1 Samuel 30

1The Amalekites spoil Ziklag. 3David on his return is greatly distressed, but asking counsel of God is encouraged to pursue them. 9He setteth forward, and finding an Egyptian receiveth intelligence of the enemy. 16Being conducted to them, he smiteth them, and recovereth the spoil. 22David's law of dividing the spoil. 26He sendeth presents to his friends.

1AND it came to pass, when David and his men were come to Ziklag on 1the third day, that 2the Amalekites had invaded the south, and Ziklag, and 3smitten Ziklag, and burned it with fire;

1 Namely, after that David was parted from the Philistines’ army, for, at so great a distance was the Philistines’ army (where David and his men had been) from the city of Ziklag, as may be gathered from 2 Sam. 1:2.

2 Understand the remnant of the Amalekites, who had escaped when Saul smote that people, 1 Sam. 15:7. Or this may be understood of the Amalekites who lived in another part or corner of the land, than those did who were destroyed by Saul. These have shown their old inveterate hatred against the Israelites.

3 That is, ruined it, and ill-treated the inhabitants thereof. See Ezek. 33 on verse 21.

2And had taken the women captives, that were therein: they slew not any, either 4great or small, but carried them away, and went on their way.

4 Other, greatest or smallest.

3¶So David and his men came to the city, and, behold, it was burned with fire; and their wives, and their sons, and their daughters, were taken captives.

4Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep.

5And David's two wives were taken captives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail 5the wife of Nabal the Carmelite.

5 See the annotation at 1 Sam. 27 on verse 3.

6And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because 6the soul of all the people was grieved, every man 7for his sons and for his daughters: but 8David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.

6 Hebr. the soul of all the people was bitter, that is, they were heartily grieved, besides possessed with bitterness and wrath against David, giving him the blame, that they were bereft of their wives and children by the Amalekites, who were thereunto moved and provoked, because David had first set upon them in an hostile manner, and smitten them, 1 Sam. 27:8.

7 Or, because of.

8 Trusting on the promises and tokens which God had made to him, that he would be king. See the annotation 1 Sam. 23:16.

7And David said to Abiathar the priest, Ahimelech's son, I pray thee, 9bring me hither the ephod. And Abiathar brought thither the ephod to David.

9 That is, put on the ephod for my sake, that thou mayest thereby ask counsel of the Lord. See Num. 27:21; 1 Sam. 23:9.

8And David enquired at the LORD, saying, Shall I pursue after 10this troop? shall I overtake them? And he answered him, Pursue: for thou shalt surely overtake them, and without fail recover all.

10 He means the Amalekites, as also verse 15.

9So David went, he and the six hundred men that were with him, and came to the brook Besor, where those 11that were left behind stayed.

11 Namely, two hundred men, who were so weary, that they could not follow, verse 10.

10But David pursued, he and four hundred men: for two hundred abode behind, which were so faint that they could not go over the brook Besor.

11¶And 12they found an Egyptian in the field, and 13brought him to David, and gave him bread, and he did eat; and they made him drink water;

12 Namely, the men who were with David.

13 Hebr. they took him to David, that is, they took and brought. See the annotation on Gen. 12:15.

12And they gave him a piece of a cake of figs, and two clusters of raisins: and when he had eaten, his 14spirit came again 15to him: for he had eaten no 16bread, nor drunk any water, three days and three nights.

14 That is, he who was faint and almost dead with hunger, was cheered and revived by the meat or food; so that the word spirit here signifies breathing.

15 Or, in him. Other, unto him.

16 That is, meat, food.

13And David said unto him, To whom belongest thou? and whence art thou? And he said, I am a 17young man of Egypt, servant to an Amalekite; and my master left me, because three days 18agonea I fell sick.

17 That is, boy, youth. See Gen. 22 on verse 5.

18 Hebr. this is the third day.

a ago

14We made an invasion upon the south of 19the Cherethites, and upon the coast which belongeth to Judah, and 20upon the south of Caleb; and we burned Ziklag with fire.

19 That is, the Philistines, as may be gathered from verse 16. Thus are the Philistines also called Ezek. 25:16; Zeph. 2:5.

20 That is, against the south part of the land, where Caleb’s posterity dwelt. See Joshua 14:13; 15:13.

15And David said to him, Canst thou bring me down to this company? And he said, Swear unto me by God, 21that thou wilt neither kill me, nor deliver me into the hands of my master, and I will bring thee down to this company.

21 Hebr. if thou shalt kill me, and if thou shalt deliver me, etc. See of such kind of oath, Gen. 14:23. The meaning is, that thou wilt not kill me, or that, etc. Compare 1 Sam. 24:22, etc.

16¶And when he had brought him down, behold, they were spread abroad upon all the earth, eating and drinking, and dancing, because of all the great spoil that they had taken out of the land of the Philistines, and out of 22the land of Judah.

