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Bible Commentaries
2 Samuel 1

Gann's Commentary on the BibleGann on the Bible

Verse 1


Walking Thru The Bible


AUTHOR: Much of these 1 and 2nd Samuel were written by the prophet whose name the books bear, Samuel. But not all of it could be authored by him, for it records his death and some subsequent events. 1 Chronicles 29:29-30 provides the information for us that the material in this time of Israel’s history was recorded by Samuel, and the prophets Nathan and Gad who followed him.

Samuel was Judge, Prophet and Priest. He was a Levite, a descendant of Kohath (1 Chronicles 6:26, 1 Chronicles 6:33), and was not redeemed at birth but was dedicated to the Lord from his infancy (thus he belonged to God and God’s use). Geographically he was an Ephraimite.

DATE: First Samuel begins with the birth of Samuel in about 1100 BC to the death of King Saul in 1010 BC. Second Samuel begins at that time frame and continues with Israel’s history till the death of David in 970 BC.

STRUCTURE: The events of 1st and 2nd Samuel cover roughly 130 years. The lives of three great men of this period overlap in the first book. The prominent characters of FIRST SAMUEL are:

SAMUEL: The Last of the Judges -- Ch. 1 - 8

SAUL: The First of the Kings - -- Ch. 8 - 15

DAVID: The Anointed Successor -- Ch. 16 - 31

The book of SECOND SAMUEL is the "Book of David’s Reign." It opens with David reigning in Judah immediately after Saul’s death. The book closes just before David’s death when he "was old and stricken in year." Its structure looks like this:

David’s Triumphs -- Ch. 1 - 12

David’s Troubles -- Ch. 13 - 24

IMPORTANT CHARACTERS: Three great characters and many other important ones, are found in this time of Israel’s history. We are probably more familiar with the stories of this part of the Old Testament than any other.

The stories of Eli, Samuel, Saul and David stand at the forefront, but also there are the stories of Saul’s general Abner, and David’s general Joab, and of Goliath, Jonathan and the rebellion of David’s son Absalom against his father, and David and Bathsheba’s sin which all occur within the time frame of these two books of the Old Testament. There are many lessons to be learned from man’s weakness and sin and God’s love and forgiveness. We learn that obedience will be rewarded and disobedience will be severely punished.

An Outline of Second Samuel:

Ch. 1 - 12 - David’s Triumphs

1 - 4 David at Hebron (Civil war period)

5 - 12 David King of all Israel at Jerusalem

7:8-16 The Davidic Covenant

8-10 David’s reign at its highest - victory abounds

11 David’s great sin

12 David’s confession

Ch. 13 - 24 - David’s Troubles

13-14 David has problems with his children

15-18 Absalom’s rebellion

19-24 David is forgiven, his kingdom reestablished.

Some Lessons from the Book of Second Samuel

1. In David we see something of how God providentially cares for those whose heart are set on him and who want to do His will.

2. From the time of Israel’s civil war between generals Joab and Abner we learn a lesson about the folly of division (A house divided cannot stand).

3. There is a major lesson to be learned from David on the folly of fleshly lusts which war against the soul.

4. We can learn a great lesson on the proper attitude needed for the heart and how one must deal with sin in his life.

5. We learn that truly God’s grace and mercy is great!

6. Other thought-provoking lessons to be learned:

a. David recognized the chief good even in his enemies (2 Samuel 3:33, 2 Samuel 3:38).

b. The contents of a prayer from a sincere and thankful heart (2 Samuel 7:18-29).

c. The proper attitude in the death of a child (2 Samuel 22-23)

d. The kind of friend that no one needs (2 Samuel 13:1-3).

e. The feelings of old age (2 Samuel 19:35).

f. When it is better to fall into God’s hands rather than men’s (2 Samuel 24:14).

2Samuel 9

David and Mephibosheth

2 Samuel 9:1


1. The story of David and Mephibosheth is one of the many fine stories in the Old Testament with a great lesson for us today (Romans 15:4).

2. It points out some of the finer virtues of a good character and emphasizes the value of good friendships and their effect in later life.

3. The background on the story of Mephibosheth (2 Samuel 4).


.1. David had a desire to remember for good Saul and Jonathan (2 Samuel 9:1) "Is there anyone left of the house of Saul that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?"

a. Our thoughts in hours of quietness when alone show what we really are at heart.

b. Do we fill our heart and dwell on mistreatment we have received from others?

c. Do we look for opportunities to do good?

2. From David we see the power of sacred associations and friendship of the past.

a. Evidently this thought came upon David as he walked down memory lane and his soul was touched again by his memories of Jonathan’s friendship.

b. The power of good memories can have long lasting effect upon others.

II. FOR JONATHAN’S SAKE (2 Samuel 9:7)

1. Children may be blessed after their parents are gone by good deeds done to others.

2. Nothing could be done for Jonathan but that was no excuse for doing nothing. He could do the next best thing.

a. One person was overheard saying, "I don’t know how I will ever be able to repay all the kindness shown me."


1. Picture what David did "For Jonathan’s Sake" for Mephibosheth.

2. Picture what God has done "For Jesus’ Sake" for us.

a. 2 Corinthians 4:5; Ephesians 4:32.

3. What if Mephibosheth had rejected David’s love?

2Sam 1.1

Verse Comments

Bibliographical Information
Gann, Windell. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 1". Gann's Commentary on the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gbc/2-samuel-1.html. 2021.
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