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Adam Clarke Commentary

1 Chronicles 19

Introduction

David sends a congratulatory message to Hanun, king of Ammon, 1 Chronicles 19:1 , 1 Chronicles 19:2 . He treats the messengers with great incivility, 1 Chronicles 19:3 , 1 Chronicles 19:4 . David is exasperated, but condoles with the degraded messengers, 1 Chronicles 19:5 . The Ammonites prepare for war, and hire thirty-two thousand chariots, and besiege Medeba, 1 Chronicles 19:6 , 1 Chronicles 19:7 . David sends Joab to attack them; he defeats the Syrians and Ammonites, 1 Chronicles 19:8 -15. The discomfited Syrians recruit their army, and invade David's territories beyond Jordan; he attacks them, kills Shophach their general, seven thousand charioteers, and forty thousand of their infantry, 1 Chronicles 19:16 -18. The Syrians abandon the Ammonites and make a separate peace with David, 1 Chronicles 19:19 .

Verse 1

Now it came to pass - See the same history, 2 Samuel 10:1 (note), etc., and the notes there.

Verse 4

And cut off their garments in the midst - Usque ad eorum, pudenda. So the Targum, Jarchi, and others; leaving exposed what nature and decency require to be concealed. See on 2 Samuel 10:4 (note).

Verse 6

Chariots and horsemen out of Mesopotamia - These are not mentioned in the parallel place in Samuel; probably they did not arrive till the Ammonites and their other allies were defeated by the Israelites in the first battle.

Verse 7

Thirty and two thousand - The whole number mentioned in Samuel is, Syrians, of Beth-rehob, and of Zoba, twenty thousand; of King Maacah, one thousand; of Ish-tob, twelve thousand; in all thirty-three thousand. Of chariots or cavalry there is no mention. These could not have been the whole army.

Verse 13

Be of good courage - See the note on 2 Samuel 10:12 .

Verse 18

Forty thousand footmen - See this number accounted for in the note on 2 Samuel 10:18 (note).

Verse 19

They made peace with David, and became his servants - See on 2 Samuel 10:19 (note), and the concluding note in that place; and see for omissions in Chronicles, the preface to these books.

1 Chronicles 19


  1 Now it came to pass after this, that Nahash the king of the children of Ammon died, and his son reigned in his stead.
  2 And David said, I will shew kindness unto Hanun the son of Nahash, because his father shewed kindness to me. And David sent messengers to comfort him concerning his father. So the servants of David came into the land of the children of Ammon to Hanun, to comfort him.
  3 But the princes of the children of Ammon said to Hanun, Thinkest thou that David doth honour thy father, that he hath sent comforters unto thee? are not his servants come unto thee for to search, and to overthrow, and to spy out the land?
  4 Wherefore Hanun took David's servants, and shaved them, and cut off their garments in the midst hard by their buttocks, and sent them away.
  5 Then there went certain, and told David how the men were served. And he sent to meet them: for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and then return.
  6 And when the children of Ammon saw that they had made themselves odious to David, Hanun and the children of Ammon sent a thousand talents of silver to hire them chariots and horsemen out of Mesopotamia, and out of Syriamaachah, and out of Zobah.
  7 So they hired thirty and two thousand chariots, and the king of Maachah and his people; who came and pitched before Medeba. And the children of Ammon gathered themselves together from their cities, and came to battle.
  8 And when David heard of it, he sent Joab, and all the host of the mighty men.
  9 And the children of Ammon came out, and put the battle in array before the gate of the city: and the kings that were come were by themselves in the field.
  10 Now when Joab saw that the battle was set against him before and behind, he chose out of all the choice of Israel, and put them in array against the Syrians.
  11 And the rest of the people he delivered unto the hand of Abishai his brother, and they set themselves in array against the children of Ammon.
  12 And he said, If the Syrians be too strong for me, then thou shalt help me: but if the children of Ammon be too strong for thee, then I will help thee.
  13 Be of good courage, and let us behave ourselves valiantly for our people, and for the cities of our God: and let the LORD do that which is good in his sight.
  14 So Joab and the people that were with him drew nigh before the Syrians unto the battle; and they fled before him.
  15 And when the children of Ammon saw that the Syrians were fled, they likewise fled before Abishai his brother, and entered into the city. Then Joab came to Jerusalem.
  16 And when the Syrians saw that they were put to the worse before Israel, they sent messengers, and drew forth the Syrians that were beyond the river: and Shophach the captain of the host of Hadarezer went before them.
  17 And it was told David; and he gathered all Israel, and passed over Jordan, and came upon them, and set the battle in array against them. So when David had put the battle in array against the Syrians, they fought with him.
  18 But the Syrians fled before Israel; and David slew of the Syrians seven thousand men which fought in chariots, and forty thousand footmen, and killed Shophach the captain of the host.
  19 And when the servants of Hadarezer saw that they were put to the worse before Israel, they made peace with David, and became his servants: neither would the Syrians help the children of Ammon any more.

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