NASB — Judges 9 — KJV

Abimelech’s Conspiracy

1 And aAbimelech the son of Jerubbaal went to Shechem to his mother’s Irelatives, and spoke to them and to the whole clan of the household of his mother’s father, saying, 2 “Speak, now, in the hearing of all the leaders of Shechem, ‘Which is better for you, that aseventy men, all the sons of Jerubbaal, rule over you, or that one man rule over you?’ Also, remember that I am byour bone and your flesh.” 3 And his mother’s Irelatives spoke all these words on his behalf in the hearing of all the leaders of Shechem; and IIthey were inclined to follow Abimelech, for they said, “He is aour IIIrelative.” 4 They gave him seventy [pieces] of silver from the house of aBaal-berith with which Abimelech hired worthless and reckless fellows, and they followed him. 5 Then he went to his father’s house at Ophrah and akilled his brothers the sons of Jerubbaal, bseventy men, on one stone. But Jotham the youngest son of Jerubbaal was left, for he hid himself. 6 All the men of Shechem and all IBeth-millo assembled together, and they went and made Abimelech king, by the IIoak of the pillar which was in Shechem.

[1] ILit brothers aJg 8:31, 35
[2] aJg 8:30; 9:5, 18 bGn 29:14
[3] ILit brothers IILit their hearts inclined after IIILit brother aGn 29:15
[4] aJg 8:33
[5] a2K 11:1, 2 bJg 8:30; 9:2, 18
[6] IOr the house of Millo IIOr terebinth

7 ¶ Now when they told Jotham, he went and stood on the top of aMount Gerizim, and lifted his voice and called out. Thus he said to them, “Listen to me, O men of Shechem, that God may listen to you. 8 Once the trees went forth to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us!’ 9 But the olive tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my fatness with Iwhich God and men are honored, and go to wave over the trees?’ 10 Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 11 But the fig tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my sweetness and my good Ifruit, and go to wave over the trees?’ 12 Then the trees said to the vine, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 13 But the vine said to them, ‘Shall I leave my new wine, which cheers God and men, and go to wave over the trees?’ 14 Finally all the trees said to the bramble, ‘You come, reign over us!’ 15 The bramble said to the trees, ‘If in Itruth you are anointing me as king over you, come and take refuge in my shade; but if not, may fire come out from the bramble and consume the cedars of Lebanon.’

[7] aDt 11:29, 30
[9] ILit which by me
[11] IOr produce
[15] IOr sincerity

16 ¶ “Now therefore, if you have dealt in Itruth and integrity in making Abimelech king, and if you have dealt well with aJerubbaal and his house, and IIhave dealt with him IIIas he deserved17 for my father fought for you and Irisked his life and delivered you from the hand of Midian; 18 but you have risen against my father’s house today and have killed ahis sons, seventy men, on one stone, and have made Abimelech, bthe son of his maidservant, king over the men of Shechem, because he is your Irelative19 if then you have dealt in Itruth and integrity with Jerubbaal and his house this day, rejoice in Abimelech, and let him also rejoice in you. 20 But if not, let fire come out from Abimelech and consume the men of Shechem and IBeth-millo; and let fire come out from the men of Shechem and from IBeth-millo, and consume Abimelech.” 21 Then Jotham escaped and fled, and went to Beer and remained there because of Abimelech his brother.

[16] IOr sincerity IILit if you have IIILit according to the dealing of his hands aJg 8:35
[17] ILit cast his soul in front
[18] ILit brother aJg 8:30; 9:2, 5 bJg 8:31
[19] IOr sincerity
[20] IOr the house of Millo

Shechem and Abimelech Fall

22 ¶ Now Abimelech ruled over Israel three years. 23 aThen God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem; and the men of Shechem bdealt treacherously with Abimelech, 24 aso that the violence Idone to the seventy sons of Jerubbaal might come, and btheir blood might be laid on Abimelech their brother, who killed them, and on the men of Shechem, who strengthened his hands to kill his brothers. 25 The men of Shechem set Imen in ambush against him on the tops of the mountains, and they robbed all who might pass by them along the road; and it was told to Abimelech.

[23] a1S 16:14; Is 19:2, 14 bIs 33:1
[24] ILit of the seventy aDt 27:25; Jg 9:56, 57 bNu 35:33
[25] ILit liers-in-wait for

26 ¶ Now Gaal the son of Ebed came with his Irelatives, and crossed over into Shechem; and the men of Shechem put their trust in him. 27 They went out into the field and gathered [the grapes of] their vineyards and trod [them], and held a Ifestival; and they went into the house of atheir god, and ate and drank and cursed Abimelech. 28 Then Gaal the son of Ebed said, “Who is Abimelech, and who is Shechem, that we should serve him? Is he not the son of Jerubbaal, and [is] Zebul [not] his Ilieutenant? Serve the men of aHamor the father of Shechem; but why should we serve him? 29 IaWould, therefore, that this people were under my authority! Then I would remove Abimelech.” And he said to Abimelech, “Increase your army and come out.”

