|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:22-39 Judgments are prepared for such scorners as Abner; but Joab, in what he did, acted wickedly. David laid Abner's murder deeply to heart, and in many ways expressed his detestation of it. The guilt of blood brings a curse upon families: if men do not avenge it, God will. It is a sad thing to die like a fool, as they do that any way shorten their own days, and those who make no provision for another world. Who would be fond of power, when a man may have the name of it, and must be accountable for it, yet is hampered in the use of it? David ought to have done his duty, and then trusted God with the issue. Carnal policy spared Joab. The Son of David may long delay, but never fails to punish impenitent sinners. He who now reigns upon the throne of David, has a kingdom of a nobler kind. Whatever He doeth, is noticed by all his willing people, and is pleasing to them.
Verse 34. - Thy hands were not bound. Abner had been put to death by Joab for killing Asahel. But there had been no legal process. He had not been brought in fetters before a judge to be tried for the crime alleged, but murdered for private ends. And thus, "As a man falleth before the children of iniquity, so had he fallen," that is, by crime, and not by law. These words s re probably the refrain of the dirge, like those in 2 Samuel 1:19, 25, 27, and were followed by the celebration of Abner's bravery, but they alone are recorded, because they contain the main point. Abner's death was not, like the sentence upon Baanah and Rechab, an act of justice, but one of lawless revenge; and by this poem David proclaimed, not only his innocence, but also his abhorrence of the crime.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Thy hands were not bound, nor thy feet put into fetters,.... As malefactors are when they are taken up for any crime, and especially when proved upon them, and condemned for it, and brought forth to be executed. This was not his case, and had he been aware of the design against him, as his hands and feet were at liberty, he might have defended himself; or if he found he had too many to deal with, might have made use of his feet and fled:
as a man falleth before wicked men, so fellest thou; as a man being before bloodthirsty and deceitful men, falls before them, through treachery and deceit, privately and unawares, so fell Abner before Joab and Abishai; this David said in the presence of Joab, and before all the people, to declare the plain fact how it was, to express his detestation of it, and to show he had no hand in it; and Joab must be an hardened creature to stand at the grave of Abner, and hear all this, and not be affected with it:
and all the people wept again over him; over Abner, being laid in his grave; they had wept before, but hearing this funeral oration delivered by the king in such moving language, and in such a mournful tone, it drew tears afresh from them.
2 Samuel 3:34 Parallel Commentaries
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