1 Samuel 22:2
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
All those who were in distress or in debt or discontented gathered around him, and he became their commander. About four hundred men were with him.

New Living Translation
Then others began coming--men who were in trouble or in debt or who were just discontented--until David was the captain of about 400 men.

English Standard Version
And everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was bitter in soul, gathered to him. And he became commander over them. And there were with him about four hundred men.

New American Standard Bible
Everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him; and he became captain over them. Now there were about four hundred men with him.

King James Bible
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
In addition, every man who was desperate, in debt, or discontented rallied around him, and he became their leader. About 400 men were with him.

International Standard Version
Everyone who was in distress, everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was malcontent gathered around him, and he became their leader. There were about 400 men with him.

NET Bible
All those who were in trouble or owed someone money or were discontented gathered around him, and he became their leader. He had about four hundred men with him.

New Heart English Bible
Everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented, gathered themselves to him; and he became captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Then everyone who was in trouble, in debt, or bitter about life joined him, and he became their commander. There were about four hundred men with him.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became captain over them; and there were with him about four hundred men.

New American Standard 1977
And everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented, gathered to him; and he became captain over them. Now there were about four hundred men with him.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And every one that was in distress and every one that was in debt and all whose souls were bitter gathered themselves unto him, and he became the captain over them, and there were about four hundred men with him.

King James 2000 Bible
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

American King James Version
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves to him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

American Standard Version
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And all that were in distress and oppressed with debt, and under affliction of mind gathered themselves unto him: and he became their prince, and there were with him about four hundred men.

Darby Bible Translation
And every one in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one of embittered spirit collected round him; and he became a captain over them; and there were with him about four hundred men.

English Revised Version
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

Webster's Bible Translation
And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, resorted to him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

World English Bible
Everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented, gathered themselves to him; and he became captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

Young's Literal Translation
and gather themselves unto him do every man in distress, and every man who hath an exactor, and every man bitter in soul, and he is over them for head, and there are with him about four hundred men.
Study Bible
David Flees to Adullam and Mizpeh
1So David departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam; and when his brothers and all his father's household heard of it, they went down there to him. 2Everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him; and he became captain over them. Now there were about four hundred men with him. 3And David went from there to Mizpah of Moab; and he said to the king of Moab, "Please let my father and my mother come and stay with you until I know what God will do for me."…
Cross References
1 Samuel 22:3
And David went from there to Mizpah of Moab; and he said to the king of Moab, "Please let my father and my mother come and stay with you until I know what God will do for me."

1 Samuel 23:13
Then David and his men, about six hundred, arose and departed from Keilah, and they went wherever they could go. When it was told Saul that David had escaped from Keilah, he gave up the pursuit.

1 Samuel 25:13
David said to his men, "Each of you gird on his sword." So each man girded on his sword. And David also girded on his sword, and about four hundred men went up behind David while two hundred stayed with the baggage.

2 Kings 4:1
Now a certain woman of the wives of the sons of the prophets cried out to Elisha, "Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that your servant feared the LORD; and the creditor has come to take my two children to be his slaves."
Treasury of Scripture

And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves to him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men.

distress

Judges 11:3 Then Jephthah fled from his brothers, and dwelled in the land of …

Matthew 11:12,28 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven …

was in debt [heb] had a creditor

Matthew 18:25-34 But for as much as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be …

discontented [heb] bitter of soul

1 Samuel 1:10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed to the LORD, and wept sore.

1 Samuel 30:6 And David was greatly distressed; for the people spoke of stoning …

Judges 18:25 And the children of Dan said to him, Let not your voice be heard …

2 Samuel 17:8 For, said Hushai, you know your father and his men, that they be …

Proverbs 31:6 Give strong drink to him that is ready to perish, and wine to those …

a captain

1 Samuel 9:16 To morrow about this time I will send you a man out of the land of …

1 Samuel 25:15,16 But the men were very good to us, and we were not hurt, neither missed …

1 Samuel 30:22-24 Then answered all the wicked men and men of Belial, of those that …

2 Samuel 5:2 Also in time past, when Saul was king over us, you were he that led …

2 Kings 20:5 Turn again, and tell Hezekiah the captain of my people, Thus said …

1 Chronicles 11:15-19 Now three of the thirty captains went down to the rock to David, …

Psalm 72:12 For he shall deliver the needy when he cries; the poor also, and …

Psalm 72:13,14 He shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy…

Matthew 9:12,13 But when Jesus heard that, he said to them, They that be whole need …

Hebrews 2:10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, …

(2) Every one that was in distress.--Ewald writes on this statement:--"The situation of the country, which was becoming more and more melancholy under Saul, . . . drove men to seek a leader from whom they might hope for better things for the future . . . David did not send away these refugees, many of them distinguished and prominent Israelites, but organised them into a military force. He foresaw that while commanding such a company as this, he might, without injuring his king and former benefactor, be of the very greatest use to the people, and protect the southern frontiers of the kingdom--sadly exposed in these later years of King Saul--from the plundering incursions of the neighbouring nomadic tribes. This state of things, with a few interruptions, really came to pass, and David won great repute and popularity among the protected districts during these years when he was a wanderer and an outlaw--a popularity which in after years stood him in good stead."

