2 Samuel 8:7
And David took the shields of gold that were on the servants of Hadadezer, and brought them to Jerusalem.
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(7) Shields of gold.—Solomon also “made shields of gold” (1Kings 10:17), which appear to have been a mark of oriental magnificence. Solomon’s shields were ultimately carried off by Shishak (1Kings 14:25-28). The LXX. has here a curious addition, saying that Shishak carried off the shields which David captured, a manifest error, since those were made by Solomon.

2 Samuel 8:7. The shields of gold that were on the servants of Hadadezer — It hath been the practice of many princes to make the arms of their soldiers ornamental and precious, partly from the love of splendour and magnificence, and partly to influence the courage of those, that carried them: since nothing else could secure them from becoming a property and a prey to the enemy. Some think, however, the meaning here is, Which were with the servants; that is, committed to their custody, as being kept in the king’s armory; for it is not probable, they think, that they carried shields of gold into the field.

8:1-8. David subdued the Philistines. They had long been troublesome to Israel. And after the long and frequent struggles the saints have with the powers of darkness, like Israel with the Philistines, the Son of David shall tread them all under foot, and make the saints more than conquerors. He smote the Moabites, and made them tributaries to Israel. Two parts he destroyed, the third part he spared. The line that was to keep alive, though it was but one, is ordered to be a full line. Let the line of mercy be stretched to the utmost. He smote the Syrians. In all these wars David was protected, for this in his psalms he often gives glory to God.Garrisons - The word is used for officers in 1 Kings 4:5, 1 Kings 4:19, and some think that that is its meaning here. Perhaps, however, it is best to take it with the King James Version in the same sense as in 1 Samuel 10:5; 1 Samuel 13:3.

Brought gifts - Rather, "tribute" (and in 2 Samuel 8:2); meaning they became subject and tributary.

2Sa 8:3-14. He Smites Hadadezer and the Syrians.

3. Zobah—(1Ch 18:3). This kingdom was bounded on the east by the Euphrates, and it extended westward from that river, perhaps as far north as Aleppo. It was long the chief among the petty kingdoms of Syria, and its king bore the hereditary title of "Hadadezer" or "Hadarezer" ("Hadad," that is, "helped").

as he went to recover his border at the river Euphrates—in accordance with the promises God made to Israel that He would give them all the country as far as the Euphrates (Ge 15:18; Nu 24:17). In the first campaign David signally defeated Hadadezer. Besides a great number of foot prisoners, he took from him an immense amount of booty in chariots and horses. Reserving only a small number of the latter, he hamstrung the rest. The horses were thus mutilated because they were forbidden to the Hebrews, both in war and agriculture. So it was of no use to keep them. Besides, their neighbors placed much dependence on cavalry, but having, for want of a native breed, to procure them by purchase, the greatest damage that could be done to such enemies was to render their horses unserviceable in war. (See also Ge 46:6; Jos 11:6, 9). A king of Damascene-Syria came to Hadadezer's succor; but David routed those auxiliary forces also, took possession of their country, put garrisons into their fortified towns, and made them tributary.

That were on the servants, or rather, which were with the servants, i.e. committed to their custody, as being kept in the king’s armory; for it is not probable they carried them into the field.

And David took the shields of gold that were on the servants of Hadadezer,.... That were found with them, which they had in their hands; these must be supposed to be with the principal officers of his army; or golden chains, as Aquila, or golden bracelets on their arms, as the Septuagint; the Syriac version is "quivers of gold", such as they put arrows into, and so Jarchi and R. Isaiah understand it of such, and refer to Jeremiah 51:11; and so Josephus (r):

and brought them to Jerusalem; where they were laid up, and converted to the use of the sanctuary Solomon built; see Sol 4:4.

(r) Ut supra, (Antiqu. l. 7. c. 5.) sect. 3.

And David took the shields of gold that were on the servants of Hadadezer, and brought them to {e} Jerusalem.

(e) For the use of the temple.

7. that were on the servants of Hadadezer] Or, that belonged to, &c. Probably it was his bodyguard which was distinguished by these golden shields. Similarly a corps of the Macedonian army under Alexander the Great was known as “the silver-shields” (ἀργυράσπιδες).

The Septuagint adds at the end of the verse: “And Susakim [i.e. Shishak] king of Egypt took them, when he went up to Jerusalem in the days of Roboam the son of Solomon.” In 1 Kings 14:26 there is a corresponding addition in the Sept.: “And the golden spears which David took from the hand of the servants of Adraazar king of Soba and carried to Jerusalem, he took them all.”

Verse 7. - Shields of gold. Probably they were plated with gold, and were borne by Hadarezer's bodyguard. But it is very uncertain whether shields are really meant. The word in Syriac means "quivers." Jerome evidently could not at first find out what it signified, as he in this place translates in the Vulgate "arms," but subsequently he became better, informed. The LXX. renders "bracelets," and adds that they were carried away from Jerusalem by Shishak in the days of Rehoboam. There is no contradiction in this with what is said in 1 Kings 14:26, as what Solomon made were undoubtedly shields, such being the certain meaning of the word in the Hebrew, and its rendering in all the versions. No version renders the word used here "shield." In the parallel place (1 Chronicles 18:7) the Syriac and Vulgate render it "quivers," the LXX. "collars," and the Arabic "plates of gold hung on the trappings of the horses." As they were captured from a Syrian king, they probably retained their Syriac name, and if so they were "quivers." 2 Samuel 8:7Of the booty taken in these wars, David carried the golden shields which he took from the servants, i.e., the governors and vassal princes, of Hadadezer, to Jerusalem.

(Note: The lxx has this additional clause: "And Shishak the king of Egypt took them away, when he went up against Jerusalem in the days of Rehoboam the son of Solomon," which is neither to be found in the Chronicles nor in any other ancient version, and is merely an inference drawn by the Greek translator, or by some copyists of the lxx, from 1 Kings 14:25-28, taken in connection with the fact that the application of the brass is given in 1 Chronicles 18:8. But, in the first place, the author of this gloss has overlooked the fact that the golden shields of Rehoboam which Shishak carried away, were not those captured by David, but those which Solomon had had made, according to 1 Kings 10:16, for the retainers of his palace; and in the second place, he has not observed that, according to 2 Samuel 8:11 of this chapter, and also of the Chronicles, David dedicated to the Lord all the gold and silver that he had taken, i.e., put it in the treasury of the sanctuary to be reserved for the future temple, and that at the end of his reign he handed over to his son and successor Solomon all the gold, silver, iron, and brass that he had collected for the purpose, to be applied to the building of the temple (1 Chronicles 22:14., 1 Chronicles 29:2.). Consequently the clause in question, which Thenius would adopt from the lxx into our own text, is nothing more than the production of a presumptuous Alexandrian, whose error lies upon the very surface, so that the question of its genuineness cannot for a moment be entertained.)

Shelet signifies "a shield," according to the Targums and Rabbins, and this meaning is applicable to all the passages in which the word occurs; whilst the meaning "equivalent" cannot be sustained either by the rendering πανοπλία adopted by Aquila and Symmachus in 2 Kings 11:10, or by the renderings of the Vulgate, viz., arma in loc. and armatura in Sol 4:4, or by an appeal to the etymology (vid., Gesenius' Thes. and Dietrich's Lexicon).

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