22 Under which Ziklag belonged, and the land of Caleb.

17And David smote them from 23the twilight even 24unto the evening of the next day: and there escaped not a man of them, save four hundred young men, which rode upon camels, and fled.

23 The Hebrew word that is here used, as also the Dutch word schemering, signifies both the evening and morning glimmering, or twilight. Some think that David fell upon this people in the evening twilight, (for he found them eating, drinking, and dancing, which commonly is done in the evening, or at even-tide, not at break of day), they also perceive, that David, having but four hundred men with him, rather chose the darkness of the night, to fall upon this great multitude in their drunkenness and jollity, than the glimmering of the morning, when the day began to dawn. Yet others take it here for the glimmering of the morning, conceiving that David and his men at even-tide were too weary to make an invasion upon their enemies.

24 That is, the evening of the day wherein David went forth with his men.

18And David recovered all that the Amalekites had carried away: and David rescued his two wives.

19And there was nothing lacking to them, neither small nor great, neither sons nor daughters, neither spoil, nor any thing that they had taken to them: David recovered all.

20And David took all the flocks and the herds, which 25they drave 26before those other cattle, and said, 27This is David's spoil.

25 Namely, David’s men.

26 That is, before the cattle that had been taken from them by the Amalekites.

27 That is, which pertains to David, therefore he gave away thereof, where and to whom he pleased. See verse 26.

21¶And David came to 28the two hundred men, which were so faint that they could not follow David, whom they had made also to abide at the brook Besor: and they went forth to meet David, and to meet the people that were with him: and when David came near to the people, 29he saluted them.

28 See verses 9, 10.

29 That is, he kindly saluted them, and asked them if they were well.

2230Then answered all the wicked men and men of Belial, of those that went with David, and said, Because they went not 31with us, we will not give them ought of the spoil that we have recovered, save to every man his wife and his children, that they may lead them away, and depart.

30 Namely, when they began to talk of dividing the prey.

31 Hebr. with me.

23Then said David, Ye shall not do so, my brethren, 32with that which the LORD hath given us, who hath preserved us, and delivered the company that came against us into our hand.

32 Namely, with the prey which we have gotten, not by our own strength or power, but which the Lord has given us.

24For who will hearken unto you in this matter? but as his part is that goeth down to the battle, so shall his part be that tarrieth by the stuff: 33they shall part alike.

33 That is, the men that tarried behind, and abode by the baggage, shall have their share of the prey, as well as those that marched forth with me into the battle. Herein David follows God’s ordinance, Num. 31:27, and also the rule of right reason and equity, see Joshua 22:8, and 2 Maccabees 8:28.

25And it was so from that day 34forward, that he made it a statute and an ordinance for Israel 35unto this day.

34 Other, above or upwards, which some understand of the time past; so that it was here again revived, and brought in use again by David.

35 The sentence will be completed thus: which remaineth unto this day.

26¶And when David came to Ziklag, he sent of the spoil unto the elders of Judah, even to 36his friends, saying, Behold a 37present for you of the spoil of the enemies of the LORD;

36 That is, those who continued to be faithful to him in his grievous persecution.

37 Hebr. a blessing. See Gen. 33:11.

27To them which were in 38Beth-el, and to them which were in south 39Ramoth, and to them which were in 40Jattir,

38 Other, to them that were in the house of God, namely, at Kirjath-jearim, where was the ark of the covenant, 1 Sam. 6:21; 7:1.

39 This city was situated in the inheritance of the tribe of Simeon, Joshua 19:8, and it was in the south-quarter of the land of Canaan, and is thus distinguished from other cities, which were also called Ramah; as Ramoth in Gilead, 1 Kings 22:13.

40 A city situated in the tribe of Judah, on the mountains, Joshua 15:48.

28And to them which were in 41Aroer, and to them which were in 42Siphmoth, and to them which were in 43Eshtemoa,

41 This city was situated by the brook Arnon, given to the tribe of Reuben. See Deut. 3:12; Joshua 13:16.

42 Otherwise called Shepham, Num. 34:10.

43 A city situated in the tribe of Judah, Joshua 15:50; otherwise called Eshtemoh. It was given to the children of Aaron; 1 Chron. 6:57.

29And to them which were in Rachal, and to them which were in the cities of the 44Jerahmeelites, and to them which were in the cities of the 45Kenites,

44 See the annotation on 1 Sam. 27:10.

45 See of these Judges 1:16.

30And to them which were in 46Hormah, and to them which were in 47Chorashan, and to them which were in Athach,

46 Other, Zephath. See Judges 1:17.

47 This seems to be the same city which Joshua 19:7 is only called Ashan, being in the tribe of Simeon.

31And to them which were in 48Hebron, and to all the places 49where David himself and his men were wont to haunt.

48 See of this city, Gen. 23:2 in the annotation.

49 That is, where David and his men abode for some space of time, when he had to flee from Saul. David was thankful to those who had entertained him and his men, and done them good.