[26] ILit brothers
[27] ILit rejoicing aJg 8:33; 9:46
[28] ILit overseer aGn 34:2
[29] ILit And who will give this people into my hand a2S 15:4

30 ¶ When Zebul the ruler of the city heard the words of Gaal the son of Ebed, his anger burned. 31 He sent messengers to Abimelech Ideceitfully, saying, “Behold, Gaal the son of Ebed and his IIrelatives have come to Shechem; and behold, they are IIIstirring up the city against you. 32 Now therefore, arise by night, you and the people who are with you, and lie in wait in the field. 33 In the morning, as soon as the sun is up, you shall rise early and rush upon the city; and behold, when he and the people who are with him come out against you, you shall ado to them Iwhatever you can.”

[31] IOr in Tormah IILit brothers IIILit besieging
[33] ILit as your hand can find a1S 10:7

34 ¶ So Abimelech and all the people who [were] with him arose by night and lay in wait against Shechem in four Icompanies. 35 Now Gaal the son of Ebed went out and stood in the entrance of the city gate; and Abimelech and the people who [were] with him arose from the ambush. 36 When Gaal saw the people, he said to Zebul, “ILook, people are coming down from the tops of the mountains.” But Zebul said to him, “You are seeing the shadow of the mountains as [if they were] men.” 37 Gaal spoke again and said, “Behold, people are coming down from athe Ihighest part of the land, and one IIcompany comes by the way of IIIthe diviners’ IVoak.” 38 Then Zebul said to him, “Where is your Iboasting now with which you said, ‘Who is Abimelech that we should serve him?’ Is this not the people whom you despised? Go out now and fight with them!” 39 So Gaal went out before the leaders of Shechem and fought with Abimelech. 40 Abimelech chased him, and he fled before him; and many fell wounded up to the entrance of the gate. 41 Then Abimelech remained at Arumah, but Zebul drove out Gaal and his Irelatives so that they could not remain in Shechem.

[34] ILit heads
[36] ILit Behold
[37] IOr center IILit head IIIHeb Elommeonenim IVOr terebinth aEzk 38:12
[38] ILit mouth
[41] ILit brothers

42 ¶ Now it came about the next day, that the people went out to the field, and it was told to Abimelech. 43 So he took Ihis people and divided them into three IIcompanies, and lay in wait in the field; when he looked and IIIsaw the people coming out from the city, he arose against them and IVslew them. 44 Then Abimelech and the Icompany who was with him dashed forward and stood in the entrance of the city gate; the other two IIcompanies then dashed against all who [were] in the field and IIIslew them. 45 Abimelech fought against the city all that day, and he captured the city and killed the people who [were] in it; then he arazed the city and sowed it with salt.

[43] ILit the IILit heads IIILit behold IVLit smote
[44] ISingular with Gr; Heb plural, heads IILit heads IIILit smote
[45] a2K 3:25

46 ¶ When all the leaders of the tower of Shechem heard of [it], they entered the inner chamber of the Itemple of aEl-berith. 47 It was told Abimelech that all the leaders of the tower of Shechem were gathered together. 48 So Abimelech went up to Mount aZalmon, he and all the people who [were] with him; and Abimelech took Ian axe in his hand and cut down a branch from the trees, and lifted it and laid [it] on his shoulder. Then he said to the people who [were] with him, “What you have seen me do, hurry [and] do IIlikewise.” 49 All the people also cut down each one his branch and followed Abimelech, and put [them] on the inner chamber and set the inner chamber on fire over those [inside], so that all the men of the tower of Shechem also died, about a thousand men and women.

[46] ILit house aJg 8:33
[48] ILit the axes IILit like me aPs 68:14

50 ¶ Then Abimelech went to Thebez, and he camped against Thebez and captured it. 51 But there was a strong tower in the center of the city, and all the men and women with all the leaders of the city fled there and shut themselves in; and they went up on the roof of the tower. 52 So Abimelech came to the tower and fought against it, and approached the entrance of the tower to burn it with fire. 53 But aa certain woman threw an upper millstone on Abimelech’s head, crushing his skull. 54 Then ahe called quickly to the young man, his armor bearer, and said to him, “Draw your sword and kill me, so that it will not be said of me, ‘A woman slew him.’” So Ithe young man pierced him through, and he died. 55 When the men of Israel saw that Abimelech was dead, each departed to his Ihome. 56 Thus aGod repaid the wickedness of Abimelech, which he had done to his father in killing his seventy brothers. 57 Also God returned all the wickedness of the men of Shechem on their heads, and the curse of Jotham the son of Jerubbaal came Iupon them.

