Now then do it: for the LORD has spoken of David, saying, By the hand of my servant David I will save my people Israel out of the hand of the Philistines, and out of the hand of all their enemies.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)The Lord hath spoken.—The promise here quoted is not contained in so many words in the records which have come down to us. It may have been either an unrecorded utterance of one of the prophets (Samuel, Gad, or Nathan), or simply a reasonable inference from what had been promised, and from the Divine support of David in his career hitherto.2 Samuel 3:18. The Lord hath spoken — By the hand of my servant David, &c. — We nowhere find these words recorded; but it is probable Samuel had often spoken them; at least the sense of them is implied in the words of God to Samuel, when he commanded him to anoint David king over Israel, 1 Samuel 10:1-12; for the intention of giving them a king was, that he might fight their battles, 1 Samuel 8:20.1 Samuel 18:5. It was only by Abner's great influence that the elders of Israel had been restrained hitherto from declaring for David, and this accounts for Ish-bosheth's helpless submission to his uncle's dictation. Now then do it; you shall have my free consent and utmost assistance in procuring it.
The Lord hath spoken of David; he wickedly pretends religion, when he intended nothing but the satisfaction of his own pride, and malice, and fury against Ish-bosheth. It is very probable God spake these words, but undoubtedly he spake the same sense by Samuel, though it be not expressed before.
for the Lord hath spoken of David; concerning his being king, and the saviour of his people Israel:
saying, by the hand of my servant David I will save my people Israel out of the hand of the Philistines, and out of the hand of all their enemies; and which, though where recorded in so many words, yet was the sense of the promise of making him king, and the design of his unction; and besides they might have been spoken to Samuel, though not written; and which he might report, and so might pass from one to another to be generally known.Now then do it: for the LORD hath spoken of David, saying, By the hand of my servant David I will save my people Israel out of the hand of the Philistines, and out of the hand of all their enemies.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)18. I will save my people] The commission which had been given to Saul (1 Samuel 9:16) was transferred to David. Again we have an intimation that prophetic utterances respecting David’s divine appointment to the throne were commonly known.Verse 18. - The Lord hath spoken. Here again Abner's statements go far beyond the text of anything recorded in Holy Scripture, but probably they give the popular interpretation of the prophecies respecting David. It will be noticed also that Abner endeavours to meet the general prejudice against David by asserting that he was Israel's destined deliverer from Philistine oppression. As Abner's speech is virtually an acknowledgment of failure, we may also be sure that he had found himself unable any longer to make head against the Philistines on the western side of the Jordan, and that Judah was the only tribe there that enjoyed tranquillity. Everywhere else they had once again established their supremacy. Though a brave soldier, Abner was inferior, not only to David, but also to Joab, both as statesman and general; and the weak Ishbosheth was no help to him, but the contrary. 2 Samuel 3:12. Abner soon carried out his threat to Ishbosheth. He sent messengers to David in his stead (not "on the spot," or immediately, a rendering adopted by the Chaldee and Symmachus, but for which no support can be found) with this message: "Whose is the land?" i.e., to whom does it belong except to thee? and, "Make a covenant with me; behold, so is my hand with thee (i.e., so will I stand by thee), to turn all Israel to thee."
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