Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Samuel 12:18

Then it happened on the seventh day that the child died. And the servants of David were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they said, "Behold, while the child was still alive, we spoke to him and he did not listen to our voice. How then can we tell him that the child is dead, since he might do himself harm!"
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Bereavement;   Children;   David;   Fasting;   Parents;   Servant;   Seven;   Thompson Chain Reference - David;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Afflicted Saints;   Children;   Servants;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Nathan;   Parable;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Bathsheba;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Bath-Sheba;   David;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Diseases;   Intercession;   Samuel, Books of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Ammon, Ammonites;   Bathsheba;   Prayer;   Samuel, Books of;   Sin;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Nathan ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Nathan;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - David;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Hebrew Monarchy, the;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Fast;   Nathan (1);   Samuel, Books of;   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Bathsheba;  

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died,.... Not the seventh day from its being taken ill, but from its birth; for it cannot be thought that David should fast seven days:

and the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead; lest he should be overwhelmed with too much sorrow:

for they said, behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him; to rise from the ground, and eat food:

and he would not hearken unto our voice; we could not prevail upon him to do the one nor the other:

how will he then vex himself if we tell him that the child is dead? or should we acquaint him with it, "he will do mischief"F23ועשה רעה και ποιησει κακα, Sept. "faciat malum", Pagninus, Montanus; "malum sibi inferet", Syr. Ar. to himself, to his body; he will tear his flesh to pieces, and cut and kill himself; this they were afraid of, observing the distress and agony he was in while it was living, and therefore they concluded these would increase upon hearing of its death.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-samuel-12.html. 1999.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

(18) And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead?

The seventh day prevented the act of circumcision. No doubt David construed this also as a further token of God's displeasure.

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Bibliographical Information
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/2-samuel-12.html. 1828.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead?

Seventh day — From the beginning of the distemper.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/2-samuel-12.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Samuel 12:18 And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead?

Ver. 18. And it came to pass on the seventh day,] viz., Of the child’s sickness, a critical day; or, After his birth, and then he died without circumcision, and yet was saved. [2 Samuel 12:23] Gratia non est alligata symbolis, God’s grace is not tied unto the signs.

That the child died.] Repentance may come too late in respect of temporal chastisements, [1 Corinthians 11:32] which yet are not penal but medicinal. Thus Moses and Aaron were kept out of Canaan for their disobedience at the waters of Meribah.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-samuel-12.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

2 Samuel 12:18. It came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died Thus was the first instance of the divine vengeance upon David's guilt speedily and rigidly executed. Other instances of it were fulfilled in their order before his own eyes; and the dreadfullest of all the rest, the sword shall never depart from thine house, sadly and successively fulfilled in his posterity; from the death of Amnon by the order of his own brother, to the slaughter of the sons of Zedekiah by the king of Babylon. Indeed, David's guilt was more signally and dreadfully punished in his own person and in his posterity, than any guilt that I ever heard or read of in any other person since Adam. The Jews are of opinion, that his own decree of repaying the robbery four-fold, was strictly executed upon him. And as he was professedly punished by the death of one of his sons for the murder of Uriah, they imagine that the other three also, who died violent deaths, fell so many sacrifices to the divine justice upon the same account. In this view, can David's example be an encouragement for sin? Who would incur his guilt, to go through such a scene of sorrow and repentance?

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/2-samuel-12.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

On the seventh day; either,

1. From the beginning of the distemper. Or rather,

2. From the day of his birth, which is the most usual way of computation of men’s days or years; for it is apparent that this happened during the time of David’s fasting and lying upon the earth, 2 Samuel 12:20, which it is not probable that it lasted for seven days.

They said, whispering among themselves, 2 Samuel 12:19.

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Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-samuel-12.html. 1685.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

2 Samuel 12:18. On the seventh day the child died — The seventh from the beginning of the distemper. “Thus was the first instance of the divine vengeance for David’s guilt speedily and rigidly executed; other instances of it were fulfilled in their order, before his own eyes, as will abundantly appear in the sequel of this history; and the most dreadful of all the rest, The sword shall never depart from thy house, sadly and successively fulfilled in his posterity; from the death of Amnon, by the order of his own brother, to the slaughter of the sons of Zedekiah before his own eyes, by the king of Babylon.” We may learn from hence, therefore, that God is no respecter of persons, for David’s guilt was as signally and dreadfully punished in his own person, and in his posterity, as perhaps any guilt in any other person since Adam. “The Jews are of opinion that his own decree of repaying the robbery four-fold was strictly executed upon him. The deflouring of Tamar by her own brother; the death of four sons, three of them before his own eyes, and one by the hand of his brother; the unnatural rebellion of one son, which brought him almost to the brink of ruin; the prostitution of ten wives in the sight of all his subjects; and the successive and signal massacre of his posterity; besides the distress of his own public shame and infamy, added to at least one cruel disease.” These are surely awful proofs that God did not connive at sin in David any more than in any other. Why then are the scoffers so fond of urging and dwelling on the heinous crimes of David? Do the Holy Scriptures deny them? No, they set them forth with all their aggravating circumstances, but at the same time they assure us they were followed by such a train of calamities as is enough to make every sinner tremble; since it affords an indubitable proof that the ALMIGHTY GOVERNOR of the world is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity without detestation, and that every species of vice and wickedness, in whomsoever it is found, will certainly be punished under his government. Let the reader consider these things, and then say, whether David’s example be an encouragement to sin? Who would incur his guilt to go through such a scene of sorrow and suffering? See Delaney.

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Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/2-samuel-12.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Day. After his birth, when he had received circumcision; (Salien) or on the 7th day since the commencement of his malady. (Calmet; Menochius)

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Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-samuel-12.html. 1859.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead?
seventh day
vex. Heb. do hurt to.
18; Numbers 20:15
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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 12:18". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-samuel-12.html.