Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Samuel 5:11

Then Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David with cedar trees and carpenters and stonemasons; and they built a house for David.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Ambassadors;   Art;   Carpentry;   Cedar;   Commerce;   David;   Diplomacy;   Hiram;   Mason;   Thompson Chain Reference - Ambassadors;   Arts and Crafts;   Carpenters;   Hiram;   Huram;   Nation, the;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Arts of the;   Cedar, the;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Hiram or Huram;   Tyre or Tyrus;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Craft workers;   Hiram;   Phoenicia;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Building;   Carpenter;   Cedar;   Hiram;   Mason;   Tyre;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Hiram;   Joshua, the Book of;   Tyre;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Cedar;   Hiram;   Masons;   Occupations and Professions in the Bible;   Palace;   Plants in the Bible;   Samuel, Books of;   Sidon and Tyre;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Ambassador, Ambassage;   Architecture;   Arts and Crafts;   David;   Hiram;   Israel;   Phoenicia, PhNicians;   Samuel, Books of;   Solomon;   Stone;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Hiram ;   Masons;   Tyre, Tyrus;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - David;   Hiram;   Tyre;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Handicraft;   Hi'ram,;   Phoeni'ce, Phoenic'ia;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Hebrew Monarchy, the;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Architecture;   Brotherly;   Carpenter;   Cedar;   David;   Hiram;   Mason;   Samuel, Books of;   Ships and Boats;   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Alliances;   Architecture;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Artisans;   Engraving and Engravers;   Hiram, Huram;   Jerusalem;   Judæ;   Samuel, Books of;   Tyre;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Hiram king of Tyre - He was a very friendly man, and no doubt a believer in the true God. He was not only a friend to David, but also of his son Solomon, to whom, in building the temple, he afforded the most important assistance.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/2-samuel-5.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Hiram king of Tyre - Now mentioned for the first time. He survived David, and continued his friendship to Solomon (marginal references). The news of the capture of the city of the Jebusites had doubtless reached Tyre, and created a great impression of David‘s power.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/2-samuel-5.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

DAVID BUILT HIMSELF A CEDAR HOUSE

"And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, also carpenters and masons who built David a house. And David perceived that the Lord had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel."

"David's policy as king was that of being strong at home, but living side by side with other nations as his allies. Here he made an alliance with Hiram king of Tyre, and later an alliance with Toi king of Hamath (2 Samuel 8:9); and it was his proposed alliance with the Ammonites, which, due to their rejection of it, led to his war with them and with the Aramaeans."[13]

"Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David" (2 Samuel 5:11). This king is also mentioned in 1 Kings 9:10-14; and, critics always alert to find something they can contradict in the Bible. Since Hiram is mentioned as king in the 20th year of Solomon's reign, Bennett declared, "Hiram I cannot have been reigning so early in David's reign."[14] We might ask, "Indeed! And Why not?" Manasseh reigned over Israel for over fifty years; and since this event was probably in the eighteenth year of David's reign, and since the use of the past perfect tense in 1 Kings 9:10 indicates that what Hiram did for Solomon had been done at some indefinite time in the past, there is no reason whatever that demands that the Hiram in this chapter and in 1 Kings 9 must be considered as two different men. Keil did not hesitate to conclude that "Hiram reigned at least forty or fifty years."[15]

"Who built David a house" (2 Samuel 5:11). From the mention of cedar trees, it is evident that this house was built of cedar, as David also mentioned in 2 Samuel 7. There is no more desirable timber from which a house may be built. At Washington-on-the-Brazos, once the capital of the Republic of Texas, tourists may see the cedar house which was built for the first president of that state. The cedar wood is hostile to all kinds of insects and creeping things; and even after more than 150 years since the place was built, the attendant sweeps the dead insects out of that house every morning.

