2 Samuel 2:7
Therefore now let your hands be strengthened, and be you valiant: for your master Saul is dead, and also the house of Judah have anointed me king over them.
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2:1-7. After the death of Saul, many went to David at Ziklag,David had already been anointed by Samuel 1 Samuel 16:13. His first anointing indicated God's secret purpose, his second the accomplishment of that purpose. (Compare the case of Saul, 1 Samuel 10:1; 1 Samuel 11:14.) David was anointed again king over Israel 2 Samuel 5:3. The interval between the anointing of the Lord Jesus as the Christ of God, and His taking to Himself His kingdom and glory, seems to be thus typified. 5-7. David sent messengers unto the men of Jabesh-gilead—There can be no doubt that this message of thanks for their bold and dangerous enterprise in rescuing the bodies of Saul and his sons was an expression of David's personal and genuine feeling of satisfaction. At the same time, it was a stroke of sound and timely policy. In this view the announcement of his royal power in Judah, accompanied by the pledge of his protection of the men of Jabesh-gilead, should they be exposed to danger for their adventure at Beth-shan, would bear an important significance in all parts of the country and hold out an assurance that he would render them the same timely and energetic succor that Saul had done at the beginning of his reign. Be ye valiant; be not afraid lest the Philistines should punish you for this fact, but take good courage, I will defend yon.

For your master Saul is dead, or

though your master Saul be dead, and so your hearts may faint within you, as if you were now sheep without a shepherd. Now therefore let your hands be strengthened, and be ye valiant,.... And not be afraid of the Philistines, who might resent their conduct in taking away from them the bodies of Saul and his sons, whom they had hung up in triumph; and these men might fear they would bring their armies against them, and destroy them; but David bids them be of good heart and courage, and not be afraid of them:

for your master Saul is dead; or rather "though" (a) he is dead; for that he was dead they knew full well, having buried him, and needed no information of it; but being dead, they might be discouraged, as having none to protect and defend them, or come to their relief as he did, should they be attacked:

and also the house of Judah have anointed me king over them; or "for even", or "notwithstanding" (b); and this therefore being the case, he would take their parts, and help and assist them; and which he suggests to them, to invite them to own him as their king also, and put themselves under his protection.

(a) "licet enim", V. L. "quamvis", Piscator. So Pool and Patrick. (b) "tamen", V. L. "nam similiter", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.

Therefore now let your hands be strengthened, and be ye valiant: for your master Saul is dead, and also the house of Judah have anointed me {e} king over them.

(e) So that you shall not want a captain and a defender.

7. be ye valiant] The following clause, which might be rendered “for though your master Saul is dead, yet the house of Judah, &c.,” makes it plain that David hoped the men of Jabesh would join him, and hold the land of Gilead against the Philistines until he could come to their aid. As however Gilead became the head-quarters of his rival Ish-bosheth, it does not appear that the embassy was successful.David's return to Hebron, and anointing as king over Judah. - 2 Samuel 2:1. "After this," i.e., after the facts related in 2 Samuel 1, David inquired of the Lord, namely through the Urim, whether he should go up to one of the towns of Judah, and if so, to which. He received the reply, "to Hebron," a place peculiarly well adapted for a capital, not only from its situation upon the mountains, and in the centre of the tribe, but also from the sacred reminiscences connected with it from the olden time. David could have no doubt that, now that Saul was dead, he would have to give up his existing connection with the Philistines and return to his own land. But as the Philistines had taken the greater part of the Israelitish territory through their victory at Gilboa, and there was good reason to fear that the adherents of Saul, more especially the army with Abner, Saul's cousin, at its head, would refuse to acknowledge David as king, and consequently a civil war might break out, David would not return to his own land without the express permission of the Lord. 2 Samuel 1:2-4. When he went with his wives and all his retinue (vid., 1 Samuel 27:2) to Hebron and the "cities of Hebron," i.e., the places belonging to the territory of Hebron, the men of Judah came (in the persons of their elders) and anointed him king over the house, i.e., the tribe, of Judah. Just as Saul was made king by the tribes after his anointing by Samuel (1 Samuel 11:15), so David was first of all anointed by Judah here, and afterwards by the rest of the tribes (2 Samuel 5:3).

A new section commences with ויּגּדוּ. The first act of David as king was to send messengers to Jabesh, to thank the inhabitants of this city for burying Saul, and to announce to them his own anointing as king. As this expression of thanks involved a solemn recognition of the departed king, by which David divested himself of even the appearance of a rebellion, the announcement of the anointing he had received contained an indirect summons to the Jabeshites to recognise him as their king now.

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