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Ahinoam the Jezreelitess

Ahinoam, from the Hebrew name pronounced awk-ee-no-awm, was a woman of Jezreel who became a wife of King David (not to be confused with another woman named Ahinoam who was a wife of King Saul i.e. "the name of Saul's wife was Ahinoam, the daughter of Ahimaaz" 1 Samuel 14:50 KJV). Ahinoam of Jezreel was the mother of David's first son, Amnon (see the Fact Finder question below).

"His firstborn was Amnon, of Ahinoam the Jezreelitess"

Ahinoam became a wife of David at the same time as Abigail, the widow of Nabal (who, if he hadn't died from a heart attack would have been killed by David anyway). Michal, the daughter of Saul, was also, almost, a wife of David prior to that.


"25:39 And when David heard that Nabal was dead [see notes for 1 Samuel 25], he said, Blessed be the LORD, that hath pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal, and hath kept his servant from evil: for the LORD hath returned the wickedness of Nabal upon his own head.

And David sent and communed with Abigail, to take her to him to wife. 25:40 And when the servants of David were come to Abigail to Carmel, they spake unto her, saying, David sent us unto thee, to take thee to him to wife.

25:41 And she arose, and bowed herself on her face to the earth, and said, Behold, let thine handmaid be a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord. 25:42 And Abigail hasted, and arose, and rode upon an ass, with five damsels of hers that went after her; and she went after the messengers of David, and became his wife. 25:43 David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel; and they were also both of them his wives. 25:44 But Saul had given Michal his daughter, David's wife, to Phalti the son of Laish, which was of Gallim." (1 Samuel 25:39-44 KJV)

The marriage of Ahinoam and David occurred during The Civil War between the house of David and the house of Saul.

"27:1 And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul: there is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape into the land of the Philistines; and Saul shall despair of me, to seek me any more in any coast of Israel: so shall I escape out of his hand.

27:2 And David arose, and he passed over with the six hundred men that were with him unto Achish, the son of Maoch, king of Gath [see Gath of the Philistines]. 27:3 And David dwelt with Achish at Gath, he and his men, every man with his household, even David with his two wives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the Carmelitess, Nabal's wife.27:4 And it was told Saul that David was fled to Gath: and he sought no more again for him." (1 Samuel 27:1-4 KJV)

Ahinoam did not always live safely while David was off at war. She was once taken captive by enemy forces that attacked David's base camp while he was away.

"30:1 And it came to pass, when David and his men were come to Ziklag on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the south, and Ziklag, and smitten Ziklag, and burned it with fire; 30:2 And had taken the women captives, that were therein: they slew not any, either great or small, but carried them away, and went on their way.

30:3 So David and his men came to the city, and, behold, it was burned with fire; and their wives, and their sons, and their daughters, were taken captives. 30:4 Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep. 30:5 And David's two wives were taken captives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the wife of Nabal the Carmelite. 30:6 And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of Stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God." (1 Samuel 30:1-6 KJV)

Ahinoam and all the others were safely taken back later. It wasn't just David's military power that was growing; the political power of Israel was also shifting. When Saul was killed in battle against the Philstines, Israel would soon become The United Kingdom of Israel.

"2:1 And it came to pass after this, that David inquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah?

And the LORD said unto him, Go up.

And David said, Whither shall I go up?

And he said, Unto Hebron [see David's Capital During The Civil War].

2:2 So David went up thither, and his two wives also, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail Nabal's wife the Carmelite. 2:3 And his men that were with him did David bring up, every man with his household: and they dwelt in the cities of Hebron.

2:4 And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah. And they told David, saying, That the men of Jabeshgilead were they that buried Saul. 2:5 And David sent messengers unto the men of Jabeshgilead, and said unto them, Blessed be ye of the LORD, that ye have showed this kindness unto your lord, even unto Saul, and have buried him. 2:6 And now the LORD show kindness and truth unto you: and I also will requite you this kindness, because ye have done this thing. 2:7 Therefore now let your hands be strengthened, and be ye valiant: for your master Saul is dead [see What Happens When You Die?], and also the house of Judah have anointed me king over them." (2 Samuel 2:1-7 KJV)

It was also in Hebron that David's family began to grow - along with the number of wives.

"3:2 And unto David were sons born in Hebron: and his firstborn was Amnon, of Ahinoam the Jezreelitess; 3:3 And his second, Chileab, of Abigail the wife of Nabal the Carmelite; and the third, Absalom the son of Maacah the daughter of Talmai king of Geshur; 3:4 And the fourth, Adonijah the son of Haggith; and the fifth, Shephatiah the son of Abital; 3:5 And the sixth, Ithream, by Eglah David's wife. These were born to David in Hebron." (2 Samuel 3:2-5 KJV)

Fact Finder: What did Amnon do to his half-sister Tamar? What did Tamar's brother Absalom do to his half-brother Amnon?
See Tamar and Amnon

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