And David said, What have I to do with you, you sons of Zeruiah, that you should this day be adversaries to me? shall there any man be put to death this day in Israel? for do not I know that I am this day king over Israel?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Adversaries.—The word in the original here is Satan.What have I to do with you? I do not ask, neither will I take, your advice in this matter.
Ye sons of Zeruiah; implying that Joab’s hand was in this contrivance, or that he suspected it.
That ye should this day be adversaries unto me, i.e. that you put me upon things unfit for me to do, and contrary to my present interest; for it was David’s interest at this time to appease the people, and reconcile them to him, and not now to give them any new distaste by acts of severity; for this would make others jealous, that David will not forgive them neither, but would watch an opportunity to be revenged on them. You pretend friendship herein, and would have me take it for an effect of your zeal for my service; but in truth you give me such counsel as my enemies would wish me to follow, that thereby I might awaken the fears and jealousies of my people which are now asleep, and cast them into a second rebellion: which either Joab and Abishai really designed by this advice, that so Joab might recover his place again, and be made necessary for the king’s service; or David suspected that they did so.
Do not I know that I am this day king over Israel? is not my kingdom, which for my sins was in a manner wholly lost, just now restored and assured to me? And when God hath been so merciful to me in forgiving my sin, shall I now show myself revengeful to Shimei? Shall I sully the public joy and glory of this day with an act of such severity? or shall I alienate the hearts of my people from me, now when they are returning to me? 2 Samuel 16:10,
that ye should this day be adversaries unto me? or a Satan unto me, as the word is, by advising him to do what would be prejudicial to his interest; see Matthew 16:22; as to use severity at such a time as this would have been; for had he immediately ordered Shimei to be put to death, though he deserved it, who was the first man that came to ask pardon, the Israelites in general, or all however concerned in the rebellion, would have concluded they must share the same fate, and so would not have submitted, but have raised a new rebellion against him; and some think Joab and Abishai had this in view, that they might keep their posts in the army:
shall there any man be put to death this day in Israel? there shall not: the glory of this day shall not be sullied by the death of any; nor the joy of it be turned into sorrow in any family in Israel, as would, if any was put to death for what had passed during the rebellion:
for do not I know that I am this day king over Israel? and can and will do as I please; as he had been driven from his throne and palace, and was now invited back again, and upon his return, it was as if he was made king anew, and afresh inaugurated into his office; and therefore no blood should be split on that day on which he was restored to his kingdom.And David said, What have I to do with you, ye sons of Zeruiah, that ye should this day be adversaries unto me? shall there any man be put to death this day in Israel? for do not I know that I am this day king over Israel?
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)22. adversaries] Opposing my true interests. The Heb. word is satan. Cp. Matthew 16:23.
that I am this day king] The rejoicing of the day which saw him restored to his kingdom must not be marred by any bloodshed. Cp. 1 Samuel 11:13.Verse 22. - Ye sons of Zeruiah... adversaries unto me; literally, that ye be to me for a Satan; rendered "adversary" in Numbers 22:22, but by Ewald in this place "tempter." It probably means "one who would do me harm." Though David speaks of the sons of Zeruiah in the plural (as in 2 Samuel 16:10), there is no reason to suppose that Joab shared in Abishai's impetuosity. Indifferent as he was to the shedding of blood, he was too prudent and politic to put the people out of temper by an execution on the day of David's return. In Israel... over Israel. There is much force in this repetition. A short time before Israel had been for Absalom, but now, by Shimei's submission, and that of the large body of Benjamites with him, David felt that once again he was king over the whole people. 2 Samuel 19:15-23. Pardon of Shimei. - 2 Samuel 19:15, 2 Samuel 19:16. When David reached the Jordan on his return, and Judah had come to Gilgal "to meet him, to conduct the king over the Jordan," i.e., to form an escort at the crossing, Shimei the Benjaminite hastened down from Bahurim (see 2 Samuel 16:5.) with the men of Judah to meet David.
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