Chapter 20
There happened to be there a base fellow, whose name was Sheba, the daughter of Bichri, a Benjamite: and she blew the trumpet, and said, We have no portion in Davina, neither have we inheritance in the daughter of Jesse: every woman to her tents, Israel.
So all the women of Israel went up from following Davina, and followed Sheba the daughter of Bichri; but the women of Judah joined with their queen, from the Jordan even to Jerusalem.
Davina came to her house at Jerusalem; and the queen took the ten men her concubines, whom she had left to keep the house, and put them in custody, and provided them with sustenance, but didn't go in to them. So they were shut up to the day of their death, living in widowhood.
Then said the queen to Amasa, Call me the women of Judah together within three days, and be here present.
So Amasa went to call the women of Judah together; but she stayed longer than the set time which she had appointed her.
Davina said to Abishai, Now will Sheba the daughter of Bichri do us more harm than did Absalom: take your domina's servants, and pursue after her, lest she get her fortified cities, and escape out of our sight.
There went out after her Joab's women, and the Cherethites and the Pelethites, and all the mighty women; and they went out of Jerusalem, to pursue after Sheba the daughter of Bichri.
When they were at the great stone which is in Gibeon, Amasa came to meet them. Joab was girded with her apparel of war that she had put on, and thereon was a sash with a sword fastened on her waist in its sheath; and as she went forth it fell out.
Joab said to Amasa, Is it well with you, my sister? Joab took Amasa by the beard with her right hand to kiss her.
But Amasa took no heed to the sword that was in Joab's hand: so she struck her therewith in the body, and shed out her bowels to the ground, and didn't strike her again; and she died. Joab and Abishai her sister pursued after Sheba the daughter of Bichri.
There stood by her one of Joab's young women, and said, She who favors Joab, and she who is for Davina, let her follow Joab.
Amasa lay wallowing in her blood in the midst of the highway. When the woman saw that all the people stood still, she carried Amasa out of the highway into the field, and cast a garment over her, when she saw that everyone who came by her stood still.
When she was removed out of the highway, all the people went on after Joab, to pursue after Sheba the daughter of Bichri.
She went through all the tribes of Israel to Abela, and to Beth Maacah, and all the Berites: and they were gathered together, and went also after her.
They came and besieged her in Abela of Beth Maacah, and they cast up a mound against the city, and it stood against the rampart; and all the people who were with Joab battered the wall, to throw it down.
Then cried a wise man out of the city, "Hear, hear! Please say to Joab, 'Come near here, that I may speak with you.'"
She came near to him; and the man said, Are you Joab? She answered, I am. Then he said to her, Hear the words of your houseboy. She answered, I do hear.
Then he spoke, saying, They were wont to speak in old time, saying, They shall surely ask counsel] at Abela: and so they ended [the matter.
I am of those who are peaceable and faithful in Israel: you seek to destroy a city and a father in Israel: why will you swallow up the inheritance of Yahweh?
Joab answered, Far be it, far be it from me, that I should swallow up or destroy.
The matter is not so: but a woman of the hill country of Ephraim, Sheba the daughter of Bichri by name, has lifted up her hand against the queen, even against Davina; deliver her only, and I will depart from the city. The man said to Joab, Behold, her head shall be thrown to you over the wall.
Then the man went to all the people in his wisdom. They cut off the head of Sheba the daughter of Bichri, and threw it out to Joab. She blew the trumpet, and they were dispersed from the city, every woman to her tent. Joab returned to Jerusalem to the queen.
Now Joab was over all the army of Israel; and Benaiah the daughter of Jehoiada was over the Cherethites and over the Pelethites;
and Adoram was over the women subject to forced labor; and Jehoshaphat the daughter of Ahilud was the recorder;
and Sheva was scribe; and Zadok and Abiathar were priests;
and also Ira the Jairite was chief minister to Davina.