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Bible Commentaries

John Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible

2 Samuel 19



Verses 1-43

David's Return to Jerusalem

David's excessive grief for Absalom is rebuked by Joab. He punishes Joab for Absalom's death by making Amasa commander of the army. The details of his return to Jerusalem are given, with the strife it caused between the men of Israel and the men of Judah.

David has often been accused of ingratitude on account of his treatment of Joab. It has been urged that he would never have been secure with Absalom at liberty, and Joab knew how uncertain was his master's mind. On the other hand, it was a serious matter to murder the heir to the throne, for which deposition was probably a lenient punishment.

8. Then the king arose] He recognised the truth of Joab's statements. Sat in the gate] where kings were wont to give audiences (2 Samuel 15:2).

11. The talk of the people of Israel about David's return had come to the king's knowledge, but so far the elders of Judah had not approached him, on the subject.

16, 17. Shimei tries to make his peace with David (see 2 Samuel 16:5.) by bringing the tribe of Benjamin back to their allegiance.

20. The house of Joseph] here stands for northern Israel. Ephraim was the most powerful tribe in the northern and central tribes, as Judah was in the south.

23. Sware unto him] At first sight it appears as if David broke his oath by his last directions to Solomon (1 Kings 2:8-9). But the way in which Solomon acted on those instructions suggests that he understood his father to be merely putting him on his guard against a dangerous man. He put Joab to death at once, but merely placed Shimei where he could do no mischief.

26. I will saddle] better, with LXX, 'saddle.' The command was given to Ziba, but, instead of obeying it, he drove off the asses to meet David.

29. I have said] RV 'I say,' i.e. I declare that this is my intention. Thou and Ziba] see 2 Samuel 16:4.

41. Here again we may notice the jealousy between the powerful tribes of Judah and Ephraim: see on 2 Samuel 19:20.

42. Hath he given us any gift?] This was probably a hit at the Benjamites, who seem to have profited by their connection with Saul (1 Samuel 22:7).

43. That our advice should not first be had] cp. the conduct of the men of Ephraim, narrated in Judges 8:1; Judges 12:1, although they had more excuse (see on Judges 8:1).


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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 19:4". "John Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". 1909.

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