[53] a2S 11:21
[54] ILit his a1S 31:4
[55] ILit place
[56] aGn 9:5, 6; Ps 94:23
[57] ILit to


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NAS Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible
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Abimelech by conspiracy with the Shechemites, and murder of his brethren, is made king.

1 ¶ And Abimelech the son of Jerubbaal went to Shechem unto his mother's brethren, and communed with them, and with all the family of the house of his mother's father, saying, 2 Speak, I pray you, in the ears of all the men of Shechem, Whether [is] better for you, either that all the sons of Jerubbaal, [which are] threescore and ten persons, reign over you, or that one reign over you? remember also that I [am] your bone and your flesh. 3 And his mother's brethren spake of him in the ears of all the men of Shechem all these words: and their hearts inclined to follow Abimelech; for they said, He [is] our brother. 4 And they gave him threescore and ten [pieces] of silver out of the house of Baalberith, wherewith Abimelech hired vain and light persons, which followed him. 5 And he went unto his father's house at Ophrah, and slew his brethren the sons of Jerubbaal, [being] threescore and ten persons, upon one stone: notwithstanding yet Jotham the youngest son of Jerubbaal was left; for he hid himself. 6 And all the men of Shechem gathered together, and all the house of Millo, and went, and made Abimelech king, by the plain of the pillar that [was] in Shechem.

[1] Gn 33:18; 34:2; Jg 8:31; 2S 15:6; 1K 12:1, 3, 20; Ps 83:2; Jr 18:18.
[2] Gn 29:14; Jg 8:30; 2S 19:13; 1Ch 11:1; Ep 5:30; He 2:14.
[3] Gn 29:15; Ps 10:3; Pv 1:11.
[4] Jg 8:33; 9:46; 11:3; 1S 22:2; 2Ch 13:7; Jb 30:8; Pv 12:11; Ac 17:5.
[5] Jg 6:24; 2K 10:17; 11:1; 2Ch 21:4; Mt 2:16, 20.
[6] Jsh 24:26; 2S 5:9; 1K 12:1, 20, 25; 2K 12:20.

Jotham by a parable rebuketh them, and foretelleth their ruin.

7 ¶ And when they told [it] to Jotham, he went and stood in the top of mount Gerizim, and lifted up his voice, and cried, and said unto them, Hearken unto me, ye men of Shechem, that God may hearken unto you. 8 The trees went forth [on a time] to anoint a king over them; and they said unto the olive tree, Reign thou over us. 9 But the olive tree said unto them, Should I leave my fatness, wherewith by me they honour God and man, and go to be promoted over the trees? 10 And the trees said to the fig tree, Come thou, [and] reign over us. 11 But the fig tree said unto them, Should I forsake my sweetness, and my good fruit, and go to be promoted over the trees? 12 Then said the trees unto the vine, Come thou, [and] reign over us. 13 And the vine said unto them, Should I leave my wine, which cheereth God and man, and go to be promoted over the trees? 14 Then said all the trees unto the bramble, Come thou, [and] reign over us. 15 And the bramble said unto the trees, If in truth ye anoint me king over you, [then] come [and] put your trust in my shadow: and if not, let fire come out of the bramble, and devour the cedars of Lebanon. 16 Now therefore, if ye have done truly and sincerely, in that ye have made Abimelech king, and if ye have dealt well with Jerubbaal and his house, and have done unto him according to the deserving of his hands; 17 (For my father fought for you, and adventured his life far, and delivered you out of the hand of Midian: 18 And ye are risen up against my father's house this day, and have slain his sons, threescore and ten persons, upon one stone, and have made Abimelech, the son of his maidservant, king over the men of Shechem, because he [is] your brother;) 19 If ye then have dealt truly and sincerely with Jerubbaal and with his house this day, [then] rejoice ye in Abimelech, and let him also rejoice in you: 20 But if not, let fire come out from Abimelech, and devour the men of Shechem, and the house of Millo; and let fire come out from the men of Shechem, and from the house of Millo, and devour Abimelech. 21 And Jotham ran away, and fled, and went to Beer, and dwelt there, for fear of Abimelech his brother.

