2 Samuel 19

1Joab by threats forceth David to cease mourning. 9The Israelites are earnest to bring the king back. 11David sendeth to the priests to incite the men of Judah. 16Shimei making submission is pardoned. 24Mephibosheth cometh to meet David, and complaineth of his servant's treachery; half his land is restored to him. 31Barzillai attendeth the king over Jordan, and is gratefully dismissed; Chimham is received into the king's family. 41The men of Israel expostulate with the men of Judah for not calling them to take part in bringing back the king.

1AND it was told Joab, Behold, the king weepeth and mourneth for Absalom.

2And the 1victory that day was turned into mourning unto all the people: for the people heard say that day 2how the king was grieved for his son.

1 Hebr. salvation or deliverance, that is, the joy, which the people should have shown for the victory, was turned into sorrow.

2 Or, the king is very much grieved.

3And the people gat them 3by stealth that day into the 4city, as people being ashamed steal away when they flee in battle.

3 Hebr. the people stole themselves to come or coming.

4 Mahanaim.

4But the king 5covered his face, and the king cried with a loud voice, 6O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son!

5 Or, wound about. As a sign of great mourning. See 2 Sam. 15 on verse 30.

6 See 2 Sam. 18 on verse 33.

5And Joab came into the house to the king, and said, Thou hast shamed this day the faces of all thy servants, which this day have saved thy 7life, and the lives of thy sons and of thy daughters, and the lives of thy wives, and the lives of thy concubines;

7 Or, soul. That is here, your life or person, as elsewhere often.

6In that thou lovest thine enemies, and hatest thy friends. For thou hast declared this day, that thou regardest neither princes nor servants: for this day I perceive, that if Absalom had lived, and all we had died this day, then it had pleased thee well.

7Now therefore arise, go forth, and speak 8comfortably unto thy servants: for I swear by the LORD, if thou go not forth, 9there will not tarry one with thee this night: and that will be worse unto thee than all the evil that befell thee from thy youth until now.

8 See Gen. 34 on verse 3.

9 Understand with this: then God do this and that to me. A kind of oath, as often.

8Then the king arose, and sat in the gate. And they told unto all the people, saying, Behold, the king doth sit in the gate. And all the people came before the king: for 10Israel had fled every man to his 11tent.

10 Who had followed Absalom.

11 That is, dwelling places.

9¶And all the people were at 12strife throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, The king saved us out of the hand of our enemies, and he delivered us out of the hand of the Philistines; and now he is fled out of the land for Absalom.

12 With sorrow and shame, condemning themselves.

10And Absalom, whom we 13anointed over us, is dead in battle. Now therefore why 14speak ye not a word of bringing the 15king back?

13 That is, whom we had chosen to be king, and intended to cause him to be anointed.

14 Hebr. are ye silent. See Judges 18 on verse 9.

15 David, our lawful and benevolent king.

11¶And king David sent to Zadok and to Abiathar the priests, 16saying, Speak unto the elders of Judah, saying, Why are ye the last to bring the king back to his 17house? seeing the 18speech of all Israel is come to the king, even to his 19house.

16 That is, to send word to them.

17 Into the royal court at Jerusalem.

18 Related in the previous verses.

19 At Mahanaim.

12Ye are my brethren, ye are 20my bones and my flesh: wherefore then are ye the last to bring back the king?

20 See 2 Sam. 5 on verse 1. Also in the next verse.

13And say 21ye to Amasa,aArt thou not of my 22bone, and of my flesh? God 23do so to me, and more also, if thou be not captain of the host before me continually in the room of 24Joab.

21 Priests, Zadok and Abiathar.

a 2 Sam. 17:25.

22 For he was the son of David’s sister. See 2 Sam. 17 on verse 25.

23 Of such kind of oath taking, see Ruth 1 on verse 17; 1 Kings 19 on verse 2.

24 See 2 Sam. 3 on verse 39.

14And 25he bowed the heart of all the men of Judah, even 26as the heart of one man; so that they sent this word unto the king, Return thou, and all thy servants.

25 Namely, David. Some apply it to Amasa.

26 That they were so unanimous, of one accord, as one man. See Judges 20 on verse 1.

15So the king returned, and came to Jordan. And Judah came to Gilgal, to go to meet the king, to conduct the king over Jordan.

16¶And Shimeib the son of Gera, a 27Benjamite, which was of 28Bahurim, hasted and came down with the men of Judah to meet king David.

b 2 Sam. 16:5; 1 Kings 2:8.

27 Or, a son of Jemini. That is, a Benjamite. See 2 Sam. 16 on verse 11.

28 See 2 Sam. 3 on verse 16; 2 Sam. 16:5.

17And there were a thousand men of Benjamin with him, and Ziba 29the servant of the house of Saul, and his 30fifteen sons and his twenty servants with him; and they 31went over Jordan 32before the king.

