought a man to me and said, Guard this man; if by any means he is missing, oyour life shall be for his life, or else you shall pay a talent1 of silver. 40 And as your servant was busy here and there, he was gone. The king of Israel said to him, So shall your judgment be; you yourself have decided it. 41 Then he hurried to take the bandage away from his eyes, and the king of Israel recognized him as one of the prophets.