[7] Dt 11:29; 27:12; Jsh 8:33; Ps 18:40; 50:15; Pv 1:28; 21:13; 28:9; Is 1:15; 58:6; Mt 18:26; Jn 4:20; Jm 2:13.
[8] Jg 8:22; 2K 14:9; Ezk 17:3; Dn 4:10.
[9] Ex 29:2, 7; 35:14; Lv 2:1; 1K 19:15; Jb 1:7; 2:2; Ps 89:20; 104:15; Ac 4:27; 10:38; 1Jn 2:20.
[11] Lk 13:6.
[13] Nu 15:5, 7, 10; Ps 104:15; Pv 31:6; Ec 10:19.
[14] 2K 14:9.
[15] Nu 21:28; Jg 9:20, 49; 2K 14:9; Ps 104:16; Is 1:31; 2:13; 30:2; 37:24; Ezk 19:14; 31:3; Dn 4:12; Ho 14:7; Mt 13:32.
[16] Jg 8:35.
[17] Jg 7:1; 8:4; Es 4:16; Ro 5:8; 16:4; Rv 12:11.
[18] Jg 8:31, 35; 9:5, 6, 14; Ps 109:4.
[19] Is 8:6; Php 3:3; Jm 4:16.
[20] Jg 7:22; 9:15, 23, 56; 2Ch 20:22; Ps 21:9; 28:4; 52:1; 120:3; 140:10.
[21] Nu 21:16; Jsh 19:8; 2S 20:14.

Gaal conspireth with the Shechemites against him.

22 ¶ When Abimelech had reigned three years over Israel, 23 Then God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem; and the men of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech: 24 That the cruelty [done] to the threescore and ten sons of Jerubbaal might come, and their blood be laid upon Abimelech their brother, which slew them; and upon the men of Shechem, which aided him in the killing of his brethren. 25 And the men of Shechem set liers in wait for him in the top of the mountains, and they robbed all that came along that way by them: and it was told Abimelech. 26 And Gaal the son of Ebed came with his brethren, and went over to Shechem: and the men of Shechem put their confidence in him. 27 And they went out into the fields, and gathered their vineyards, and trode [the grapes], and made merry, and went into the house of their god, and did eat and drink, and cursed Abimelech. 28 And Gaal the son of Ebed said, Who [is] Abimelech, and who [is] Shechem, that we should serve him? [is] not [he] the son of Jerubbaal? and Zebul his officer? serve the men of Hamor the father of Shechem: for why should we serve him? 29 And would to God this people were under my hand! then would I remove Abimelech. And he said to Abimelech, Increase thine army, and come out.

[23] Jg 9:15, 16, 20; 1S 16:14; 18:9; 1K 12:15; 22:22; 2Ch 10:15; 18:19; Is 19:2, 14; 33:1; Mt 7:2; 2Th 2:11.
[24] 1S 15:33; 1K 2:32; Es 9:25; Ps 7:16; Mt 23:34.
[25] Jsh 8:4, 12; Pv 1:11.
[26] Gn 13:8; 19:7.
[27] Ex 32:6, 19; Lv 24:11; Jg 9:4; 16:23; 1S 17:43; Ps 109:17; Is 16:9; 22:12; 24:7; Jr 25:30; Dn 5:1, 23; Am 6:3; Lk 12:19; 17:26.
[28] Gn 34:2, 6; 1S 25:10; 2S 20:1; 1K 12:16.
[29] 2S 2:14; 15:4; 1K 20:11; 2K 14:8; 18:23; Ps 10:3; Is 36:8; Ro 1:30.

Zebul revealeth it.

30 ¶ And when Zebul the ruler of the city heard the words of Gaal the son of Ebed, his anger was kindled. 31 And he sent messengers unto Abimelech privily, saying, Behold, Gaal the son of Ebed and his brethren be come to Shechem; and, behold, they fortify the city against thee. 32 Now therefore up by night, thou and the people that [is] with thee, and lie in wait in the field: 33 And it shall be, [that] in the morning, as soon as the sun is up, thou shalt rise early, and set upon the city: and, behold, [when] he and the people that [is] with him come out against thee, then mayest thou do to them as thou shalt find occasion.

[30] Jg 9:30.
[31] Jg 9:31.
[32] Jb 24:14; Ps 36:4; Pv 1:11; 4:16; Ro 3:15.
[33] Lv 25:26; 1S 10:7; 25:8; Ec 9:10.

Abimelech overcometh them, and soweth the city with salt.

34 ¶ And Abimelech rose up, and all the people that [were] with him, by night, and they laid wait against Shechem in four companies. 35 And Gaal the son of Ebed went out, and stood in the entering of the gate of the city: and Abimelech rose up, and the people that [were] with him, from lying in wait. 36 And when Gaal saw the people, he said to Zebul, Behold, there come people down from the top of the mountains. And Zebul said unto him, Thou seest the shadow of the mountains as [if they were] men. 37 And Gaal spake again