Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Samuel 7:23

And what one nation on the earth is like Your people Israel, whom God went to redeem for Himself as a people and to make a name for Himself, and to do a great thing for You and awesome things for Your land, before Your people whom You have redeemed for Yourself from Egypt, from nations and their gods?
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - David;   God Continued...;   Humility;   Prayer;   Thompson Chain Reference - Ask;   Christ;   Church;   Family;   Importunity;   Israel;   Israel-The Jews;   Prayer;   Secret Prayer;   United Prayer;   Unwise Prayers;   Wicked, the;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Prayer, Private;   Redemption;   Theocracy, the, or Immediate Government by God;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Temple;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Exodus;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Israel;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Midwives;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Samuel, Books of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Covenant;   David;   Jerusalem;   Nathan;   Prayer;   Samuel, Books of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Atonement (2);   Majesty (2);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - David ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Temple;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - David;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Trinity;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Hebrew Monarchy, the;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Christ, Offices of;   Gentiles;   Gods;   Name;   Nathan (1);   Redeemer;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Abbahu;   Abina;   Monotheism;   Prayer;   Salvation;  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The nations and their gods - i e. the people and the idols of Canaan.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/2-samuel-7.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And what one nation in the earth is like thy people, even like Israel,.... For the knowledge and worship of the true God among them, for laws and or given them, and for blessings of goodness bestowed upon them:

whom God went to redeem for a people to himself; the words are plural, "whom the gods went to redeem"; the Targum is,"they that were sent from the Lord,'meaning Moses and Aaron, of whom Jarchi interprets them, of the first of which it is said, "I have made thee a god unto Pharaoh", Exodus 7:1; but Kimchi and R. Isaiah understand it of the true God, only suppose, as the former, that the plural expression is used for the sake of honour and glory; whereas, no doubt, respect is had to the three divine Persons in the Trinity, who were all concerned in the redemption of Israel, see Isaiah 63:9, where mention is made of the Lord, and of the Angel of his presence, and of his holy Spirit, as engaged therein:

and to make him a name; either to get himself a name, and honour and glory in the world, to show forth his power and might, as well as his mercy and goodness, or to make his people famous, great, and glorious in the earth:

and to do for you great things and terrible; as he did in the land of Ham, at the Red sea, and in the wilderness, and in the land of Canaan, great things for his people, and terrible ones to their enemies:

for thy land; which is either spoken to God, whose was the land of Israel, and which he had chosen to dwell in, and had given to his people; or else to Israel, to whom the grant of this land was made, and who were put into the possession of it:

before thy people which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt: that is, the great and terrible things were done in their sight, when they were redeemed from the bondage of Egypt, see Psalm 78:12,

from the nations, and their gods? meaning, that they were redeemed not only from Egypt, but the nations of the Canaanites were driven out before them; nor could their idols save them, but destruction came upon them as upon the gods of the Egyptians: some leave out the supplement "from", and interpret this of the persons redeemed, even of the nations and tribes of Israel, and their great men, their rulers and civil magistrates, sometimes called gods.

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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.
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Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-samuel-7.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And what one nation in the earth [is] like thy people, [even] like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make him a name, and to do for i you great things and terrible, for k thy land, before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, [from] the l nations and their gods?

(i) O Israel.

(k) And inheritance, which is Israel.

(l) From the Egyptians and their idols.

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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/2-samuel-7.html. 1599-1645.

Scofield's Reference Notes

redeem

(See Scofield "Exodus 14:30")

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Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on 2 Samuel 7:23". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/2-samuel-7.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Samuel 7:23 And what one nation in the earth [is] like thy people, [even] like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make him a name, and to do for you great things and terrible, for thy land, before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, [from] the nations and their gods?

Ver. 23. And what one nation … is like thy people?] See Deuteronomy 4:7; Deuteronomy 33:29. {See Trapp on "Deuteronomy 4:7"} {See Trapp on "Deuteronomy 33:29"}

Whom God went to redeem.] Came down from heaven, as it were, to display his glorious power upon earth [Exodus 3:7-8] The whole Trinity did so in a special manner, when God the Son took our nature, and therein came to visit us.

And to defer you.] This he speaketh by a most emphatical apostrophe to the people: and then presently turneth him to God again, having his heart as full of heaven as it could hold.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-samuel-7.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

2 Samuel 7:23. To do for you Instead of for you, the LXX, Vulgate, and Arabic read, for them, which is certainly right. See Houbigant, Hallet, &c. By referring to 1 Chronicles 17:21 the embarrassment of this verse may be removed, and the whole rendered thus: For what one nation upon earth is there like thy people Israel, whom God went to redeem to be his own people, that he might make to himself a name; might do in their favour great and terrible things, and might drive the nations, and their gods, before his people, whom he delivered from Egypt.

