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Bible Commentaries
2 Samuel 9

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

And David said, Is there yet any that is left of the house of Saul, that I may shew him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?

And David said.Tandem aliquando, long and last good Jonathan’s posterity is thought on and inquired after. Perraro grati reperiuntur. It was much that David, so thankful a man to God as his psalms testify, should be so forgetful of his most faithful friend, and of the covenant of God betwixt them. This is by some accounted to be one of the chief errors of his life.

That I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake. — We must also see where Jesus our fast friend hath any receivers; that since our goodness extendeth not to him, we may show him kindness in his poor people, who are his seed, and do prolong his days on earth. Isaiah 53:10 Psalms 16:3 And herein be nimble, since

Gratia, ab officio, quod mora tardat, abest.

Verse 2

And [there was] of the house of Saul a servant whose name [was] Ziba. And when they had called him unto David, the king said unto him, [Art] thou Ziba? And he said, Thy servant [is he].

A servant whose name was Ziba. — An old flatter, such as Saul had many about him; Qualis herus, tolis servus.

Verse 3

And the king said, [Is] there not yet any of the house of Saul, that I may shew the kindness of God unto him? And Ziba said unto the king, Jonathan hath yet a son, [which is] lame on [his] feet.

The kindness of God. — A God-like kindness, - compare 3 John 1:6 , - or that which Jonathan bound me in the presence of God to show to him and his. 1 Samuel 20:14-15

Which is lame on his feet. — But this broke no square; neither thought good David the worse of Mephibosheth, so long as he saw in him the features of his friend Jonathan: no more doth God of those weak but willing servants of his, whom he beholdeth in the face of his Son, whose image they bear.

Verse 4

And the king said unto him, Where [is] he? And Ziba said unto the king, Behold, he [is] in the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, in Lodebar.

Behold, he is in the house of Machir … in Lodebar. — Which was a place beyond Jordan. 2 Samuel 17:27 Here, in a remote part of the country, Mephibosheth secreted and secured himself; little thinking of any court preferment, which yet God was now providing for him: his motto might be,

Crede mihi bene qui latuit, bene vixit

Verse 5

Then king David sent, and fetched him out of the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, from Lodebar.

Then king David sent, and fetched him. — Thus God oft stirreth up the hearts of his able servants to do good to the orphans of poorer saints, for their sakes; as were easy to instance. Peter Martyr’s only daughter, through the riot and prodigality of her debauched husband, being brought to extreme poverty, was well maintained by the Senate of Zuric, for her reverend father’s sake. Personal goodness is profitable to posterity.

Verse 6

Now when Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, was come unto David, he fell on his face, and did reverence. And David said, Mephibosheth. And he answered, Behold thy servant!

And David said, Mephibosheth. — He is also called Meribbaal, 1 Chronicles 8:34 but his name was, haply, turned to Mephibosheth, saith Martyr, for some deformity that happened to his face in his fall. 2 Samuel 4:4

Verse 7

And David said unto him, Fear not: for I will surely shew thee kindness for Jonathan thy father’s sake, and will restore thee all the land of Saul thy father; and thou shalt eat bread at my table continually.

And David said unto him, Fear not. — Mephi-bosheth feared, belike, that he was sent for to be put to death, as being Saul’s nephew. Kings are not without their jealousies; that Mephi-bosheth well knew, and afterwards smarted for. 2 Samuel 16:4

For I will surely show thee kindness. — It would be a great stay of mind if some great man should say to us, as David here doth to Mephibosheth, and as afterwards he did to Barzillai the Gileadite. Behold, God, the only potentate, saith more than all this; and shall we not trust him?

And will restore thee all the land. — Which had been confiscated for Ishbosheth’s rebellion, saith Vatablus.

And thou shalt eat bread at my table continually,i.e., At fit times; like as we are commanded to pray continually. Here take notice how they that humble themselves are exalted. Mephi-bosheth, who made himself a dog, and therefore fit only to lie under the table; yea, a dead dog, and therefore fit only for the ditch; is raised up to the table of a king.

Verse 8

And he bowed himself, and said, What [is] thy servant, that thou shouldest look upon such a dead dog as I [am]?

Upon such a dead dog as I am? — So he calleth himself, as being lame, poor, of a rejected stock, and no way to be compared to David and his children, whose companion and fellow commoner he was now to be made. There is no more certain way to honour and advancement, than a lowly dejection of ourselves.

Verse 9

Then the king called to Ziba, Saul’s servant, and said unto him, I have given unto thy master’s son all that pertained to Saul and to all his house.

I have given unto thy master’s son,i.e., To Mephibosheth; though some expositors will have it meant of Micha, Mephibosheth’s son; since Mephibosheth himself was to eat at David’s table continually.

Verse 10

Thou therefore, and thy sons, and thy servants, shall till the land for him, and thou shalt bring in [the fruits], that thy master’s son may have food to eat: but Mephibosheth thy master’s son shall eat bread alway at my table. Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.

Shall till the land for him.Hic Ziba instituitur colonus partiarius. Here Ziba is far intrusted, but he proved treacherous; being neither good egg nor good bird, as they say.

That thy master’s son may have food to eat. — That is, Food in his house for his family to eat, and enough besides to defray his other necessary charges; so Josephus.

Verse 11

Then said Ziba unto the king, According to all that my lord the king hath commanded his servant, so shall thy servant do. As for Mephibosheth, [said the king], he shall eat at my table, as one of the king’s sons.

As for Mephibosheth, said the king. — These last words are not in the original: and some there are that make it Ziba’s speech; as if he had said, Do, O king, as thou thinkest fitting: howbeit Mephibosheth might have his meals with me, and should by me be royally entertained as a king’s son.

Verse 12

And Mephibosheth had a young son, whose name [was] Micha. And all that dwelt in the house of Ziba [were] servants unto Mephibosheth.

And Mephibosheth had a younq son. — It was no small while, therefore, ere poor Mephibosheth was thought upon - see 2 Samuel 9:1 ; twenty years at least.

Were servants unto Mephibosheth. — He was master of the house, and Ziba but steward; till, by his false and foolish calumnies, he had wormed out his master.

Verse 13

So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king’s table; and was lame on both his feet.

And was lame on both his feet. — Or, Though he were lame, and therefore unfit to take his meals at the court, or to come thither at all; 2 Samuel 5:8 yet by special favour he enjoyed this privilege.

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 9". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jtc/2-samuel-9.html. 1865-1868.
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