EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
18:19-33 By directing David to give God thanks for his victory, Ahimaaz prepared him for the news of his son's death. The more our hearts are fixed and enlarged, in thanksgiving to God for our mercies, the better disposed we shall be to bear with patience the afflictions mixed with them. Some think David's wish arose from concern about Absalom's everlasting state; but he rather seems to have spoken without due thought. He is to be blamed for showing so great fondness for a graceless son. Also for quarrelling with Divine justice. And for opposing the justice of the nation, which, as king, he had to administer, and which ought to be preferred before natural affection. The best men are not always in a good frame; we are apt to over-grieve for what we over-loved. But while we learn from this example to watch and pray against sinful indulgence, or neglect of our children, may we not, in David, perceive a shadow of the Saviour's love, who wept over, prayed for, and even suffered death for mankind, though vile rebels and enemies.
Ahimaaz called - This marks the eager haste with which, before he had quite reached the king, he shouted out the pithy decisive word of good tidings, "Shalom!" Peace!
Hath delivered - See the margin. The figure seems to be that of confining a person within the power of his enemy, in opposition to "giving him his liberty" "in a large room," to work what mischief he pleases.
24-32. David sat between the two gates—that is, in the tower-house on the wall that overhung the gate of Mahanaim. Near it was a watchtower, on which a sentinel was posted, as in times of war, to notify every occurrence. The delicacy of Ahimaaz' communication was made up by the unmistakable plainness of Cushi's. The death of Absalom was a heavy trial, and it is impossible not to sympathize with the outburst of feeling by which David showed that all thoughts of the victory he had won as a king were completely sunk in the painful loss he had sustained as a father. The extraordinary ardor and strength of his affection for this worthless son break out in the redundancy and vehemence of his mournful ejaculations.
No text from Poole on this verse.
And the king said unto him, turn aside, and stand here,.... On the side of him, not far from him, until the other messenger came, that he might learn from them both the true state of the case:
and he turned aside, and stood still; saying nothing more to the king, nor he to him. And the king said unto him, Turn aside, and stand here. And he turned aside, and stood still.