29 Hebr. lad. See 2 Sam. 9 on verse 2; 2 Sam. 16:1, etc. This man feared that David would come to know (as indeed he did) of his deceitful dealing with Mephibosheth. Therefore he sought by this complaisance to mollify and soften the king’s heart against it; which also happened unto him.

30 As 2 Sam. 9:10.

31 Or, they made the Jordan ready, that is, they made all things suitable and ready for the king and his household to pass over.

32 That is, before the king arrived at the ferry of Jordan to pass over, they were already on the other side and had made all things ready.

18And there went over a 33ferry boat to carry over 34the king’s household, and to do what he thought good. And Shimei the son of Gera fell down before the king, 35as he was come over Jordan;

33 Or, hulk, a flat inland vessel.

34 That is, the king with his family at the court.

35 Other, when he went over the Jordan, or, would cross over.

19And said unto the king, Let not my lord impute iniquity unto me, neither do thou remember that which thy servant did perversely the day that my lord the king went out of Jerusalem, that the king should take it to 36his heart.

36 That is, regard it, mind it, and cause me to be punished according to my desert. Hebr. put it in, or, to his heart.

20For 37thy servant doth know that I have sinned: therefore, behold, I am come the first this day of all the house of 38Joseph to go down to meet my lord the king.

37 That is, I know.

38 Hereby he understands not only Ephraim and Manasseh but also Benjamin (of which tribe he was, verse 16) because Joseph and Benjamin were full brethren, both of one father and one mother, so that Benjamin also marched under the standard of Ephraim, Num. 10:22, 23, 24. Some understand that he wants to say: He came sooner than any man of the ten tribes, or Ephraim and Manasseh; but it seems that here of all the house of Joseph is meant the Israelites in general, opposed to the tribe of Judah.

21But Abishai the son of Zeruiah answered and said, Shall not Shimei be put to death 39for this, because he cursed the LORD’S 40anointed?

39 That he pleads for mercy and is therefore come to meet the king.

40 Compare 1 Sam. 24:7. Of David being anointed as king, see 2 Sam. 5 on verse 3.

22And David said, 41What have I to do with you, ye sons of Zeruiah, that ye should this day be 42adversaries unto me? shall there any man be put 43to death this day in Israel? for do not I know that I am 44this day king over Israel?

41 See 2 Sam. 16 on verse 10.

42 Or, Satan, that is, opposer, who hinders me and crosses me in mine intent and purpose. Compare Mat. 16:23. See further Job 1 on verse 6.

43 Compare 1 Sam. 11:13.

44 As if he would say: again, as it were anew, etc.

23Therefore the king said unto Shimei, Thou shalt 45not die. And the king sware unto him.

45 Understand, this day, and so onward during my reign I will not cause you to be punished. Yet, in regard Shimei’s fault was very scandalous and abusive and did likewise concern much the public, therefore David would not that he would altogether, or always, go unpunished. See 1 Kings 2:8, 9.

24¶And Mephibosheth the 46son of Saul came down to meet the king, and had neither dressed his 47feet, nor trimmed his beard, nor washed his clothes, from the day the king 48departed until the day he came again in peace.

46 That is, his grandchild; for, Mephibosheth was Jonathan’s son, 2 Sam. 9:3, 6.

47 Hebr. had not made his feet, nor made his moustache, that is, (as this word is elsewhere often taken) dressed himself, fitted or ordered. Compare especially Deut. 21 on verse 12. These were all signs of much grief and sorrow which Mephibosheth had about the misfortune of David, who had done him so much good. Compare 2 Sam. 12:20.

48 Fleeing for Absalom, from Jerusalem.

25And it came to pass, when he was come to 49Jerusalem to meet the king, that the king said unto him, Wherefore wentest not thou with me, Mephibosheth?

49 After the king was come into Jerusalem. It seems he found no opportunity on the way, or was afraid to speak to the king. Other, when Jerusalem (that is, the inhabitants of Jerusalem) came to meet the king, among whom Mephibosheth joined himself to meet the king at the Jordan.

26And he answered, My lord, O king, my 50servant deceived me: for thy servant said, I will saddle me an ass, that I may ride thereon, and go to the king; because thy servant is lame.

50 Ziba.

27Andc he hath 51slandered thy servant unto my lord the king; but my lord the king is as an 52angel of God: do therefore what is good in thine eyes.

c 2 Sam. 16:3.

51 See 2 Sam. 16:3.

52 As 2 Sam. 14:17.

28For all of my 53father’s house were 54but dead men before my lord the king: yet didst thou set thy servant among them that did eat at thine own 55table. What right therefore have I yet to 56cry any more unto the king?

53 That is, Saul, my grandfather.

54 That is, all them who had deserved death. Compare Gen. 20 on verse 3; 2 Sam. 12 on verse 5.

55 See 2 Sam. 9:7, 10, 13.

56 To complain of the wrong that my servant has done to me.

29And the king said unto him, Why speakest thou any more of thy matters? I 57have said, Thou and Ziba divide the land.