"God exalted his kingdom for the sake of ... Israel" (2 Samuel 5:12). Tatum remarked that, "It appears strange that at the very time when God was so richly blessing David, he seemed so utterly selfish. He built his own house BEFORE thinking of building a house for God."[16] There is even more evidence of David's selfishness in his sinful multiplication of his wives and concubines as related a little later. As this verse states, it was not anything that David personally deserved that resulted in all of God's wonderful blessings; those blessings were directed to the good of God's people Israel, and eventually to the salvation of all mankind.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/2-samuel-5.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And Hiram king of Tyre,.... This was father of that Hiram that lived in the times of Solomon, whose name was Abibalus before he took the name of Hiram, which became a common name of the kings of Tyre; his former name may be seen in the ancient historians quoted by JosephusF19Contr. Apion. l. 1. sect. 17, 18. ; of the city of Tyre; see Gill on Isaiah 23:1; which was built one year before the destruction of TroyF20Justin e Trogo, l. 18. c. 3. . This king, on hearing of David's being acknowledged king by all Israel, and of his taking Jerusalem out of the hands of the Jebusites:

sent messengers to David; to congratulate him upon all this:

and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons; these might not be sent at first, but David intending to build himself an house, might, by the messengers on their return, request of Hiram to send him timber and workmen for that purpose; the people of Israel being chiefly employed in cultivating their fields, and vineyards, and oliveyards, and feeding their flocks and herds, few of them had any skill in hewing: timber and stone, and building houses, at least not like the Tyrians and Sidonians; see 1 Kings 5:6; and accordingly he sent him cedars from Lebanon, a great part of which was in his dominions, and artificers in wood and stone, to build his house in the most elegant manner:

and they built David an house; to dwell in, a stately palace, called an house of cedar, 2 Samuel 7:2.

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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 5:11". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-samuel-5.html. 1999.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Samuel 5:11 And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house.

Ver. 11. And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David.] To congratulate his happy settlement in the kingdom. This Tyre was at first a poor town, built by the Phoenicians, for their fishermen to dwell in: but afterwards it became a famous city: like as Dublin, the chief city of Ireland, was at first called by the Irish Balacleigh, that is, the town upon hurdles, because the foundation thereof was laid upon hurdles; the place where it was built was so fennish and moorish.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-samuel-5.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

2 Samuel 5:11. Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers The accounts left us of this king are but short; it is evident, however, that he was a magnificent and generous prince, and a believer in the true God, as appears from the form of his congratulation to Solomon upon his accession to the throne, 1 Kings 5:7. And this character well fitted him to enter into, and to cultivate an alliance with David, as he did, with uncommon friendship and affection, as long as David lived, and continued it to his son for his sake. See Josephus against Appion, book 1:

REFLECTIONS.—1. David, with thankfulness, perceived the establishment of his kingdom, every competitor removed, himself beloved by his subjects, courted by his neighbours, and feared by his enemies; and this he ascribes to God's love to his people, whom he regards, not as given to be his slaves, but as intrusted with him to be made happy under his wise and prudent administration. Happy the nation that has such a king!

2. Many wives and concubines increased his family, and seemed to strengthen his kingdom, though it is to be feared they hurt his heart. Having once suffered his eye to wander on various objects, his neighbour's wife was not safe at last: so dangerous is the first step from the path of duty; for we know not then where we shall stop.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/2-samuel-5.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

For Lebanon, which was famous for its cedars, was a great part of it in his dominion. For the Tyrians were excellent artists and workmen, as both sacred and profane writers agree.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-samuel-5.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

DAVID’S INTERCOURSE WITH HIRAM — HIS TEMPORAL PROSPERITY, 2 Samuel 5:11-16.

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11.And Hiram — Called Huram in 2 Chronicles 2:3; 2 Chronicles 2:11; 2 Chronicles 8:2; 2 Chronicles 9:10. On the question of the identity of this Hiram with the one who assisted Solomon in building the temple, see on 1 Kings 5:1.

Tyre — On the locality of this great city see Joshua 19:29. From this verse we learn that it was under a monarchical form of government, and in it the mechanical arts had been carried to a noteworthy state of perfection. In Isaiah xxiii, 8, it is called “the crowning city, whose merchants are princes, whose traffickers are the honourable of the earth.” Its power and glory are more fully delineated in Ezekiel 26-28.

