2 Samuel 5
Barnes' Notes
Then came all the tribes of Israel to David unto Hebron, and spake, saying, Behold, we are thy bone and thy flesh.
Compare the marginal reference. The chronicler adds some interesting details 2 Samuel 12:23-40 of the manner in which the various tribes from both sides of the Jordan came to Hebron to make David king, and of the joyful festivities on the occasion. The consummation to which events in God's Providence had been leading had now come. Saul and Jonathan, Abner and Ish-bosheth, were dead; David was already head of a very large portion of Israel; the Philistines, and perhaps the remnant of the Canaanites, were restless and threatening; and it was obviously the interest of the Israelite nation to unite themselves under the sovereignty of the valiant and virtuous son of Jesse, their former deliverer, and the man designated by the word of God as their Captain and Shepherd. Accordingly he was at once anointed king over all Israel (compare 2 Samuel 2:4 note).

Also in time past, when Saul was king over us, thou wast he that leddest out and broughtest in Israel: and the LORD said to thee, Thou shalt feed my people Israel, and thou shalt be a captain over Israel.
So all the elders of Israel came to the king to Hebron; and king David made a league with them in Hebron before the LORD: and they anointed David king over Israel.
Before the Lord - Abiathar and Zadok the priests were both with David, and the tabernacle and altar may have been at Hebron, though the ark was at Kirjath-jearim.

David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years.
The age of David is conclusive as to the fact that the earlier years of Saul's reign (during which Jonathan grew up to be a man) are passed over in silence, and that the events narrated from 1 Samuel 13 to the end of the book did not occupy more than 10 years. If David was 20 years old at the time he killed Goliath, four years in Saul's service, four years of wandering from place to place, one year and four months in the country of the Philistines, and a few months after Saul's death, would make up the 10 years necessary to bring him to the age of 30.

In Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months: and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty and three years over all Israel and Judah.
And the king and his men went to Jerusalem unto the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land: which spake unto David, saying, Except thou take away the blind and the lame, thou shalt not come in hither: thinking, David cannot come in hither.
David immediately after being anointed king of Israel, probably wished to signalize his accession by an exploit which would be popular with all Israel, and especially with Saul's tribe, Benjamin. He discerned the importance of having Jerusalem for his capital both because it belonged as much to Benjamin as to Judah, and on account of its strong position.

Except thou take away the blind ... - Rather, "and (the Jebusite) spake to David, saying, Thou shalt not come hither, but the blind and the lame shall keep thee off," i. e. so far shalt thou be from taking the stronghold from us, that the lame and blind shall suffice to defend the place.

Nevertheless David took the strong hold of Zion: the same is the city of David.
The stronghold of Zion - Or castle 1 Chronicles 11:5, 1 Chronicles 11:7. The ancient Zion was the hill on which the temple stood, and the castle seems to have been immediately to the north of the temple. The modern Zion lies to the southwest of the temple.

The same is the city of David - The name afterward given to it 2 Samuel 5:9, and by which it was known in the writer's time.

And David said on that day, Whosoever getteth up to the gutter, and smiteth the Jebusites, and the lame and the blind, that are hated of David's soul, he shall be chief and captain. Wherefore they said, The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.
i. e. "Whosoever will smite the Jebusites, let him reach both the lame and the blind, who are the hated of David's soul, by the gutter or water-course, and he shall be chief." The only access to the citadel was where the water had worn a channel (some understand a subterranean channel), and where there was, in consequence, some vegetation in the rock. Joab (see the marginal reference) took the hint, and with all the activity that had distinguished his brother Anabel 2 Samuel 2:18, climbed up first. The blind and the lame are either literally such, placed there in derision by the Jebusites who thought the stronghold impregnable, or they are the Jebusite garrison, so called in derision by David.

Wherefore they said ... - i. e. it became a proverb (as in 1 Samuel 19:24). The proverb seems merely to have arisen from the blind and the lame being the hated of David's soul, and hence, to have been used proverbially of any that were hated, or unwelcome, or disagreeable.

