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Bible Commentaries

Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

2 Samuel 16

Verse 1

A couple of donkeys saddled - Those that Mephibosheth and his servant should have ridden. See 2 Samuel 19:26 note.

Verse 3

Thy master’s son - Meaning Saul’s grandson 2 Samuel 9:6. David asks the question, evidently hurt at the apparent ingratitude of Mephibosheth. It is impossible to say whether Mephibosheth was quite guiltless or not. If Psalms 116:0 was composed by David, and after the quelling of Absalom’s rebellion, 2 Samuel 16:11 may contain David’s confession of his present hasty judgment 2 Samuel 16:4 in the matter.

Verse 5

Bahurim - See 2 Samuel 3:16 note. It seems to have lain off the road, on a ridge 2 Samuel 16:13, separated from it by a narrow ravine, so that Shimei was out of easy reach though within hearing, and within a stone’s throw 2Sa 16:6, 2 Samuel 16:9.

Shimei, the son of Gera - In the title to Psalms 7:0 he is apparently called “Cush the Benjamite.” On Gera, see Judges 3:15 note.

Verse 7

Come out - Rather, “Go out,” namely, of the land, into banishment. Compare Jeremiah 29:16.

Thou bloody man - See the margin. The Lord’s word to David 1 Chronicles 22:8 was probably known to Shimei and now cast in David’s teeth by him, with special reference to the innocent blood of Uriah.

Verse 8

All the blood of the house of Saul - Shimei probably put to David’s account the death of Saul, and Jonathan, and Abinadab, and Melchishua, slain in battle by the Philistines with whom David was in league; of Ish-bosheth, slain in consequence of David’s league with Abner; that of Abner himself, which he attributed to David’s secret orders; and all the 360 slain in the battle between Joab and Abner 2 Samuel 2:31. Some, too, think that the death of seven men of Saul’s immediate family 2 Samuel 21:8 had occurred before David’s flight, and was referred to by Shimei. Shimei’s hatred and virulence is an indication that the Benjamites resented the loss of royalty in their tribe, even in the palmiest days of David’s monarchy.

Verse 9

This dead dog - See the marginal reference and 2 Samuel 9:8 note.

Go over - The ravine, possibly with a stream of water 2 Samuel 17:20, which lay between them and Shimei.

Verse 10

What have I to do ... - See the marginal references compare Matthew 8:29; John 2:4, and a similar complaint about the sons of Zeruiah 2 Samuel 3:39. And for a like striking incident in the life of the Son of David, see Luke 9:52-42.9.56.

Verse 12

His cursing - Another reading has “my curse,” i. e., the curse that has fallen upon me. David recognizes in every word and action that he was receiving the due reward of his sin, and that which Nathan had foretold.

Verse 21

Taking possession of the harem was the most decided act of sovereignty (see 1 Kings 2:22). It was also the greatest offence and insult that could be offered. Such an act on Absalom’s part made reconciliation impossible. A further motive has been found in this advice, namely, the desire on the part of Ahithophel to make David taste the bitterness of that cup which he had caused others (Uriah and all Bath-sheba’s family) to drink, and receive the measure which he had meted withal.

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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 16". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/bnb/2-samuel-16.html. 1870.