2 Samuel 23:34
Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai, the son of the Maachathite, Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite,
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(34) Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai.—The reading in Chronicles is quite different: “Eliphal the son of Ur, Hepher the Mecherathite,” thus making two heroes instead of the one given here. So, also, instead of “Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite,” Chronicles has Ahijah the Pelonite. In the latter case it seems likely that different persons are intended, one being mentioned in one list and the other in the other. It is interesting to know that a son of David’s astute but treacherous counsellor was among his thirty heroes.

23:8-39 David once earnestly longed for the water at the well of Bethlehem. It seems to be an instance of weakness. He was thirsty; with the water of that well he had often refreshed himself when a youth, and it was without due thought that he desired it. Were his valiant men so forward to expose themselves, upon the least hint of their prince's mind, and so eager to please him, and shall not we long to approve ourselves to our Lord Jesus, by ready compliance with his will, as shown us by his word, Spirit, and providence? But David poured out the water as a drink-offering to the Lord. Thus he would cross his own foolish fancy, and punish himself for indulging it, and show that he had sober thoughts to correct his rash ones, and knew how to deny himself. Did David look upon that water as very precious which was got at the hazard of these men's blood, and shall not we much more value those benefits for purchasing which our blessed Saviour shed his blood? Let all beware of neglecting so great salvation.etc. The early death of Asahel 2 Samuel 2:32 would make it very likely that his place in the 30 would be filled up, and so easily account for the number 31 in the list. Compare throughout the list in 1 Chronicles 11. 19-39. the first three—The mighty men or champions in David's military staff were divided into three classes—the highest, Jashobeam, Eleazar, and Shammah; the second class, Abishai, Benaiah, and Asahel; and the third class, the thirty, of which Asahel was the chief. There are thirty-one mentioned in the list, including Asahel; and these added to the two superior orders make thirty-seven. Two of them, we know, were already dead; namely, Asahel [2Sa 3:30] and Uriah [2Sa 11:17]; and if the dead, at the drawing up of the list, amounted to seven, then we might suppose a legion of honor, consisting of the definite number thirty, where the vacancies, when they occurred, were replaced by fresh appointments. No text from Poole on this verse.

Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai, the son of the Maachathite,.... In 1 Chronicles 11:35, he is called Eliphal the son of Ur:

Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite; David's counsellor, that went off to Absalom, 2 Samuel 15:12; Eliam his son is supposed, by the Jews, to be the father of Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah, 2 Samuel 11:3; according to Hillerus (q), he is the same with Ahijah the Pelonite, 1 Chronicles 11:36.

(q) Onomastic. Sacr. p. 906.

Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai, the son of the Maachathite, Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite,
34. Here the text of 1 Chronicles 11:35-36 diverges widely, and in place of the names in this verse reads “Eliphal the son of Ur, Hepher the Mecherathite, Ahijah the Pelonite.”

the son of the Maachathite] Better, the Maachathite, a member of the clan or family of Maachah, settled at Abel-beth-Maachah (ch. 2 Samuel 20:14 ff.); or possibly a native of the Syrian kingdom of Maachah (ch. 2 Samuel 10:6).

Eliam] Son of David’s clever but treacherous counsellor (ch. 2 Samuel 15:12); supposed by some to be the father of Bath-sheba. But the identification is doubtful: see note on ch. 2 Samuel 11:3.

Verse 34. - Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai, the son of the Maachathite. In Chronicles this becomes "Elipha the son of Ur, Hepher the Mecherathite." If the text here is correct, Eliphelet must be a native of Beth-Maachah, a town in Naphtali (2 Samuel 20:14). Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite. Instead of this, we find "Ahijah the Pelonite" in 1 Chronicles 11:36. Eliam is supposed by many to have been Bathsheba's father (see note on 2 Samuel 11:3; and for Ahithophel the Gilonite, note on ch. 15:12). 2 Samuel 23:34The names in 2 Samuel 23:34, Eliphelet ben-Ahasbai ben-Hammaacathi, read thus in the Chronicles (2 Samuel 23:35, 2 Samuel 23:36): Eliphal ben-Ur; Hepher hammecerathi. We see from this that in ben-Ahasbai ben two names have been fused together; for the text as it lies before us is rendered suspicious partly by the fact that the names of both father and grandfather are given, which does not occur in connection with any other name in the whole list, and partly by the circumstance that בּן cannot properly be written with המּעכתי, which is a Gentile noun. Consequently the following is probably the correct way of restoring the text, המּעכתי חפר בּן־אוּר אליפלט, Eliphelet (a name which frequently occurs) the son of Ur; Hepher the Maachathite, i.e., of Maacah in the north-east of Gilead (see at 2 Samuel 10:6 and Deuteronomy 3:14). Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite, the clever but treacherous counsellor of David (see at 2 Samuel 15:12). This name is quite corrupt in the Chronicles.
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