1Chronicles 14

 

1Chronicles 14:1–14

David’s Family in Jerusalem; His Wars with the Philistines


Outline of Chapter 14:

 

         vv.     1–2           Hiram King of Tyre Builds David a Palace

         vv.     3–7           The Line of David in Jerusalem

         vv.     8–12          David’s First War with the Philistines

         vv.    13–16         David’s Second War with the Philistines

         v.       17           David’s Fame


Charts, Short Doctrines and Maps:

 

         Introduction         Clarke’s Outline of 1Chronicles 14

         Introduction         The Authorship of the Book of Chronicles

         Introduction         Why Do we Have 1Chronicles 14 in the Bible?

         Introduction         Why Is 1Chronicles 14 Placed Here?

         Introduction         Martin Selman: Why 1Chronicles 14 is Placed Here

         v.       2              Whose Kingdom? Whose People?

         v.       3              The Key Theme of 1Chronicles 14 is Jerusalem

         v.       3              David’s Sons and Daughters

         v.       6              The Parallel Genealogies—David’s Children

         v.       8              Why Do the Philistines Continually War Against Israel?

         v.       9              A Map of David’s Movements and the Philistine Aggression

         v.      10              Why David Needs to Ask for God’s Guidance Here

         v.      11              Personal Application of David’s War with the Philistines

         v.      14              What About the Believer and Wars His Country Engages in?

         v.      14              David’s Tactics in the Second Philistine War

         v.      14              Keil and Delitzsch Show how 2Samuel 23 and 1Chronicles 14 Agree

         v.      14              Some Fundamental Principles of Textual Criticism

         v.      16              Keil and Delitzsch on Gibeon or Geba

         v.      16              Gibeon and Geba

         v.      16              The Hebrew, Latin, Greek and Syriac: Gibeon, Gezer and Geba

         v.      16              Summary: Is it Gibeon or should this Passage Read Geba?

         v.      17              What are the Differences between 2Samuel 5:11–24 and 1Chronicles 14?

         v.      17              David and Saul, Contrasted by the Author/Editor of Chronicles

         v.      17              A Complete Translation of 1Chronicles 14


Doctrines Covered

Doctrines Alluded To

 

 

The Lost Books of Scripture

Gibeah, Gibeon and Geba


I ntroduction: Just as 1Chron. 13 was a close parallel to 2Sam. 6, so 1Chron. 14 is almost identical to 2Sam. 5 (specifically, to 2Sam. 5:11–25). Now, I found out a great many more things when I studied 1Chron. 13 immediately after 2Sam. 6, even though much of the text was identical. I am assuming that, if I am on my game, that the same will be true of this chapter.


As is my wont to do, here is another outline:

Clarke’s Outline of 1Chronicles 14

1.      Hiram sends artificers and materials to David, to build him a house (1Chron. 14–2).

2.      David’s wives and children (1Chron. 14:3–7).

3.      He defeats the Philistines in two battles:

         a.      In the valley of Rephaim (1Chron. 14:8–12)

         b.      The other at Gibeon and Gazer (1Chron. 14:13–16)

4.      His fame goes out into all the surrounding nations (1Chron. 14:17).

From Adam Clarke, Commentary on the Bible; from e-Sword, 1Chron. 14 Introduction.


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The way that I am beginning this is, I have copied all of the 2Sam. 5 exegesis into this document, and I will heavily edit and fix whatever is different in the specific exegesis. Some of the commentary will be identical; some of the charts, short doctrines and will also be identical. However, as I study this chapter, a great deal of new information will be added.


My personal opinion is, the writer of Chronicles had a copy of Samuel to work from, as well as some additional ancient manuscripts. The text throughout this chapter and 2Sam. 5 is just too close to be a matter of accident. One might say, well aren’t these words inspired by God the Holy Spirit? And they are, but that is not why they are so similar. Some portions of Scripture are dictated: much of Exodus–Numbers is dictated directly from God to Moses, and it is carefully noted as such. However, most of Deuteronomy are the words of Moses; Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Samuel and Kings are primarily historical narratives where there is no indication that God dictated the words found therein. Each book of the Bible has a distinct literary style. John’s writings are very simple and the first year Greek student can translate most of John’s gospel and letters. However, one gets a closer examination of certain Apostles in John’s gospel than in any of the other 3 gospels. Paul’s writings are more involved, and he may carry logical thought streams through several verses and, at times, through several chapters. Luke tends to be very precise and chronological. These various books have different styles because they were written by different men. They are inspired by God the Holy Spirit, but each book is fully the words of these men and fully the words of God. There is an exact parallel in Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God. He is fully man and fully God, in One Person forever. My point in this is, the similarity between this chapter of Chronicles and 2Sam. 5 is not simply a matter of being inspired by God the Holy Spirit. That fact does not require the human styles or vocabularies to be identical. Therefore, it is more reasonable that the writer of Chronicles used the Samuel text in preparing his own work (along with other ancients texts, long lost to us).


We use similar reasoning when it comes to the recording of certain events. Of course, we could at any time, say, “Well, Moses prophetically wrote about his death (Deut. 34); or Samuel through God the Holy Spirit was able to observe Jonathan’s victory over the Philistines (1Sam. 14)” but that is stretching the function of God the Holy Spirit into a different realm of supernatural influence. Nowhere in Scripture, when an incident is recorded, do we have any indication that the writer was not there and somehow saw this in a vision or in a dream. Now, there are a number of times in Scripture when the means of God’s conveyance of knowledge is not specified; but there are enough times when it is specified, that we can at least make a reasonable guess. My point is, people record the most accurate narratives when they actually observe the events firsthand. We may reasonable assume that this describes the writings of Moses, Joshua, Matthew and John. We may reasonably assume that there are instances when the writer of Scripture obtained his information from a firsthand source. Luke is a good example of this; he accompanied Paul on some missionary journeys, and was a firsthand observer of those events. However, he also came into contact with a number of other believers during his tenure with Paul who observed the events of the gospels and of Acts, and from their testimonies (and quite possibly from the writings of Matthew and Mark), Luke wrote his gospel and the book of Acts. Furthermore, Luke testifies to this at the beginning of both of his books. He does not present himself as an eyewitness, but as a historian who researched these events, living at a time when eyewitnesses were alive and willing to share what they observed.


The point I am trying to make is, when it comes to the authorship of this or that chapter, or this or that book, we should gravitate to the means and to the author which make the most sense, based upon the contents of the book. In this case, we have a chapter which, in parts, is almost word-for-word identical to 2Sam. 5:11–25. The most logical explanation of this is, the writer of Chronicles (who composed his book even as late as 580 b.c.), had at his disposal, the works of Samuel. The writer of Chronicles was not an eyewitness to most of the events of Chronicles; therefore, he had to get his material from somewhere. Since there is really no precedent for a narrative to be dictated by God the Holy Spirit to a writer of Scripture, we must look to the most logical human explanation, which is, the writer of Chronicles is principally an editor, and his work is based upon other writings which existed at his time—most of which were written as eyewitness or 2nd hand reports of the historical events covered.


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Let’s take this in points:

The Authorship of the Book of Chronicles

1.      Chronicles has genealogies which go back to Adam, and covers historical events which take us to the dispersion of the southern kingdom (586 b.c.) to the first year of Cyrus, king of Persia (538 b.c.). This is a period of 3000 years or more. Since no one in Scripture has a lifespan of the length, and since only Noah and his immediate family survived the flood, we must assume that the author of Chronicles was not an eyewitness to all events recorded in Chronicles.

2.      There were several books which existed prior to the incarnation of our Lord: in fact, the writer of Chronicles tells us about some of them: Now, the acts of King David, from first to last, are written in The Chronicles of Samuel the Seer, in The Chronicles of Nathan the Prophet, and in The Chronicles of Gad the Seer (I Chron. 29:29). I covered this doctrine back in Joshua 10 (the Lost Books of Scripture).

3.      Therefore, it is most reasonable to assume that the writer of Chronicles (if there was only one writer) lived around 538 b.c. and that he has several reference books which he used to assemble the history and genealogies found in Chronicles.

4.      We have no reason to believe that this writer went into some weird trance and wrote as God the Holy Spirit directed him to write, as in some form of dictation. Although Moses is dictated to in portions of the books of Moses, it is very clear that Moses appears to be in possession of his faculties when he records God’s words.

5.      Given that the writer of chronicles alludes to several books in existence at his time, books which carry more information than his book carries, and given that we have no precedence for the automatic writing of Scripture, and given that this, and several other chapters of Chronicles is almost identical to chapters in Samuel, it is reasonable to assume that the author if Chronicles functions more like an editor, taking information from books available to him at that time, and, in some cases, copying from these books word for word.

6.      It is very likely that the historian Josephus functioned in much the same way; however, the Chronicles are divinely inspired and the writings of Josephus are not.

7.      This also indicate to us that it is possible to be an author-editor and to still be divinely inspired.

8.      The works used by the author of Chronicles were both inspired by God and, most likely, not; but the final product produced—the Book of Chronicles—is inspired by God, and historically accurate in its autographs.

Or, to summarize, the author of Chronicles function more as an editor than he did as an author.


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1Chron. 14 is almost identical to the latter half of 2Sam. 5, so why is 1Chron. 14 necessary?

Why Do we Have 1Chronicles 14 in the Bible?

1.      First of all, the writer of Chronicles is presenting a divine perspective of the history of David, so that, now and again, there are going to be parallel portions of Samuel and Chronicles.

2.      Although we have the entire Word of God, believers in ancient times, particularly during the Old Testament, were lucky to have any sort of access to any book (although it is clear that the Scriptures were available to be read aloud in the synagogues by what we find in the New Testament). Therefore, a person reading the Chronicles might not necessarily have access (or, easy access) to the book of Samuel. We can flip back and forth quite easily; they could not. Therefore, some things will be found in both books simply for reasons of context and narrative. We should not be so egocentric as to assume that each and every verse in Scripture has meaning for our individual lives.

3.      However, it is also reasonable that we might have some reason to find this chapter in both books. One reason is the placement of this chapter. David fails when it comes to moving the Ark of God in the previous chapter. He will be successful in the next chapter. All the while, David had a relationship with God. All the while, God continued to bless him. This chapter is inserted between the two attempts to move the Ark to indicate that God has not removed His blessing from David. David failed; so what. That does not mean that God turns His back on David.

4.      We are going to fail in our Christian lives; we are going to make mistakes and we are going to sin. Regularly naming our sins to God should be almost automatic. This maintains our fellowship with God. We might commit an awful sin, but this does not mean that our house is going to fall down upon us. David made a big mistake in the previous chapter—he followed the actions of the Philistines in moving the Ark of God; he did not follow the Scriptures. That is a big failure. However, God continued to bless David.

5.      Bearing this in mind—that David failed to move the Ark because he follows the actions of the Philistines—in this chapter, the Philistines will attack Israel and be soundly defeated. This is another reason why David should not look to them for spiritual guidance. Herein is a reasonable application for our own lives: you do not look to the world to determine how you should act or what you should do with regards to your non-secular life. The Philistines are not simply failures; they are the enemies of God; David should have never looked at their actions when it came to determining how he should move the Ark of God.

6.      This chapter, included where it is, also suggests that there are a number of ways of examining the Scriptures. One might proceed chronologically (as we have in the book of Samuel) or topically, which is more of the approach of Chronicles (although there is an eye to chronology, as the book in general is in chronological order).

7.      Now, unlike the gospels, however, Chronicles is not really a second witness of these events herein recorded since the Book of Chronicles is based, in part, upon the Book of Samuel. That is, much of what we find in Samuel is a firsthand or a secondhand account of the events therein recorded. Chronicles is not the observations of a different firsthand observer (like the gospels of Matthew and John, for instance). However, this does tell us two things about the books of Samuel and Chronicles:

         a.      They had to be written during vastly different eras; otherwise, the book of Chronicles would make little sense to write. This would suggest that Samuel is an ancient as we believe it to be.

         b.      Samuel is considered to be historically accurate by the people of the ancient world—those much closer to the time of events in Samuel—as it is obviously used to produce another historical work, which apparently has no opposition to its contents. We are separated in time by 3000 years from the events of the book of Samuel. However, the writer of Chronicles was separated in time by 500 years. The writer of Chronicles boldly copies entire portions of Samuel, indicating that he has trust in its historical accuracy.

8.      Chronicles does act as a second witness with respect to the accuracy of the text of Samuel. Both books are going to be preserved, sometimes together and sometimes separately. However, the fact that their texts are so close, yet not exactly the same, indicates almost a supernatural preservation of text. Let’s see if I can explain this: if the text of Samuel and Chronicles were exactly the same, it could suggest that, at some given time in recent history, scribes looked at both texts and decided to clear up the minor discrepancies and make them read exactly the same. Obviously, that never happened. Furthermore, if you ever do any writing, and you quote from another source, you will find yourself occasionally adjusting the text of the source you are quoting from (which is why I often paraphrase a source). This is normal for a writer to do. Sometimes, these changes are extremely minor (as you will see throughout this chapter); however, this is what we writers do. Therefore, even though the writer of Chronicles copies from the Samuel manuscript now and again, he occasionally adjusts the text to his own style of writing, and to his own vocabulary.

God the Holy Spirit is not in the habit of including duplications in Scripture without there being a reason for these duplications.

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An important and related question is...

Why Is 1Chronicles 14 Placed Here?

1.      What should be obvious are two points: (1) this does not match the probably more chronological view of 2Sam. 6, where the two Ark movements are placed together in the same chapter, as they occurred only 3 months apart; and (2) this is not a reasonable chronological presentation of these events, as David’s marriages and children had to occur over a longer period of time (quite certainly, longer than 3 months); and the other events included in this chapter—Hiram building a palace for David, two wars with the Philistines—also could not have occurred within a 3 month period of time.

2.      By this time in your examination of Scripture, it should be obvious that, although chronology is a consideration for the arrangement of some books of the Bible, it is not the only consideration. If you ever pick up a Chronological Bible, it will be clear that, putting the Bible into some sort of the Chronological order makes a total mess of the order that we are used to.

3.      However, chronology is certainly a factor in the composition of these various books of Scripture; Gen. 1 surely precedes in time, Gen. 10, for instance (and this is true of most books of Scripture). However, not all of Gen. 2 follows chronologically after Gen. 1. This is where we must enter into the mind of the Hebrew writer, who often takes a portion of one chapter and expands on it considerably in the next. We find this occurring on several occasions in the Bible. This is no different than Paul making a theological point, and then logically developing this point in the following chapter, using illustrations, examples and logic. Therefore, seeing a writer do this, should not confuse us. No doubt, you have seen a movie, and then, half way through this movie, we flash to a different scene, which took place 10 years ago. You don’t suddenly storm out of the theater when that occurs, demanding your money back. Same thing here: don’t be concerned that we are not moving in an exact chronological order.

4.      This does allow us a peak at David’s psyche. In the next chapter, David will have figured out how the Ark is to be moved; this indicates that he has studied the Old Testament (which he has a copy of; all kings were to hand-write out a copy of the Law for themselves). Because David has this, he knows that kings are not to multiply wives to himself—he does anyway (and he dearly pays for this, by the way).

5.      Even though David has failed in the previous chapter, and even though he marries more than one woman, God still blesses him, just as God had promised (which David will realize in v. 2). God blesses David in war as well, as he will have two strong victories over the Philistines in the second half of this chapter.

6.      This tells us that, even though David will fail, and sometimes, spectacularly, God still blesses him and, above all, God still keeps His Word to David.

7.      I think one key to this placement might be this: the writer/editor of Chronicles wants to make certain that we know David is God’s man and Jerusalem is the proper choice for the capital city of Israel. Twice, David’s establishment as rulership over Israel will be alluded to (1Chron. 14:2, 17), which is confirmed by his successful defense of this city. The point is, when David chose to move the Ark to Jerusalem, the time was right, the man was right and the place to where the Ark was going was right. Who, when and where were all right, and this chapter makes that clear. The problem with moving the Ark was how David chose to move it. If you will recall 2Sam. 5, I went into great detail about the application of this principle: you cannot copy the outside world; you cannot even copy what you read in Scripture. You obey the mandates of Scripture. Almost every cult bases its doctrine upon copying something that they read in the Bible.

8.      A key to this chapter is that it is all about the city of Jerusalem (see Jerusalem is the Key to 1Chron. 14). The author/editor of Chronicles is making it clear that David is the right king and that Jerusalem is the right place to bring the Ark to.

9.      Some contend that the first war with the Philistines occurs in between the two movements of the Ark, although I did not really see any compelling evidence for this (not that I disagree). However, it does seem quite unlikely that both wars with the Philistines would have occurred during that short period of time.

These points should be re-read after completing the examination of this chapter. I think that the final 2 points are the ones which most accurately explain the placement of 1Chron. 14.

