2 Samuel 22:35
He teaches my hands to war; so that a bow of steel is broken by my arms.
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22:1-51 David's psalm of thanksgiving. - This chapter is a psalm of praise; we find it afterwards nearly as Ps 18. They that trust God in the way of duty, shall find him a present help in their greatest dangers: David did so. Remarkable preservations should be particularly mentioned in our praises. We shall never be delivered from all enemies till we get to heaven. God will preserve all his people, 2Ti 4:18. Those who receive signal mercies from God, ought to give him the glory. In the day that God delivered David, he sang this song. While the mercy is fresh, and we are most affected with it, let the thank-offering be brought, to be kindled with the fire of that affection. All his joys and hopes close, as all our hopes should do, in the great Redeemer.This song, which is found with scarcely any material variation as Psalm 18, and with the words of this first verse for its title, belongs to the early part of David's reign when he was recently established upon the throne of all Israel, and when his final triumph over the house of Saul, and over the pagan nations 2 Samuel 22:44-46, Philistines, Moabites, Syrians, Ammonites, and Edomites, was still fresh 2 Samuel 21. For a commentary on the separate verses the reader is referred to the commentary on Psalm 18.

The last words of David - i. e., his last Psalm, his last "words of song" 2 Samuel 22:1. The insertion of this Psalm, which is not in the Book of Psalms, was probably suggested by the insertion of the long Psalm in 2 Samuel 22.

David the son of Jesse said ... - The original word for "said" is used between 200 and 300 times in the phrase, "saith the Lord," designating the word of God in the mouth of the prophet. It is only applied to the words of a man here, and in the strikingly similar passage Numbers 24:3-4, Numbers 24:15-16, and in Proverbs 30:1; and in all these places the words spoken are inspired words. The description of David is divided into four clauses, which correspond to and balance each other.


2Sa 22:1-51. David's Psalm of Thanksgiving for God's Powerful Deliverance and Manifold Blessings.

The song contained in this chapter is the same as the eighteenth Psalm, where the full commentary will be given [see on [278]Ps 18:1, &c.]. It may be sufficient simply to remark that Jewish writers have noticed a great number of very minute variations in the language of the song as recorded here, from that embodied in the Book of Psalms—which may be accounted for by the fact that this, the first copy of the poem, was carefully revised and altered by David afterwards, when it was set to the music of the tabernacle. This inspired ode was manifestly the effusion of a mind glowing with the highest fervor of piety and gratitude, and it is full of the noblest imagery that is to be found within the range even of sacred poetry. It is David's grand tribute of thanksgiving for deliverance from his numerous and powerful enemies, and establishing him in the power and glory of the kingdom.

No text from Poole on this verse. He teacheth my hands to war; so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms. See Gill on Psalm 18:34. He teacheth my hands to war; so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms.
35. so that a bow of steel, &c.] And mine arms bend a bow of bronze. The ability to bend a metal bow (cp. Job 20:24) was a mark of superior strength. Readers of the Odyssey will recall Ulysses’ bow, which none but himself could bend. (Hom. Od. xxi. 409).

Observe how David recognises that the advantages of physical strength and energy, important qualifications in times when the king was himself the leader of his people in battle, were gifts of God; yet that it was not these that saved him and made him victorious, but Jehovah’s care and help (2 Samuel 22:36 ff.).Verses 35-37. -

"He teaeheth my hands to war;
And mine arms can bend a bow of bronze.
And thou hast given me thy saving shield;
And thy hearing of me hath made me great.
Thou hast enlarged my steps under me;
And my feet have not slipped."
Bow of bronze. In Job 20:24 we also read of bows made of this metal, or compound of metals, which was a far more ancient material for weapons than steel. The bending of such a bow was proof of great strength, and the last artifice of Penelope, to save herself from the suitors, was to promise her hand to the man who could bend Ulysses' bow. Thy hearing of me; in Psalm 18:35, and Authorized Version and Revised Version here, "thy gentleness." The words in the Hebrew are very nearly alike, but the Septuagint notices the difference, and translates "hearing" in this place, but "chastisement" in the psalm. The Vulgate has "gentleness" or "mildness" here, and "discipline" in the psalm. The Syriac alone has "discipline" in both places. My feet; literally, ankle bones, the weakness of which causes men to totter. 2 Samuel 22:29 commences the description of the help which David had already received from God in his conflict with the enemies of Israel, and which he would still receive.

29 For Thou art my lamp, O Jehovah!

And Jehovah maketh my darkness bright.

30 For through Thee I run troops,

And through my God I leap walls.

31 God - innocent is His way.

The word of Jehovah is refined,

A shield is He to all who trust in Him.

The explanatory כּי, with which the new description of the divine mercy commences, refers to the thought implied in 2 Samuel 22:28, that David belonged to the "afflicted people," whom the Lord always helps. As the Lord delivered him out of the danger of death, because He took pleasure in him, so He also gave him power over all his enemies. For He was his lamp, i.e., He had lifted him out of a condition of depression and contempt into one of glory and honour (see at 2 Samuel 21:17), and would still further enlighten his darkness, i.e., "would cause the light of His salvation to shine upon him and his tribe in all the darkness of their distress" (Hengstenberg). In the psalm the verse reads thus: "For Thou lightest (makest bright) my lamp (or candle), Jehovah my God enlighteneth my darkness;" the bold figure "Jehovah the lamp of David" being more literally explained. The figure is analogous to the one in Psalm 27:1, "The Lord is my light;" whilst the form ניר is a later mode of writing נר.

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