1 Chronicles 17:21
And what one nation in the earth is like thy people Israel, whom God went to redeem to be his own people, to make thee a name of greatness and terribleness, by driving out nations from before thy people, whom thou hast redeemed out of Egypt?
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(21) And what one nation in the earth.—Rather, And who is like Thy people Israel, a single (isolated) race on the earth? (Comp. Numbers 23:9.)

Nation (gôy)—i.e., race; a people considered as united by common blood, speech, country.

People (‘ām)—i.e., a political community, social union, or state, owning one sovereign.

Whom God went . . .—Literally, which God went (marched) to redeem to Himself as a people. Samuel has “which gods went.”

To make thee a name.—That is, for Thyself, God. Samuel has “for him,” in the same sense.

A name of greatness and terribleness.—Both nouns are plural, and imply renown for great and terrible deeds.

By driving.To drive; parallel with “to redeem “and “to make.”

Nations.—Samuel adds, “and his gods.” The text of this verse in Samuel is corrupt (comp. the LXX.), and perhaps the added phrase is spurious. But, on the other hand, the chronicler may have omitted it because, like Isaiah, he regarded the heathen deities as non-entities. In earlier times, foreign gods were spoken of as real beings, subordinate to Jehovah. (Comp. the LXX. rendering of Deuteronomy 32:8.)

17:1-27 David's purposes; God's gracious promises. - This chapter is the same as 2Sa 7. See what is there said upon it. It is very observable that what in Samuel is said to be, for thy word's sake, is here said to be, "for thy servant's sake," ver. 19. Jesus Christ is both the Word of God, Re 19:13, and the Servant of God, Isa 42:1; and it is for his sake, upon account of his mediation, that the promises are made good to all believers; it is in him, that they are yea and amen. For His sake it is done, for his sake it is made known; to him we owe all this greatness, from him we are to expect all these great things. They are the unsearchable riches of Christ, which, if by faith we see in themselves, and see in the Lord Jesus, we cannot but magnify as the only true greatness, and speak honourably of them. For this blessedness may we look amidst the trials of life, and when we feel the hand of death upon us; and seek it for our children after us.For the honor of thy servant - i. e., "for the honor which Thou hast done for Thy servant." The Septuagint omits "Thy servant," and renders it: "What can David say more to Thee to glorify Thee? For Thou knowest," etc. 16. David the king … sat before the Lord, and said—(See on [386]2Sa 7:18). No text from Poole on this verse.

See Chapter Introduction And what one nation in the earth is like thy people Israel, whom God went to redeem to be his own people, to make thee a name of greatness and terribleness, by driving out nations from before thy people whom thou hast redeemed out of Egypt?
21. what one nation in the earth is like thy people Israel] Better as R.V. mg., who is like thy people Israel, a nation that is alone in the earth. Cp. Targ. a people unique and chosen in the earth.

of greatness and terribleness] R.V. by great and terrible things.

Verse 21. - In the parallel verse (2 Samuel 7:23), our Authorized Version, following the Hebrew text (לְכֶם), reads, "To do for you great things and terrible." The transition is awkward, no way in harmony with the other short clauses of the passage, and it would be inexplicable except for the alternative open to us, of regarding it as a quotation from Deuteronomy 4:34, brought in regardless of the context into which it was introduced. The difficulty does not meet us in our present passage, being obviated by the other sentences of our compiler. Both places, however, manifestly quote from the Book of Deuteronomy, with the grand passages and grand verbiage of which we may well imagine David familiar. A similar familiarity is also betokened in the following verses, as regard other Pentateuchal passages. 1 Chronicles 17:21The combining of ונוראות גּדלּות with שׁם לך לשׂוּם as one sentence, "to make Thee a name with great and fearful deeds," is made clearer in 2nd Samuel by the interpolation of לכם ולעשׂות, "and for you doing great and fearful things." This explanation, however, does not justify us in supposing that ולעשׂות has been dropped out of the Chronicle. The words ונוראות גּדלּות are either to be subordinated in a loose connection to the clause, to define the way in which God has made Himself a name (cf. Ew. 283), or connected with שׂוּם in a pregnant sense: "to make Thee a name, (doing) great and fearful things." But, on the other hand, the converse expression in Samuel, "fearful things for Thy land, before Thy people which Thou redeemedst to Thee from Egypt (from) the nations and their gods," is explained in Chronicles by the interpolation of לגרשׁ: "fearful things, to drive out before Thy people, which ... nations." The divergences cannot be explained by the hypothesis that both texts are mutilated, as is sufficiently shown by the contradictions into which Thenius and Bertheau have fallen in their attempts so to explain them.

All the remaining divergences of one text from the other are only variations of the expression, such as involuntarily arise in the endeavour to give a clear and intelligible narrative, without making a literal copy of the authority made use of. Among these we include even להתפּלּל עבדּך מצא, "Thy servant hath found to pray" (1 Chr. , as compared with להתפּלּל את־לבּו עבדּך מצא, "Thy servant hath found his heart," i.e., found courage, to pray (2 Samuel 7:28); where it is impossible to decide whether the author of the books of Samuel has added את־לבּו as an explanation, or the author of the Chronicle has omitted it because the phrase "to find his heart" occurs only in this single passage of the Old Testament. להת עבדּך מצא signifies, Thy servant has reached the point of directing this prayer to Thee.

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