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The only commentator who seemed to ask this question that I came across was Martin Selman (I read about 10 commentaries as I exegete Chronicles):

Martin Selman: Why 1Chronicles 14 is Placed Here

1.      The seeking theme of 1Chron. 13 continues to play a prominent rolein this account of the Philistines wars. It is related to a wider pattern by which military victory and international recognition are regarded as benefits received as a result of seeking God [I question whether David was truly seeking God in the previous chapter, as he did not find out how to move the Ark until 1Chron. 15].

2.      David’s kingship over all Israel, continued from chapters 12–13, is now confirmed (vv. 2, 8).

3.      The constant focus on Jerusalem throughout chapter 14 as not only David’s conquered city (1Chron. 11:4–9), but also where David receives God’s varied blessings, marks it out as a city prepared for the Ark.

4.      God’s breakout in judgment (1Chron. 13:9–12) now becomes a ‘breakout’ in blessing for Israel as well as for Obed-edom’s household (v. 11; Baal perazim means ‘lord who breaks out/through). The ark can finally proceed to Jerusalem because God’s mercy and blessing have now removed and overwhelmed the consequences of his anger (compare John 3:16–17).

5.      The last verse of this chapter will indicate that there is international recognition for David as king of Israel.

6.      This chapter provides a dramatic contrast between David and Saul:

         1)      Saul was completely defeated by the Philistines in 1Chron. 10; David is victorious.

         2)      Saul’s line has been cut off; David’s house is fertile (1Chron. 14:3–7).

         3)      David inquires of God (1Chron. 14:10, 14) whereas, Saul did not (1Chron. 10:13–14).

         4)      David captures and burns the Philistine gods (1Chron. 14:12); before whom Saul’s head and armour had been previously presented as trophies of war (1Chron. 10:9–10).

         5)      Saul’s kingdom was transferred (1Chron. 10:14), but David’s is confirmed (1Chron. 14:2, 17).1

The final set of points is excellent. I don’t know that they show why 1Chron. 14 is placed here, but they show a coherence in the author/editor’s style and purpose which I did not see before. It makes it clear why the author/editor makes reference to specific observations, some of which are not found in Samuel (e.g., 1Chron. 10:13–14 14:17).

1 This is taken from Martin J. Selman, I Chronicles An Introduction & Commentary; The Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries, D. J. Wiseman editor, Inter-Varsity Press, Downers Grove, Il., ©1994, pp. 155–156; and slightly edited. On p. 158, Selman attempts to place the Philistine wars into a time line (immediately after David’s anointing ceremony), which is not out of the question; however, his arguments were not conclusive or compelling. I think we can place the first Philistine war in this time period, roughly, but I am unable to nail its location in time any more than that.


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Hiram King of Tyre Builds David a Palace

2Samuel 5:11–12


And so sends Hiram king of Tyre messengers unto David and trees of cedars and engravers of a wall and engravers of wood to build for him a house.

1Chronicles

14:1

Hiram, king of Tyre, sent messengers to David with cedar trees, wall-builders and carpenters, to build for him a [royal] residence.

Hiram, the king of Tyre, sent messengers to David, along with cedar trees, carpenters and masons. They built a royal residence for him.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And so sends Hiram king of Tyre messengers unto David and trees of cedars and engravers of a wall and engravers of wood to build for him a house.

Septuagint                              And Chiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar timbers, and masons, and carpenters, to build a house for him.

 

Significant differences:           None; the differences between this text and the Hebrew of 2Sam. 5 is slight and will be covered in the exegesis.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       King Hiram of Tyre sent some officials to David. They brought along carpenters and stone workers, and enough cedar logs to build David a palace.

NAB                                       Hiram, king of Tyre, sent enjoys to David along with masons and carpenters, and cedar wood to build him a house.

TEV                                        King Hiram of Tyre sent a trade mission to David; he provided him with cedar logs and with stonemasons and carpenters to build a palace.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         King Hiram of Tyre sent messengers to David, along with cedarwood, masons, and carpenters to build a palace for David.

HCSB                                     King Hiram of Tyre sent envoys to David, along with cedar logs, stonemasons, and carpenters to build a palace for him.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, also masons and carpenters to build a house for him.

Young's Updated LT              And Huram king of Tyre sends messengers unto David, and cedar-wood, and artificers of walls, and artificers of wood, to build to him a house.


What is the gist of this verse? The king of Tyre sends a wonderful present to David: he sends David an army of carpenters and masons to build a great palace for David.


Differences between the Samuel and Chronicles text will be noted as we go along.


1Chronicles 14:1a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

shâlach (ח ַל ָש) [pronounced shaw-LAKH]

to send, to send for [forth, away], to dismiss, to deploy, to put forth, to stretch out

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #7971 BDB #1018

Chîyrâm (מָרי.ח) [pronounced khee-RAWM]

noble and transliterated Hiram

masculine singular proper noun

Strong’s #2438 BDB #27

Also spelled Chîyrôwm (מרי.ח) [pronounced khee-ROHM]. I did not see a Chiriq in Owen’s text.

meleke ( ל מ) [pronounced MEH-lek]

king, ruler, prince

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #4428 BDB #572

Tsôr (רֹצ) [pronounced tsohr]

rock; knife; and is transliterated Tyre or Tyrus

proper singular noun; location

Strong’s #6865 BDB #862

Also spelled Tsôwr (רצ) [pronounced tsohr], and is identical to Strong’s #6864 (which means flint, hard pebble; knife).

maleâke (ָא׃לַמ) [pronounced mahle-AWKe]

messenger or angel; this word has been used for a prophet (Isa. 42:19) and priest (Mal. 2:7)

masculine plural noun

Strong’s #4397 BDB #521

el (לא) [pronounced el]

unto; into, among, in; toward, to; against; concerning, regarding; besides, together with; as to

directional preposition (respect or deference may be implied)

Strong's #413 BDB #39

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187


Translation: Hiram, king of Tyre, sent messengers to David... Tyre is a Phœnician city along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, north of Israel. I would assume that this area was also well-known for its cedars in that era, just as Lebanon was. Hiram is sending a great many things to David, so he first sends messengers to explain to David what he is doing.


1Chronicles 14:1b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

׳êts (ץ ֵע) [pronounced ģayts]

trees felled for building (1Kings 5:20, 32), lumber (Gen. 6:14 2Kings 12:13), sticks or logs for fuel (Gen. 22:3 Lev. 1:7)

masculine plural construct

Strong’s #6086 BDB #781

erez (ז∵ר∵א) [pronounced EH-rez]

cedar

masculine plural noun

Strong’s #730 BDB #72


Translation: ...with cedar trees,... Along behind these messengers we have a number of cedar trees, which no doubt are brought along by a large number of men who somehow transport these trees (in what manner, I don’t know).


1Chronicles 14:1c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

chârâsh (ש ָר ָח) [pronounced khaw-RAWSH]

graver, engraver, artificer, metal worker, blacksmith; artisan, craftsman

masculine plural construct

 Strong's #2796 BDB #360

2Sam. 5:11 inserts the following word:

eben (ןבא) [pronounced EHB-ven]

stone

feminine singular construct

Strong's #68 BDB #6

qîyr (רי .ק) [pronounced keer]

the wall [of a city], a wall; a place fortified with a wall [i.e., a fortress]; a side

masculine singular noun

Strong’s #7023 BDB #885


Translation: ...and wall-builders;... Literally, this reads craftsmen of a wall, which, taken together, mean craftsmen of stone walls; which is a different set of skills from the carpenters named above. The idea of a wall is to keep people out and to keep those on the other side of the walls safe. Even though there was apparently a wall built already around Jerusalem, additional walls provided additional safety.


1Chronicles 14:1d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

chârâsh (שָרָח) [pronounced khaw-RAWSH]

graver, engraver, artificer, metal worker, blacksmith; artisan, craftsman

masculine plural construct

 Strong's #2796 BDB #360

׳êts (ץ ֵע) [pronounced ģayts]

tree, wood; wooden post, [wooden] stake, gallows; [collectively for] a forest of trees

masculine singular noun

Strong’s #6086 BDB #781

Interestingly enough, this short phrase precedes the previous phrase in 2Sam. 5:11.


Translation: ...carpenters... Literally, we have here craftsmen of wood; men whom we would call carpenters today. Now, even though many of the tools we have today, they had then, I imagine that they were quite dissimilar, and therefore, these artisans of wood had great skills, but those which are different from carpenters today.


In any case, Hiram was showing great respect to David by sending these men to him—he sends much of the raw material along with the men who know how to work with this raw material, with the result that a great palace will be built for David.


For whatever reason, up until this time, the Jews were not generally known for their building projects, Footnote apart from the reign of Solomon. What appears to be the case is, they seemed to live primarily in tents, and that, when they took the land of promise, that they inherited the buildings of the cities whose people they defeated. It is reasonable to postulate that they really did not need to develop building skills at first. I’ve used my own house as an example; I am in the process of adding on a substantial addition, and this has required me to learn, either by observation or by actually doing the work, each process in constructing this house—framing, electrical, plumbing, etc. Prior to this, my knowledge of such things increased as I did this or that repair, but, I had no actual complete knowledge of any individual system, as I only would work on a portion of it. At first, the Jews had no reason to learn building skills; what they needed had already been provided. In fact, it is possible that for some Jews, building was too closely associated with their slavery under Egypt, and they possible avoided this profession for that reason.


1Chronicles 14:1e

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

bânâh (ה ָנ ָ) [pronounced baw-NAWH]

to build, to rebuild, to restore

Qal infinitive construct

Strong’s #1129 BDB #124

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

No Strong’s # BDB #510

bayith (ת̣י ַ) [pronounced BAH-yith]

house, residence; household, habitation as well as inward

masculine singular noun; pausal form

Strong's #1004 BDB #108

Quite frankly, I do not see anything different about the pausal form and the normal spelling.

2Sam. 5:11 reads ...and they build a house for David.


Translation: ...to build for him a [royal] residence. Even though this simply says that these men built a house for David, we are probably talking a wonderful, royal palace. This is an incredible gesture by the king of Tyre, and much different than those of the Mideast today.


There are some details that I should dispense with here. Hiram (which may be short for Ahiram) seems to have more interaction with Solomon, David’s son, than with David. For this reason, some Footnote have suggested that this palace was build for David during the 2nd half of his reign. David would have been well-established as king, he would have been an older man, and perhaps Hiram was a young king who looked up to David. Selman offers a lot of dates at this point, but it is unclear whether these are the dates for Hiram’s reign or for the 2nd half of David’s reign. Footnote The point the author of Chronicles is making (in this verse and the next) is, God has clearly established David as king over Israel in contrast to Saul, whom God clearly rejected.


Why do we find this verse here? What is the purpose? I see it as twofold: (1) This chapter seems to be inserted between David’s unsuccessful and successful attempts to move the Ark to indicate that God did not withdraw His blessing from David, despite his failure in the previous chapter to transport the Ark. (2) Hiram is being presented as a believer in Jehovah Elohim, given his relationship with David, and given other references to him (1Kings 5 2Chron. 2:11–12). This would suggest that some evangelism has taken place outside of Israel, although the exact nature of this evangelism is unknown to us. Perhaps simply the fact that Israel went from slavery to a nation in two generations and that their God accompanied them and supported them with signs and wonders caused some to believe. Footnote


David does have a well-deserved reputation, which could also have impacted Hiram’s choice to honor him. As one of Saul’s generals, David has guided his troops in and out of battle and they, in turn, developed a great respect for him as a leader. Such information would be available to Hiram. Although one could argue that Hiram cultivated David’s friendship in order to retain his trade routes, one could also argue that allying himself with the Philistines might have done the same thing. However, the key here is really positive volition. Those who showed positive volition toward the Jew often believe in Jehovah Elohim, God of the Jews. Those who allied themselves against the Jews obviously did not believe in Jehovah Elohim, as who would be so foolish as to oppose the God of the Universe? Footnote


The Philistines were Hiram’s polar opposite; whereas, he extends the hand of friendship to David while the Philistines were continually at war with Israel (with the possible exception of Achish, king of Gath Footnote ). Their negative volition toward David indicates negative volition toward the God of David, Jehovah Elohim.


I think that we learn a great many things in this particular chapter: we find out that there were those in David’s periphery who respected him, were allied with him, and were likely believers for the most part. Surely there were more groups of people besides Hiram. On the other side of the coin, also covered in this chapter, are the Philistines, who, for the most part, were very antagonistic toward the Jews, which suggests that they were equally antagonistic toward Jehovah God.


In case you need more examples of this, examine the countries involved with Israel today. Lebanon was, at one time, quite neutral with respect to the Jews, and their country appeared to be greatly blessed as a result. Most recently, evil forces have gained a foothold in Israel (Hamas), and these forces have been quite antagonistic toward Israel, and the end result has been great instability within Lebanon itself, which, for awhile, was one of the few functioning democracies in the Middle East (Israel being the other; and Iraq, at this point in time, might become a reasonable democracy). Most of the other nations in that region are very hostile toward Israel and their lives reflect a distinct lack of blessing as a result. Footnote In fact, one might compare the relative antagonism of the people of a country to Israel and show a direct relationship between that and their sorry lives. Some of these countries have a greater per capita income than we have in the United States, and yet, the vast majority of their people are far worse off than those in our country who are thought to be in poverty (I know people today who are considered to be far below the poverty line, and they live with much greater material blessings than I had growing up).


And so knows David that established him Yehowah to king over Israel and that was lifted up to a higher [place] his kingdom because of His people Israel.

1Chronicles

14:2

Then David realized [or, perceived] that Yehowah had established [or, prepared] him as [lit., for a] king over Israel and that his kingdom was exalted exceedingly for the sake of His people Israel.

It was then that David realized that Jehovah had established him as king over Israel and that Jehovah lifted up his kingdom on behalf of His people Israel.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Latin Vulgate                          And David perceived that the Lord had confirmed him king over Israel, and that his kingdom was exalted over his people Israel.

Masoretic Text                       And so knows David that established him Yehowah to king over Israel and that was lifted up to a higher [place] his kingdom because of His people Israel.

Peshitta                                  And David perceived that the Lord had chosen him to be king over Israel, for his kingdom was exalted because of his people Israel.

Septuagint                              And David knew that the Lord had prepared him to be king over Israel; because his kingdom was increased in height [i.e., highly exalted], on account of his people Israel.

 

Significant differences:           Interestingly enough, the verbs are all different when it comes to Jehovah making David king over all Israel (I use the English translations of the Latin and Syriac, so I am assuming the verbs are different).

 

At the end, the Latin is interesting, as we find in it, one of the very few times that one might say, aha, the Catholic church altered the text for their own benefit! First of all, it is Jerome who translated the text, and, although there might have been some pressure from the Catholic church, his translation of the Old Testament, insofar as we have gone, seems to be right on target. Furthermore, the translation that we find in the Latin (again, the English translation of the Latin) is a legitimate rendering from the Hebrew text. Now, I am not in any way an apologist for the Catholic church. They promote false doctrine and they represent centuries of evil. However, Jerome’s text appears time and time again to be very accurate and to reflect little influence of any higher body with an agenda. Footnote


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       David now knew that the LORD had made him a powerful king of Israel for the good of his people.

The Message                         Then David knew for sure that GOD had confirmed him as king over Israel, because of the rising reputation that GOD was giving his kingdom for the benefit of his people Israel.

NJB                                        David then knew the Yahweh had confirmed him as king of Israel and, for the sake of his people, had extended his sovereignty.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         So David realized that the LORD had established him as king of Israel and that his kingdom was made famous for the sake of Israel, the LORD'S people.

HCSB                                     Then David knew that the LORD had established him as king over Israel and that his kingdom had been exalted for the sake of His people Israel.

JPS (Tanakh)                         Thus David knew that the Lord had establish him as king over Israel, and that his kingship was highly exalted for the sake of His people Israel.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

MKJV                                     And David saw that Jehovah had confirmed him king over Israel, for his kingdom was lifted on high, because of His people Israel.

Young’s Updated LT             And David knows that Jehovah has established him for king over Israel, because of the lifting up on high of his kingdom, for the sake of His people Israel.


What is the gist of this verse? At this point in time, David realized that God had established him as king over all Israel, as God had promised; and that his kingdom would be stable and that God did this for His people Israel.


