2 Samuel 2:30
When Joab returned from pursuing Abner, he gathered all the troops. In addition to Asahel, nineteen of David's servants were missing,
Strength and WeaknessH. E. Stone.2 Samuel 2:1-32
Attempts At Conciliation DefeatedW. G. Blaikie, M. A.2 Samuel 2:5-32
The Sorrows of VictoryB. Dale 2 Samuel 2:30-32

2 Samuel 2:30-32. - (GIBEON, BETHLEHEM, HEBRON.)
What a glorious thing must be a victory, sir! it was remarked to the Duke of Wellington. "The greatest tragedy in the world," he replied, "except a defeat" ('Recollections,' by S. Rogers). The rejoicing by which it is attended, is usually mingled with weeping and sometimes swallowed up of grief. Various persons are thus affected for various reasons. Think of the sorrows endured:

1. At the fall of fellow soldiers. "Nineteen men and Asahel" (vers. 23, 30) who come not to the muster after sunset (vers. 24, 30), nor answer to the roll call, but lie in the chill embrace of death. "Alas! fallen are the heroes."

2. In the burial of the dead. (Ver. 32.) No opportunity is afforded for seeking out and burying all the slain; but the remains of Asahel are carried across the hills by night (ver. 29) and laid in the tomb of his father in Bethlehem, where the sorrow of the preceding day is renewed. It reminds us of a pathetic scene of recent times described in the familiar lines —

"We buried him darkly at dead of night,
The sod with our bayonets turning;
By the struggling moonbeam's misty light,
And our lanterns dimly burning."


3. When the news is conveyed to their homes. "They came to Hebron at break of day;" a day of bitter grief to many bereaved hearts. "By the slaughter of a war there are thousands who weep in unpitied and unnoticed secrecy whom the world does not see; and thousands who retire in silence to hopeless poverty for whom the world does not care" (Dymond).

4. For the miseries of fellow sufferers; the enemy - defeated, bereaved, and mourning - for they too are "brethren," and cannot but be remembered with sympathy and pity.

5. Concerning the state of the departed. A soldier's life is not favourable to piety and preparation for heaven, and the passions by which he is commonly swayed when his earthly probation is suddenly terminated are such that we can seldom contemplate his entrance into the eternal world with feelings of cheerfulness and hope. "After death the judgment."

6. On account of the animosities of the living, which are increased by conflict and victory, and are certain to be a source of future trouble (2 Samuel 3:1, 30, 33).

7. Because of the dishonour done to the cause of the Lord's Anointed. Religion suffers, the progress of the kingdom is hindered, and the King himself is "grieved for the misery of Israel." "The victory that day was turned into mourning" (2 Samuel 19:2). So is every victory gained by "the devouring sword." But there are victories which are bloodless and tearless, sources of unmingled joy; spiritual victories over ignorance and sin won by and through the might of him at whose birth the angels sang upon those hills of Bethlehem, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men." - D.

And they dwelt in the cities of Hebron, and the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David.
The death of Saul did not end David's domestic troubles, and did not leave him free, for a considerable number of years, to employ his energies for the good of the whole kingdom. It appears that his chastisement for allying himself with Achish was not yet exhausted. The more remote fruits of that step were now only beginning to emerge, and years elapsed before its evil influence ceased to be felt. The close alliance which had subsisted between him and the great enemy of his country, arid author of its disasters, could hardly fail to render him an object of distrust and suspicion to many of his countrymen. All his former achievements against the Philistines — the cruel injustice of Saul which had driven him in despair to Achish — his recent services against the Amalekites — the generous use he had made of the spoil — and the influence of his high personal character, however powerfully they might tell is his immediate neighbourhood, would have but little weight in his favour in the more distant parts of the kingdom. For after a great disaster, the public mind is often exasperated, and ready to lay an enormous amount of blame on any one who can be assailed with any plausibility. Beyond all doubt, David would come in for his full share of such attacks. It was, therefore, in every way the most expedient course for David to establish his quarters immediately in one of the cities of Judah. But in the admirable frame of mind in which he now was, he declined taking this step, indispensable though it seemed, until he had obtained Divine direction regarding it The form in which he made the inquiry shows how clear the expediency of going up to one of the cities of Judah was to his own mind. The city of Hebron, situated about eighteen miles to the south of Jerusalem, was the place to which he was directed to go. In was a spot abounding in holy and elevating associations. It was among the first, if not the very first haunt of civilised men in the land — so ancient, that it is said to have been built seven years before Zoan in Egypt (Numbers 13:22). The Father of the Faithful had often pitched his tent under its spreading oaks, and among its olive groves and vine-clad hills the gentle Isaac had meditated at eventide. There, Abraham had watched the last breath of his beloved Sarah, the companion of his wanderings and the partner of his faith; and there, from the sons of Heth, he had purchased the sepulchre where so much holy and venerable dust was deposited, in the hope of a glorious resurrection. Thither Joseph and his brethren had brought up the body of Jacob, laying it, in fulfilment of his dying command, beside the bones of Leah. It had been s, halting-place of the twelve spies, when they went up to search the land; and the cluster of grapes which they carried back was cut from the neighbouring valley, where the finest grapes of the country are still found. The sight of its venerable cave had doubtless elevated the faith and courage of Joshua and Caleb, when the other spies became so faithless and fearful. In the division of the land it had been assigned to Caleb, one of the noblest spirits the nation ever produced; and afterwards it had been made one of the Levitical cities of refuge. No place could have recalled more vividly the lessons of departed worth, and the victories of early faith, or abounded more in memorials of the blessedness of following the Lord. It was a token of God's kindness to David that He directed him to make Hebron his headquarters. And it was a further token of His goodness, that no sooner had David gone to Hebron, than "the men of Judah came and anointed him king over the house of Judah."

