Mark 14:1–11; 2 Corinthians 12:11–21; Psalm 108; 2 Samuel 3–4

The Plot to Kill Jesus

14 xIt was now two days before ythe Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. And the chief priests and the scribes zwere seeking how to arrest him by stealth and kill him, for they said, Not during the feast, alest there be an uproar from the people.

Jesus Anointed at Bethany

bAnd while he was at cBethany in the house of Simon the leper,1 as he was reclining at table, a woman came with an alabaster flask of ointment of pure nard, very costly, and she broke the flask and poured it over his head. There were some who said to themselves indignantly, Why was the ointment wasted like that? For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred denarii2 and dgiven to the poor. And they escolded her. But Jesus said, Leave her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. For fyou always have the poor with you, and whenever gyou want, you can do good for them. But hyou will not always have me. iShe has done what she could; she has anointed my body beforehand jfor burial. And truly, I say to you, wherever kthe gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told lin memory of her.

Judas to Betray Jesus

10 mThen nJudas Iscariot, who was one of the twelve, nwent to the chief priests in order to betray him to them. 11 And when they heard it, they were glad and promised to give him money. And he sought an opportunity to obetray him.


Concern for the Corinthian Church

11 pI have been a fool! You forced me to it, for I ought to have been commended by you. For I was qnot at all inferior to these super-apostles, reven though I am nothing. 12 sThe signs of a true apostle were performed among you twith utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works. 13 For in what were you less favored than the rest of the churches, except that uI myself did not burden you? Forgive me this wrong!

14 Here vfor the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be a burden, for wI seek not what is yours but you. For xchildren are not obligated to save up for their parents, but yparents for their children. 15 zI will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls. If aI love you more, am I to be loved less? 16 But granting that bI myself did not burden you, I was crafty, you say, and got the better of you by deceit. 17 Did I take advantage of you cthrough any of those whom I sent to you? 18 dI urged Titus to go, and sent ethe brother with him. Did Titus take advantage of you? Did we not act in the same spirit? Did we not take the same steps?

19 Have you been thinking all along that we have been defending ourselves to you? It is fin the sight of God that we have been speaking in Christ, and gall for your upbuilding, beloved. 20 For I fear that perhaps hwhen I come I may find you not as I wish, and that you may find me not as you wishthat perhaps there may be quarreling, jealousy, anger, hostility, slander, gossip, conceit, and disorder. 21 I fear that when I come again my God may humble me before you, and I may have to mourn over many of those iwho sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, jsexual immorality, and sensuality that they have practiced.


With God We Shall Do Valiantly

A Song. A Psalm of David.

108  pMy heart is steadfast, O God!

I will sing and make melody with all my being!1

Awake, O harp and lyre!

I will awake the dawn!

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;

I will sing praises to you among the nations.

For your steadfast love is great qabove the heavens;

your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens!

Let your glory be over all the earth!

rThat your beloved ones may be delivered,

give salvation by your right hand and answer me!

God has promised in his holiness:2

With exultation I will divide up Shechem

and portion out the Valley of Succoth.

Gilead is mine; Manasseh is mine;

Ephraim is my helmet,

Judah my scepter.

Moab is my washbasin;

upon Edom I cast my shoe;

sover Philistia I shout in triumph.

10  Who will bring me to the fortified city?

Who will lead me to Edom?

11  Have you not rejected us, O God?

You do not go out, O God, with our armies.

12  Oh grant us help against the foe,

for vain is the salvation of man!

13  With God we shall do valiantly;

it is he who will tread down our foes.


Abner Joins David

There was a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David. And David grew stronger and stronger, while the house of Saul became weaker and weaker.

vAnd sons were born to David at Hebron: his firstborn was Amnon, of wAhinoam of Jezreel; and his second, Chileab, of wAbigail the widow of Nabal of Carmel; and the third, Absalom the son of Maacah xthe daughter of Talmai king of yGeshur; and the fourth, zAdonijah the son of Haggith; and the fifth, Shephatiah the son of Abital; and the sixth, Ithream, of Eglah, David’s wife. These were born to David in Hebron.

While there was war between the house of Saul and the house of David, Abner was making himself strong in the house of Saul. Now Saul had a concubine whose name was aRizpah, the daughter of Aiah. And Ish-bosheth said to Abner, bWhy have you gone in to my father’s concubine? Then Abner was very angry over the words of Ish-bosheth and said, Am I ca dog’s head of Judah? To this day I keep showing steadfast love to the house of Saul your father, to his brothers, and to his friends, and have not given you into the hand of David. And yet you charge me today with a fault concerning a woman. dGod do so to Abner and more also, if I do not accomplish for David ewhat the Lord has sworn to him, 10 to transfer the kingdom from the house of Saul and set up the throne of David over Israel and over Judah, ffrom Dan to Beersheba. 11 And Ish-bosheth could not answer Abner another word, because he feared him.

12 And Abner sent messengers to David on his behalf,1 saying, To whom does the land belong? Make your covenant with me, and behold, my hand shall be with you to bring over all Israel to you. 13 And he said, Good; I will make a covenant with you. But one thing I require of you; that is, gyou shall not see my face unless you first bring hMichal, Saul’s daughter, when you come to see my face. 14 Then David sent messengers to Ish-bosheth, Saul’s son, saying, Give me my wife Michal, ifor whom I paid the bridal price of a hundred foreskins of the Philistines. 15 And Ish-bosheth sent and took her from her husband Paltiel the son of Laish. 16 But her husband went with her, weeping after her all the way to jBahurim. Then Abner said to him, Go, return. And he returned.