1Chronicles 14:2a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

yâda׳ (עַדָי) [pronounced yaw-DAHĢ]

to know, to perceive, to acquire knowledge, to become acquainted with, to know by experience, to have a knowledge of something; to see

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #3045 BDB #393

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

kîy (י̣) [pronounced kee]

for, because; that; when

explanatory conjunction; preposition

Strong's #3588 BDB #471

kûwn (ן) [pronounced koon]

to erect (to stand up perpendicular), to set up, to establish, to prepare, to strengthen, to be stabilized

3rd person masculine singular, Hiphil perfect; with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong’s #3559 BDB #465

YHWH (הוהי) [pronunciation is possibly yhoh-WAH]

transliterated variously as Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehowah

proper noun

Strong’s #3068 BDB #217

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

meleke ( ל מ) [pronounced MEH-lek]

king, ruler, prince

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #4428 BDB #572

׳al (לַע) [pronounced ģahl ]

upon, beyond, on, against, above, over, by, beside

preposition of proximity

Strong’s #5921 BDB #752

Yiserâêl (לֵאָר ׃̣י) [pronounced yis-raw-ALE]

transliterated Israel

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #3478 BDB #975


Translation: Then David realized [or, perceived] that Yehowah had established [or, prepared] him as [lit., for a] king over Israel... The verb to know can indicate that David suddenly realized all that God had done on his behalf. Now, we mostly know about David over many years of studying; and it all seems just what we would expect—that God would exalt him. Furthermore, Samuel anointed David. So, why am I saying that David suddenly realized what God did on his behalf? When I was younger, a new believer, I heard about testing of different types and I heard about prosperity testing and I thought, okay, God, give that to me. Well, years and years later, I looked around at where I was one afternoon in my house, and realized that God answered that prayer. Whereas, I am not a member of the super-rich, by any means, I am in a very good situation with respect to finances and living conditions. My first house, when I moved out from my parents was one where a motorcycle gang drove in and out of via ramps at the front and back doors (they were squatting when I rented the house). The shower walls were bright red, peeling paint. I had to sell most of my valuable possessions in order to buy food at that time. Most of the carpet came from carpet scraps which I had glued together (it looked cool!). When I took a teaching job in Texas, the salary was so low, women who found out that I was a teacher would pretty much stop talking to me (this occurred several times). In other words, when I spoke to God about these things, I was in a moderately impoverished condition. Now, years later, it is much different. I live reasonably well and retired at the age of 51. Now, on the other hand, there are a plethora of problems when you live in a nice house in a nice neighborhood. You may think that money solves everything, but it doesn’t. With money comes problems; and sometimes, significant problems.


David looks around and he suddenly realizes the same thing. He suddenly knows that God has delivered on His promises. No longer was this academic; this was David’s life, as king over all Israel, just as God had promised him back when he was a boy of 12. Footnote


Application: If you are a believer who is growing—learning the Word of God and you are consistently filled with God the Holy Spirit (and I don’t mean in some holy roller way), you are going to note changes in your life. There might not be that big of a difference in my life from yesterday to today; however, if I look at my life in 5 year increments, there is a definite improvement in my life from increment to increment. Even though I have a small handful of regrets and certainly wish I could have done this or that differently, God has blessed me nevertheless. Furthermore, there are things which have a occurred, sometimes as a result of a regretful action, that God has made right. We are told that God works all things together for blessing for those who love Him; that means good and bad things. My personal testimony to you is, this is true. All you need to do is to grow spiritually, which is not a difficult thing to do. You find a good pastor teacher, you get under his teaching regularly (daily is preferred) and you name your sins to God regularly when you are out of fellowship. Everything else is going to work itself out.

 

Jamieson, Fausset and Brown make an important comment here. This is an important truth, that sovereigns are invested with royal honor and authority, not for their own sakes so much as for that of their people. But while it is true of all kings, it was especially applicable to the monarchs of Israel, and even David was made to know that all his glory and greatness were given only to fit him, as the minister of God, to execute the divine purposes towards the chosen people. Footnote If you don’t understand this, than you should not even have authority over your own pets.


1Chronicles 14:2b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

kîy (י̣) [pronounced kee]

for, because; that; when

explanatory conjunction; preposition

Strong's #3588 BDB #471

nâsâ (אָָנ) [pronounced naw-SAW]

to lift up onself, to be lifted up, to be elevated, (high); to be carried, to be carried away

3rd person feminine singular, Niphal perfect

Strong’s #5375 (and #4984) BDB #669

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

ma׳elâh (הָלע-מ) [pronounced mawģe-LAW]

higher, higher part, above, upon, forward

adverb

Strong’s #4605 BDB #751

With the preposition, this means upwards, over the head; beyond; over [anything]; in a higher degree, exceedingly. Owen says the Hebrew adds the locative hê, but that appears to be the spelling of the adverb to me.

mamelâkâh (ה ָכ ָל  ׃מ ַמ) [pronounced mahme-law-kaw]

kingdom, sovereignty, dominion, reign, dynasty; used to refer to both the royal dignity and to the country of a king

feminine singular noun with 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong’s #4467 BDB #575

baģăbûwr (רבֲע -ב) [pronounced bah-ģub-VOOR]

because of, for, that, for the sake of, on account of, in order that; while

preposition/conjunction; substantive always found combined with the bêyth preposition

Strong’s #5668 BDB #721

Actually a combination of the bêyth preposition (in, into, at, by, near, on, with, before) and ׳âbûwr (רבָע) [pronounced ģawv-BOOR] which means a passing over, a transition; the cause of a crossing over; the price [of transferring ownership of something]; purpose, objective. Properly, it is the passive participle of Strong’s #5674 BDB #720. Strong’s #5668 BDB #721.

׳am (ם ַע) [pronounced ģahm]

people; race, tribe; family, relatives; citizens, common people; companions, servants; entire human race; herd [of animals]

masculine singular collective noun with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong’s #5971 BDB #766

Yiserâêl (לֵאָר ׃̣י) [pronounced yis-raw-ALE]

transliterated Israel

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #3478 BDB #975

2Sam. 5:12 reads: ...and that He exalted his kingdom for the sake of His people Israel. The verb is in the 3rd person masculine singular, Piel (intensive stem) perfect instead.


Translation: ...and that his kingdom was exalted exceedingly for the sake of His people Israel. Just as we found in 2Sam. 5:12, we have 4 possible interpretations here. We have two 3rd person masculine singular suffixes, and to whom should they be applied? Both to David, both to God, one to David and the other to God?


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In the English, we capitalize the pronouns which refer to God. This is not true in the Hebrew, where there are no capital letters; nor is it true for the Greek, where this convention is not used. There are four ways that we can understand this portion of v. 12:

Whose Kingdom? Whose People?

Scripture

Interpretation

And that He exalted His kingdom for the sake of His people Israel.

God exalts His kingdom—divine rule in the nation Israel—for the sake of His people, the Jews.

And that He exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.

God exalts David’s kingdom on behalf of, or for the sake of David’s people, the Jews.

And that He exalted his kingdom for the sake of His people Israel.

God exalts David’s kingdom—his rulership, his power in Israel—for the sake of God’s people, the Jews.

And that He exalted His kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.

God exalts His kingdom—divine rule in the nation Israel—on behalf of David’s people the Jews.

In my opinion, which is generally correct, the third option is what is meant here.

Because there are differences in interpretation—passages like these, for instance—some Bible translators do not capitalize pronouns which refer to God because there are some occasions where it is not completely clear whether they should be capitalized or not. Personally, I think that such passages should be footnoted and capitalized where appropriate.

This short chart was also included in 2Sam. 5.


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Later, through Nathan the prophet, God will make an incredible promise to David: And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more. And violent men shall afflict them no more, as formerly, from the time that I appointed judges over my people Israel. And I will give you rest from all your enemies. Moreover, the LORD declares to you that the LORD will make you a house. When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son. When he commits iniquity, I will discipline him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men, but my steadfast love will not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away from before you. And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever (2Sam. 7:10–16).


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The Line of David in Jerusalem

2Samuel 5:13–16


And so takes David more women in Jerusalem. And so sires David more sons and daughters.

1Chronicles

14:3

David took more wives [while] in Jerusalem. David also sired more sons and daughters [as well].

David married even more wives while in Jerusalem, and he sired more sons and daughters.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And so takes David more women in Jerusalem. And so sires David more sons and daughters.

Septuagint                              And David took yet more wives in Jerusalem: and there were born to David more sons and daughters.

 

Significant differences:           The Greek adds the adverb yet to the first phrase. Even though this is not found in the Hebrew, there is no problem with including it.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       After David moved to Jerusalem, he married more women and had more sons and daughters.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         David married more wives in Jerusalem and fathered more sons and daughters.

HCSB                                     David took more wives in Jerusalem, and he became the father of more sons and daughters.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And David took more wives in Jerusalem, and David fathered more sons and daughters.

Young’s Updated LT             And David takes again wives in Jerusalem, and David sires again sons and daughters;...


What is the gist of this verse? Interestingly enough, David’s wives and children were kept track of based upon where he married them. He took more wives and mistresses when he moved to Jerusalem.


1Chronicles 14:3a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

lâqach (חַקָל) [pronounced law-KAHKH]

to take, to take from, to take away, to take in marriage; to seize, to take possession of; to send after, to fetch, to bring; to receive

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #3947 BDB #542

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

׳ôwd (דע) [pronounced ģohd]

still, yet, again, besides, in addition to, even yet

adverb

Strong’s #5750 BDB #728

These words from Samuel are not included in the Chronicles version:

pîylegesh (ש∵ג∵לי.) [pronounced pee-LEH-gesh]

mistress, paramour, illicit lover, live-in lover, concubine

feminine plural noun

Strong’s #6370 BDB #811

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

nâshîym (םי.שָנ) [pronounced naw-SHEEM]

women, wives

feminine plural noun; irregular plural of Strong’s #802

Strong’s #802 BDB #61

be () [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

You may recall the confusing preposition found in the Samuel text:

min (ן ̣מ) [pronounced min]

from, off, out from, out of, away from, on account of, since, than, more than

preposition of separation

Strong's #4480 BDB #577

Yerûwshâlayim (ם̣יַלָשר׃י) [pronounced yroo-shaw-LAH-yim]

possibly means founded upon peace or city of the Jebusites (or both); it is transliterated Jerusalem

Proper singular noun, location; pausal form

Strong’s #3389 BDB #436

The following text is found in the Samuel passage, but not in chronicles:

achărêy (י̤רֲח ַא) [pronounced ah-kuh-RAY]

hinder parts; behind, after; following; after that, afterwards

preposition; plural form

Strong’s #310 BDB #29

bôw (א) [pronounced boh]

to come in, to come, to go in, to go, to enter

Qal infinitive construct with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong’s #935 BDB #97

min (ן ̣מ) [pronounced min]

from, off, out from, out of, away from, on account of, since, than, more than

preposition of separation

Strong's #4480 BDB #577

Cheberôwn (ןר׃ב∵ח) [pronounced khebv-ROHN]

association, league, joined; transliterated Hebron

proper noun; location

Strong’s #2275 BDB #289


Translation: David took more wives [while] in Jerusalem. The author/editor of Chronicles here assumes that one is familiar with David’s other wives. We know them from the book of Samuel, and we came into contact with them as David did chronologically. However, we do not have that information in Chronicles. David’s line is given in 1Chron. 3, and we can fill in the blanks from there. My impression is, the writer/editor of Chronicles essentially assumes that David’s first 3 wives are so well-known as not to require them to be named. Furthermore, the emphasis of this chapter seems to be the capital city Jerusalem.


I have asserted that the key theme of this chapter is Jerusalem, so let’s back that up.

The Key Theme of 1Chronicles 14 is Jerusalem

1.      The palace which Hiram builds for David is in Jerusalem. There is some question as to when this actually occurred, and it is suggested that it was not necessarily early in David’s reign. 1Chron. 14:1–2

2.      David’s entire set of wives is not herein discussed, nor are all of his children; the author/editor lists only those who belong to David in Jerusalem specifically (1Chron. 14:3–7).

3.      David will have a number of wars against the Philistines. The two wars named here, and assumed to have occurred early in his reign, are wars where the Philistines went after David particularly and probably while David was in Jerusalem. 1Chron. 14:8–16

4.      David’s fame goes out around the world as he rules from Jerusalem. 1Chron. 14:17

Something which is often overlooked in Scripture are themes, organization and continuing principles which the author apparently has in mind as he writes God’s Word. Once and awhile with a psalm, which sometimes just seems to be several lines of poetry thrown together, I will suddenly recognize the organization of the psalm, and everything seems to make much more sense and appears much less random at that point.


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I have taken the following commentary from my own commentary on Samuel: According to Clarke, Footnote David had 8 wives and 10 mistresses (2Sam. 15:16). For most men, they think this is the perfect arrangement. They have complete power; they have all the financial resources that they need; and they have several wives and mistresses, and it is all out in the open. There is no hiding, no apologizing, no cheating per se. However, the problem with all that is, it simply is not true. Most men think that this would be the ideal situation, but it is not. Despite man’s predilection for infidelity, God has designed the family unit to function as a specific, nuclear family unit; and all other perversions of this do not work, regardless of whatever you read in the NY Times that might indicate otherwise. Footnote


Women respond to a man from their soul—this is their makeup. They need to have reenforcement from the man to reenforce their soul response. No doubt, when David would first court a woman, there were be a modicum of exclusivity, and David would give enough of his soul for the woman to respond to. Or, her soul would respond to his wealth and power—however, after a certain point in time, when David was off elsewhere, there was no longer a man to whom this woman could respond to regularly. Her soul had no man to respond to; it became like a vacuum. A phenomenon which we see today, especially with so many split up families, is some women’s souls begin responding to their sons or daughters, as there is no husband for their souls to respond to. There is more than the mother’s love and protectiveness. Now, I don’t mean that there was pedophilia going on; but that the woman’s soul, not having David’s to respond to, would respond to the souls of her children. When it became clear to the woman that she could not jockey for first place with David, then she would attempt to place her children in first place within the palace. She would be in constant competition herself for David’s interest; and she would have her children in constant competition for preeminence within the palace. When it came to David’s wives and mistresses within the palace, there would be daily turmoil. I believe that this would be a fascinating psychological study—women and children and the household dynamic in a polygamous marriage.


So that I make myself abundantly clear here, and many men can attest to this—if the woman of the house is not happy, then their soul response or their soulish reaction is going to make most everyone else in that house unhappy. Off in the future, as we study David’s life, we are going to find him on the roof watching a woman from afar. Remember, he’s got a house full of women, but where is he? He is on his roof where he can get away from his sons, daughters, wives and mistresses; and what is going through his mind? Sexual fantasies. He’s got multiple wives to go to, and David’s mind is still absorbed with sexual fantasies which they cannot fulfill.


After studying David, Solomon will be next, and Solomon will have a 1000 wives and mistresses, and yet, he will get all out of joint over one woman whom he writes about in Song of Solomon. The number of women which Solomon has is not enough. 1000 women is not enough!


The focus of Scripture is certainly not monogamy versus polygamy; but now and again we are going to come across passages and, at times, whole books, which indicate that the fantasy of some men is a pretty unhappy reality.


The Bible does speak to polygamy and to those who were most able to have several wives: Neither should the king multiply wives to himself, so that his heart is not turned away; neither should he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold (Deut. 17:17). No one more than a king could gather up as many wives and as much money as he wants; and God explicitly tells them not to.

 

McGee comments: Now perhaps you are saying, “And God permitted this [David to have a multiplicity of wives]!” Yes, God permitted a multiplication of wives, but God did not approve of it. In fact, this will eventuate in God judging him, and it will bring srrow to him for the rest of his life. It is wrong. This record is not given to us because God approved of it. But God wants us to know that this is exactly what happened. This is an historical record, and as we follow it, we will discover God’s attitude. Footnote Let me add that, God does not necessarily need to judge all sins and discipline us for each and every sin; many sins carry with them inherent problems. David’s multiple marriages will cause him all kinds of problems. Did God specifically punish David for these marriages? I don’t really know; however, there are a number of incidents which make David’s life difficult, and they all stem from having many wives.


Now I am ready to tell you another reason why we find this chapter sandwiched between David’s attempts to move the Ark. David, from 1Chron. 13 to 1Chron. 15 finds out how to move the Ark from point A to point B (see 1Chron. 15:2). How do you think that he figured this out? He read his copy of the Bible; he read his copy of the Mosaic Law. David probably did not have his own copy of Strong’s Concordance, so we might reasonably suppose that he read a great deal of the Mosaic Law, including the passage above about not making himself rich and not marrying tons of women. David marries many women; God allows him to marry many women; and God blesses David with many children. However, this is not God’s first choice for David. His life could have been a lot simpler without all of these wives. His life would have been even more filled with blessings without all of these wives, even though you men may not grasp that fact.


1Chronicles 14:3b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

yâlad (דַלָי) [pronounced yaw-LAHD]

sired, fathered, became the father of, became the ancestor of; to became the founder of

3rd person masculine singular, Hiphil perfect (specifically with a masculine subject)

Strong’s #3205 BDB #408

(This was a Niphal in the Samuel text).

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

׳ôwd (דע) [pronounced ģohd]

still, yet, again, besides, in addition to, even yet

adverb

Strong’s #5750 BDB #728

bên (ן ֵ) [pronounced bane]

son, descendant

masculine plural noun

Strong’s #1121 BDB #119

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

bath (ת ַ) [pronounced bahth]

daughter; village

feminine plural noun

Strong's #1323 BDB #123

The word order is slightly different than the text in Samuel and this text leaves out a lâmed preposition found in Samuel.


Translation: David also sired more sons and daughters [as well]. Generally speaking, sons and daughters are a blessing to any husband and wife. However, when these sons and daughters are not raised properly, they become extremely troublesome, as we will find with David’s extremely dysfunctional family.