57 Namely, when I called to mind that Ziba had done thee wrong; or, I say, that is, ordain and appoint. So much had Ziba by his cunning plots and devices prevailed with this, otherwise most wise king, that he obtains a reward or gratuity, instead of a punishment, which he had most justly deserved, by reason of his shameful unfaithfulness shown towards Mephibosheth, and his lying and falsehood whereby he had cheated the king.

30And Mephibosheth said unto the king, Yea, let him take all, 58forasmuch as my lord the king is come again in peace unto his own house.

58 As if he had said: It suffices me that generally the things prosper; and regarding my private concerns, it is of little importance; or, I will bear this loss patiently by considering the common prosperity.

31¶And 59Barzillai the Gileadite 60came down from Rogelim, and went over Jordan with the king, to conduct him over Jordan.

59 See 2 Sam. 17:27; 1 Kings 2:7.

60 Before the king had passed the Jordan.

32Now Barzillai was a very aged 61man, even fourscore years old: andd he had provided the king of sustenance while he lay at Mahanaim; for he was a very 62great man.

61 Hebr. a son.

d 2 Sam. 17:27, etc.; 1 Kings 2:7.

62 In power or means. As 1 Sam. 25:2.

33And the king said unto Barzillai, Come thou over with me, and I will feed thee with me in Jerusalem.

34And Barzillai said unto the king, 63How long have I to live, that I should go up with the king unto Jerusalem?

63 As if he had said: I have now but a little time to live, why then would I undergo that trouble?

35I am this day 64fourscore years old: and 65can I discern between good and evil? can thy servant taste what I eat or what I drink? can I hear any more the voice of singing men and singing women? wherefore then should thy servant be yet a burden unto my lord the king?

64 Hebr. a son of fourscore years.

65 Intimating that he was too old to take delight in all these things; that it was more proper for him to be near his grave and to prepare himself for his dying day.

36Thy servant will go a little way over Jordan with the king: and why should the king recompense it me with 66such a reward?

66 For a small courtesy give so great a reward.

37Let thy servant, I pray thee, turn back again, that I may die in mine own city, and be buried by the grave of my father and of my mother. But behold thy servant 67Chimham; let him go over with my lord the king; and do to him what shall seem good unto thee.

67 Hebr. Chimhan. One of Barzillai’s sons, as appears in 1 Kings 2:7.

38And the king answered, Chimham shall go over with me, and I will do to him that which shall seem 68good unto thee: and whatsoever thou shalt 69require of me, that will I do for thee.

68 What shall be acceptable and well-pleasing unto thee.

69 Hebr. shalt choose, namely, for to desire of me, or, whatsoever shall please thee, whatsoever shall be delightful and acceptable unto thee. See 2 Sam. 15 on verse 15.

39And all the people went over Jordan. And when the king was 70come over, the king 71kissed Barzillai, and blessed him; and 72he returned unto his own place.

70 With the flat inland vessel. As verse 18.

71 Taking his leave of him with thanksgiving and wishing him all happiness. See Gen. 29 on verse 11.

72 Barzillai returned to Rogelim.

40Then the king went on to Gilgal, and Chimham went on with him: and all the people of Judah 73conducted the king, and also 74half the people of 75Israel.

73 Or, brought the king over; and so in the following verse.

74 Hebr. the half, which is sometimes taken for a part.

75 That is, of the other tribes.

41¶And, behold, all the men of Israel came to the king, and said unto the king, Why have our brethren the men of Judah 76stolen thee away, and have 77brought the king, and his household, and all David’s men 78with him, over Jordan?

76 That is, going alone by themselves, as it were by stealth, without sending for us.

77 Or, conducted? All David’s men were now by him, namely, with the king, who had all his officers and soldiers by or about him.

78 That is, David’s officers and soldiers were all with David, and attached themselves to Judah, who had moved David himself to it, verses 11, 12, 14. Therefore those of Judah spoke the bolder.

42And all the men of Judah answered the men of Israel, Because the king is near of kin to 79us: wherefore then be ye angry for this matter? 80have we eaten 81at all of the 82king’s cost? or hath he given us any gift?

79 Hebr. me, namely, the tribe of Judah.

80 As if they would say: Do you think that the king has bought or bribed us with good cheer, or with gifts and presents to do it?

81 Hebr. eating eaten.

82 Hebr. of the king.

43And the men of Israel answered the men of Judah, and said, 83We have 84ten parts in the 85king, and we have also more right in David than ye: why then did ye despise us, that 86our advice should not be first had in bringing back our king? And the words of the men of Judah were 87fiercer than the words of the men of Israel.

83 Hebr. I, namely, Israel; and so in the following words.

84 Hebr. hands. They say this, because they were ten tribes, and in that regard had ten voices.

85 That is, in the king in general, or in the kingdom, and also in this king David, whom we, with our common vote, have chosen, 2 Sam. 5:1.

86 That is, that we had not the first choice and the forefront position in this matter.

87 That is, it was stronger, mightier, more powerful, so that those of Israel could not prevail, but had to desist.