Second Samuel 9 – 10

2 Samuel 9

David is kind to the family of Saul for Jonathan’s sake.

2 Samuel 9:1 And David said, Is there yet any that is left of the house of Saul, that I may shew him kindness for Jonathan’s sake? 9:2 And there was of the house of Saul a servant whose name was Ziba. And when they had called him unto David, the king said unto him, Art thou Ziba? And he said, Thy servant is he.

9:3 And the king said, Is there not yet any of the house of Saul, that I may shew the kindness of God unto him? And Ziba said unto the king, Jonathan hath yet a son, which is lame on his feet. 9:4 And the king said unto him, Where is he? And Ziba said unto the king, Behold, he is in the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, in Lodebar. 9:5 Then king David sent, and fetched him out of the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, from Lodebar.

9:6 Now when Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, was come unto David, he fell on his face, and did reverence. And David said, Mephibosheth. And he answered, Behold thy servant! 9:7 And David said unto him, Fear not: for I will surely shew thee kindness for Jonathan thy father’s sake, and will restore thee all the land of Saul thy father; and thou shalt eat bread at my table continually.

David restored to Mephibo-sheth all his rightful inheritance according to the law of God, from the property of his grandfather Saul.

9:8 And he bowed himself, and said, What is thy servant, that thou shouldest look upon such a dead dog as I am?

Then David commissioned Saul’s servant Ziba to oversee the lands, while David took care of Mephibo-sheth the son of his beloved friend Jonathan personally.

9:9 Then the king called to Ziba, Saul’s servant, and said unto him, I have given unto thy master’s son all that pertained to Saul and to all his house.

Ziba was himself a wealthy man having 20 servants and 15 sons; and he committed himself to do as David had said.

9:10 Thou therefore, and thy sons, and thy servants, shall till the land for him, and thou shalt bring in the fruits, that thy master’s son may have food to eat: but Mephibosheth thy master’s son shall eat bread alway at my table. Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants. 9:11 Then said Ziba unto the king, According to all that my lord the king hath commanded his servant, so shall thy servant do. As for Mephibosheth, said the king, he shall eat at my table, as one of the king’s sons.

Jonathan the faithful to God, called his son Mephibo-sheth: “exterminator of shame”; i.e., “destroyer of idols”.

Mephibo-sheth had one son of his own and they were cared for personally by David.

9:12 And Mephibosheth had a young son, whose name was Micha. And all that dwelt in the house of Ziba were servants unto Mephibosheth. 9:13 So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king’s table; and was lame on both his feet.


2 Samuel 10

In Israel it was not lawful to mourn for the dead by making cuttings in the beard or flesh, but it was the custom in Ammon to do so. David thinking to do the dead king honor; instead, provoked a diplomatic incident by committing what was to the Ammonites an insult to the dead, his representatives not cutting their beards in mourning.

2 Samuel 10:1 And it came to pass after this, that the king of the children of Ammon died, and Hanun his son reigned in his stead. 10:2 Then said David, I will shew kindness unto Hanun the son of Nahash, as his father shewed kindness unto me. And David sent to comfort him by the hand of his servants for his father. And David’s servants came into the land of the children of Ammon.

The new king of Ammon’s servants were angered by this apparent affront and declared that David’s servants were not there to mourn [because they did not follow the Ammonite customs of mourning] but had come to spy out the land.

10:3 And the princes of the children of Ammon said unto Hanun their lord, Thinkest thou that David doth honour thy father, that he hath sent comforters unto thee? hath not David rather sent his servants unto thee, to search the city, and to spy it out, and to overthrow it?

They cut the beards of David’s representatives in half and also cut off the lower half of their garments, sending them home in shame, and doing an insult to David who was by that time a great and mighty king.

This was an act of returning great evil for a perceived evil; and precipitated a serious animosity between the two nations bringing enormous bloodshed. 

We are instructed to return good for evil and if the new king of Ammon had treated these men with respect in spite of a perceived affront to his pride, much bloodshed would have been avoided. 

10:4 Wherefore Hanun took David’s servants, and shaved off the one half of their beards, and cut off their garments in the middle, even to their buttocks, and sent them away.

David protected his servants from shame and was most outraged. 

10:5 When they told it unto David, he sent to meet them, because the men were greatly ashamed: and the king said, Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and then return.

Then the king of Ammon realized the magnitude of his error and was greatly afraid, and hired the Syrians to fight David for him.

10:6 And when the children of Ammon saw that they stank before David, the children of Ammon sent and hired the Syrians of Ammon hired Bethrehob and the Syrians of Zoba, twenty thousand footmen, and of king Maacah a thousand men, and of Ishtob twelve thousand men.