Although I covered this in the Samuel text, I will include it again here; there are no changes.

David’s Sons and Daughters

1.      Amnon (2Sam. 3:2 13 1Chron. 3:1 4:20) by Ahinoam, the Jezreelitess (1Sam. 14:50 25:43 27:3 30:5 2Sam. 3:2 ).

2.      Daniel (1Chron. 3:1) by Abigail, the Carmelitess (1Sam. 25 27:3 30:5 2Sam. 3:2–3 1Chron. 3:1) (who is not to be confused with Abigail, David’s sister (2Sam. 17:25 1Chron. 2:16–17).

3.      Absalom (2Sam. 3:3 13 14 16 18 19 20:6 1Kings 15:2, 10 (?) 1Chron. 3:2 2Chron. 11:20–21 Psalm 3:1) by Maacah, the daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur (2Sam. 3:3 1Chron. 3:2).

4.      Tamar (2Sam. 13 1Chron. 3:9) daughter by Maacah. We do not know whether or not David had more daughters, but Tamar figures in prominently with David’s life, so she must be mentioned along the way. Since daughters are typically left out of genealogies, it is reasonable to suppose that David had roughly an equal number of daughters as sons.

5.      Adonijah (2Sam. 3:4 1Kings 1–2 1Chron. 3:2) by Haggith (2Sam. 3:4 1Kings 1:5, 11 2:13 1Chron. 3:2)

6.      Shephatiah (2Sam. 3:4 1Chron. 3:3) by Abital (2Sam. 3:4 1Chron. 3:3).

7.      Ithream (2Sam. 3:5 1Chron. 3:3) by Eglah (2Sam. 3:5 1Chron. 3:3)

8.      Shimea (also called Shammua) and Shobab (2Sam. 5:14 1Chron. 3:5 14:4) both by Bathsheba (2Sam. 5:14 11–12 2Kings 1–2 1Chron. 3:5 Matt. 1:6).

9.      Nathan (by Bathsheba) (2Sam. 5:14 1Chron. 3:5 14:4 Luke 3:31)

10.    Solomon (by Bath-sheba); he reigned 40 years (2Sam. 5:14 12 1Kings 1–11 1Chron. 3:5 22:5–16 29:1 2Chron. 1–9). Solomon wrote Song of Solomon, Ecclesiastes and much of Proverbs.

11.    Ibhar, Elishua, Eliphelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada and Eliphelet (by David’s other wives) (2Sam. 5:15–16 1Chron. 3:6–8 14:5–6).

If there is only one verse in 2Sam. 3 and one in 1Chron. 3, then we know nothing else about this son (and mother) apart from them being in David’s line, as these are simply genealogical listings.

We will go into much greater detail as to who is who, and their interactions as we get further along in David’s life. Obviously, when there is more than one son to a king, almost anything can happen.


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And these names of those born who are to him in Jerusalem: Shammua and Shobab [and Nathan] and Solomon...

1Chronicles

14:4

These are the names of those born to him in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, [Nathan], Solomon,...

These are the names of the children who were born to David in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon,...


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And these names of those born who are to him in Jerusalem: Shammua and Shobab and Solomon...

Septuagint                              And these are the names of those that were born, who were born to him in Jerusalem; Samaa, Sobab, Nathan, and Solomon,...

 

Significant differences:           The big difference is the Greek, Latin and Syriac all have the name Nathan here (as is also found in the parallel Samuel text).


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       His children born there were Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon,...


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

HCSB                                     His children born there were Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon, Ibhar, Elishua, Elpelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada, and Eliphelet,...


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       These are the names of the children born to him in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon,,...

Young's Literal Translation     And these are the names of the children whom he has in Jerusalem: Shammua, and Shobab, Nathan, and Solomon,...


What is the gist of this verse? This verse begins naming off the sons who David sired when in Jerusalem: Shammuah, Shobab, Nathan and Solomon.


1Chronicles 14:4a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

êlleh (ה  ֵא) [pronounced ALE-leh]

these, these things

demonstrative plural adjective with the definite article

Strong's #428 BDB #41

shêm (ם ֵש) [pronounced shame]

name, reputation, character

masculine plural construct

Strong’s #8034 BDB #1027

yâlad (דַלָי) [pronounced yaw-LAHD]

to give birth, to bear, to be born, to bear, to bring forth, to beget

masculine plural, Qal passive participle

Strong’s #3205 BDB #408

ăsher (רשֲא) [pronounced ash-ER]

that, which, when, who, whom

relative pronoun

Strong's #834 BDB #81

hâyâh (ה ָי ָה) [pronounced haw-YAW]

to be, is, was, are; to become, to come into being; to come to pass

3rd person plural, Qal imperfect

Strong's #1961 BDB #224

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition; with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

No Strong’s # BDB #510

be () [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

Yerûwshâlayim (ם̣יַלָשר׃י) [pronounced yroo-shaw-LAH-yim]

possibly means founded upon peace or city of the Jebusites (or both); it is transliterated Jerusalem

Proper singular noun, location; pausal form (as per Owen)

Strong’s #3389 BDB #436

The passage in Samuel reads: And these [are] the names of the ones born to him in Jerusalem:..


Translation: These are the names of those who are born to him in Jerusalem:... Again, it is clear that we are getting an overall view of David over several decades as king over all Israel.


1Chronicles 14:4b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

Shammûwa׳ (-ע-ש) [pronounced shahm-MOO-ahģ]

reknown and is transliterated Shammua

masculine singular proper noun

Strong’s #8051 BDB #1035


Translation: ...Shammua,... We begin with the 4 sons of David by Bathsheba, who, obviously has not been introduced to us yet, and will not come on the scene for several years. What we are getting is a few verses which summarize David’s life; then we will examine David’s life from his move to Jerusalem. Shammua is found only here and in 1Chron. 3:5 14:4, all genealogical passages. It is possible that David named him after Samuel (their names are not exactly the same, but they are very similar).


1Chronicles 14:4c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Shôwbâb (בָבש) [pronounced show-BAWBV]

rebellious, back turning, recusant, apostate; transliterated Shobab

masculine singular proper noun

Strong’s #7727 BDB #1000

The equivalent passage in Samuel adds and Nathan at this point. Nathan is also found in the Greek, Latin and Syriac translations. Therefore, this is probably a copyist error (many English translations properly include Nathan’s name at this point; that would be good textual criticism).


Translation: ...Shobab,... Shobab is another of David’s sons by Bathsheba, and is only found in genealogies: 2Sam. 5:14 1Chron. 3:5 14:4.


Interestingly enough, the parallel passage in Samuel inserts and Nathan at this point. Our Lord is descended through Nathan and not Solomon because of the Coniah curse. Now, if anything, I would have expected Nathan to be left out of the genealogy in Samuel and found here; instead, it is just the opposite. I lean toward this being a simple copyist error (or a defective manuscript), as the Greek, Latin and Syriac all have Nathan’s name at this point in Chronicles.


Translation: ...Nathan,... The paternal/legal line to our Lord is through Solomon; the maternal line is through Nathan. Jesus Christ is not born of Joseph, He is born of God the Holy Spirit. The old sin nature is passed down through the man, and there was no man involved in the conception of Jesus Christ. Jesus is born of Mary and the woman does not pass down the old sin nature.


God pronounced the Coniah curse through Jeremiah (Jer. 22:24–30). Coniah, a royal descendant of Solomon, was so evil, that God said that no man of his seed would be blessed as a sitting king; that his royal line would be cut off. Joseph is descended through Coniah (also known as Jeconiah—Matt. 1:11). Joseph was descended through Coniah. Mary, the mother of the humanity of Jesus Christ, was descended through Nathan (Luke 3:31), so Coniah is not in her line, thus fulfilling the Coniah curse (which we will cover in greater detail if and when we get to Jeremiah).


1Chronicles 14:4d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Shelômôh (הֹמֹלש) [pronounced shel-oh-MOH]

peace, peaceful; transliterated Solomon

masculine singular, proper noun

Strong’s #8010 BDB #1024


Translation: ...Solomon,... Solomon is David’s most famous son, and because of him, and because of the many children that they had, it appears as though David’s right woman was Bathsheba. Solomon wrote Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Solomon. He will become the 3rd king over Israel.


...and Ibhar and Elishua and Elpelet;...

1Chronicles

14:5

...Ibhar, Elishua, Elpelet;...

...Ibhar, Elishua, and Elpelet;...


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic text                        ...and Ibhar and Elishua and Elpelet;...

Septuagint                              ...and Baar, and Elisa, and Eliphaleth,.

 

Significant differences:           None.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       ...Ibhar, Elishua, Elpelet,...

Young's Literal Translation     ...and Ibhar, and Elishua, and Elpelet,...


What is the gist of this verse? Three more sons of David are named: Ibhar, Elishua, and Elpelet.


1Chronicles 14:5a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Yibechar (ר-חב.י) [pronounced yibe-KHAHR]

Jehovah chooses; transliterated Ibhar

masculine singular, proper noun

Strong’s #2984 BDB #104


Translation: ...Ibhar,... His name means whom Jehovah chooses; and marks the time when David was still giving his children meaningful names. Smith tells us that he must have been born after 1044 b.c. (although I have no idea why). Footnote


These four sons are found in 3 passages and their names appear to be accurately recorded; however we known next to nothing about them.


1Chronicles 14:5b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Ĕlîyshûwa׳ (-עשי.לֱא) [pronounced el-ee-SHOO-ahģ]

my God is wealth, God is riches; God is salvation; transliterated Elishua

masculine singular proper noun

Strong’s #474 BDB #46


Translation: ...Elishua,... At this point, David was still giving his sons names which seem to indicate divine viewpoint; Elisha means my God is wealth or God is salvation; and David was no doubt declaring his wealth and deliverance by God by the name of this son.


He has the name Elishama in 1Chron. 3:6; which is either a different spelling, a nickname, or a scribal error.


1Chronicles 14:5c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Elephâleţ (ט∵לָל∵א) [pronounced ele-PAW-let)

God is deliverance, God of deliverance

masculine singular proper noun; pausal form (according to Owen)

Strong’s #467 BDB #45

Possibly spelled Ĕlîyphâleţ (ט∵לָפי.לֱא) [pronounced el-ee-FEH-let) in the parallel Samuel passage. However, further along in this Chronicles passage, we will come upon an Eliphelet. Therefore, I think that this is a different person.

Transliterated Elpelet and Eliphelet; and I think these should have received different Strong’s numbers.


Translation: ...and Elpelet. This final young man has the name God is deliverance; but we know nothing more about him. Although Strong treats this name as identical to Eliphelet; I don’t believe it is, as that name will occur in 1Chron. 14:7.


...and Nogah and Nepheg and Japhia and Elishama and Beeliada and Eliphelet.

1Chronicles

14:6–7

...Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada and Eliphelet.

...Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada and Eliphelet.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       ...and Nogah and Nepheg and Japhia and Elishama and Beeliada and Eliphelet.

Septuagint                              ...and Nageth, and Naphath, and Japhia, and Elisamae, and Eliade, and Eliphala.

 

Significant differences:           Although there was apparently a great deal of discrepancy with the Greek and Hebrew of the parallel Samuel passage, here there are no differences in the text. Does this mean that the Greek text is all messed up in Samuel? Not necessarily. There may have been more in the Samuel line; this may have been lost to us; and later restored, as best as could be, from the Chronicles text.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       ...Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada and Eliphelet.

Young's Literal Translation     ...and Nogah, and Nepheg, and Japhia, and Elishama, and Beeliada, and Eliphalet.


What is the gist of this verse? 6 more names are added to David’s line. The Greek text in the parallel Samuel passage adds a baker’s dozen additional names.


1Chronicles 14:6a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Nôgahh (-גֹנ) [pronounced NOH-gah]

brightness, shining; prosperity transliterated Nogah

masculine singular, proper noun

Strong’s #5052 BDB #618


Translation: ...Nogah... We find Nogah here and in the 3 chronologies; we don’t know anything else about him.



1Chronicles 14:6b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Nepheg (ג∵פ∵נ) [pronounced neh-FEHG]

a root, a sprout; weak, slack; transliterated Nepheg

masculine singular, proper noun

Strong’s #5298 BDB #655


Translation: ...Nepheg... Nephew is mentioned in 3 passages, but only in genealogies and with nary a detail. His name means a root, a sprout and possibly weak, slack. I would guess that he was a very small and puny baby, and was so named by David.


1Chronicles 14:6c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Yâphîya׳ (-עי.פָי) [pronounced yaw-FEE-ahģ]

shining, bright; enlightening; appearing transliterated Japhia

masculine singular, proper noun

Strong’s #3309 BDB #422


Translation: ...and Japhia;.. Japhia is mentioned here and in 1Chron. 3:7 14:6. We know nothing about him, except that he was born to David in Jerusalem.


I don’t really know why Japhia would be called shining or bright. If his name actually means appearing, this could simply describe his being born.


1Chronicles 14:7a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Ĕlîyshâmâ׳ (עָמָשי.לֱא) [pronounced el-ee-shaw-MAWĢ

God has heard, God of hearing

masculine singular proper noun

Strong’s #476 BDB #46


Translation: ...Elishama,... This is a son of David, where his name refers to something which God is or something which God does. Here, his name means God has heard, which perhaps references his wife’s (mistress’s) desire for a child by David.


1Chronicles 14:7b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Eleyâdâ׳ (עָדָי ל∵א) [pronounced ehle-yaw-DAWĢ]

God knows; transliterated Eliada

masculine singular proper noun

Strong’s #450 BDB #45

Be׳eleyârâ׳ (עָרָי ל∵ע) [pronounced beh-el-yaw-DAW]

Baal knows; transliterated Beeliada

masculine singular, proper noun

Strong’s #1182 BDB #128


Translation: ...Beeliada... God named this child God knows. We know nothing more about him. He is doubtless equivalent to Eliada from the parallel Samuel genealogy. The equivalent Greek name here lacks a β (beta; bêyth in the Hebrew); the same is true of the Syriac and Arabic. Footnote We don’t know if the translators of the Greek (Syriac and Arabic) tried to smooth things out by leaving the β out (so that it matches the parallel passage in Samuel) or if that change had been made in the Hebrew text which they used (either purposely or unintentionally). It is fascinating that God allowed errors to creep into His text; but that these errors, although a matter for some discussion, have no effect upon any doctrine.


1Chronicles 14:7c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Ĕlîyphâleţ (ט∵לָפי.לֱא) [pronounced el-ee-FEH-let)

God is deliverance, God of deliverance

masculine singular proper noun; pausal form (according to Owen)

Strong’s #467 BDB #45

Spelled Ĕlîyphâleţ (ט∵לָפי.לֱא) [pronounced el-ee-FEH-let) in the parallel Samuel passage.


Translation: ...and Eliphelet. This final young man has the name God is deliverance; but we know nothing more about him. However, since we find him here and Elpelet listed earlier, this suggests to me that they are two different people, and not alternate spellings of the same name. Now, could David have given the same name to two sons, and Elpelet is a nickname for one? That is also a possibility.


Sometimes, the names are slightly different in the genealogies, so I have the 3 genealogies from the Hebrew and 1 from the Greek below.

The Parallel Genealogies—David’s Children

Scripture

Incident

2Sam. 5:14–16

And these are the names of those who were born to him in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon, Ibhar, Elishua, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada, and Eliphelet;...

2Sam. 5:14–16 (from the Greek)

And these are the names of those that were born to him in Jerusalem: Sammus, and Sobab, and Nathan, and Solomon, and Ebear, and Elisue, and Naphec, and Jephies, and Elisama, and Elidae, and Eliphalath, Samae, Jessibath, Nathan, Galamaan, Jebaar, Theesus, Eliphalat, Naged, Naphec, Janathan, Leasamys, Baalimath, Eliphaath

1Chron. 3:5–8

These were born to him in Jerusalem: Shimea, Shobab, Nathan and Solomon, four by Bath-shua, the daughter of Ammiel; Ibhar, Elishama, Eliphelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada, and Eliphelet;...

1Chron. 14:4–7

These are the names of the children born to him in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon; Ibhar, Elishua, Elpelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada and Eliphelet;...

The first name in 1Chron. 3:5 is spelled slightly differently. Usually, children are listed in the order of their birth; I don’t know why Solomon would be made king, if he is the youngest; or, why he would be listed last, if he is the oldest. There is probably a simple explanation for this.

The second name in 1Chron. 3:6 is spelled slightly differently. Both passages in 1Chronicles have two additional names, the first with a slightly different spelling (just a vowel point difference), both names are found in v. 16. Eliada is named only in v. 16. Because 1Chron. 3:9 tells us that there are 9 names, that means that there are two missing from the 1Chronicles 14 list. Both Barnes and Keil and Delitzsch Footnote suggest that these are two sons who died in childbirth or very early in life. Kimchi suggests that the two sons who are missing had no sons themselves and are therefore left out. Footnote

None of these passages indicate which wife or mistress bore which children. This would be another indication that Bathsheba, listed first in our passage, is David’s right woman.