17 And Abner conferred with the elders of Israel, saying, For some time past you have been seeking David as king over you. 18 Now then bring it about, kfor the Lord has promised David, saying, By the hand of my servant David I will save my people Israel from the hand of the Philistines, and from the hand of all their enemies. 19 Abner also spoke to lBenjamin. And then Abner went to tell David at Hebron all that Israel and the whole house of Benjamin thought good to do.

20 When Abner came with twenty men to David at Hebron, David made a feast for Abner and the men who were with him. 21 And Abner said to David, I will arise and go and mwill gather all Israel to my lord the king, that they may make a covenant with you, and that you may nreign over all that your heart desires. So David sent Abner away, and he went in peace.

22 Just then the servants of David arrived with Joab from a raid, bringing much spoil with them. But Abner was not with David at Hebron, for he had sent him away, and he had gone in peace. 23 When Joab and all the army that was with him came, it was told Joab, Abner the son of Ner came to the king, and he has let him go, and he has gone in peace. 24 Then Joab went to the king and said, What have you done? Behold, Abner came to you. Why is it that you have sent him away, so that he is gone? 25 You know that Abner the son of Ner came to deceive you and to know oyour going out and your coming in, and to know all that you are doing.

Joab Murders Abner

26 When Joab came out from David’s presence, he sent messengers after Abner, and they brought him back from the cistern of Sirah. But David did not know about it. 27 And when Abner returned to Hebron, Joab took him aside into the midst of the gate to speak with him privately, pand there he struck him qin the stomach, so that he died, for the blood of Asahel his brother. 28 Afterward, when David heard of it, he said, I and my kingdom are forever guiltless before the Lord for the blood of Abner the son of Ner. 29 rMay it fall upon the head of Joab and upon all his father’s house, and may the house of Joab never be without sone who has a discharge or who is tleprous or who holds a spindle or who falls by the sword or who lacks bread! 30 So Joab and Abishai his brother killed Abner, because uhe had put their brother Asahel to death in the battle at Gibeon.

David Mourns Abner

31 Then David said to Joab and to all the people who were with him, vTear your clothes and wput on sackcloth and mourn before Abner. And King David followed the bier. 32 They buried Abner at Hebron. And the king lifted up his voice and wept at the grave of Abner, and all the people wept. 33 And the king xlamented for Abner, saying,

yShould Abner die zas a fool dies?

34  Your hands were not bound;

your feet were not fettered;

as one falls before the wicked

you have fallen.

And all the people wept again over him. 35 Then all the people came ato persuade David to eat bread while it was yet day. But David swore, saying, bGod do so to me and more also, if I taste bread or anything else ctill the sun goes down! 36 And all the people took notice of it, and it pleased them, as everything that the king did pleased all the people. 37 So all the people and all Israel understood that day that it had not been the king’s will to put to death Abner the son of Ner. 38 And the king said to his servants, Do you not know that a prince and a great man has fallen this day in Israel? 39 And I was gentle today, though anointed king. dThese men, the sons of Zeruiah, are more severe than I. eThe Lord repay the evildoer according to his wickedness!

Ish-bosheth Murdered

When Ish-bosheth, Saul’s son, heard that Abner had died at Hebron, fhis courage failed, and all Israel was dismayed. Now Saul’s son had two men who were captains of raiding bands; the name of the one was Baanah, and the name of the other Rechab, sons of Rimmon a man of Benjamin from Beeroth (gfor Beeroth also is counted part of Benjamin; hthe Beerothites fled ito Gittaim and have been sojourners there to this day).

jJonathan, the son of Saul, had a son who was crippled in his feet. He was five years old when the news about Saul and Jonathan kcame from Jezreel, and his nurse took him up and fled, and as she fled in her haste, he fell and became lame. And his name was Mephibosheth.

Now the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, Rechab and Baanah, set out, and about the heat of the day they came to the house of Ish-bosheth as he was taking his noonday rest. And they came into the midst of the house as if to get wheat, and they stabbed him lin the stomach. Then Rechab and Baanah his brother escaped.2 When they came into the house, as he lay on his bed in his bedroom, they struck him and put him to death and beheaded him. They took his head and went by the way of mthe Arabah all night, and brought the head of Ish-bosheth to David at Hebron. And they said to the king, Here is the head of Ish-bosheth, the son of Saul, your enemy, nwho sought your life. The Lord has avenged my lord the king this day on Saul and on his offspring. But David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, oAs the Lord lives, pwho has redeemed my life out of every adversity, 10 qwhen one told me, Behold, Saul is dead, and thought he was bringing good news, rI seized him and killed him at Ziklag, which was the reward I gave him for his news. 11 How much more, when wicked men have killed a righteous man in his own house on his bed, shall I not now srequire his blood at your hand and destroy you from the earth? 12 And David commanded his young men, and they killed them and cut off their hands and feet and hanged them beside the pool at Hebron. But they took the head of Ish-bosheth and buried it tin the tomb of Abner at Hebron.