David sent his army out to the battle

10:7 And when David heard of it, he sent Joab, and all the host of the mighty men. 10:8 And the children of Ammon came out, and put the battle in array at the entering in of the gate: and the Syrians of Zoba, and of Rehob, and Ishtob, and Maacah, were by themselves in the field.

Joab selected the best of the army to stand against Syria having much respect for them as fighters, and the remainder of the army he gave to his brother Abishai to fight the Ammonites.

10:9 When Joab saw that the front of the battle was against him before and behind, he chose of all the choice men of Israel, and put them in array against the Syrians: 10:10 And the rest of the people he delivered into the hand of Abishai his brother, that he might put them in array against the children of Ammon.

It appears that Abishai was outnumbered and Joab encouraged his brother.

10:11 And he said, If the Syrians be too strong for me, then thou shalt help me: but if the children of Ammon be too strong for thee, then I will come and help thee.

Let all those of today’s spiritual Israel be of a good courage to follow our Lord, and he will give us victory over sin and Satan.

10:12 Be of good courage, and let us play the men for our people, and for the cities of our God: and the LORD do that which seemeth him good.

The hired enemy was driven from the battlefield and the army of Israel returned home.

10:13 And Joab drew nigh, and the people that were with him, unto the battle against the Syrians: and they fled before him. 10:14 And when the children of Ammon saw that the Syrians were fled, then fled they also before Abishai, and entered into the city. So Joab returned from the children of Ammon, and came to Jerusalem.

The Syrians were not about to give up and they brought together a much greater army.

10:15 And when the Syrians saw that they were smitten before Israel, they gathered themselves together. 10:16 And Hadarezer sent, and brought out the Syrians that were beyond the river: and they came to Helam; and Shobach the captain of the host of Hadarezer went before them.

David himself then gathered all the men of Israel and went out to battle destroying the enemy host.

10:17 And when it was told David, he gathered all Israel together, and passed over Jordan, and came to Helam. And the Syrians set themselves in array against David, and fought with him. 10:18 And the Syrians fled before Israel; and David slew the men of seven hundred chariots of the Syrians, and forty thousand horsemen, and smote Shobach the captain of their host, who died there.

Then Syria and Ammon made peace with David and served Israel and her king David, just as they will serve Israel and her resurrected king David in the millennium.

The prophets tell us that with the coming of Christ, David shall be raised up and will again rule a united Israel; and at that time Syria, Turkey, the Philistines in Gaza, Amman and Moab, and the remainder of the Palestinians will serve Israel.

Then the land of Israel will be restored as it was during the reign of David and Solomon, from the Wadi el Arish of Egypt, to the Euphrates. 

Very soon now during the tribulation these nations will be devastated by the armies of Asia as they come up against Jerusalem; and being humbled they will be glad to look for their deliverance to Messiah the Christ coming as the King of the world and to David his servant, resurrected to be king over a united Israel.

10:19 And when all the kings that were servants to Hadarezer saw that they were smitten before Israel, they made peace with Israel, and served them. So the Syrians feared to help the children of Ammon any more.

Ahithophel, Bathsheba and Absalom

The next several chapters concern Bathsheba and David’s sin against Uriah; the rebellion of Absalom and the turning of Ahithophel’s loyalty to David into hatred.

To properly understand these events it is necessary to realize that Bathsheba is the daughter of Eliam one of David’s thirty mighty men (2 Samuel 11:3 & 23:34).

Eliam was the son of Ahithophel who was David’s chief adviser, making Bathsheba the granddaughter of one of David’s chief counselors, and the daughter of one of his Mighty Men and the wife of another, Bathsheba’s husband Uriah the Hittite who was also one of David’s thirty commanders or mighty men (2 Samuel 23:39).

Bathsheba [Hebrew: Bat-Sheva, daughter of an oath]: Probably Bathsheba was in awe of the king, and feared his position and authority; not daring to cry out against him.

Our Sin Today: Herein lies a great lesson for us all; should we fear and submit to the supposed authority of men, even supposed men of God; or should we first fear, respect and obey the Word of God, above the words of men?

David was a mighty man of God and yet he made many mistakes.

Do not assume that the spiritual leaders in today’s Ekklesia cannot make mistakes or even go astray like Saul; prove all things by God’s Word before obeying and following them.  One of the biggest issues for those within the brotherhood is that they have been purposefully indoctrinated into the fear of men for decades.

Brethren, we are to fear God and do HIS will, and we are not fear any man.

David’s sin: We see that while David committed adultery and murder, another great often overlooked sin was the abuse of the office and position entrusted to him [and to the leaders and elders today] by God.

Our sin today: When spiritual leaders and elders teach people to follow the traditions of men and turn the brethren away from living by every Word of God to follow themselves, demanding loyalty to their own ways above loyalty to God’s Word; they are also abusing their office and position like Eli’s sons. 


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