REFLECTIONS.—Overcome with Nathan's gracious message from the Lord, though his purposes were prevented, the great and precious promises declared to him by the prophet, awaken the liveliest returns of thankfulness. He immediately repairs to the tabernacle, and there pours forth his prayers and praises before his Covenant-God.

1. Abased in the dust, he confesses his own vileness and unworthiness of these distinguished favours; speaking with deep humility of himself, though so distinguished in gifts and graces. Note; They whom God honours, will have the lowliest opinion of themselves.

2. He acknowledges with thankfulness and admiration what God had done for him. It was to him alone that he was indebted for all that advancement at which he was arrived, and God had now added the promise of many days to come. He is overwhelmed with such goodness! Yet thus has God done, exceeding even his utmost wishes, and leaving David nothing more to ask. Note; (1.) God bestows on his people not only more than they deserve, but more than they can desire. (2.) Men are niggards of their gifts, especially to those who have offended them: but God blesses them that were his enemies; first reconciles them to himself, then covers them with mercies and loving-kindness, and more than all, gives them still greater blessings in promise, even than those they at present enjoy. (3.) God's covenant of grace contains all that a sinner needs: when we plead that before God, and lay hold by faith on Jesus, in whom alone this covenant standeth fast, then all things are ours.

3. He ascribes the whole to God's unmerited and boundless grace; who, for his word's sake, according to his promise by Samuel, or for the sake of his incarnate Son, the Word made flesh, thus graciously respected him, and had also made him know these mercies yet in store, Note; To know and be assured of our interest in the blessings of the New Covenant, is an unspeakable mercy.

4. He extols the glorious God whose mercy was so great towards him. There is none like unto him, no God beside him; none that can do as he doth, in works of power and grace towards his people.

5. The people of God, from their relation to him, appear also great and distinguished in his eyes. God, or, as the original is, Gods went to redeem them, not Moses and Aaron, (though they as magistrates may be called Elohim,) but the triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; to save them from the nations, and their gods, to be a peculiar people to Jehovah, their Covenant-God. Note; More glorious is our spiritual redemption from idolatrous affections and servitude to sin, more peculiar our consecration to him through the blood of Jesus, than theirs by the blood of bulls and goats.

6. He concludes with his humble supplications for the fulfilment of the promises wherein God had caused him to put his trust. Since it had pleased him to reveal his great goodness to his servant, David can ask nothing greater, nothing better. Let the word be established; and this he confidently expects from the truth and faithfulness of God, and is thence encouraged in his heart to pray, because God has promised. Let God therefore be magnified, his great and glorious name be exalted in mercy, and, according as he hath said, Let David's house be built and blessed, and his throne continue for ever. Note; (1.) We may boldly ask, when we have God's promises to encourage us. (2) Let us not stagger at the greatness of the promise, but pray in faith, nothing doubting. (3.) Whenever we find in our heart to pray, God will not fail to hear and answer us. (4.) It is the constant desire of the faithful soul, that God may be glorified; and as this is especially the case when the kingdom of his dear Son is enlarged, therefore he prays, thy kingdom come. (5.) All repetition of our prayers is not vain repetition, but rather is often the liveliest expression of faith and importunity.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/2-samuel-7.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

God went, to wit, into Egypt; an expression of God after the manner of men.

To make him a name; to advance the glory of his power and goodness, and other perfections. Compare Exodus 9:16.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-samuel-7.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

23.To do for you great things For you refers to Israel. In the rapt earnestness and enthusiasm of his prayer, David seems in heart to have all Israel before him, and addresses them unconsciously as with an orator’s directness.

Thy land — God’s land, the land of Canaan, because it was the land of divine promise.

This prayer of David is a model for all who approach the spiritual mercy-seat. It embodies confession, adoration, and supplication. David confesses his own unworthiness of blessings already received, (18,) adores Jehovah for personal favours, (19-21,) and also for the amazing displays of mercy and love for his chosen people, (22-24,) and lastly, with devout supplication, prays for the fulfilment of the Divine promise, (25-29.) Let the reader here observe that though the Divine promise to David and his seed was unconditional, and sure as the pledge of God could make it, (2 Samuel 7:15-16,) the pious monarch still prays for its fulfilment. Compare Ezekiel 36:36-37.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-samuel-7.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