(W. G. Blaikie, M. A.)

Anointed first by Samuel in the secrecy of his lather's house, he was now anointed king over his own people; just as the Lord Jesus, of whom he was the great exemplar and type, was anointed first by the banks of the Jordan, and again as the representative of His people, when He ascended for them into the presence of the Father, and was set as King on the holy hill of Zion. We cannot turn from this second anointing without emphasising the obvious lesson that at each great crisis of our life, and especially when standing on the threshold of some new and enlarged sphere of service, we should seek and receive a fresh anointing to fit us to fulfil its fresh demands. There should be successive and repeated anointings in our life-history as our opportunities widen out in ever-increasing circles.

(F. B. Meyer, B. A.)

Abigail, Abishai, Abner, Ahinoam, Asahel, Asherites, Ashurites, Asshurites, Benjamin, Benjaminites, Benjamites, David, Gibeon, Ishbosheth, Jabesh, Jezreel, Jezreelitess, Jizreelitess, Joab, Nabal, Ner, Saul, Zeruiah
Ammah, Arabah, Bethlehem, Carmel, Giah, Gibeon, Gilead, Hebron, Helkath-hazzurim, Jabesh-gilead, Jezreel, Jordan River, Mahanaim
Abner, Addition, Asahel, As'ahel, Assembled, Besides, David, David's, Fighting, Gathered, Gathereth, Got, Joab, Jo'ab, Lacked, Lacking, Missing, Nineteen, Pursuing, Pursuit, Returned, Servants
1. David, by God's direction, with his company goes up to Hebron
4. where he is made king of Judah
5. He commends them of Jabesh Gilead for their king of Israel
8. Abner makes Ishbosheth king of Israel
12. A mortal skirmish between twelve of Abner's and twelve of Joab's men.
18. Asahel is slain
25. At Abner's motion, Joab sounds a retreat
32. Asahel's burial

Dictionary of Bible Themes
2 Samuel 2:28

     5595   trumpet

The Bright Dawn of a Reign
'And it came to pass after this, that David enquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah? And the Lord said unto him, Go up. And David said, Whither shall I go up? And He said, Unto Hebron. 2. So David went up thither, and his two wives also, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail, Nabal's wife, the Carmelite. 3. And his men that were with him did David bring up, every man with his household: and they dwelt in the cities of Hebron. 4. And the men of Judah came, and there
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The King.
We have now to turn and see the sudden change of fortune which lifted the exile to a throne. The heavy cloud which had brooded so long over the doomed king broke in lightning crash on the disastrous field of Gilboa. Where is there a sadder and more solemn story of the fate of a soul which makes shipwreck "of faith and of a good conscience," than that awful page which tells how, godless, wretched, mad with despair and measureless pride, he flung himself on his bloody sword, and died a suicide's death,
Alexander Maclaren—The Life of David

This Affection the Martyrs of Christ Contending for the Truth did Overcome...
10. This affection the Martyrs of Christ contending for the truth did overcome: and it is no marvel that they despised that whereof they should, when death was overpast, have no feeling, when they could not by those tortures, which while alive they did feel, be overcome. God was able, no doubt, (even as He permitted not the lion when it had slain the Prophet, to touch his body further, and of a slayer made it to be a keeper): He was able, I say, to have kept the slain bodies of His own from the dogs
St. Augustine—On Care to Be Had for the Dead.

The First Chaldaean Empire and the Hyksos in Egypt
Syria: the part played by it in the ancient world--Babylon and the first Chaldaean empire--The dominion of the Hyksos: Ahmosis. Some countries seem destined from their origin to become the battle-fields of the contending nations which environ them. Into such regions, and to their cost, neighbouring peoples come from century to century to settle their quarrels and bring to an issue the questions of supremacy which disturb their little corner of the world. The nations around are eager for the possession
G. Maspero—History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, V 4

How the Meek and the Passionate are to be Admonished.
(Admonition 17.) Differently to be admonished are the meek and the passionate. For sometimes the meek, when they are in authority, suffer from the torpor of sloth, which is a kindred disposition, and as it were placed hard by. And for the most part from the laxity of too great gentleness they soften the force of strictness beyond need. But on the other hand the passionate, in that they are swept on into frenzy of mind by the impulse of anger, break up the calm of quietness, and so throw into
Leo the Great—Writings of Leo the Great

Alike from the literary and the historical point of view, the book[1] of Samuel stands midway between the book of Judges and the book of Kings. As we have already seen, the Deuteronomic book of Judges in all probability ran into Samuel and ended in ch. xii.; while the story of David, begun in Samuel, embraces the first two chapters of the first book of Kings. The book of Samuel is not very happily named, as much of it is devoted to Saul and the greater part to David; yet it is not altogether inappropriate,
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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