2 Samuel 3:20
So Abner came to David to Hebron, and twenty men with him. And David made Abner and the men that were with him a feast.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(20) Twenty men.—These were doubtless representative men, selected by Abner from Israel and Benjamin to accompany him and confirm his report. The feast which David made for them is not to be understood of mere conviviality, but of a solemn sacrificial feast, such as was customary in ancient times in connection with important negotiations. (See Genesis 26:30; Genesis 31:54; 1Kings 3:15.)

3:7-21 Many, like Abner, are not above committing base crimes, who are too proud to bear reproof, or even the suspicion of being guilty. While men go on in sin, and apparently without concern, they are often conscious that they are fighting against God. Many mean to serve their own purposes; and will betray those who trust them, when they can get any advantage. Yet the Lord serves his own designs, even by those who are thus actuated by revenge, ambition, or lust; but as they intend not to honour him, in the end they will be thrown aside with contempt. There was real generosity both to Michal and to the memory of Saul, in David's receiving the former, remembering probably how once he owed his life to her affection, and knowing that she was separated from him partly by her father's authority. Let no man set his heart on that which he is not entitled to. If any disagreement has separated husband and wife, as they expect the blessing of God, let them be reconciled, and live together in love.Twenty men - These were doubtless his official suite as Ish-bosheth's envoy to conduct Michal to David, but privy and consenting to his intrigue with David. It is remarkable that not a word should be said about the meeting of David and Michal. 17-21. Abner had communication with the elders of Israel—He spoke the truth in impressing their minds with the well-known fact of David's divine designation to the kingdom. But he acted a base and hypocritical part in pretending that his present movement was prompted by religious motives, when it sprang entirely from malice and revenge against Ish-bosheth. The particular appeal of the Benjamites was a necessary policy; their tribe enjoyed the honor of giving birth to the royal dynasty of Saul; they would naturally be disinclined to lose that prestige. They were, besides, a determined people, whose contiguity to Judah might render them troublesome and dangerous. The enlistment of their interest, therefore, in the scheme, would smooth the way for the adhesion of the other tribes; and Abner enjoyed the most convenient opportunity of using his great influence in gaining over that tribe while escorting Michal to David with a suitable equipage. The mission enabled him to cover his treacherous designs against his master—to draw the attention of the elders and people to David as uniting in himself the double recommendation of being the nominee of Jehovah, no less than a connection of the royal house of Saul, and, without suspicion of any dishonorable motives, to advocate policy of terminating the civil discord, by bestowing the sovereignty on the husband of Michal. In the same character of public ambassador, he was received and feted by David; and while, ostensibly, the restoration of Michal was the sole object of his visit, he busily employed himself in making private overtures to David for bringing over to his cause those tribes which he had artfully seduced. Abner pursued a course unworthy of an honorable man and though his offer was accepted by David, the guilt and infamy of the transaction were exclusively his. Which in those times was customary when persons entered into covenant. See Genesis 26:30 31:44,46. So Abner came to David to Hebron, and twenty men with him,.... Before he went privately to him, and conferred with him, but now, having gained so many of the Israelites in favour of David, he appeared more publicly and brought perhaps some of the principal of the nation with film, to join in the league and covenant to be made:

and David made Abner and the men that were with him a feast; not only in honour to them, as great personages, especially Abner, and as expressive of reconciliation; but as a token of the covenant they were entering into, and for the confirmation of it; it being usual to have feasts when covenants were made; see Genesis 26:28.

So Abner came to David to Hebron, and twenty men with him. And David made Abner and the men that were with him a feast.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
20. twenty men with him] They formed the official escort sent by Ish-bosheth to convey Michal back to David, but were in all probability privy to the secret purpose of Abner’s visit.Verse 20. - Twenty men with him. These, we may feel sure, were not common soldiers, but chieftains selected from those elders who were on David's side; and, though the honourable escort of Michal was the pretext, yet Ishbosheth must have felt sure that more was intended. Most of them, however, would join Abner on the road, especially those who represented Benjamin and the western tribes. On arriving at Hebron they were honourably received, and, after a feast, they settled the conditions on which David was to be made king of all Israel; and Abner then departed in peace, after giving the assurance that all the tribes would now gladly assemble, and by solemn compact and covenant make David their king. The terms of the league, and the conditions agreed upon for Ishbosheth, are not mentioned, because upon Abner's death the whole plan fell to the ground, and David had to wait for many years before his hopes were fulfilled. But we gather from this covenant and 2 Samuel 5:3 (where see note) that the early kings of Israel were not absolute monarchs. Thereupon, namely when Abner had assented to this condition, David sent messengers to Ishbosheth with this demand: "Give (me) my wife Michal, whom I espoused to me for a hundred foreskins of the Philistines" (see 1 Samuel 18:25, 1 Samuel 18:27). David sent to Ishbosheth to demand the restoration of Michal, that her return might take place in a duly legal form, "that it might be apparent that he had dealt justly with Paltiel in the presence of his king, and that he had received his wife back again, and had not taken her by force from her husband" (Seb. Schmidt).
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