Bible Commentaries
2 Samuel 5

Gaebelein's Annotated BibleGaebelein's Annotated

Verses 1-5


1. David Anointed King over all Israel


1. David anointed king over all Israel (2 Samuel 5:1-3 )

2. Duration of his reign (2 Samuel 5:4-5 )

The events of the reign of David over Judah had a beneficial effect upon all Israel. After Ish-bosheth’s death all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron. It is a blessed scene when they appear to anoint him King over all Israel. 1 Chronicles 12:0 should here be consulted. In that chapter the names of those are given who stood by David. In verse 38 we read: “All these men of war, that could keep rank, came with a perfect heart to Hebron, to make David king over all Israel; and all the rest also of Israel were of one heart to make David king.” The coming of all Israel to Hebron was one of the most magnificent spectacles in the history of the nation. One only needs to take a pencil and add the numbers mentioned in 1 Chronicles 12:24-37 to find what a great army had gathered to make David king. There were 1222 chiefs and 339,600 men. Here we see a united Israel swept by a tremendous enthusiasm. Now they own him as their own bone and flesh; the victories of the past are remembered as well as the divine promise that he, David the Bethlehemite, should be the shepherd of Israel as well as their captain.

But there is coming for Israel a greater day than the day in Hebron, when they anointed David king. It foreshadows but faintly the glorious day when their long rejected King-Messiah, the Son of David, comes again. Then they will own Him and He will own them. They will also know and remember all God has done through Him. He will then indeed be the Shepherd and King of Israel. All this and much more is foreshadowed in David’s coronation and his reign. David is the type of the coming reign of our Lord as “King of Righteousness” while Solomon and his reign typify Him as “King of Peace.” And David made a covenant with them in Hebron as the Lord Jesus will enter into covenant with the nation in the day of His return.

Then the duration of David’s reign is given. Seven years and six months he reigned over Judah and over all Israel and Judah 33 years. The record here does not speak of the great feast which was made at Hebron. We find this also mentioned in 1 Chronicles 12:39-40 . It is typical of the time of joy and rejoicing in Israel and throughout the world, when the true King has come. Then the great feast of which Isaiah speaks will take place (Isaiah 25:6-10 ).

Verses 6-25

2. David’s Conquest of Zion and Victory over the Philistines

CHAPTER 5:6-25

1. David’s conquest of Zion (2 Samuel 5:6-10 )

2. Hiram King of Tyre (2 Samuel 5:11-12 )

3. David’s additional concubines and wives (2 Samuel 5:13-15 )

4. The victory over the Philistines (2 Samuel 5:17-25 )

Zion is closely linked with David’s anointing as king over all Israel. Here 1 Chronicles 11:0 must be read for a more complete account of what took place. Jerusalem is now to become the capital of the great kingdom. The oldest name was Salem; the name of Jebus was given to it by the Jebusites (Judges 19:10 ). After David’s conquest the ancient name was restored and it became known as Jerusalem (“habitation of peace”). The town had previously been taken (Judges 1:8 ) but the stronghold of the upper city, Mount Zion, remained in the hands of the Jebusites. David took the stronghold. Jebusite means “the one who treads down.” It reminds us of the words of our Lord, “Jerusalem shall be trodden down by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled” (Luke 21:24 ). Jerusalem and Zion are still trodden down by the Gentiles. The day is coming when the King will end all this. Jerusalem is yet to be “the city of the great King.” (Psalms 48:0 ). Here we have once more a prophetic foreshadowing of what will take place, only on a larger scale, when He, who is greater than David, begins His long promised reign in the midst of His people. After this we shall find much more about Zion, especially in the prophets and in the psalms. It is the place Jehovah has chosen (Psalms 132:13-14 ). To this place, where his throne was, David also brought the ark. When our Lord establishes His kingdom, Zion will be the glorious and the beautiful Place. “This is my rest forever; here will I dwell; I have desired it” (Psalms 132:14 ). Then He will bless out of Zion (Psalms 128:5 ); and out of Zion shall go forth the law (Isaiah 2:3 ). He will be enthroned upon the holy hill of Zion (Psalms 2:6 ); the rod of His strength cometh out of Zion (Psalms 110:2 ); Zion will be the joy of the whole earth (Psalms 48:2 ).

Then Hiram, the King of Tyre, is mentioned. He sent messengers to David, as well as cedar trees, carpenters and masons, and they built David a house. It must be understood that we have in this and the events which follow not a strict chronology. The children mentioned here were born at a later period. All is put in here to show how David grew great and that the Lord was with him. Hiram, the Gentile king, and the messengers he sent, are typical of that day, when our Lord reigns in Zion and “the Kings of Tarshish and the isles shall bring presents”--when all nations shall serve Him (Psalms 72:10-11 ).

The Hebrew names of the eleven sons of David are of deep significance. It seems the story of the redemption which is in Him, whom David foreshadows, is made known in these names. Shammuah (heard); Shobab (returning); Nathan (he is given); Solomon (peace); Ibhar (the Lord chooses); Elishua (my God is salvation); Nepheg (budding); Japhia (glorious); Elishama (God heareth); Eliada (whom God knoweth); Eliphalet (my God is escape). This is a most blessed revelation contained in those names; and some Christians can say there is no meaning in names! Read them in their meaning and ponder over each as telling forth the very gospel story from start to finish.

Twice David enquired of the Lord concerning the Philistines. Once he is told to go up and the Lord gave him the victory and he burned the images of the Philistines. It is another picture of how the coming King will make an end of idolatry. Again he asked the Lord and was told not to go up. Then the Lord smote the Philistines Himself. In all David was obedient.

Bibliographical Information
Gaebelein, Arno Clemens. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5". "Gaebelein's Annotated Bible". 1913-1922.