2 Samuel 2:4-7
And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah. And they told David, saying…
The first recorded act of David after he became king was of a kingly character. It is not improbable that the persons who informed him of what the men of Jabesh had done supposed that he had little love for the memory of Saul, and was apprehensive of Opposition from his "house" (ver. 8), and wished to excite his jealousy against them; seeking to insinuate themselves into his confidence by detraction from the good name of others. But, instead of yielding to suspicion, he sent a message of peace and good will. His commendation was -
I. WELL DESERVED by men who had performed a noble deed (see 1 Samuel 31:11-13). Their conduct displayed:
1. Gratitude toward their benefactor, whose kindness they returned with kindness.
2. Fidelity toward their king, whose faithfulness they repaid with faithfulness.
3. Reverence toward their God. "To bury the dead with the Jews was always reckoned an instance of humanity and kindness, and, indeed, of piety; an act done in imitation of God, who buried Moses; and so it might be expected the Divine blessing would attend it" (Gill).
II. WORTHILY BESTOWED by a king of royal disposition.
1. Unsuspecting. Others might find reason for suspecting their intentions, but he could see only what was deserving of praise.
2. Generous, with respect to Saul; appreciating and sympathizing with their kindness to their master, even though he had been his enemy. "Use the memory of thy predecessor fairly and tenderly; for if thou dost not, it is a debt will sure be paid when thou art gone" (Bacon).
3. Practical. "David sent messengers," etc.
4. Devout. "Blessed be ye of Jehovah," etc. Recognizing God as the Observer and Rewarder of men, he invoked for them his commendation and blessing - kindness for kindness, faithfulness for faithfulness - as the highest good (Psalm 40:11; Psalm 86:15; Matthew 5:7; Hebrews 6:10).
5. Becoming. "And I also" - as one whose office it becomes to observe and recompense good as well as evil - "requite you this kindness" (send you this message), "because," etc.
6. Encouraging and stimulating. "And now," as heretofore, "let your hands be strong, and be ye valiant" in the new circumstances which have arisen through the death of your master.
7. Candid, considerate, and dignified. "For me have the house of Judah anointed king over them." He indicated delicately, but not obscurely, his claims to their allegiance, and assured them of his protection and help. "To act nobly is always the best policy."
"Where'er a noble deed is wrought,
Where'er is spoken a noble thought,
Our hearts in glad surprise
To higher levels rise.
The tidal wave of deeper souls
Into our inmost being rolls,
And lifts us unawares
Out of all meaner cares.
Honour to those whose words or deeds
Thus help us in our daily needs;
And by their overflow
Raise us from what is low!"
III. WISELY ADAPTED to effect a laudable end.
1. To confirm good men in a virtuous and praiseworthy course.
2. To win the confidence and support of such men.
3. To secure the benefit of their services to the nation and the kingdom of God.
4. To manifest to all the spirit of a just and generous rule.
1. One good action tends to produce another; in performing it one knows not how far its influence may reach, or what blessings it may bring upon himself.
2. Although we ought not to do good simply for the sake of reward, yet the desire of the approval of the good is a proper motive of action.
3. We should be as ready to give commendation as to receive it.
4. We should desire, above all things, the approbation of God. - D.
Parallel VersesKJV: And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah. And they told David, saying, That the men of Jabeshgilead were they that buried Saul.