2 Samuel 19:14
And he bowed the heart of all the men of Judah, even as the heart of one man; so that they sent this word unto the king, Return thou, and all thy servants.
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2 Samuel 19:14-15. He bowed the heart of all the men of Judah — This prudent and friendly message and free offer of pardon to them, and this kind treatment of the captain of the hostile host, and all his rebel adherents, had all the effect David could hope for; it touched their hearts, and melted them into loyalty and affection. They sent this word unto the king, Return thou, &c. — They immediately deputed the heads of their tribe to wait upon him, and invite him to return. So the king returned — He immediately complied with their request, and began his progress toward Jordan. And Judah came to Gilgal — David had not gone far before the principal persons of the whole tribe met him in a body, to conduct him over the river.

19:9-15 God's providence, by the priests' persuasions and Amasa's interest, brought the people to resolve the recall of the king. David stirred not till he received this invitation. Our Lord Jesus will rule in those that invite him to the throne in their hearts, and not till he is invited. He first bows the heart, and makes it willing in the day of his power, then rules in the midst of his enemies, Ps 110:2,3.Of my bone ... - Render as in preceding verse, "art thou not my bone and my flesh?" It is curious to note how the phrase is used in 2 Samuel 5:1 of common descent from Israel, in 2 Samuel 19:12 of the closer kindred of the tribe of Judah, and in this verse of the yet nearer kindred between David and Amasa his sister's son.

Captain ... in the room of Joab - It is very plain that David felt the weight of Joab's overbearing influence to be very oppressive (compare 2 Samuel 19:22; 2 Samuel 3:39; 2 Samuel 16:10). He was, at this time, very angry with Joab for killing Absalom; and so, thinking it of vital importance to win over Amasa and the army of Judah, he did not scruple to offer him Joab's high post.

14. he bowed the heart of all the men of Judah—that is, Amasa, who had been won over, used his great influence in re-attaching the whole tribe of Judah to the interest of David. He; either, first, Amasa, by his great influence upon them. Or rather, secondly, David, by his prudent and kind message, and his free offer of pardon and favour to them, as if they had never offended.

And he bowed the heart of all the men of Judah, even as the heart of one man,.... This the Jewish commentators generally understand of Amasa that he used his interest with the men of Judah, and so wrought upon them, that they agreed as one man to send for the king, and bring him back; but it seems best to understand it of David, who by these gentle methods, kind messages, and affectionate speeches, powerfully inclined and engaged the hearts of the people towards him; so that they were unanimously and affectionately agreed to restore him: in this way David chose to return; he could have come without their leave, or any invitation from them, as he was their lawful king, and a victorious one, the rebellion being crushed; and had it in his power to chastise those concerned in it, and use them with severity; but he chose rather to gain the hearts of his people, and to come in a way peaceable to them, and honourable to himself:

so that they sent this word unto the king, return thou and all thy servants; perhaps by the same messengers that David sent; or it may be, rather for honour's sake they deputed some of their principal men to wait on David, and invite him to return to them with all his retinue and army, promising allegiance and fidelity to him.

And he bowed the heart of all the men of Judah, even as the heart of one man; so that they sent this word unto the king, Return thou, and all thy servants.
14. And he bowed, &c.] By this message David inclined the hearts of the men of Judah to restore him to the throne.

Verse 14. - And he bowed, etc. It was not Amasa, but David, who made all the members of his tribe unanimous in his recall. And not only were the high priests active in his cause, but David, He may feel sure, sent numerous messages to all the more powerful men, assuring them of forgiveness and favour. In his general policy he was right. After the solemn anointing of Absalom, it was necessary for him to wait until some equally public and national act authorized his resumption of the royal power; and delay was dangerous. Every day now spent at Mabanaim might give the opportunity for fresh troubles. 2 Samuel 19:14Thus he (David) inclined the heart of all the people as of one man, and they sent to the king, saying, "Return thou, with all thy servants." The result of David's message to the priests is given summarily here. The subject to ויּט is David, not Amasa or Zadok. So far as the fact itself is concerned, it was certainly wise of David to send to the members of his own tribe, and appeal to them not to be behind the rest of the tribes in taking part in his restoration to the kingdom, lest it should appear as though the tribe of Judah, to which David himself belonged, was dissatisfied with his victory, since it was in that tribe that the rebellion itself first broke out; and this would inevitably feed the jealousy between Judah and the rest of the tribes. But it was not only unwise, but unjust, to give to Amasa, the traitor-general of the rebels, a promise on oath that he should be commander-in-chief in the place of Joab; for even if the promise was only given privately at first, the fact that it had been given could not remain a secret from Joab very long, and would be sure to stir up his ambition, and lead him to the commission of fresh crimes, and in all probability the enmity of this powerful general would become dangerous to the throne of David. For however Joab might have excited David's anger by slaying Absalom, and by the offensive manner in which he had reproved the king for giving way to his grief, David ought to have suppressed his anger in his existing circumstances, and ought not to have rendered evil for evil, especially as he was not only about to pardon Amasa's crime, but even to reward him as one of his faithful servants.
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