Bible Commentaries

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

2 Samuel 14

Verse 2

Tekoah - In the south of Judah, six miles from Bethlehem, the modern Tekua. The rough, wild district was well suited for the lawless profession of the wise woman; it abounds in caves, as does the country near Endor.

Verse 3

Come to the king - The king as a judge was accessible to all his subjects (2 Samuel 15:2; compare 1 Kings 3:16).

Verse 4

Spake - Seems to be an accidental error for came, which is found in many manuscipts and versions.

Help - literally, save (see the margin). It is the same cry as Hosanna, i. e. save now Psalm 118:25.

Verse 7

The whole family … - This indicates that all the king‘s sons, and the whole court, were against Absalom, and that the knowledge of this was what hindered David from yielding to his affection and recalling him.

Verse 8

I will give charge … - Indirectly granting her petition, and assenting that her son‘s life should be spared.

Verse 9

The iniquity be on me … - Compare the principle in Genesis 9:5-6; Numbers 35:30-34. The woman therefore says, if there is any such guilt in sparing my son, may it rest upon me and my house, not on David and his throne. Compare 2 Samuel 3:28. The cunning speech of the woman extracted a more direct promise of protection from the king 2 Samuel 14:1.

Verse 12

Having at last obtained what she wanted, the king‘s oath that her son should not die, she proceeds to the case of Absalom. The meaning of 2 Samuel 14:13 may be paraphrased thus: “If you have done right as regards my son, how is it that you harbor such a purpose of vengeance against Absalom as to keep him, one of God‘s people, an outcast in a pagan country, far from the worship of the God of Israel? Upon your own showing you are guilty of a great fault in not allowing Absalom to return.”

The king doth speak … - literally, “And from the king speaking this word (this sentence of absolution to my son) he is as one guilty; i. e. the sentence you have pronounced in favor of my son condemns your own conduct toward Absalom.”

Verse 14

His banished - The use of the word as applied to one of the people of God driven into a pagan land, is well illustrated by Deuteronomy 30:4-5; Jeremiah 40:12; Micah 4:6; Zephaniah 3:19.

Neither doth God respect any person - Some prefer the margin: “And God does not take away life, in the case of every sin that deserves death, e. g. David‘s own case 2 Samuel 12:13, but devises devices that the wanderer may not be forever expelled from him, i. e., for the return of penitent sinners.”

Verse 15

The people have made me afraid - She pretends still that her suit was a real one, and that she was in fear of the people (“the whole family,” 2 Samuel 14:7) setting upon her and her son.

Verse 17

As an angel of God - Rather, as “the” Angel of God; and therefore whatever David decided would be right.

Verse 24

Let him not see my face - We are not told why David adopted this half-measure. Possibly Bath-sheba‘s influence may have been exerted to keep Absalom in disgrace for the sake of Solomon.

Verse 26

Two hundred shekels … - The exact weight cannot be determined. If these “shekels after the king‘s weight” were the same as “shekels of the sanctuary,” the weight would be about 6 lbs., which is incredible; “twenty” shekels is more probable.

Verse 27

Three sons - These probably died in infancy (see the marginal reference). From Tamar must have been born Maachah, the mother of Abijah, and the favorite wife of Rehoboam 1 Kings 15:2; 2 Chronicles 11:20-22.

Verse 33

Kissed - This was the pledge of reconciliation. (See the marginal references and Genesis 45:15.)

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 14". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/bnb/2-samuel-14.html. 1870.