We set these lines down name by name in 1Chron. 3.


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David’s First War with the Philistines

2Samuel 5:17–21


And so hear Philistines has been anointed David to king over all Israel and so go up all the Philistines to seek David. And so hears David and so he goes up to their faces.

1Chronicles

14:8

When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed as king over all Israel, all the Philistines went up to seek David. When David heard [this], he went up to face them down [lit., before them].

When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed as king over Israel, they went up to seek David. And when David heard this, he went out to face them down.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And so hear Philistines has been anointed David to king over all Israel and so go up all the Philistines to seek David. And so hears David and so he goes up to their faces.

Septuagint                              And the Philistines heard that David was anointed king over all Israel: and all the Philistines went up to seek David; and David heard it, and went out to meet them.

 

Significant differences:           Although the Hebrew text does not say that David went out to meet them; it is pretty much a synonym for that. Therefore, we should not fault the Greek translator or think there are any problems with the text here.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       When the Philistines heard that David had become king of Israel, they came to capture him. But David heard about their plan and marched out to meet them in battle.

REB                                       When the4 Philistines learnt that David had been anointed king over the whole of Israel, they came up in force to seek him out. David, getting wind of this, went t to face them.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king of Israel, all of them came to attack David. But David heard about it and went out to meet them.

HCSB                                     When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over all Israel, they all went in search of David; when David heard of this, he went out to face them.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over all Israel, all the Philistines went up to search for David. But David heard of it and went out against them.

NRSV                                     .

Young’s Updated LT             And the Philistines hear that David has been anointed for king over all Israel, and all the Philistines go up to seek David, and David hears and goes out before them.


What is the gist of this verse? The Philistines hear that David has been made king over all Israel, so they go up to oppose him. David hears about this and goes out to meet them.


1Chronicles 14:8a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

When a wâw consecutive is followed by a kîy conjunction, the result is often a conditional or a causal sentence, and can be reasonably rendered if...then; when...then; when...that; when....

shâma׳ (ע ַמ ָש) [pronounced shaw-MAHĢ]

to listen [intently], to hear, to listen and obey, [or, and act upon, give heed to, take note of], to hearken to, to be attentive to, to listen and be cognizant of

3rd person masculine plural, Qal imperfect

Strong's #8085 BDB #1033

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun)

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814

kîy (י̣) [pronounced kee]

for, because; that; when

explanatory conjunction; preposition

Strong's #3588 BDB #471

mâshach (ח  ָמ) [pronounced maw-SHAHKH]

to be anointed, to be consecrated by anointing

3rd person masculine singular, Niphal perfect

Strong’s #4886 BDB #602

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

meleke ( ל מ) [pronounced MEH-lek]

king, ruler, prince

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #4428 BDB #572

׳al (לַע) [pronounced ģahl ]

upon, beyond, on, against, above, over, by, beside

preposition of proximity

Strong’s #5921 BDB #752

kôl (לֹ) [pronounced kohl]

every, each, all of, all; any of, any

masculine singular construct not followed by a definite article

Strong’s #3605 BDB #481

Yiserâêl (לֵאָר ׃̣י) [pronounced yis-raw-ALE]

transliterated Israel

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #3478 BDB #975

There are differences between the text of Chronicles and Samuel, but the differences are slight: 2Sam. 5:17 reads: When the Philistines heard that they anointed David as king over Israel,...


Translation: When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed as king over all Israel,... It is clear from 1Samuel 29 that the Philistines are well aware of who and what David was. David lived near the Philistines on Philistine land for about a year and a half, but essentially had no dealings with the Philistines themselves (except, apparently, to periodically report to Achish, king of Gath). However, the first time that David was called upon to join with the Philistines to fight against Israel, he went (surprisingly enough), despite the fact that he had two times in the past resisted taking King Saul’s life. Prior to this, when David and Saul were on good terms, David was a great warrior against the Philistines, and it seemed likely to the Philistines that he may return to that mindset again. Therefore, the Philistines decided to be proactive here and take out David before he became too powerful with the Jews.


Furthermore, as we read in 1Chron. 12:23–40, a huge number of soldiers from all over Israel gathered to support David and to celebrate his being made king over a united Israel. More than anything, this would have been a cause of great concern to the Philistines. We have no indication that these soldiers gathered with the intention of taking out the Philistines. Their purpose was one of great celebration, as we read in 1Chron. 12:38–40: All these, men of war, arrayed in battle order, came to Hebron with full intent to make David king over all Israel. Likewise, all the rest of Israel were of a single mind to make David king. And they were there with David for three days, eating and drinking, for their brothers had made preparation for them. And also their relatives, from as far as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, came bringing food on donkeys and on camels and on mules and on oxen, abundant provisions of flour, cakes of figs, clusters of raisins, and wine and oil, oxen and sheep, for there was joy in Israel. In the back of their minds, no doubt they realized that David would probably lead them in a campaign against the Philistines, as the Philistines had humiliated the Israeli army about 8 years previous, and were probably collecting tribute regularly since then. However, since a number of them had served under David, and had witnessed both his bravery and great intelligence and demeanor, they recognized that he could successfully lead them against the Philistines as well as any other foreign power (a primary purpose of a king, if you will recall—1Sam. 8:19–20).


1Chronicles 14:8b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

The chief function of the wâw consecutive is to mark the continuation of a piece of narrative or discourse over at least one but more often several stages. The sequence they establish is essentially chronological, though not necessarily one of strict succession. This sequence of frequently logical as well. Footnote

׳âlâh (ה ָל ָע) [pronounced ģaw-LAWH]

to go up, to ascend, to come up, to rise, to climb

3rd person masculine plural, Qal imperfect

Strong's #5927 BDB #748

kôl (לֹ) [pronounced kohl]

every, each, all of, all; any of, any

masculine singular construct not followed by a definite article

Strong’s #3605 BDB #481

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun)

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

bâqash (שַקָ) [pronounced baw-KAHSH]

to seek, to search, to desire, to strive after, to attempt to get, to require, to demand, to ask, to seek with desire and diligence

Piel infinitive construct

Strong’s #1245 BDB #134

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187


Translation: ...all the Philistines went up to seek David. I am assuming that, the Philistines determined to strike David before he got this whole king thing going. He was made king of Israel and he was a great leader; however, he had been king for only a very short time. Perhaps they hoped that there would have been little organization in his military. Or, perhaps it was the huge gathering of troops which caught the attention of the Philistines. The Philistines had recently (7 or 8 years previously) defeated Saul’s army; but now, there was a new sheriff in town, and they did not expect David to be cooperative with whatever sanctions they had instituted against Israel (for instance, the Philistines no doubt taxed much of Israel; and, under David, it would be very likely that David would put an end to this). However, all of this requires organization, and the Philistines knew this; so it is to their best interest to deal with David before he can get too organized.

 

The Open Bible points out: Since the defeat of Saul at Mount Gilboa (1Chron. 10:1–14), the Philistines had been in possession of the main northeast trade routes on the coast and in the Jezreel Valley. The rise of David posed an economic and military threat to this monopoly. Footnote We should bear some things in mind: David’s kingship may have had an economic effect upon the Philistines. However, one might argue that his rise to power might have some effect upon Hiram king of Tyre as well. There is much more to it than economics, as will be discussed below. Footnote


Because this is such an important principle, I have reprinted it from 2Sam. 5:

You may recall that Psalm 2 begins with Why do the heathen rage? Kimchi suggests that these attacks of the Philistines motivated David to write this psalm (whether he wrote the psalm or not is the subject of a great deal of discussion in my exegesis of that psalm). Why don’t they just let things be? Why don’t the Philistines just recognize, David is now king; and it is time to back off. This does bring us to the question:

Why Do the Philistines Continually War Against Israel?

1.      The grammar is important here: when a wâw conjunction is followed by a wâw consecutive, the result is often a conditional or a causal sentence, and can be reasonably rendered if...then; when...then; when..., but if..., though...;because...therefore. Therefore, what causes these Philistines to advance against Israel is the fact that David has been made king over a united Israel.

2.      The Philistines and Israel have been traditional enemies. Their anti-Semitism is a clear indication of their negative volition against the God of the Jews.

3.      The Philistines had soundly defeated Israel when Saul was their king. They killed Saul, almost all of his sons, established garrisons in Israel, and were very likely taking in regular tribute from the Israelis in the northern kingdom.

4.      Most nations do not back off from a position which they have gained through war. The Philistines have come into central Israel in a war against Saul; they are not going to back off from that position. They have a firm hold in specific areas, and it would make little sense for them to simply pack their bags and leave.

5.      There do not appear to be any conflicts between the Philistines and eastern Israel (Trans Jordania) or between the Philistines and southern Israel (Judah). It is likely that eastern Israel was too far away to control, and their king was viewed as weak and ineffectual (Ishbosheth); and the boundaries between Judah and Philistia, at least at that time, were probably well-established. Furthermore, there was some sort of an alliance between David and Achish, king of Gath, which may have kept war from breaking out between Judah and Philistia for those 7½ years that David was king of the southern kingdom.

6.      A United Israel under David means (1) probably no more tribute and (2)  possibly aggressive action of the Jews against the Philistines.

7.      Achish, king of Gath, was probably overruled by the other 4 kings in this matter, when David became king over a United Israel.

8.      It is possible that the good relationship between David and Hiram, king of Tyre, may have influenced the decision of the Philistines to go to war. This is an alliance which could have threatened their own security.

Always bear in mind that, negative volition toward the Jews means negative volition toward the God of the Jews, Jesus Christ. Those rulers and countries which have a good relationship with the Jews were likely those who believed in their God; those rulers and countries who are antagonistic toward the Jews are also likely antagonistic toward their God.

A good question to pose at this time is, what about Achish, king of Gath? Satan is in a constant struggle against God’s plan. During the previous dispensation, Satan attacked Israel in any way possible. Achish may have had little problem with David, but it is obvious that the other 4 kings did. You may recall that we fought against Germany in both world wars. There are a great many theologians from Germany in the 19th and early 20th centuries.


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Application: In the Middle East today, we have continual conflicts between the Jews and the Palestinians. No matter how much land Israel gives up, the violent forces in the Palestinian areas continue to shoot rockets into Israel (this is the year 2007). We have radical Muslim leaders, like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (Iran’s present head of government), threatening to level Israel with nuclear weapons (as soon as the attain the technology). From the way the Jews are blamed, one would think that their incursion in the Middle East is rather dramatic. However, the Jews occupy less than 0.2% of the land in the Middle East. Not 2% but a tenth of that! I have not examined their population figures, but I imagine that it is similar. Yet, huge numbers of Muslims see Israel (and the United States) as their biggest and most pressing problem. These people call for the destruction of Israel out of their hatred and negative volition. One thing you can depend upon, just as the sun rises in the east, is continued anti-Semitism in the Middle East and continued unrest.

 

Jamieson, Fausset and Brown comment: ...all the Philistines went up to seek David in the hope of accomplishing his ruin (for so the phrase is used, 1Sam. 23:15 24:2–3) before his throne was consolidated. Their hostility arose, both from a belief that his patriotism would lead him, ere long, to wipe out the national dishonor at Gilboa, and by fear, that in any invasion of their country, his thorough knowledge of their weak points would give him superior advantages. They resolved, therefore, to surprise and crush him before he was fairly seated on his throne. Footnote The Jews, except for taking the land, tended to be relatively non-aggressive. As we found in the book of the Judges, even though God had instructed them to take the cities still held by heathen groups, for the most part, they did not. A good historian in the Philistine area could reasonably argue that the Jews would probably not expand. However, David appears to be more aggressive and more willing to do God’s will. Therefore, striking Israel sooner rather than later would have been seen in Philistia as the most reasonable course of action.


Application: Although the Philistines moved against Israel for nefarious reasons, the principle is clear: you strike your enemy at the most opportune time. The avowed enemy of democracy is radical Islam, which first achieved control of a national government in the late 70's in Iran, which has become the radical Islam model. Much of the Middle East is under the control of moderates (e.g., Saudi Arabia) who prosper by doing business with the United States. They may not completely approve of us, but they are certainly willing to do business with us. However, we have Iran, which is given over to a radical government; Lebanon, a true middle eastern democracy, could also end up in the same situation. Whereas, striking Iran now (we know where their 14 nuclear sites are) Footnote is the most prudent, such a move would be almost universally criticized (not in Israel, however).


1Chronicles 14:8c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

The chief function of the wâw consecutive is to mark the continuation of a piece of narrative or discourse over at least one but more often several stages. The sequence they establish is essentially chronological, though not necessarily one of strict succession. This sequence of frequently logical as well. Footnote

shâma׳ (ע ַמ ָש) [pronounced shaw-MAHĢ]

to listen [intently], to hear, to listen and obey, [or, and act upon, give heed to, take note of], to hearken to, to be attentive to, to listen and be cognizant of

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong's #8085 BDB #1033

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187


Translation: When David heard [this],... David has some sort of functioning intelligence; how official they are, or whether these are simply some Israelites who decided to take on this responsibility. What I mean is, David may have some troops out guarding the perimeter, and they observe the gathering of Philistines, and come and tell David. Or, this could be simply citizens who observe the influx of Philistines and they make a quick run to David in Jerusalem to tell him what is going on.


1Chronicles 14:8d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

yâtsâ (אָצָי) [pronounced yaw-TZAWH]

to go out, to come out, to come forth; to rise; to flow, to gush up [out]

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong's #3318 BDB #422

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

pânîym (םי̣נָ) [pronounced paw-NEEM]

face, faces countenance; presence

masculine plural noun (plural acts like English singular); with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong’s #6440 BDB #815

Together, they mean before them, before their faces, in their presence, in their sight, in front of them.

There is a great divergence in the text at this point; the book of Samuel tells us that David first went to his stronghold; and Chronicles simply tells us that David goes to face the Philistines.


Translation: ...he went up to face them down [lit., before them]. This is quite interesting; in the Samuel text, David goes first to his stronghold, then he inquires from God whether or not he should go up against the Philistines. That text I would have assumed to fit better with Chronicles, as this book is perceived as being more God’s viewpoint than man’s. However, we are simply told that David goes out to meet the Philistines; to face them down.


So, the situation is, David celebrated with a huge number of men from all over Israel, celebrating his becoming king over all Israel. The attempt to move of the Ark in the previous chapter may have occurred already and maybe it did not (this is not the order of Samuel, which tends to be closer to a chronological approach).


And Philistines came in and so they spread out in a valley of Rephaim.

1Chronicles

14:9

The Philistines came [into David’s periphery] and they spread out in the valley of the Rephaim.

The Philistines entered into areas near David and dispersed themselves throughout the valley of the Giants.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And Philistines came in and so they spread out in a valley of Rephaim.

Septuagint                              And the Philistines came and assembled together in the giants’ valley.

 

Significant differences:           Interestingly enough, the Hebrew text is at odds with the Greek, the Latin, the Syriac and even with the text of Samuel. This would suggest that perhaps the Hebrew text is incorrect (although that is not a for sure call). However, a strong mitigating factor in favor of the Hebrew text is, to spread out against and to plunder are both meanings for the verb found here (even though it is a different verb than what we find in the Samuel text).


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       The Philistines had already camped in Rephaim Valley and were raiding the nearby villages.

NJB                                        When the Philistines arrived, they deployed in the Valley of the Rephaim.

REB                                       When the Philistines came and raided the valley of Rephaim,...


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         The Philistines had come and raided the valley of Rephaim.

HCSB                                     Now the Philistines had come and made a raid in the Valley of Rephaim,...


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

LTHB                                     And the Philistines came and made a raid in the Valley of the Giants.

Young's Updated LT              And the Philistines have come, and they rush into the valley of Rephaim.


What is the gist of this verse? The Philistines move into an area close to where Jerusalem is (and therefore close to where David is).


1Chronicles 14:9a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun)

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814

bôw (א) [pronounced boh]

to come in, to come, to go in, to go, to enter

3rd person plural, Qal perfect

Strong’s #935 BDB #97


Translation: The Philistines came [into David’s periphery]... The verb means to come in; and the Philistines came into the general area around Jerusalem in search of David (I’ll discuss below the possibility of David being in Hebron rather than in Jerusalem).


1Chronicles 14:9b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

pâshaţ (טַשָ) [pronounced paw-SHAHT]

to spread out; to strip, to plunder, to unclothe; to flay, to remove the skin; in war, it is used to indicate a vicious attack, along the lines of flaying the skin off an animal

3rd person plural, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #6584 BDB #832

The Greek, Latin and Syriac text, along with the text of the parallel passage in Samuel tells us that the Philistines spread themselves out in the valley of the Rephaim. The verb in the Hebrew means this, as well as several other things.

be () [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

׳emeq (ק מ ע) [pronounced ĢEH-mek]

valley, vale, lowland, deepening, depth

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #6010 BDB #770

Repha’îym (מי  ̣א ָפ ׃ר) [pronounced refaw-EEM]

giants; transliterated Rephaim

masculine plural noun

Strong's #7495-7497 BDB #952


Translation: ...and they spread out in the valley of the Rephaim. Although the verb here can also mean to plunder, I think that the Philistines set themselves up for war against David; afterwards, they would plunder, if victorious.


