2 Samuel – Chapter 3

2 Samuel Chapter 3

Verses 1-5 – David suffered much heartache because of many wives. Polygamy was socially acceptable practice for kings at this time, even though God specifically warned against it (Deuteronomy 17:14-17). These sons that David had with these different wives caused him great trouble. Rape (13:14), murder (13:28), rebellion (15:13), and greed (1 Kings 1:5, 6) all resulted from the jealous rivalries among the half brothers. Solomon, one of David’s sons and his successor to the throne also took many wives who eventually turned him away from God (1 Kings 11:3, 4).

Verses 6, 7 – To sleep with any of the king’s wives or concubines was to make a claim to the throne, and it was considered treason. Because Ish-Bosheth was a weak ruler, Abner was running the country. Ish-Bosheth may have been right to speak out against Abner’s behavior, but he didn’t have the moral strength to maintain his authority (3:11). The lack of a moral backbone became the root of Israel’s troubles over the next four centuries. Only 4 of the next 40 kings of Israel were called “good.” When you believe something is wrong, do not let someone talk you out of your position.

Verse 8 – By saying, “Am I a dog’s head?” Abner was angry that Ish-Bosheth had admonished him because Abner had put Ish-Bosheth on the throne in the first place. Prior to this conversation, Abner realized that he could not keep David from eventually taking over Israel. Because he was angry at Ish-Bosheth, Abner devised a plan to turn over the kingdom of Israel to David.

Verses 13, 14 – Michal had been married to David. She was Saul’s daughter and had been given to David but in a fit of jealousy, Saul had taken her and given her to Paltiel (1 Samuel 25:44). Now David wanted his wife back before he would negotiate peace with northern tribes. Paltiel was the unfortunate victim caught in the web of Saul’s jealousy.

Verse 19 – Saul, Ish-Bosheth, and Abner were all from the tribe of Benjamin so the elders of that tribe meant that Abner was serious about his offer.

Verses 26-29 – Joab took revenge for the death of his brother instead of leaving justice to God. Abner had killed Joab’s brother Asahel in self-defense. People who killed in self-defense were to be safe in cities of refuge; Hebron was such a city (Joshua 20:7). Joab showed his disrespect for God’s laws by killing Abner in this city called Hebron.]

Verse 29 – David was saying that Joab’s descendants would be unclean, unhealthy, and in want.

Verse 39 – Joab and Abishai were the sons of Zeruiah David mentioned. David had especially a hard time controlling Joab because; although he was intensely loyal, he was strong willed, and preferred to do things his own way. While David opposed the murder, he allowed it to remain unpunished.

2 Samuel – Chapter 2

2 Samuel chapter 2

David is anointed as King over Judah

Verse 1 – Although David knew he would become king, David still asked God if he should move back to Judah, the home territory of his tribe. Before moving ahead with what seems obvious, first bring the matter to God, who alone knows the best timing. God told David to return to Hebron, where he would soon be crowned king of Judah. David made Hebron the capital city.

Verse 4 – The men of Judah publicly anointed David as their king even though he had been anointed earlier by Samuel (1 Samuel 16:13), but that ceremony had taken place in private. The rest of Israel, however, didn’t accept David’s kingship for seven and half years (2:10, 11).

Verse 8 – Abner was Saul’s relative and general and had survived the battle. Ish-Bosheth was probably the oldest surviving son of Saul.

Verse 9 – All of Israel means everything but Judah.

Verses 10, 11 – David ruled over Judah for seven and a half years, while Ish-Bosheth reigned in Israel for only two years. The five-year gap may have been due to Ish-Bosheth not assuming the throne immediately after Saul’s death. In addition, the Philistines still dominated the area, and Ish-Bosheth was intimidated by Abner (3:11).

Verse 12 – With Israel divided, there was constant tension between north and south. David’s true rival in the north, however, was not Ish-Bosheth but Abner. In this incident, Abner suggested a “dagger match” between the champions of both armies. Neither side won nor anything was accomplished because 12 men died from each side so the civil war continued.

Verses 21-23 – Persistence is a good trait if it is for a worthy cause. But if the goal is only personal honor or gain persistence may be no more than stubbornness. Asahel’s stubbornness not only cost him his life but it spurred disunity in David’s army for years to come.

Verse 28 – This battle ended with a victory for Joab’s troops (2:17), but war in the divided nation continued until David was finally crowned king over all Israel (5:1-5).

2 Samuel – Chapter 1

2 Samuel Chapter 1

2 Samuel

The story of David begins in First Samuel 16 and ends in First Kings 2. Second Samuel records the major events of David’s forty-year rule. His reign in Hebron begins in 1011 B.C. and ends in 1004 B.C. (5:5). His thirty-three year reign over the united Judah and Israel lasts from 1004 B.C. to 971 B.C.

In spite of David’s sins, he remains a man after God’s own heart because of his responsive and faithful attitude toward God. David becomes the standard by which all subsequent kings are measured. Unlike most kings who succeeded him, he never allows idolatry to become a problem during his reign. He is a true servant of Yahweh, obedient to His law.

2 Samuel Chapter 1

Verses 1-12 – When Saul died, David and his men were still living in Ziklag where Saul had driven him. David and his men were visible shaken over Saul’s death. Their actions showed their genuine sorrow over the loss of their king. They were not ashamed to grieve.

Verse 13 – This man that shows up identified himself as an Amalekite from Saul’s camp (1:2). More than likely, he was a battlefield scavenger. This man was lying both about his identity and about what happened on the battlefield. Because he had Saul’s crown with him, something the Philistines wouldn’t have left behind, we can believe that he found Saul dead on the battle field before the Philistines arrived (1 Samuel 31:8). The man had lied to gain some personal reward for killing David’s rival, but he misread David’s character. David had the messenger killed. Lying can bring disaster upon the liar, even for something he or she has not done, but only lied about.

The Amalekites were nomads and conducted frequent surprise raids on Canaanite villages. They had been Israelites enemies since Moses time. David had just destroyed an Amalekites band of raiders who had burned his city and kidnapped its women and children (1 Samuel 30:1-20).

Verses 15, 16 – Why did David consider it a crime to kill the king, even though Saul was his enemy? David believed and knew that God anointed Saul and only God could remove him from office. It was God’s job, not David’s to judge Saul’s sins (Leviticus 19:18).

Verses 17, 18 – Music played an important part in Israel’s’ history. David was a talented musician. He played the harp, he brought music into the worship services of the temple (1 Chronicles 25), and he wrote many of the Psalms. Here we are told he wrote a lament in memory of Saul and his son Jonathan, David’s closest friend.

Verses 17-27 – David had every reason to hate Saul, but he chose not to. Instead, he chose to look at the good Saul had done and to ignore the times when Saul had attacked him.

Verse 26 – This statement that David made, “More wonderful than that of a woman,” was simply restating the deep brotherhood and faithful friendship he had with Jonathan.