2 Samuel 7:23. What one nation in the earth, &c. — He seems to have in view the words of Moses in Deuteronomy 4:7; Deuteronomy 4:34. To make him a name — That all the world might know and acknowledge his power and glory. To do for you great things and terrible, &c. — Instead of, for you, the Seventy, Vulgate, and Arabic read, for them. Or the words may be understood, according to Le Clerc’s interpretation, who supplies some words evidently intended to be supplied to perfect the sense, thus: To do for you great things, O Israel, and terrible for thy land, O God, by casting out the nations before thy people, &c. But the parallel place, 1 Chronicles 17:2, to which the reader is referred, will best explain the sense of this whole verse. From the nations and their gods — Some, by gods, understand their rulers; but their gods were no more able, nay, being mere imaginary beings, were less able to save the nations whom Jehovah drove out, than their kings and rulers.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/2-samuel-7.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

CHAPTER VII.

A name. So that all might praise God, for the favours which he had bestowed upon his people, (Haydock) and admire his power and glory. --- Gods, whom thou didst cast out of Chanaan. (Paralipomenon) (Calmet) --- From, is not expressed in the Vulgate or Hebrew, though Protestants also supply it. (Haydock) --- Some explain Elohim, "gods," of the chief men of the Hebrew nation. The power of the idols was overthrown; (Numbers xxxiii. 4,) and the Israelites were rescued both from oppression, and from the service of false gods, Ezechiel xvi. (Calmet) --- Adonai is often substituted for Jehova; as appears from 1 Paralipomenon xvii. 21, 22. (Kennicott)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-samuel-7.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

what . . . ? Figure of speech Erotesis. App-6.

like Israel. Some codices, with Septuagint, Syriac, and Vulgate, read "like Thy People Israel".

redeem. Hebrew. padah. See notes on Exodus 13:13 and 2 Samuel 6:6.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-samuel-7.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And what one nation in the earth is like thy people, even like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make him a name, and to do for you great things and terrible, for thy land, before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, from the nations and their gods?

What one nation ... is like thy people, even like Israel, whom God went to redeem. The phraseology is used more humano; and the allusion is to the deliverance from Egyptian bondage. The rest of the sentence, which is confused and nearly unintelligible in our version, is translated by Kennicott as follows: 'And to make himself a name, and to do for them things great and terrible, to drive out from before thy people (whom thou redeemedst to thee out of Egypt) the nations and their gods. And thou hast confirmed to thyself thy people Israel, to be a people unto thee for ever; for thou, Yahweh, hast been their God.'

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-samuel-7.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(23) Whom God went to redeem.—The word here used for God in this its usual plural form is always construed with a singular verb when it refers to the true God. Here the verb is plural, because the thought is, “What nation is there whom its gods went to redeem?”

For you.—These words, which can only refer to Israel, seem strange in a prayer to God. They are omitted by the LXX., and changed into for them by the Vulg. If they are retained as they are, it must be understood that David for the moment turns in thought to the people, instead of to God whom he is immediately addressing.

For thy land.—The LXX. and the parallel passage (1 Chronicles 17:21), instead of this have, “by driving out.” If the text here may be corrected in this way, there will be no occasion for inserting from before the nations, which is not in the Hebrew. This part of the verse will then read, to do great things and terrible, by driving out before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, nations and their gods. The phrase, “great things and terrible,” in reference to the Exodus, is taken from Deuteronomy 10:21. The whole of this part of the prayer is evidently founded upon Deuteronomy 4:7; Deuteronomy 4:32-34.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-samuel-7.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And what one nation in the earth is like thy people, even like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make him a name, and to do for you great things and terrible, for thy land, before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, from the nations and their gods?
what one
Deuteronomy 4:7,8,32-34; 33:29; Psalms 147:20; Romans 3:1,2
went
Exodus 3:7,8; 19:5,6; Numbers 14:13,14; Psalms 111:9; Isaiah 63:7-14; Titus 2:14; 1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 5:9
make him
Exodus 9:16; Joshua 7:9; 1 Chronicles 17:21; Isaiah 63:12,14; Ezekiel 20:9; Ephesians 1:6
great things
Deuteronomy 10:21; Psalms 40:5; 65:5; 66:3; 106:22; 145:6
thy people
Deuteronomy 9:26; 15:15; Nehemiah 1:10
nations and their gods
Exodus 12:12
Reciprocal: Genesis 35:2 - strange;  Exodus 6:7 - will take;  Exodus 15:16 - which thou;  Exodus 33:16 - separated;  Exodus 34:10 - I will do marvels;  2 Samuel 7:24 - art become;  Isaiah 48:20 - utter it even;  Isaiah 64:3 - thou didst;  Jeremiah 32:20 - and hast;  Micah 6:4 - and redeemed

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Samuel 7:23". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-samuel-7.html.