The Philistines had planned on warring against David, although it is possible that they did not know exactly where David was. Therefore, the spread themselves out in the valley of the Rephaim (or, giants) either in hopes of coming across David or in getting David to respond to them. It is reasonable to assume that they desired to control the battlefield environment, so they set themselves up in Judah to indicate their hostility, but they apparently did not directly attack Jerusalem.

valleyofrephaim.jpgTaken from The MacMillan Bible Atlas; 3rd Edition; Aharoni, Avi-Yonah, Rainey, and Safrai; MacMillan; ©1993 by Carta; p. 77. I think that David is actually in Hebron during this time period; however, Hebron is about 40 miles south-southwest of Jerusalem and barely visible at the bottom of the map. The location of this valley is in keeping with Joshua 15:8, so Hebron may be too far south to have been David’s location during the first Philistine invasion.

I doubt that they are randomly spread out in this area, but that they are deployed strategically, setting up a camp (or camps) and then sending out divisions from there.


Above is a map from MacMillan’s book of maps, just to give you one idea as to where everything is and who went where near the Valley of Rephaim.


This map suggests to us is that David was in Jerusalem when the Philistines gathered in the Valley of Rephaim. Being so close, this would cause David to go down into the stronghold in order to think this through. If David were in Hebron, then it seems less likely that he would have needed to go anywhere else until the Philistines moved closer to him.

 

Jamieson, Fausset and Brown describe the valley of Rephaim: [It is] a broad and fertile plain, which descends gradually from the central mountains towards the northwest. Footnote


The parallel text in Samuel has David going to his stronghold first; his exact movement is discussed in the parallel passage in 2Sam. 5:18.


Let’s talk strategy now: the Philistines spreading themselves out in the Valley of Rephaim accomplishes two things: (1) it drives a wedge between the northern and southern kingdoms (over which David had most recently been named ruler); and (2) they stand as a threat before David, almost camping on his front doorstep, if he is in Jerusalem. The Philistines, being an intelligent people, are going to move on David before he is able to settle into Jerusalem and complete any fortification projects. There is the additional possibility, as Keil and Delitzsch suggest, Footnote that the Philistines might be interested in taking Jerusalem themselves.


And so asks David in Elohim to say, “Do I go up upon Philistines? And [have] you given them into my hand?” And so says Yehowah unto him, “Go up and I have given them into your hand.”

1Chronicles

14:10

David asked Elohim saying, “Should I go up against the Philistines? Will you give them into my hand?” And Yehowah said unto David, “Go up [against them] and I will give them into your hand.”

David asked God, “Should I go up against the Philistines? Will you deliver them into my hand?” And Jehovah said to David, “Go up against them and I will give them into your hand.”


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And so asks David in Elohim to say, “Do I go up upon Philistines? And [have] you given them into my hand?” And so says Yehowah unto him, “Go up and I have given them into your hand.”

Septuagint                              And David enquired of God, saying, “Should I go up against the Philistines? And will You deliver them into my hand?” And the Lord said to him, “Go up, and I will give them into your hands.”

 

Significant differences:           The primary difference is that the verb to give is in the future tense in the Greek, which is the way almost every English translator rendered this sentence.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       David asked God, "Should I attack the Philistines? Will you help me win?" The LORD told David, "Yes, attack them! I will give you victory."

NAB                                       David inquired of God, “Shall I advance against the Philistines, and will you deliver them into my power?” The Lord answered him, “Advance, for I will deliver them into your power.”

REB                                       ...David enquired of God, ‘If I attack the Philistines, will you deliver them into my hands?’ The Lord answered, ‘Go, I shall deliver them into your hands.’


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         David asked God, "Should I attack the Philistines? Will you hand them over to me?" The LORD answered him, "Attack! I will hand them over to you."

HCSB                                     ...so David inquired of God, "Should I go to war against the Philistines? Will You hand them over to me?" The LORD replied, "Go, and I will hand them over to you."


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

WEB                                      David inquired of God, saying, Shall I go up against the Philistines? and will you deliver them into my hand? Yahweh said to him, Go up; for I will deliver them into your hand.

Young’s Updated LT             ...and David asks of God, saying, “Do I go up against the Philistines—and have You given them into my hand?” And Jehovah says to him, “Go up, and I have given them into your hand.”


What is the gist of this verse? When in the stronghold, David asks God if he should go up against the Philistines and how it will turn out. God tells David to advance against them and that God would make David victorious.


1Chronicles 14:10a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

shâal (לַאָש) [pronounced shaw-AHL]

to ask [petition, request, inquire]; to demand [require]; to question, to interrogate; to ask [for a loan]; to consult; to salute

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #7592 BDB #981

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; among, in the midst of; at, by, near, on, before, in the presence of, upon; with; to, unto, upon, up to; in respect to, on account of; by means of, about, concerning

primarily a preposition of proximity; however, it has a multitude of functions

No Strong’s # BDB #88

Ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun

Strong's #430 BDB #43

The parallel text in 2Sam. 5 has Jehovah here instead of Elohim.

YHWH (הוהי) [pronunciation is possibly yhoh-WAH]

transliterated variously as Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehowah

proper noun

Strong’s #3068 BDB #217

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

âmar (ר ַמ ָא) [pronounced aw-MAHR]

to say, to speak, to utter; to say [to oneself], to think

Qal infinitive construct

Strong’s #559 BDB #55


Translation: David asked Elohim saying,... Now, you will recall that, we knew David was back in fellowship when he petitioned the Lord after the Amalekites had raided his camp. This again indicates to us that David is in fellowship and that his actions are going to be right and guided by God.


We get a more complete picture in Samuel, where David goes down to his stronghold first, and it is there where he (likely) inquires of God. Okay, here is another reason Chronicles changes the order of presenting these events: in 1Chron. 13, David does not inquire of God, and his plans to move the Ark end in tragedy. David does approach God here concerning what should be done, and the results will be success. Therefore, knowing God’s will is going to be the key to successfully moving the Ark (1Chron. 15).


1Chronicles 14:10b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

hă ( ֲה) [pronounced heh]

interrogative particle which acts almost like a piece of punctuation, like the upside-down question mark which begins a Spanish sentence. The verb to be may be implied.

Strong’s #none BDB #209

׳âlâh (ה ָל ָע) [pronounced ģaw-LAWH]

to go up, to ascend, to come up, to rise, to climb

1st person singular, Qal imperfect

Strong's #5927 BDB #748

׳al (לַע) [pronounced ģahl ]

upon, beyond, on, against, above, over, by, beside

preposition of proximity

Strong’s #5921 BDB #752

2Sam. 5:19 has a different preposition here, but one which may also be translated against.

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun)

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814


Translation:...“Should I go up against the Philistines? This is the first of two questions which David will ask God, “Should I go up against the Philistines?” He is asking if he should attack them or stay hidden. Both of David’s questions require simple yes or no answers.


This is taken from 2Sam. 5:

A reasonable question at this point is, why does David need to ask God about this? He is king over all Israel and these are Israel’s enemies; attacking them should be a no-brainer.

Why David Needs to Ask for God’s Guidance Here

1.      David probably has a much smaller army than the Philistine army. Even though a huge number of Israeli soldiers came to celebrate his kingship in Hebron, these men are probably not with him now.

2.      David had a friendship with Achish, king of Gath, where David stayed in order to remain safe from Saul. This could be a concern of David’s.

3.      There are several options here: (1) immediate war; (2) negociate a peace or some sort of settlement; (3) regroup against the Philistines later with a larger army. Therefore, David does need guidance at this point.

In other words, David’s choices here, although few, do require some guidance from God.


Return to Chapter Outline

Return to Charts, Maps and Short Doctrines


1Chronicles 14:10c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

Instead of the wâw conjunction, the parallel passage in 2Samuel has the interrogative particle instead:

hă ( ֲה) [pronounced heh]

interrogative particle which acts almost like a piece of punctuation, like the upside-down question mark which begins a Spanish sentence. The verb to be may be implied.

Strong’s #none BDB #209

One can infer the interrogative from v. 10b.

nâthan (ן ַתָנ) [pronounced naw-THAHN]

to give, to grant, to place, to put, to set; to make

2nd person masculine singular, Qal perfect; with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong's #5414 BDB #678

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

yâd (דָי) [pronounced yawd]

generally translated hand

feminine singular noun with the 1st person singular suffix

Strong's #3027 BDB #388

This combination of the bêyth preposition and hand means with me; through me, by me, by means of me; at my hand [i.e., before me, in my sight].


Translation: Will you give them into my hand?” The second question which David asks is, will I defeat the Philistines? Just because God tells David to go up against the Philistines does not mean that David was going to be successful; God also expected Saul to face off the Philistines, even though it was clear that Saul would be defeated in battle.


1Chronicles 14:10d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

âmar (ר ַמ ָא) [pronounced aw-MAHR]

to say, to speak, to utter; to say [to oneself], to think

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #559 BDB #55

YHWH (הוהי) [pronunciation is possibly yhoh-WAH]

transliterated variously as Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehowah

proper noun

Strong’s #3068 BDB #217

el (לא) [pronounced el]

unto; into, among, in; toward, to; against; concerning, regarding; besides, together with; as to

directional preposition (respect or deference may be implied) with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong's #413 BDB #39

Our parallel text in Samuel has David here instead of the 3rd person masculine singular suffix.

׳âlâh (ה ָל ָע) [pronounced ģaw-LAWH]

to go up, to ascend, to come up, to rise, to climb

2nd person masculine singular, Qal imperative

Strong's #5927 BDB #748


Translation: ...And Yehowah said unto him, “Go up [against them]... We do not know exactly how this occurred; personally, I believe that David communicated with God through a prophet. However, there is nothing in this context which indicates that is the case. Regardless, God tells David to come out of the stronghold and go up against the Philistines.


1Chronicles 14:10e

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

The parallel Samuel text has the preposition for, that here instead of the wâw conjunction.

nâthan (ן ַתָנ) [pronounced naw-THAHN]

to give, to grant, to place, to put, to set; to make

1st person singular, Qal perfect; with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong's #5414 BDB #678

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

yâd (דָי) [pronounced yawd]

generally translated hand

feminine singular noun with the 2nd person masculine singular suffix

Strong's #3027 BDB #388

This combination of the bêyth preposition and hand means with me; through me, by me, by means of me; at my hand [i.e., before me, in my sight].

The literal rendering of this portion of 2Sam. 5:19e is: ...for a giving I will give the Philistines into your hand.”


Translation: ...and I will give them into your hand.” God promises David that He will give the Philistines over to him. When Saul asked essentially the same questions, he was told to go up against the Philistines, but that he would die along with his sons (1Sam. 28:19).


And so they go up into Baal-perazim and so strikes them down there David. And so says David, “Elohim broke through my enemies in my hand as a bursting forth of waters.” Upon so they called a name of the place the that Baal-perazim.

1Chronicles

14:11

When they went up to Baal-perazim, David defeated them there. He said, “Elohim broke through my enemies by my hand like a bursting through of water.” So he called the name of that place Baal-perazim [which means the Lord bursts through].

When they went up to Baal-perazim, the battlefield, David completely annihilated them there. He said, “God, by my hand, broke through my enemies like water bursts through a dam.” Therefore, he named the battlefield Baal-perazim.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Latin Vulgate                          And when they were come to Baalpharasim, David defeated them there, and he said: God hath divided my enemies by my hand, as waters are divided: and therefore the name of that place was called Baalpharasim.

Masoretic Text                       And so they go up into Baal-perazim and so strikes them down there David. And so says David, “Elohim broke through my enemies in my hand as a bursting forth of waters.” Upon so they called a name of the place the that Baal-perazim.

Peshitta                                  So they came up to the valley of Toretha, and David struck them there. Then David said, “The Lord has broken in upon my enemies before me like the breaking forth of waters; therefore they called the name of that place the valley of Toretha.

Septuagint                              And he went up to Baal Pharasin, and David struck them there; and David said, “God has broken through enemies by my hand like a breach of water.” Therefore he called the name of that place, the Breach of Pharasin.

 

Significant differences:           The Syriac is closer to the text of Samuel here. The only difference between the Syriac text and the Samuel text is the first verb is slightly different. In the Latin, Syriac and Hebrew, we begin with they go up; in the Greek, it reads he goes up.

 

The Samuel text and the Syriac read: “The Lord [JHWH] breaks through upon my enemies before me...” The other texts have “God breaks through my enemies by my hand...”

 

As usual, the difference in text makes very little difference. I should point out that this is consistent in Scripture. There are a handful of places in the Bible where the difference in the text makes a slight to a moderate difference when it comes to understanding this or that doctrine. Two passages which come to mind are the additional material added on to the end of the book of Mark (that makes a big difference in doctrine); and the place were Saul calls for the Ark of God, but it should really read that he has called for the Ephod of God (this would affect our understanding of the function of the Ark). In both cases, we have enough evidence to be able to say, with very little doubt, that we know what the actual text should be. In this chapter, every time we come up to a difference in text and we are unsure of what the original text was, it is no big deal—no doctrine is affected. In fact, about 99% of the time, there is no affect on the historical narrative, not even a nuanced one.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       David and his army marched to Baal-Perazim, where they attacked and defeated the Philistines. He said, "I defeated my enemies because God broke through them like a mighty flood." So he named the place "The Lord Broke Through."

The Message                         David attacked at Baal Perazim and slaughtered them. David said, "God exploded my enemies, as water explodes from a burst pipe." That's how the place got its name, Baal Perazim (Baal-Explosion).

NAB                                       They advanced, therefore, to Baal-perazim, and David defeated them there. Then David said, “God has used me to break through my enemies just as water breaks through a dam.” Therefore that place was called Baal-perazim.

NJB                                        Accordingly, they went up to Baal-perazim and there David defeated them. David said, ‘Through me God has made a breach in my enemies, as though they had been breached by a flood.’ This is why the place was given the name Baal-Perazim.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         So David and his men attacked and defeated the Philistines at Baal Perazim. David said, "Using my power like an overwhelming flood, God has overwhelmed my enemies." That is why they call that place Baal Perazim [The Lord Overwhelms].

HCSB                                     So the Israelites went up to Baal-perazim, and David defeated the Philistines there. Then David said, "Like a bursting flood, God has used me to burst out against my enemies." Therefore, they named that place the Lord Bursts Out.

JPS (Tanakh)                         Thereupon David ascended Baal-perazim, and David defeated them there. David said, “God burst out against my enemies by my hands as waters burst out.” That is why that place was named Baal-perazim.

.

Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And he went up to Baal-perazim, and David struck them down there. And David said, "God has broken through my enemies by my hand, like a bursting flood." Therefore the name of that place is called Baal-perazim.

LTHB                                     And they went up to Baal-perazim, and David struck them there. And David said, God has broken my enemies by my hand, like the breaking of the waters; so they called the name of that place The Breach of Baal.

Young’s Updated LT             And they go up into Baal-Perazim, and David strikes them there, and David says, “God has broken up my enemies by my hand, like the breaking up of waters;” therefore they have called the name of that place Baal-Perazim.


What is the gist of this verse? God, through David’s army, burst forth the wall of Philistine soldiers, and was victorious; David named the battlefield Baal-perazim (which means the Lord bursts through).


1Chronicles 14:11a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

׳âlâh (ה ָל ָע) [pronounced ģaw-LAWH]

to go up, to ascend, to come up, to rise, to climb

3rd person plural, Qal imperfect

Strong's #5927 BDB #748

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

Ba׳al (ל ַע ַ) [pronounced BAH-ģahl]

owner, lord, husband; transliterated Baal when referencing the heathen god

masculine singular noun

Strong's #1167 BDB #127

Perâtsîym (םי.צָר) [pronounced peraw-TZEEM],

a bursting forth, a breach, a break, a rupture [in a wall], gap; an outburst

masculine plural noun

Strong’s #6556 BDB #829

Together, these are transliterated Baal Perazim and are given Strong’s #1188 BDB #128.

The Samuel text reads: When David had come to Baal-perazim,...


Translation: When they went up to Baal-perazim,... This battleground will actually be given the name Baal-perazim by David after the fighting takes place. However, this again appears to be written after these events occurred, so this name became closely identified with the battleground.


1Chronicles 14:11b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

nâkâh (ה ָכ ָנ) [pronounced naw-KAWH]

to smite, to assault, to hit, to strike, to strike [something or someone] down, to defeat, to conquer, to subjugate

3rd person masculine singular, Hiphil imperfect; with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong #5221 BDB #645

shâm (ם ָש) [pronounced shawm]

there; at that time, then; therein, in that thing

adverb

Strong’s #8033 BDB #1027

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187


Translation: ...David defeated them there. We are given very few details, apart from what follows in the next half of this verse. We do not know how David gathered an army so quickly, we do not know which tribes participated; we simply know that David did gather an army and that his army, by God’s strength, defeated the Philistine enemy. As discussed earlier, we are not even 100% certain where David was when the Philistines moved into the Valley of Rephaim, although Jerusalem seems to be much more likely than Hebron.


