Verse 1 – Kings went out to war following the spring harvest. David’s adultery occurred at this time, while he remained in Jerusalem. This story may have been excluded from 1 Chronicles because the book was written to focus on God’s long-term interest in Israel and on the temple as a symbol of God’s presence among them.
David stayed home and sent Joab out to lead the army. We should be aware of temptation so that it doesn’t get a foothold in our inactivity.
Verses 4, 5 – The first giant mentioned was Sippai, referred to as a descendant of the giants. The Hebrew word is “rephaim,” which refers to a race of giants, of whom we know nothing more than that they were larger than normal men. Apparently the rephaim had left a genetic heritage, even though the last pure member of their race was Og, King of Basham. He had a bed 13 feet long and 6 feet wide (Deuteronomy 3:11). Goliath had a brother named Lahmi, who may have been as tall as Goliath (1 Samuel 17:4). He was killed by Elhanan son of Jair, who is not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible.
Verses 6, 7 – Another giant, whose name is not given, copied Goliath by taunting Israel. He also had an extra finger and toe on each hand and foot. David’s nephew Jonathan took care of him.
Verse 8 – The elimination of giants is an important aspect of how David finally took possession of the entire promised land. In Numbers 13:33-14:9 the giants that the spies had seen were Anakites. Those giants were descendants from the Nephilim who were destroyed in Noah’s flood (Genesis 6:4) but whose genes must have been carried recessivley by Noah’s son Ham or his wife.
About 40 years after the aborted invasion of the promised land, Caleb had the opportunity to demonstrate his faith in God by eliminating the Anakites who lived around his new hometown of Hebron (Judges 1:20). The defeat of these giants was a sign that the land had finally been completely conquered.