Sent messengers to David — Probably for the purpose of forming an alliance with him. David seems to have availed himself of the opportunity thus offered to secure from Hiram the service of carpenters and masons — workers in wood and stone — and also the gift of cedar wood from Lebanon.

They built David a house — A royal palace on Zion. This verse is evidently the mere outline of many interesting facts in the history of David which the sacred writer has not seen proper to record. This mention of David’s intercourse with the king of Tyre, as well as what follows about the growth of his family, is appended to the notice of the capture of Zion, (2 Samuel 5:6-10,) not because these events followed in chronological order immediately after its capture, but in order to show how David grew great and prospered.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-samuel-5.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

2 Samuel 5:11. Hiram sent messengers to David, &c. — Hearing that he intended to settle in the fort he had taken, Hiram sent him both materials and artificers to build him a palace. For the Jews, being given to feeding cattle and husbandry, were not very skilful in mechanic arts. The accounts left us of this king of Tyre are short; but it appears from them that he was a magnificent and a generous prince, and a believer in the true God. See the form of his congratulation to Solomon upon his accession to the throne, 1 Kings 5:7. And this character well fitted him to enter into and to cultivate an alliance with David, as he did with uncommon friendship and affection as long as David lived, and continued it to his son for his sake. — Delaney.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/2-samuel-5.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Hiram was a magnificent prince, who kept up a correspondence with Solomon. He greatly adorned the city of Tyre. See Jospehus, contra Apion 1.)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-samuel-5.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Hiram. Not the Hiram of 1 Kings 9:11, which was sixty years later. Josephus says he was his father. Compare 2 Chronicles 2:13. 1 Kings 5:1.

Tyre. Israel had no war with Phoenicians. Asher failed to expel them (Judges 1:31).

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-samuel-5.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house.

Hiram king of Tyre - i:e., old Tyre, which stood on the continent.

Sent ... carpenters, and masons. The influx of Tyrian architects and mechanics affords a clear evidence of the low state to which, through the disorders of long-continued war, the better class of artizans had declined in Israel.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-samuel-5.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(11) Hiram king of Tyre.—This is the same Hiram, variously spelt Hirom and Huram, who was afterwards the friend of Solomon (1 Kings 5:1; 2 Chronicles 2:3),and was still living in the twenty-fourth year of Solomon’s reign (1 Kings 9:10-14; comp. 6:1, 38; 7:1); either, therefore, he must have had a reign of some fifty-seven years, or else his embassy to David must have been some time after the capture of Jerusalem. It is not unlikely that several years may have elapsed between the two events, during which “David went on and grew great” (2 Samuel 5:10), thereby attracting the attention and regard of Hiram. But the statement quoted by Josephus from Menander (100 Apion, i. 18) cannot be correct, that Hiram reigned only thirty-four years; for David was already in his “house of cedar” (2 Samuel 7:2) when he formed the purpose of building the Temple, and this was before the birth of Solomon (2 Samuel 7:12; 1 Chronicles 22:9). Huram’s father, however, was also named Huram (2 Chronicles 2:13).

The Israelites evidently had little skill in architecture, since they relied on the Phœnicians for workmen both for this palace and for Solomon’s, as well as for the Temple.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-samuel-5.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house.
Hiram
1 Kings 5:1,2,8,9; 1 Chronicles 14:1
masons
Heb. hewers of the stone of the wall. they built.
7:2; 1 Kings 7:1-12; Ecclesiastes 2:4-11; Jeremiah 22:14-16
Reciprocal: Joshua 19:29 - Tyre;  1 Chronicles 22:2 - masons;  1 Chronicles 22:4 - cedar trees;  2 Chronicles 2:3 - As thou didst;  Psalm 30:1 - at the;  Amos 1:9 - brotherly covenant

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 5:11". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-samuel-5.html.