1Chronicles 14:11c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

âmar (ר ַמ ָא) [pronounced aw-MAHR]

to say, to speak, to utter; to say [to oneself], to think

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #559 BDB #55

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

pârats (ץַרָ) [pronounced paw-RATS]

to break, to break down, to destroy; to break asunder, to scatter, to disperse, to spread abroad; to break forth upon, to produce by breaking through; to act violently; to break through [negative volition, a bad attitude, a mindset, or whatever]

3rd person masculine singular, Qal perfect

Strong’s #6555 BDB #829

Ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun

Strong's #430 BDB #43

As has often been the case here, we find that the writer of Chronicles uses Elohim instead of Jehovah. Perhaps this helps to fix a time when the Jews were less likely to use the proper name of God.

YHWH (הוהי) [pronunciation is possibly yhoh-WAH]

transliterated variously as Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehowah

proper noun

Strong’s #3068 BDB #217

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

âyab (בַי ָא) [pronounced aw-YABV]

enemy, the one being at enmity with you; enmity, hostility

masculine plural, Qal active participle; with the 1st person singular suffix

Strong’s #340 BDB #33

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

yâd (דָי) [pronounced yawd]

generally translated hand

feminine singular noun with the 1st person singular suffix

Strong's #3027 BDB #388

This combination of the bêyth preposition and hand means with me; through me, by me, by means of me; at my hand [i.e., before me, in my sight].

kaph or ke ( ׃) [pronounced ke]

like, as, according to; about, approximately

preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #453

perets (ץ∵ר∵) [pronounced PEH-rets]

a bursting forth, a breach, a break, a rupture [in a wall], gap; an outburst

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #6556 BDB #829

mayim (ם̣יַמ) [pronounced MAH-yim]

water, waters

masculine plural noun

Strong's #4325 BDB #565

The parallel passage in Samuel reads: He said, “Yehowah broke through my enemies before me like a bursting through of water.”


Translation: He said, “Elohim broke through my enemies by my hand like a bursting through of water.” My impression of war in those days is, an army would line up, man next to man, to form a solid wall of warriors, and they would advance as one unit, with perhaps similar walls of soldiers behind them. David’s army broke through this wall of warriors and began to devastate them. The hole that Israel cut in the wall of Philistine soldiers got wider and wider, as Israel killed more and more Philistine soldiers, just as would happen if water began to burst through a small hole; that hole would grow larger and larger.


The imagery here is in keeping with the scenario of David with a smaller army, and the Philistines with successive walls of soldiers. David’s smaller unit bursts through successive walls of Philistines and these hole becomes wider and wider and the Israelites are more successful. Footnote


1Chronicles 14:11d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

׳al (לַע) [pronounced ģahl ]

upon, beyond, on, against, above, over, by, beside

preposition of proximity

Strong’s #5921 BDB #752

kên (ן ֵ) [pronounced kane]

so or thus

adverb

Strong's #3651 BDB #485

Together, ׳al kên (ל-ע ן̤) mean so, upon the ground of such conditions, therefore, on this account, on account, for this reason.

qârâ (א ָר ָק) [pronounced kaw-RAW]

to call, to proclaim, to read, to call to, to call out to, to assemble, to summon; to call, to name [when followed by a lâmed]

3rd person plural, Qal perfect

Strong's #7121 BDB #894

shêm (ם ֵש) [pronounced shame]

name, reputation, character

masculine plural construct

Strong’s #8034 BDB #1027

mâqôwm (םקָמ) [pronounced maw-KOHM]

place, situated; for a soldier, it may mean where he is stationed; for people in general, it would be their place of abode (which could be their house or their town)

masculine singular noun with the definite article

Strong’s #4725 BDB #879

hûw (אה) [pronounced hoo]

that; this

masculine singular, demonstrative pronoun with the definite article

Strong’s #1931 BDB #214

Ba׳al (ל ַע ַ) [pronounced BAH-ģahl]

owner, lord, husband; transliterated Baal when referencing the heathen god

masculine singular noun

Strong's #1167 BDB #127

Perâtsîym (םי.צָר) [pronounced peraw-TZEEM],

a bursting forth, a breach, a break, a rupture [in a wall], gap; an outburst

masculine plural noun

Strong’s #6556 BDB #829

Together, these are transliterated Baal Perazim and are given Strong’s #1188 BDB #128.

The parallel Samuel passage reads: So he called the name of that place Baal-perazim [which means the Lord bursts through].


Translation: So he called the name of that place Baal-perazim [which means the Lord bursts through]. God, working through David’s army, broke through the Philistine army like water bursting through a hole. The water makes the small hole, and then this hole gets wider and wider until all you see is water coming through. This is David’s army. There is only one other possible mention of this place, in Isa. 28:21: For the LORD will rise up as on Mount Perazim; as in the Valley of Gibeon he will be roused; to do his deed--strange is his deed! and to work his work--alien is his work!


I also kept the following set of points from my study of Samuel.

Like many of these passages, you read through, you occasionally stop and wonder, well, so what; how does this help me? What does this say to me?

Personal Application of David’s War with the Philistines

1.      I want you to note some important facts here: David did not sit on his hands and watch God destroy the Philistines with the Word of His mouth (with a hail storm, rainstorm, earthquake, etc.). David had to act; he had to do as God had guided him. God told David to engage, and David moved his army against the Philistine army.

2.      There is a careful balance in the Christian life between guidance and doing.

3.      You don’t run out ahead of God; nor do you hang back when God has sent you into battle (or wherever). This balance is achieved with doctrine in your soul; this guidance is achieved with doctrine in your soul.

4.      And one more point of application: again, we find war in the Bible—God guides David into battle; God does not guide David into achieving peace through diplomacy.

Although portions of the Bible are not directly applicable to your life, there is more application here than you might think.


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David writes: Blessed be the LORD, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle (Psalm 144:1).


Application: I live during a time when the issues seem quite clear: we face a radicalized form of Islam which paints the United States as the Great Satan, and vows to destroy us. Unlike the Russians, who had some sense of self-preservation, Muslims are being encouraged and then trained to commit atrocities against the United States in any way possible. At this point in time, many of them are flowing into Iraq. We are killing sometimes hundreds of them in one battle, and they kill fewer than 10 of our soldiers. Given their continued promise to pursue and destroy the United States, it seems that any person with half a brain would think, These radical Muslims are focused on Iraq and they are pouring their soldiers into Iraq; why not allow our army to kill them there? During this war, we have seen fewer direct attacks against our embassies and anything else which belong to the US outside of Iraq. It is not as though, if we pulled out of Iraq, that their hatred, and, more importantly, their aggressive actions against the United States, would suddenly end. There would be every attempt made to take over and radicalize Iraq, as Iran is; and, since we will be seen as being on the run from Islamic fascists, they are going to be more emboldened to take further action against us—against our embassies and against our country directly. For me, given their hatred and their actions and their words, it seems like a no–brainer to allow our armed forces to deal with them at arm’s length, as it were, rather than to give them any indication that we have no willingness to face them in war. In other words, when facing these Islamic fascists, the last thing that we want to do is blink.


And so they left there their elohim. And so says David and so they are burned in the fire.

1Chronicles

14:12

They [the Philistines] left their gods [lit., elohim] there, so David gave the order [lit., David spoke] and they were burned with fire.

The Philistines left their idols there, so David and his men carried the idols away and burned them.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And so they left there their elohim. And so says David and so they are burned in the fire.

Septuagint                              And the Philistines left their gods there; and David said to burn them with fire.

 

Significant differences:           None.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       Then David ordered his troops to burn the idols that the Philistines had left behind.

The Message                         The Philistines left their gods behind and David ordered that they be burned up.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

HCSB                                     The Philistines abandoned their idols there, and David ordered that they be burned in the fire.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And they left their gods there, and David gave command, and they were burned.

MKJV                                     And they left their gods there. And David commanded, and they were burned with fire.

Young's Updated LT              And they leave there their gods, and David speaks, and they are burnt with fire.


What is the gist of this verse? The Philistines brought their idols to the battlefield and left them there when they retreated; David and his men burn the idols.


1Chronicles 14:12a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

׳âzab (בַזָע) [pronounced ģaw-ZABV]

to loosen ones bands; to let go [one from being in bonds]; to leave [forsake, desert]; to leave off, to cease from [anything]

3rd person masculine plural, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #5800 BDB #736

shâm (ם ָש) [pronounced shawm]

there; at that time, then; therein, in that thing

adverb

Strong’s #8033 BDB #1027

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong's #430 BDB #43

The Samuel text has, instead:

׳ătsabîym (םי.ב-צֲע) [pronounced ģuh-tzahb-VEEM]

idols, images of idols, idol-images

masculine plural noun with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong’s #6091 BDB #781


Translation: They [the Philistines] left their gods [lit., elohim] there,... This means that Israel did not wipe out the Philistine army completely, but the Philistines did quickly retreat and they left their idols behind. In the ancient world, various peoples took their idols into battle with them in order to defeat the enemy. This is why war during this time period was often seen as a war between the gods of the peoples involved. The idea is, this is an extension of the angelic conflict, the influence of God versus the influence of Satan and his fallen minions.

 

Barnes tells us: The practice of carrying images of the gods to battle was common among the nations of antiquity, and arose from the belief that there was virtue in the images themselves, and that military success would be obtained by means of them. Footnote Knowing this gives us greater insight of 1Sam. 4, when the Jewish army went back to the Tabernacle and grabbed up the Ark of God to go into war against the Philistines. God never wanted the Ark to be used as an idol; nor was it to be worshiped. Although God instructed Joshua specifically to take the Ark into battle one time (and, essentially as a testimony to Jericho); this does not mean that it went into battle as some sort of a good luck charm or as God on earth. And, in case you have wondered, why did God have Joshua and his army march around Jericho for 6 days with the Ark of God? And, why did God order Joshua to destroy all of Jericho? I have covered those topics in Joshua 6.


1Chronicles 14:12b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

âmar (ר ַמ ָא) [pronounced aw-MAHR]

to say, to speak, to utter; to say [to oneself], to think

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #559 BDB #55

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

sâraph (ףַרָ) [pronounced saw-RAHF]

to be burned [with fire]; to be consumed [by fire]; to be baked

3rd person masculine plural, Niphal imperfect

Strong’s #8313 BDB #976

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

esh (ש ֵא) [pronounced aysh]

fire, lightening, supernatural fire; presence of Yehowah, the attendance of a theophany

feminine singular noun

Strong's #784 BDB #77

The very different text of Samuel reads: ...so David and his men carried them [away].


Translation: ...so David gave the order [lit., David spoke] and they were burned with fire. This, combined with the Samuel passage, tells us that David and his men gathered up these idols, carried them off; and then burned them.


Moses, speaking in the power of the Holy Spirit, had told Israel, “When Jehovah your God brings you into the land that you are entering to take possession of it, and clears away many nations before you, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations more numerous and mightier than yourselves, and when Jehovah your God gives them over to you, and you defeat them, then you must devote them to complete destruction. You shall make no covenant with them and show no mercy to them. You will not intermarry with them, giving your daughters to their sons or taking their daughters for your sons, for they would turn away your sons from following me, to serve other gods. Then the anger of Jehovah would be kindled against you, and he would destroy you quickly. But thus shall you deal with them: you shall break down their altars and dash in pieces their pillars and chop down their Asherim and burn their carved images with fire. For you are a people holy to Jehovah your God. Jehovah your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. Jehovah your God will clear away these nations before you little by little. You may not make an end of them at once, lest the wild beasts grow too numerous for you. But Jehovah your God will give them over to you and throw them into great confusion, until they are destroyed. And he will give their kings into your hand, and you shall make their name perish from under heaven. No one shall be able to stand against you until you have destroyed them. The carved images of their gods you shall burn with fire. You shall not covet the silver or the gold that is on them or take it for yourselves, lest you be ensnared by it, for it is an abomination to Jehovah your God. And you shall not bring an abominable thing into your house and become devoted to destruction like it. You shall utterly detest and abhor it, for it is devoted to destruction.” (Deut. 7:1–6, 22–26). Although we do not know exactly the circumstances, it is even possible that these idols were taken back to Jerusalem and David read the existing Scriptures to determine exactly what should be done with them, and had them burned when he came upon this pertinent passage.


There is some controversy here. The Chronicler is seen by liberal theologians as one who was an advocate for the Levitical Priesthood (more accurately, the Aaronic priesthood); and therefore, some of what he wrote favored or highlighted the Levites. Now, this is not necessarily an incorrect observation. However, some take this further to indicate that, David here did not really have the idols burned, but his army carried them away, possibly for their own use (in Samuel, we are told they carried the idols away). The writer of Chronicles read this, didn’t like that, and decided to change the text slightly to indicate obedience to the Pentateuch. There is no real contradiction here, and the writer of Chronicles did not necessarily change the text to suit his own fancy. Bear in mind that, at times, the texts of Samuel and Chronicles would coexist. It would be seen as irreverent if the writer/editor of Chronicles simply just added miscellaneous bits of history to suit his own fancy. However, the book of Chronicles has been accepted as divinely inspired, just as the text of Samuel is seen.


The NIV Study Bible tells us that some LXX texts of 2Sam. 5:21 also indicate that David had the idols burned by fire. Footnote This is not proof positive to correlate the texts. It suggests that this may have been lost from the book of Samuel (which is probably the most textually corrupt book in Scripture); it could suggest that some translators were smoothing things out between the parallel texts (or, they worked from texts where someone else tried to make the texts sound more alike). Given what we know about the accuracy of the text, and how well it was preserved over thousands of years, and given that Samuel is the most corrupted of all the books of the Bible, I would lean toward this line being dropped out of the Samuel text at some point in its history. I would not discount the other theories, but would lean in that direction. However, I do reject that the writer/editor of Chronicles just arbitrarily added this to the text in order to show David’s obedience to the Law of Moses. David’s mistakes are made very clear in the book of Samuel, and, on occasion, in this book of Chronicles. No one made any attempt to whitewash his life.


Speaking of such things, we might all think that we want our victories and good points to be known; but can you imagine having your worst mistakes recorded forever in the Word of God? We don’t know exactly how our mistakes and bad choices will be remembered in eternity; we are being watched right at this moment by elect and fallen angels, as God’s wisdom, purpose and character are observed in His creation and in His salvation; but how much of that is retained in eternity is not clear.


Bob Thieme Jr. teaches that, at the Judgment Seat of Christ, we will experience a moment of regret for what we have done wrong or for what we did not do right; and he also teaches that there is a hall of records, of sorts, where the rewards that we could have received are on display forever. Clearly, our mistakes and sins have impact on us in time—in some cases, grave impact; and it is reasonable to assume that they will play some part in our eternities. However, don’t become confused at this point: our sins have been forgiven and we will be separated from them. God is not going to sit us down periodically and say, “Okay, what about this thing that you did back in 2003; that pissed Me off so much, I was thinking about striking you with lightening back then.” However, we do have lost time on this earth, which will play a part in our eternity. For every minute you spend outside of God’s plan (out of fellowship), that is a minute where God cannot reward you for divine good. If you are in fellowship and if you are growing spiritually, then you can rest assured that your actions are going to have eternal impact, even though they may seem trivial to you. Let me use Bob as an example: I don’t know how many people were at Berachah Church in 1950 when he began to teach there? A few dozen maybe? He began to teach the Word of God, and he let whatever results come to pass. He did not go out and drum up business; he did not attempt to get his name in all of the papers (although that happened now and again); and his parishioners, when Berachah became more well-known, were often accused of sitting on their hands. However, there are a dozen or so churches (maybe more) which came out of Berachah. There are dozens of missionaries—who actually understand the gospel, grace and the importance of the Word of God—out there functioning. All because Bob studied hard, learned the original languages, and then began to teach the Word of God to a few dozen people in Houston, Texas (which wasn’t booming back then). Not everyone in God’s plan is a preacher, a missionary or an evangelist (on a large scale, anyway). There is a place for every one of us, and it is designed perfectly for us. It is possible that you might end up staying right where you are, at your present job, doing the same set of duties that you did before believing in Jesus Christ. God has a purpose and a plan for us, and if we stay in fellowship and grow spiritually, this will become clear to us. Furthermore, in utilizing all of the assets which God has given us, not only will our lives be good (quite frankly, I cannot complain about mine at all) and not only will we know what to do (in my life, figuring out what God wanted me to do has been fairly simple) but we will be rewarded in all eternity for these things.


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David’s Second War with the Philistines

2Samuel 5:22–25


And so add again Philistines and so they spread out in the valley.

1Chronicles

14:13

Again the Philistines came up and they spread out in the valley.

