1 Now it happened that Nahash, the king of the sons of Ammon, died, and his son reigned in his place.
2 And David said: “I will act with mercy toward Hanun, the son of Nahash. For his father was gracious to me.” And so David sent messengers to console him over the death of his father. But when they had reached the land of the sons of Ammon, so that they might console Hanun,
3 the leaders of the sons of Ammon said to Hanun: “Do you think that perhaps David has sent them to console you in order to honor your father? Have you not noticed that his servants came to you so that they might explore, and investigate, and examine your land?”
4 And so Hanun shaved the heads and beards of the servants of David, and he cut away their tunics from the buttocks to the feet, and he sent them away.
5 And when they had gone, and had sent word to David, (for they had suffered a great disgrace,) he sent to meet them, and he instructed them that they should remain at Jericho until their beards grew, and then they should return.
6 Then, when the sons of Ammon realized that they had committed an injury against David, both Hanun and the rest of the people sent one thousand talents of silver, so that they might hire for themselves chariots and horsemen from Mesopotamia, and from Syrian Maacah, and from Zobah.
7 And they hired thirty-two thousand chariots, and the king of Maacah with his people. When these had arrived, they made camp in the region opposite Medeba. Also, the sons of Ammon, gathering from their cities, went to war.
8 And when David had heard this, he sent Joab and the entire army of strong men.
9 And the sons of Ammon, going out, set up a battle line before the gate of the city. But the kings who had come to their aid stood separately in the field.
10 And so Joab, understanding the war to be set facing him and behind his back, chose the strongest men from all of Israel, and he went out against the Syrians.
11 But the remaining portion of the people he placed under the hand of his brother Abishai. And they went out against the sons of Ammon.
12 And he said: “If the Syrians prevail over me, then you shall be a help to me. But if the sons of Ammon prevail over you, I will be a safeguard for you.
13 Be strengthened, and let us act manfully on behalf of our people, and on behalf of the cities of our God. And the Lord will do what is good in his own sight.”
14 Therefore, Joab, and the people who were with him, went out to battle against the Syrians. And he put them to flight.
15 Then the sons of Ammon, seeing that the Syrians had fled, also themselves fled from Abishai, his brother, and they entered into the city. And now Joab returned to Jerusalem.
16 But the Syrians, seeing that they had fallen before Israel, sent messengers, and they brought the Syrians who were across the river. And Shophach, the leader of the military of Hadadezer, was their commander.
17 When this had been reported to David, he gathered together all of Israel, and he crossed the Jordan. And he rushed toward them. And he set up a battle line facing them. And they fought against him.
18 But the Syrians fled from Israel. And David killed of the Syrians seven thousand chariots, and forty thousand men on foot, and Shophach, the leader of the army.
19 Then the servants of Hadadezer, seeing themselves to be overwhelmed by Israel, crossed over to David, and they served him. And Syria was no longer willing to offer aid to the sons of Ammon.