Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Samuel 21:15

Now when the Philistines were at war again with Israel, David went down and his servants with him; and as they fought against the Philistines, David became weary.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Armies;   Championship;   David;   Goliath;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Philistines, the;   Rephaim, or Giants, the;  
Dictionaries:
Easton Bible Dictionary - Abishai;   Anakim;   Giants;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Abishai;   Anakim;   Giants;   Philistia;   Samuel, the Books of;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Abishai;   Samuel, Books of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - David;   Giant;   Haggai;   Ishbi-Benob;   Israel;   Samuel, Books of;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Ga'za;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Hebrew Monarchy, the;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Faint;   Ishbi-Benob;   Samuel, Books of;   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Abishai;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Goliath;   Shamgar;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Moreover the Philistines had yet war - There is no mention of this war in the parallel place, 1 Chronicles 20:4, etc.

David waxed faint - This circumstance is nowhere else mentioned.

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/2-samuel-21.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

This, like the preceding paragraph 2 Samuel 21:1-14, is manifestly a detached and unconnected extract. It is probably taken from some history of David‘s wars, apparently the same as furnished the materials for 1 Chronicles 20:4-8, but omits David‘s adventure 2 Samuel 21:15-17.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/2-samuel-21.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

DAVID'S LIFE WAS SAVED BY ABISHAI

"The Philistines had war again with Israel, and David went down together with his servants, and they fought against the Philistines; and David grew weary. And Ishbibenob, one of the descendants of the giants, whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of bronze, and who was girded with a new sword, thought to kill David. But Abishai the son of Zeruiah came to his aid, and attacked the Philistine and killed him. Then David"s men adjured him, `You shall no more go out with us to battle, lest you quench the lamp of Israel.'"

Here again the exact time of this episode is unknown; and, "Part of the text here is corrupt."[20] David was often critical of his nephews, the sons of Zeruiah, but on this occasion Abishai saved his life. Josephus tells us that, "David was totally exhausted and that he had fallen to the ground at the time the giant turned back to slay him, but Abishai covered David with his shield as he lay down and slew the enemy."[21]

"Three hundred shekels of bronze" (2 Samuel 21:16). The scholars who mention this generally agree that the weight indicated is between 7 and one-half pounds and 8 pounds. "The Hebrew word here rendered `giants' is a collective noun denoting a giant race that inhabited Canaan in the pre-Israelite times. The word is [~rapha`], rendered by the Vulgate Arapha; and from it comes Harapha the name of the giant in Milton's Samson Agonistes."[22]

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
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Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/2-samuel-21.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel,.... Besides what is before recorded in this and the preceding book; being animated to it partly by the number of giants among them, and partly by the decline of David's life, and it may be chiefly by the insurrections and rebellions in Israel; though some think that these battles were not after the rebellions of Absalom and Sheba, and the affair of the Gibeonites, though here recorded; but before, and quickly after the war with the Ammonites, next to which they are placed in 1 Chronicles 20:1; but they seem to be placed here in their proper order:

and David went down, and his servants with him; to the borders of the Philistines, perceiving they were preparing to make war against him:

and fought against the Philistines; engaged in a battle with them:

and David waxed faint; in the battle, not able to bear the fatigues of war, and wield his armour as he had used, being in the decline of life; after he had been engaged a while, his spirits began to fail, not through fear, but through feebleness; but, according to Josephus, it was through weariness in pursuing the enemy put to flight, which the following person perceived, and turned upon himF25Antiqu. l. 7. c. 12. sect. 1. .

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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 21:15". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-samuel-21.html. 1999.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Samuel 21:15 Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines: and David waxed faint.

Ver. 15. Moreover the Philistines] Trusting to their champions, which yet were all cut off, and way made thereby for Solomon’s quiet and peaceable government.

And David waxed faint.] As being senex emeritus, his best days were done: it was otherwise with him than when he slew Goliath.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-samuel-21.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

2 Samuel 21:15. Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel It appears from chap. 2 Samuel 15:18-19 that Ittai, an exile from Gath, arrived at Jerusalem with all his men on the very eve of David's flight before his son Absalom; whence it is probable, that the Philistines, hearing of Absalom's rebellion, took that opportunity to shake off the Israelite yoke; and to that purpose drove out all the friends and favourers of David's government over them; and among the rest Ittai and his followers, who arrived very providentially at Jerusalem, to support David in the extremity of his distress. And as this revolt of the Philistines was succeeded by a long famine in David's dominions, we could not reasonably expect to hear of any measures taken by the king to chastise that revolt, till after the ceasing of this calamity; and then we immediately hear of the wars now recounted.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/2-samuel-21.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

These wars, though here related, were transacted long before this time: of which See Poole "2 Samuel 21:1". For it is no way probable, either that the Philistines, being so fully and perfectly subdued by David, 2 Samuel 8:1, should in his days be in a capacity of waging war with the Israelites; or that David in his old age would undertake to fight with a giant, or that his people would permit him to do so.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-samuel-21.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

15.Yet war again — This expression indicates that the document here used by our author contained also accounts of other and earlier wars with the Philistines.

Went down — From the heights of Judea to the great plain of Philistia.

Waxed faint — Was becoming exhausted.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-samuel-21.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Again: it is not certain at what time. Some think it was towards the beginning of David's reign, since he leads his men to battle; or the Philistines might have made an irruption into his dominions, about three years after the death of Absalom. (Calmet) --- David had offered to put himself at the head of the army, against his son, chap. xviii. 2. (Haydock) --- Faint. He was now sixty-four years old. (Salien)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-samuel-21.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

war again. 930-923 B.C.

waxed faint. David was now sixty.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-samuel-21.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines: and David waxed faint.

Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel. Although the Philistines had completely succumbed to the army of David, yet the appearance of any gigantic champions among them revived their courage, and stirred them up to renewed inroads on the Hebrew territory. Four successive contests they provoked during the latter period of David's reign, in the first of which the king ran so imminent a risk of his life, that he was no longer allowed to encounter the perils of the battlefield.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-samuel-21.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(15) Had yet war again.—This, like the preceding narrative, bears no note of time except that it occurred after some other wars with the Philistines; but this is only to say that it was after David ascended the throne. From the latter part of 2 Samuel 21:17 it is plain that it must have been after David had become king of all Israel, and probably after he had become somewhat advanced in years. In 1 Chronicles 20:4-8 much the same paragraph is placed immediately after the war with Ammon; but this seems to be a mere juxta-position rather than designed as a chronological sequence.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-samuel-21.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines: and David waxed faint.
the Philistines
5:17,22; 1 Chronicles 20:4
and David waxed faint
Joshua 14:10,11; Psalms 71:9,18; 73:26; Ecclesiastes 12:3; Isaiah 40:28-30; Jeremiah 9:23,24; 1 Peter 1:24,25
Reciprocal: Genesis 6:4 - giants;  2 Samuel 8:1 - And after;  Psalm 9:5 - rebuked;  Psalm 18:38 - GeneralPsalm 60:8 - triumph;  Psalm 108:9 - over Philistia

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 21:15". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-samuel-21.html.