Then the woman went to all the people in her wisdom. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and cast it out to Joab. And he blew a trumpet, and they retired from the city, every man to his tent. And Joab returned to Jerusalem to the king.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)To his tent= to his home. (Comp. 2Samuel 20:1, 2Samuel 18:17; 1Kings 12:16, &c.)
Benaiah.—In the four closing verses of this chapter there is again given a short summary of the chief men of David’s reign, as if to form the conclusion of this account of his life. A similar summary has already been given in 2Samuel 8:16-18, and the changes introduced here mark a later period of the reign. It is noticeable that Joab still remains commander-in-chief. On Benaiah and the force which he commanded, see Note on 2Samuel 8:18. (See also 2Samuel 23:20-23.)2 Samuel 20:22. The woman went unto the people in her wisdom — Prudently treated with them about it, representing to them the certainty and nearness of their ruin, if they did not speedily comply with her desires, and certain deliverance if they did. They immediately complied, and cut off the head of Sheba. He blew a trumpet, and they retired from the city — Raised the siege and went home. It appears by this that it was usual to discharge them, as well as call them together, by the sound of the trumpet.2 Samuel 2:27-30.) In her wisdom prudently treated with them about it, either severally or jointly, as she saw fit; representing to them the certainty and nearness of all their ruin, if they did not speedily comply with her desires, and certain deliverance if they did.
They retired; Joab and his army which besieged them.
and they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and cast it out to Joab; whose face Joab knew full well, and was satisfied it was his head that was thrown over:
and he blew a trumpet; as a sign of retreat:
and they retired from the city, every man to his tent; the army under Joab broke up the siege, and departed, every man to his own city, as the Targum:
and Joab returned unto Jerusalem unto the king; to give him an account of his success, and how the rebellion was crushed; and this gave him courage and boldness to appear before the king, which one would wonder else he should have, when he had killed his general in cold blood, the king had sent out, and without his leave had reassumed his post as general of the army; but he was a bold daring man, a man of blood, and hardened in sin, and had power in the army, and over David himself, that he could not do what he would with him, but was obliged to be silent, and overlook things, and even to reestablish him in his office, as appears by what follows.Then the woman went unto all the people in her wisdom. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and cast it out to Joab. And he blew a trumpet, and they retired from the city, every man to his tent. And Joab returned to Jerusalem unto the king.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)22. in her wisdom] The “Preacher” illustrates the truth that “wisdom is better than strength” by a parable strikingly similar to this incident, and possibly suggested by it (Ecclesiastes 9:13-16).
they retired] They were dispersed to their several homes.Verse 22. - In her wisdom; that is, with her wise counsel. The story in Ecclesiastes 9:13-15 probably refers to this narrative. They retired; Hebrew, they dispersed themselves each to his tent; that is, his home. This refers to Amasa's levies, who were glad to depart, and whom Joab did not want at Jerusalem. He took thither with him all those mentioned in ver. 7. Incensed as David must have been at the murder of Amasa following so quickly upon that of Absalom, yet that very act proved Joab's determination, and left the king powerless. He must have felt, too, that Joab was indispensable for the maintenance of peace and order in his dominions, and that he was at the least faithful to himself. 2 Samuel 20:18), "They were formerly accustomed to say, ask Abel; and so they brought (a thing) to pass." These words show that Abel had formerly been celebrated for the wisdom of its inhabitants.
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