2 Samuel 4:11
How much more, when wicked men have slain a righteous person in his own house on his bed? shall I not therefore now require his blood of your hand, and take you away from the earth?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(11) A righteous person—i.e., righteous, not at fault, so far as the matter in hand and his relation to the assassins is concerned.

Take you away from the earth.—“Rather, put you away out of the land. The word is one specially used of removing evil or the guilt of evil from the land (Deuteronomy 19:13; Deuteronomy 19:19, &c.). The guilt of murder defiled the land, until expiated by the execution of the murderer. (Numbers 35:33.)”—Kirkpatrick.

2 Samuel 4:11. How much more, &c. — If he put the Amalekite to death for barely saying that he slew Saul, even at Saul’s own command, and when his life was despaired of, how much more would he take signal vengeance on their united and aggravated treachery and murder? When wicked men have slain a righteous person — For such Ish-bosheth was in respect of them. Saul might have some guilt in the Amalekite’s eye from his former destruction of the Amalekites; but Ish-bosheth could have none with regard to these his murderers, to whom he had done no wrong, but had preferred them to places of trust and honour. In respect of David, however, Ish- bosheth was not righteous, because he opposed him whom he knew God had appointed to the throne. In his own house, upon his bed — This aggravated their crime, and made it very different from that of the Amalekite who slew Saul. Shall I not, therefore, require his blood at your hands? — As persons unworthy to live. There is no one villany which the human mind so naturally, so instinctively abhors as treachery; because it is, perhaps, the only villany from which no man living is secure; and for this reason every man must take pleasure in the punishing it. This conduct of David toward these murderers of Ish-bosheth is well worth our attention; it is a proof of his integrity and piety, and of his detestation of treachery and cruelty. And we may learn from hence, that we ought not only to do no hurt to our enemies, but that we ought not even to rejoice at the hurt which may happen to them without our contributing any thing to it, nor to countenance injustice and vice in any degree, how great advantage soever we may reap from them.4:8-12 A person may be glad to obtain his just wishes, and yet really regret the means by which he receives them. He may be sorry for the death of a person by which he is a gainer. These men shed innocent blood, from the basest motives. David justly executed vengeance upon them. He would not be beholden to any to help him by unlawful practices. God had helped him over many a difficulty, and through many a danger, therefore he depended upon him to crown and complete his own work. He speaks of his redemption from all adversity, as a thing done; though he had many storms yet before him, he knew that He who had delivered, would deliver.As though they would have fetched wheat - This is a very obscure passage, and the double repetition in 2 Samuel 4:6-7 of the murder of the king and of the escape of the assassin, is hard to account for. Rechab and Baanah came into the house under the pretence of getting grain, probably for the band which they commanded out of the king's storehouse, and so contrived to get access into the king's chamber; or, they found the wheat-carriers (the persons whose business it was to carry in grain for the king's household) just going into the king's house, and by joining them got into the midst of the house unnoticed. If the latter be the sense, the literal translation of the words would be: "And behold (or, and there) there came into the midst of the house the carriers of wheat, and they (i. e. Rechab and Baanah) smote him, etc." 2Sa 4:10-12. David Causes Them to Be Put to Death. A righteous person; for so he was comparatively, and in respect of these men, having not deserved death at their hands. How much more, when wicked men have slain a righteous person,.... As Ishbosheth was in comparison of the wicked men that slew him; though not with respect to David, if he knew of his divine designation to the throne; nor with respect to Mephibosheth his eldest brother's son, whose right to the throne was prior to his, which he must know; though with respect to his conduct towards David, in assuming the throne of Israel, it might not be owing to any bad principles of malice and injustice, but to his ignorance of David's having a right to the throne upon his father's death, and by the advice of his friends he took it: the sin of these men in murdering him is aggravated, in that they slew him

in his own palace, upon his bed? in cold blood, and not in the field of battle, not being engaged in war with him; in his own palace, where he might justly think himself in safety; on his bed asleep, and so at an unawares, when insensible of danger, and not in a posture of defence; and now David argues from the lesser to the greater, that if the man that brought him the tidings of Saul's death had no reward given him for bringing what he thought would be reckoned good tidings, then much less would any be given them who had actually slain their master, and that in such a base and barbarous way; and if the above person, who only was a bringer of tidings, was taken and slain, then how much more did they deserve to die, who had been guilty of such a cruel and barbarous murder?

shall I not therefore now require his blood of your hands, and take you away from the earth? avenge his blood on them, by putting them to death, out of the world, and from the land of the living, as men that deserved to live no longer on it.

How {g} much more, when wicked men have slain a righteous person in his own house upon his bed? shall I not therefore now require his blood of your hand, and take you away from the earth?

(g) In that neither the example of him that slew Saul, nor duty to their master, nor the innocency of the person, nor reverence for the place, nor time moved them, they deserved most grievous punishment.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
11. a righteous person] “A man who had done no one any harm,” as Josephus says. His merits seem to have been negative rather than positive.

require his blood] Demand satisfaction for his murder. God is said to “require blood,” i.e. to avenge murder (Genesis 9:5; Psalm 9:12), and in punishing the murderers David acted as His representative.

take you away from the earth] Rather, put you away out of the land. The word is one specially used of removing evil or the guilt of evil from the land (Deuteronomy 19:13; Deuteronomy 19:19, &c.). The guilt of murder defiled the land until expiated by the execution of the murderer (Numbers 35:33).Verse 11. - A righteous person. Ishbosheth was probably a weak rather than a wicked man; but David is not speaking of him generally, and, as regards Rechab and Baanah, he was quite guiltless, and their crime was not in revenge for any wrong done them. The two sons of Rimmon went to Mahanaim, where Ishbosheth resided (2 Samuel 2:8, 2 Samuel 2:12), and came in the heat of the day (at noon) into Ishbosheth's house, when he was taking his mid-day rest.
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