So David dwelt in the fort, and called it the city of David. And David built round about from Millo and inward.
David dwelt in the fort - or stronghold, (as in 2 Samuel 5:7) i. e. eventually, when the buildings were completed, which may not have been for two or three years. Millo appears to have been a fortress of some kind, the northern defense of the city of David, and to have been a part of the original Canaanite defenses of Zion, as appears probable also from there having been a fortress called the house of Millo in the Canaanite city of Shechem. (Judges 9:6 note, and 2 Samuel 9:1-13 :20.) Millo may be the native name. Some identify it with the great platform called the Haram es Sherif.

David built round about - Probably meaning built his own house and other houses and streets, all, in short, that caused it to be coiled the city of David. (Compare 1 Chronicles 11:8.) The buildings were within, on the south of Millo, so as to be protected by it on the north, as they were east, west. and south, by the precipitous ravines.

And David went on, and grew great, and the LORD God of hosts was with him.
And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house.
Hiram king of Tyre - Now mentioned for the first time. He survived David, and continued his friendship to Solomon (marginal references). The news of the capture of the city of the Jebusites had doubtless reached Tyre, and created a great impression of David's power.

And David perceived that the LORD had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for his people Israel's sake.
And David took him more concubines and wives out of Jerusalem, after he was come from Hebron: and there were yet sons and daughters born to David.
And these be the names of those that were born unto him in Jerusalem; Shammua, and Shobab, and Nathan, and Solomon,
Ibhar also, and Elishua, and Nepheg, and Japhia,
And Elishama, and Eliada, and Eliphalet.
But when the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines came up to seek David; and David heard of it, and went down to the hold.
The hold - Not the same place which is so named in 2 Samuel 5:7, 2 Samuel 5:9, but probably the cave (or hold) of Adullam 2 Samuel 23:13. The invasion most probably took place before David had completed his buildings in the city of David; and is probably referred to in 2 Samuel 23:8-17.

The Philistines also came and spread themselves in the valley of Rephaim.
And David inquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up to the Philistines? wilt thou deliver them into mine hand? And the LORD said unto David, Go up: for I will doubtless deliver the Philistines into thine hand.
And David came to Baalperazim, and David smote them there, and said, The LORD hath broken forth upon mine enemies before me, as the breach of waters. Therefore he called the name of that place Baalperazim.
Baal-perazim - Master or possessor of breaches, equivalent to place of breaches. It was on a hill near Gibeon (see the marginal reference).

And there they left their images, and David and his men burned them.
And there they left their images - An indication of the precipitancy of their flight, and the suddenness with which the Israelites burst upon them like a "breach of waters." The King James Version rendering "Burned them," does not give a translation (compare the margin), but a gloss, warranted by the explanation given in marginal references

And the Philistines came up yet again, and spread themselves in the valley of Rephaim.
And when David inquired of the LORD, he said, Thou shalt not go up; but fetch a compass behind them, and come upon them over against the mulberry trees.
The mulberry trees - Rather, the Bacah-tree, and found abundantly near Mecca. It is very like the balsam-tree, and probably derives its name from the exudation of the sap in drops like tears when a leaf is torn off. Some think the valley of Baca Psalm 84:6 was so called from this plant growing there.

And let it be, when thou hearest the sound of a going in the tops of the mulberry trees, that then thou shalt bestir thyself: for then shall the LORD go out before thee, to smite the host of the Philistines.
And David did so, as the LORD had commanded him; and smote the Philistines from Geba until thou come to Gazer.
Geba - Better, as in marginal reference "Gibeon." Gazer should be "Gezer" (Joshua 10:33, etc.); it lay between the nether Bethhoron and the sea; on the direct route therefore which the Philistines, fleeing from Gibeon, would take. The exact site has now been identified (1 Kings 9:16).

Notes on the Bible by Albert Barnes [1834].
Text Courtesy of Internet Sacred Texts Archive.

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