These persons "in distress" were especially those who were persecuted by Saul and his men for their attachment to David. The several statements of the refugees who took shelter in David's armed camp, of course go over a considerable time. They did not all flock to his standard at once. Some went to him in the first days of his exile, others after the massacre at the sanctuary at Nob, others later, and thus gradually 400 gathered round him. Soon after, these numbers were swelled to 600, and these probably only were the chosen men-at-arms of the little force, which, no doubt, was numerically far greater.

And every one that was in debt.--Throughout the whole long story of Israel this unhappy love of greed and gain has been a characteristic feature of the chosen race, ever a prominent and ugly sin. In the Mosaic Law, most stringent regulations were laid down to correct and mitigate this ruling passion of avarice among the Jews. (See such passages as Exodus 22:25; Leviticus 25:36; Deuteronomy 23:19.) The poor, improvident, or perhaps unfortunate, debtor was protected by wise laws against the greedy avaricious spirit of his merciless creditor. These beneficent regulations of the great lawgiver had, under the capricious, faulty rule of King Saul, of course fallen into abeyance, and a terrible amount of misery, no doubt, was the consequence. In the Divine record sad scenes (see 2Kings 4:1-7), exemplifying this pitiless spirit, are casually related, but they are so woven into the mosaic of the history, as to show us they were, alas! no uncommon occurrence in the daily life of the people. In Proverbs, for instance, we have some conspicuous instances. The chronicles of the Middle Ages in all countries teem with similar stories about the chosen people. Our own great dramatist, some three centuries ago, evidently without attempt at exaggeration, selects the avaricious, grasping Jew as the central figure of one of his most famous dramas. In our own time the same spirit, as is too well known, is still abroad, and constitutes the bitterest reproach which the many enemies of the strange, deathless race can promulgate against a people evidently walled in by a Divine protection and a changeless eternal love.

And he became a captain over them.--It was evidently no undisciplined band, these outlaws of Adullam and the hold of Moab, of Hareth and Keilah, of Ziph and Engedi. David quickly organised the refugees, among whom, by degrees, many a man of mark and approved valour and ability were numbered.

To complete the picture of this First Book of Samuel, we must unite in one the scattered notices of this same period which occur in the Second Book of Samuel and in the Books of Kings and Chronicles. (See Excursus I. at the end of this Book.)

Verse 2. - Everyone that was in distress,... in debt, or discontented (Hebrew, bitter of soul), gathered themselves unto him. Had Saul's government been just and upright David would have had no followers; but he never rose above the level of a soldier, had developed all that arbitrariness which military command fosters in self-willed minds, and seems entirely unaware of its being his duty to attend to the righteous administration of the law. The Israelites had in him the very king they had desired, but they found that a brave general might at home be a ruthless tyrant. Debt was one of the worst evils of ancient times. The rate of usury was so exorbitant that a loan was sure to end in utter ruin, and not only the debtor, but his children might be made slaves to repay the debt (2 Kings 4:1). It was one of the first duties of an upright governor to enforce the Mosaic law against usury (Leviticus 25:36); but all such cares Saul despised, and there were probably many in the land impoverished by Saul's own exactions and favouritism (ver. 7), and made bitter of soul by his cruelty and injustice. All such were glad to join in what seemed to them the banner of revolt. Afterwards at Ziklag David was joined by nobler followers (see on 1 Samuel 27:6). With David we may compare Jephthah's case in the old days of anarchy (Judges 11:3-6), and note that bad government leads to lawlessness just as surely as no government. And everyone that was in distress,.... In straitened circumstances, through the oppression of men, through poverty, and afflictive providences in their families:

and everyone that was in debt; and not able to pay their debts, and whose creditors were pressing upon them:

and everyone that was discontented; with Saul's government and conduct: or "bitter in soul" (x); distressed and uneasy in their minds, being pinched with want, or pressed with sore afflictions, which made them very disconsolate: these

gathered themselves unto him; to help him, or rather to be helped by him; hoping in time things would take a favourable turn with him, and he should be advanced to the throne, and so their circumstances would be mended thereby:

and he became a captain over them; they enlisted themselves in his service, and he took the command of them; he might not know the circumstances of those in debt, nor of any of them thoroughly, nor their views in joining him; however he meant not to shelter them from paying their just debts if able, nor to encourage them in disloyalty to their king, only to make use of them for his own preservation for the present. In this he was a type of Christ, who receives sinners distressed with a sense of sin, discontented in their present state, and in debt, and, unable to pay their debts; see Matthew 11:28,

and there were with him about four hundred men; among whom some think were the three mighty men spoken of in 2 Samuel 23:13.

(x) "amarus animo", Pagninus, Montanus. 2. every one that was in distress—(See on [250]Jud 11:3).22:1-5 See what weak instruments God sometimes uses, to bring about his own purposes. The Son of David is ready to receive distressed souls, who will be commanded by him. He receives all who come unto Him, however vile and miserable; he changes them into a holy people, and employs them in his service: those who would reign with him must be contented first to suffer with and for him. Observe with what tender concern David provided for his aged parents. The first thing he does is to find them a quiet habitation, whatever became of himself. Let children learn to honour their parents, in every thing consulting their ease and satisfaction. Though highly preferred, and much employed, let them not forget their aged parents. The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord. And the Lord will preserve his people for their appointed work, however they may be hated and exposed.
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