Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Save only in the matter of Uriah.—In this passage alone do we find this qualification of the praise of David. In the Vatican MS. and other MSS. of the LXX. it is omitted. Possibly it is a marginal note which has crept into the text, or a comment of the compiler of the book on the language of the annals from which he drew.1 Kings 15:5. Save only in the matter of Uriah — This, and the like phrases, are not to be understood as exclusive of every sinful action, but only of an habitual and continued apostacy from God, as the very phrase of turning aside from God, or from his commands, doth generally imply: and thus it is most true; for David’s other sins were either sudden and transient acts, soon repented of and blotted out, as in the cases of Nabal and Achish, or mistakes of his judgment, which was not fully convinced of the sinfulness of such actions; whereas that which concerned Uriah’s wife was a designed and studied sin, long continued in, defended with a succession of other sins, presumptuous and scandalous to his government, and to the true religion.1 Kings 14:10-14, of Baasha 1 Kings 16:2-4, or of Zimri 1 Kings 16:19, the cutting off of his seed, and the transfer of the crown to another family. That these consequences did not follow in the kingdom of Judah, was owing to the "faithfulness" of David (see the marginal reference), which brought a blessing on his posterity. Few things are more remarkable and more difficult to account for on mere grounds of human reason, than the stability of the succession in Judah, and its excessive instability in the sister kingdom. One family in Judah holds the throne from first to last, during a space but little short of four centuries, while in Israel there are nine changes of dynasty within two hundred and fifty years. Quest. How is this true, seeing David sinned in the matter of Nabal, 1Sa 25, and Achish, 1Sa 27, and Mephibosheth, and his indulgence to his children, Adonijah, Amnon, and Absalom, and in the numbering of the people? Answ. This and the like phrases are not to be understood as exclusive of every sinful action, but only of a sinful course or state, or of an habitual and continued apostacy from God, or from his ways, as the very phrase of turning aside from God, or from his commands, doth constantly imply, as appears from Exodus 32:8 Deu 9:12,16 1 Samuel 8:3 Psalm 78:57 Isaiah 44:20 1 Timothy 1:6 5:15, &c. And thus it is most true. For David’s other sins were either sudden and transient acts, proceeding from human infirmity, and extraordinary temptations, and soon repented of and blotted out, as in the cases of Nabal and Achish; or mistakes of his judgment, which was not fully convinced of the sinfulness of such actions, as in the other cases alleged; whereas that which concerned Uriah’s wife was a designed and studied sin, long continued in, defended with a succession of other sins, presumptuous, and scandalous to his government and to the true religion, which he so eminently professed.
save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite; the killing of him, and other sins which led on to it, and were in connection with it; Abarbinel thinks, because the affair of Bathsheba is not mentioned, that was not reckoned to David as a sin; but no doubt it was, and is included here.Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)5. save only in the matter of Urijah the Hittite] See 2 Samuel 11:4; 2 Samuel 11:15. This clause is omitted in the LXX. Time would soften down the offence which David committed in numbering the people, so that the compiler of the narrative before us can pass it by in giving expression to the high estimate which was sure to be entertained of the great king David.Verse 5. Because [אֲֶשר, here causative for יַעַן אי. Comp. quod] David did that which was right in the eyes of the Lord, and turned not aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite. [2 Samuel 2:4. But this last clause is not found in the LXX., and such a statement was more likely to be inserted by transcribers, having first appeared in the margin as a gloss, than to be omitted, had it ever formed part of the text. And in support of this view it may be alleged that
(1) the matter of Uriah was by no means David's only sin, and
(2) it is not the manner of our writer thus to qualify his words. See next verse.] 2 Chronicles 11 and 12 concerning the rest of the acts of Rehoboam. "There was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam the whole time (of their reign)." As nothing is said about any open war between them, and the prophet Shemaiah prohibited the attack which Rehoboam was about to make upon the tribes who had fallen away (1 Kings 11:23.), מלחמה can only denote the hostile feelings and attitude of the two rulers towards one another.
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