1 Samuel 22:11
Then the king sent to call Ahimelech the priest, the son of Ahitub, and all his father's house, the priests that were in Nob: and they came all of them to the king.
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(11) Then the king sent to call Ahimelech.—This sending for all the priestly house to Gibeah when alone Ahimelech was to blame—if blame there was—looks as though Saul and Doeg had determined upon the wholesale massacre which followed.

1 Samuel 22:11. The king sent to call Ahimelech and all his father’s house —

The priests of the house of Eli, whom God had threatened to cut off, chap. 1 Samuel 2:31; and which threatening, by a strange chain of providences, was now about to be fulfilled.22:6-19 See the nature of jealous malice and its pitiful arts. Saul looks upon all about him as his enemies, because they do not just say as he says. In Ahimelech's answer to Saul we have the language of conscious innocence. But what wickedness will not the evil spirit hurry men to when he gets the dominion! Saul alleges that which was utterly false and unproved. But the most bloody tyrants have found instruments of their cruelty as barbarous as themselves. Doeg, having murdered the priests, went to the city, Nob, and put all to the sword there. Nothing so vile but those may do it, who have provoked God to give them up to their hearts' lusts. Yet this was the accomplishment of the threatenings against the house of Eli. Though Saul was unrighteous in doing this, yet God was righteous in permitting it. No word of God shall fall to the ground.He inquired of the Lord ... - This was not true, but Ahimelech's going to fetch the sword from behind the ephod might have given occasion to the belief on Doeg's part that he had put on the ephod to inquire of the Lord for David. 10. he inquired of the Lord for him—Some suppose that this was a malicious fiction of Doeg to curry favor with the king, but Ahimelech seems to acknowledge the fact. The poor simple-minded high priest knew nothing of the existing family feud between Saul and David. The informer, if he knew it, said nothing of the cunning artifice by which David obtained the aid of Ahimelech. The facts looked against him, and the whole priesthood along with him were declared abettors of conspiracy [1Sa 22:16, 17]. All his father’s house; of the house of Eli, which God had threatened to cut off, 1 Samuel 2:31. Then the king sent to call Ahimelech the priest, the son of Ahitub,.... Sent messengers to him, and summoned him to appear before him:

and all his father's house; the family of Eli, which God had threatened to destroy, and now the time was hastening on:

the priests that were in Nob; in which dwelt none but priests, at least these were the chief of the inhabitants, and therefore called the city of the priests, 1 Samuel 22:19,

and they came all of them to the king; not being conscious of any evil they had committed, or that could be charged upon them; or otherwise they would not have appeared, but would have fled to David for protection.

Then the king sent to call Ahimelech the priest, the son of Ahitub, and all his father's house, {h} the priests that were in Nob: and they came all of them to the king.

(h) Which were the remnant of the house of Eli, whose house God threatened to punish.

Verses 11-13. - All his father's house. Doeg's suggestion that the priests were David's allies at once arouses all Saul's worst passions. As if he had determined from the first upon the massacre of the whole body, he sends not merely for Ahimelech, but forevery priest at Nob. Shortly afterwards they arrived, for Nob was close to Gibeah, and Saul himself arraigns them before the court for treason, and recapitulates the three points mentioned by Doeg as conclusive proofs of their guilt. David proceeded thence to Mizpeh in Moab, and placed his parents in safety with the king of the Moabites. His ancestress Ruth was a Moabitess. Mizpeh: literally a watch-tower or mountain height commanding a very extensive prospect. Here it is probably a proper name, belonging to a mountain fastness on the high land, which bounded the Arboth Moab on the eastern side of the Dead Sea, most likely on the mountains of Abarim or Pisgah (Deuteronomy 34:1), and which could easily be reached from the country round Bethlehem, by crossing the Jordan near the point where it entered the Dead Sea. As David came to the king of Moab, the Moabites had probably taken possession of the most southerly portion of the eastern lands of the Israelites; we may also infer this from the fact that, according to 1 Samuel 14:47, Saul had also made war upon Moab, for Mizpeh Moab is hardly to be sought for in the actual land of the Moabites, on the south side of the Arnon (Mojeb). אתּכם ... יצא־נא, "May my father and my mother go out with you." The construction of יצא with את is a pregnant one: to go out of their home and stay with you (Moabites). "Till I know what God will do to me." Being well assured of the justice of his cause, as contrasted with the insane persecutions of Saul, David confidently hoped that God would bring his flight to an end. His parents remained with the king of Moab as long as David was בּמּצוּדה, i.e., upon the mount height, or citadel. This can only refer to the place of refuge which David had found at Mizpeh Moab. For it is perfectly clear from 1 Samuel 22:5, where the prophet Gad calls upon David not to remain any longer בּמּצוּדה, but to return to the land of Judah, that the expression cannot refer either to the cave Adullam, or to any other place of refuge in the neighbourhood of Bethlehem. The prophet Gad had probably come to David from Samuel's school of prophets; but whether he remained with David from that time forward to assist him with his counsel in his several undertakings, cannot be determined, on account of our want of information. In 1 Chronicles 21:9 he is called David's seer. In the last year of David's reign he announced to him the punishment which would fall upon him from God on account of his sin in numbering the people (2 Samuel 24:11.); and according to 1 Chronicles 29:29 he also wrote the acts of David. In consequence of this admonition, David returned to Judah, and went into the wood Hareth, a woody region on the mountains of Judah, which is never mentioned again, and the situation of which is unknown. According to the counsels of God, David was not to seek for refuge outside the land; not only that he might not be estranged from his fatherland and the people of Israel, which would have been opposed to his calling to be the king of Israel, but also that he might learn to trust entirely in the Lord as his only refuge and fortress.
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