In an old folk tale, a farmer tells his hired man to take a chicken and kill it ‘‘where no one can see.’’ The hired man returns in a few hours with a live chicken. ‘‘Why didn’t you kill it?’’ asks the farmer. ‘‘Everywhere I go, the chicken sees,’’ answers the hired man.
Behind this humorous story is a subtle message: Someone is always watching, even if it is only the victim, the perpetrator, or the perpetrator’s conscience. King David’s forces were aligned against the forces of his own son, Absalom, who was trying to take over his father’s throne a few years before the father was ready to hand it over. (Sounds like a typical family business.) David commanded his troops, ‘‘Be gentle with the young man Absalom for my sake.’’ (2 Sam. 5:5) Absalom, riding his mule, got his hair caught in a tree and was hanging by it when a common foot soldier from David’s side came upon him, but did not harm him. He reported this to his commander, Joab:

この口話の背景にはちょっとしたメッセージが隠されていた:被害者だけ、加害者、または加害者の良心でさえ、誰かしらいつも見ている。デービッド王の勢力は、父親が譲ろうとする前から王座を取ろうと数年に渡り試みていた息子アブサロムの勢力と同立場だった。(よくある家業の話のようだが)デービッドは彼の群れを指揮していた、『私のために青年アブサロムに寛大にしてくれ。』(2サム 5:5) デービッド側からの雑兵が来たとき、ラバに乗っていたアブサロムは木に髪を引っかけてしまい吊るされてしまったが、彼はアブサロムに何もしなかった。彼はそのことを自分の指揮者ジョアブに報告した。