The Philistine army came up against Israel a second time and deployed their troops in the valley of Rephaim.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic Text                       And so add again Philistines and so they spread out in the valley.

Septuagint                              And the Philistines added yet and assembled themselves in the giants’ valley.

 

Significant differences:           The Samuel text, Greek and Syriac all tells us that this is the valley of the giants (the Rephaim); the MT and Latin simply tell us that this is the valley.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       Some time later, the Philistines came back into the hill country and camped in Rephaim Valley.

The Message                         And then the Philistines were back at it again, plundering in the valley.

NJB                                        .


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         The Philistines again raided the valley.



Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

HNV                                       The Pelishtim yet again made a raid in the valley.

MKJV                                     And the Philistines still again made a raid in the valley.

Young's Updated LT              And the Philistines add again, and rush into the valley,...


What is the gist of this verse? The Philistines again come up and station themselves in the Valley of Rephaim looking to war against the Israelites.


1Chronicles 14:13a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

yâçaph (ף ַס ָי) [pronounced yaw-SAHPH]

to add, to augment, to increase, to multiply; to add to do = to do again; to continue to

3rd person masculine plural, Hiphil imperfect

Strong's #3254 BDB #414

In the Samuel text, this is in the Qal stem instead.

׳ôwd (דע) [pronounced ģohd]

still, yet, again, besides, in addition to, even yet

adverb

Strong’s #5750 BDB #728

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun)

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814


Translation: Again the Philistines [go up]... We are not given any sort of a time frame here. That is, this could have occurred a month later; and it might have occurred years later, where there are several historical incidents which occur during the in between time. Since my mind thinks more like a Greek than a Hebrew, I would of course interpret this as the next big chronological event; but, the Hebrew mind often connects together similar events and runs them together. As you may recall, Chronicles places both wars with the Philistines in between the two attempts to move the Ark, which was only a space of 3 months. However, the author-editor of Chronicles was not setting up a sequenced chronology, but merely making the point that, David, even though he failed quite dramatically when first attempting to move the Ark, God did not remove His protection or His blessing from David. This is best illustrated by David’s family in Jerusalem and by his victories over the Philistines.


Josephus tells us that the Philistines returned a second time with an army thrice the size of their first army. Footnote Bear in mind that Josephus does not write inspired Scripture, and that what he records is based upon the records which he had available at the time (primarily Scripture), as well as whatever traditions existed at this time. However, this makes perfect sense for the Philistines to return with a larger army.


1Chronicles 14:13b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

pâshaţ (טַשָ) [pronounced paw-SHAHT]

to spread out; to strip, to plunder, to unclothe; to flay, to remove the skin; in war, it is used to indicate a vicious attack, along the lines of flaying the skin off an animal

3rd person masculine plural, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #6584 BDB #832

The Samuel text, instead, has the following verb:

nâţash (ש-טָנ) [pronounced naw-TASH]

to be sent away, to be left [forsaken, deserted]; to be let go, to be dispersed, to be spread out, to be left to run wild; to be loosened

3rd person masculine plural, Niphal imperfect

Strong’s #5203 BDB #643

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

׳emeq (ק מ ע) [pronounced ĢEH-mek]

valley, vale, lowland, deepening, depth

masculine singular noun with the definite article

Strong’s #6010 BDB #770

The Samuel text adds the following word:

Repha’îym (מי  ̣א ָפ ׃ר) [pronounced refaw-EEM]

giants; transliterated Rephaim

masculine plural noun

Strong's #7495-7497 BDB #952


Translation: ...and they spread out in the valley. The term again applies to this entire verse. The Philistines again came up against Israel and they again were deployed in the Valley of Rephaim. Although this verb has several meanings, here it means that their army strategically set themselves up to war against Israel again. They don’t act like the Marching Owl Band, and just meander off in random directions; the Philistine army take up strategic positions with the intent of defeating Israel.


This demonstrates the negative volition of the Philistines. They were soundly defeated, to the point of turning and running and leaving their idols (and, presumably, all other possessions) behind. Perhaps only 70 years had transpired since the Philistines had the Ark of God in their land, and the end result was, God brought great ills against this people while the Ark was in their land. Almost all of these soldiers would have known about this. You may wonder, how is this possible? How can these Philistines know the Jews, know the history of the Jews, know about the Ark of God, and yet not give them a wide berth? I mean, there might be a tough guy who is picking fights with everyone, and I may give that person a wide berth, just out of common sense. So, why don’t the Philistines act this way? The Philistines are very negative toward Jehovah God and toward the Jews, who are God’s people. They are consumed with hatred for the Jews. We see this today with the Iranian leader; he has no fear of God; his hatred for the Jews is so great that he attempts to vilify them and blame them for all the ills of Iran, which, truth be told, can be blamed on him. The Jews are barely a spec of dust in the Middle East, and yet radical Muslims are all bent out of shape and cannot seem to rest, knowing that Israel is out there, occupying 0.2% of the land in the Mid East. Some of us are lucky enough not to have deep and abiding hatreds; so, we are nonplused by this kind of hatred. In fact, for some of us, it is hard for us to even pick up on it, as it seems so unreal.


Application: In some areas of politics, when I study both sides of an issue, some conclusions are very clear to me, and I find it amazing that some others do not come to the same conclusions. Footnote However, I have to remind myself that, some people, regardless of the facts, are going to believe in the wrong things. It is in their nature. One of the things which R. B. Thieme Jr. taught was, when a person is negative toward the gospel or toward Bible doctrine, their soul becomes a vacuum and it sucks in lies, distortions and false doctrine. This is a natural soul reaction, just as natural as touching a hot stove and getting burned.


And so asks again David in Elohim. And so says to him the Elohim, “You will not go up after them; circle around from upon them and you have come to them from opposite the balsam trees.

1Chronicles

14:14

David again inquired of Elohim and Elohim said to him, “You will not go up behind them; circle around from beside them and come up [lit., you have come up] to them from the front of [or, possibly, opposite] the weeping willow trees.

David asked God for guidance, and He said to David, “Do not go up behind them, but circle around beside them and come up from opposite those willow trees.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Latin Vulgate                          And David consulted God again, and God said to him: Go not up after them, turn away from them, and come upon them over against the pear trees.

Masoretic Text                       And so asks again David in Elohim. And so says to him the Elohim, “You will not go up after them; circle around from upon them and you have come to them from opposite the balsam trees.

Peshitta                                  Therefore David inquired again of God; and God said to him, “You will not go up afte them; but turn away from them, and go attack them from the front.

Septuagint                              And David inquired of God again; and God said to him, “You will not go after them; turn away from them, and you will come upon them near the pear trees.

 

Significant differences:           The primary difference between the Hebrew and the Greek text is, the Jewish military is to come up opposite the trees (we could argue as to their type) in the Hebrew, but near the trees in the Greek.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       David asked God what he should do, and God answered, "Don't attack them from the front. Circle around behind them where the balsam trees are.

The Message                         David again prayed to God. God answered, "This time don't attack head-on; circle around and come at them out of the balsam grove.

NAB                                       ...and again David inquired of God. But God answered him: “Do not try to pursue them, but go around them and come upon them from the direction of the mastic trees.

NJB                                        David again consulted God, and God replied, ‘Do not attack them from the front; go round and engage them opposite the balsam trees.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

BBE                                       And David went for directions to God; and God said to him, You are not to go up after them; but, turning away from them, come face to face with them opposite the spice-trees.

God’s Word                         Once more David asked God. God answered him, "Don't go after them. Circle around, and come at them in front of the balsam trees.

HCSB                                     So David again inquired of God, and God answered him, "Do not pursue them directly. Circle down away from them and attack them opposite the balsam trees.

JPS (Tanakh)                         David inquired of God once more, and God answered, “Do not go up after them, but circle around them and confront them at the baca [meaning uncertain] trees.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And when David again inquired of God, God said to him, "You shall not go up after them; go around and come against them opposite the balsam trees.

LTHB                                     And David again inquired of God. And God spoke to him, You shall not go up after them; turn away from them and come to them across from the weeping trees.

Young’s Updated LT             And David asks again of God, and God says to him, “Do not go up after them, turn round from them, and you have come to them from over-against the mulberries.


What is the gist of this verse? Again, David goes to Jehovah and asks Him what to do; this time, God tells him not to go up face to face with the Philistines, but to circle around them and come up from behind near a forest of trees.


1Chronicles 14:14a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

shâal (לַאָש) [pronounced shaw-AHL]

to ask [petition, request, inquire]; to demand [require]; to question, to interrogate; to ask [for a loan]; to consult; to salute

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #7592 BDB #981

׳ôwd (דע) [pronounced ģohd]

still, yet, again, besides, in addition to, even yet

adverb

Strong’s #5750 BDB #728

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; among, in the midst of; at, by, near, on, before, in the presence of, upon; with; to, unto, upon, up to; in respect to, on account of; by means of, about, concerning

primarily a preposition of proximity; however, it has a multitude of functions

No Strong’s # BDB #88

Ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun

Strong's #430 BDB #43


Translation: David again inquired of Elohim... Again, we know that David is in fellowship, as he is asking God what he should do. Even though the Philistines are the enemies of the Jews and even though David has defeated them in the past, and even though it is obvious that David will need to respond to their aggressive behavior, David still asks God what to do. It is okay to daily commune with God in prayer; it is okay to, even hourly, talk to God about problems or difficulties that you face; it is desirable for you to listen to God daily for guidance, and that would be through the teaching of your pastor teacher. You cannot claim on the one hand that you want to do God’s will and you want to be sensitive to His guidance, and yet, on the other, reject daily guidance from Him through the teaching of His Word.


Also, we have no idea as to the way in which David is speaking to God—is he speaking to God in a dream, inside his own mind, through Urim and Thummim or through a prophet? As before, there is no indication that a prophet is involved, but we simply do not know.


Application: I know that I am going to rain on a lot of people’s parade here, but, God is not audibly speaking to you. God does not come to you in dreams; He does speak to you as a still, small voice within you; He does not send you emails. Yes, I am fully aware that we find this frequently in Scripture (not as frequently as you might think). All David has at his disposal is the Pentateuch, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Job and bits of Samuel. That is his Bible. Quite frankly, given the decisions which David must make, there is just not enough there to guide him (although, obviously, with moving the Ark, there is enough information in the Bible to guide him). Things have changed since then. How did the early church get divine information? Paul sent them a letter. He received reports on a church, evaluated the actions and doctrine of the church, and told them what was right and what was wrong in their church. He did this often. Paul did not tell the Corinthians, listen to that voice within you; pray a listen to hear God’s voice! Instead, he wrote them several scathing letters, and God the Holy Spirit preserved two of them for us. This is from whence we get our doctrine. This is how God speaks to us. God speaks to us through His Word. I’ve have made this point many times in the past, but I think that it bears repeating: one of the easiest things for me in this life has been divine guidance. God does not come to me in dreams; He does not whisper deep inside of me; I don’t feel a tingle in the left or right shoulder, so that I know which way to turn. I cannot recall one instance of supernatural guidance since I have become a Christian. However, for the most part, I have agonized about very few decisions. This does not mean that I have not made some awful mistakes—I certainly have—and, 99% of the time, I should have known better. However, when it comes to should I do A or B, when there is some sort of a meaningful choice to be made, it is generally a fairly simple choice ot make, and, often when it isn’t, God makes the choice for me. When you have doctrine in your soul, knowing what to do and when to do it becomes much easier. On the other hand, if you ignore the Word of God; if you are a believer and have been so for the past 10 or 20 years, and yet you fret over should you take the south route to work, or do you cut through the two adjacent neighborhoods; your brain is simply trapped in minutia, and you don’t have enough doctrine in your soul to figure out if you should have coffee or tea with your breakfast.


Application: By the way, the next time some pastor deacon stands up and says God has spoken to him and this is God’s will, about the only thing you can be sure of is, God’s will is probably the exact opposite (and that you are hanging out with the wrong crowd of believers).

 

McGee: A dear lady came to the church where I served in Pasadena years ago. She said she was going to a faith healer and I advised her not to. I thought she should go to a doctor. She said, “Oh, Dr. McGee, you are so wrong. God is going to heal me. You think I ought not to go to this faith healer, but I am going and I will e healed.! She went and she was not healed. She couldn’t understand it. She thought God was going to heal her. The whole affair made shipwreck of that woman’s faith and she got to the place where she completely turned her back upon God. She said, “He let me down.” No, He didn’t. He oesn’t want us to do something very foolish. He wants us to use good old sanctified common sense. She should have gone to a doctor. Her foolishness eventuaed in her death. Footnote


Application: It is the year 2007? Should you support the war in Iraq? First of all, you are not the Commander-in-chief, so going to war is not your choice. Even if you are the highest ranking Senator in the capitol, this is not your call. This is the awesome choice and responsibility of the president. Now, should you react?

What About the Believer and Wars His Country Engages in?

1.      Bear in mind that how you feel about the war is not even a little bit important; that is pretty much the least important thing in this world.

2.      You must bear in mind that the Bible is never anti-military. Without going into any great detail here, you must recall the verse Your sin will find you out. You may be surprised as to the context of this verse—the sin being spoken of is the sin of pacifism.

3.      The Bible is never anti-nationalism, although it is anti-internationalism.

4.      Therefore, if your country goes to war, you need to actually support the troops; you need to support the military, which means you support their mission!

5.      You should never do anything which gives aid and comfort to the enemy. You should never do anything which suggests to our enemies that you do not have the resolve to support your military.

6.      Maybe you don’t like hearing about how many soldiers have died. Maybe you do not want to see war on your tv screen every evening. Maybe you are concerned when you hear the propaganda of the enemy. If you are, then consider this your personal sacrifice for the war—hold it in and pray for our troops.

7.      Let’s say, no matter what, there are no two ways about this: you know for a 100% fact that your country is 100% wrong and that your army is fighting a war which is 100% wrong. Then you pray for God to change things or you move to another country where your views are shared by the general majority (I understand the Costa Rica does not have a standing army). What you don’t do is get involved in peace demonstrations which support the enemies of the United States. This gives them hope; this gives them resolve; this gives them the strength to keep fighting, and therefore, to be able to kill more of our own soldiers.

8.      The war in Iraq is extremely unpopular at the time that I write this. There are over 50% of our population who don’t like the war. However, this is one of the most easily justified wars in our history. We removed a dictator from power who had killed anywhere from 300,000 to over a million of his own people. This is a dictator who violated 17 UN resolutions/sanctions. This is a dictator who used weapons of mass destruction (biological warfare) against his own people, the Kurds and against at least one neighboring country. So, going into the country, after spending over a decade of saber raddling was overdue. Only Bush had the guts to do this; Clinton did not. This war morphed into a vacuum for terrorists; terrorists from all over the Mid East began to flock to Iraq to fight and to cause civil disturbances. The war changed, and it became even more important for us at that point. We have countries which sponsor terrorism; we have countries which foster terrorism. At the time that I write, Iran is probably the biggest potential threat that the United States will see for decades, and they are pouring men into Iraq to fight us. These are our enemies. They tells us over and over again that they are our enemies. They want to see us dead. They want to kill conservatives and liberals both; they want to kill males and females and little children; their hatred for us is surpassed only in their hatred for Israel. This should be one of the biggest no-brainers that we will ever face: these are our enemies in war, and therefore, we should kill them. And, it does not matter if we are there for 10 more months or 10 more years or 50 more years (we do have troops still in Germany and Japan from World War II). It is in our national interest for us to kill them there, rather than to allow them to come over here so that we can kill them here. Our soldiers are willing to stand and fight, and they understand these issues far better than we do. For this reason, we should allow our soldiers to do what they are trained to do—to kill the enemy—and we should do nothing which encourages our enemy.

9.      I have had one friend of mine who said, that if I had my way, we would still be in Vietnam. To be frank with you, I don’t have a neat, concise answer for Vietnam. I know that, without a doubt, the way we ended things there was absolutely wrong. Our exit from Vietnam could not have been a worse thing to do. As many as 3 million people died as a result of our leaving Vietnam. These are people who trusted us; these are people to whom we gave our word; these are people that we fought we side-by-side. We betrayed these people; and I don’t know in who’s universe this counts as a right thing. Our leaving that region emboldened the dictator in Cambodia that he then killed 1 million of his own people in order to impose his own rule over them. Our being in Vietnam simply was the thing which kept him from exercising as much evil as he had in his heart. How we should have handled this is, we should have bombed our true enemies, the North Vietnamese, in their cities. We should have taken the fight to them; we should not have allowed them to engage us in South Vietnam. Would this have solved everything? Would this have resulted in a world war? I don’t know. Unlike thousands of people today, I still feel uncomfortable with being a Monday morning quarterback and saying, hell, this is what we should have done, and everything would have been alright. I simply do not know that. However, I do know, the way we left Vietnam was wrong and every person who had a hand in that should recognize that they have the blood of millions of innocents on their hands.

10.    One last thing about the Vietnam war: we really do not know the complete affect of this war; we do not know if weapons build-up in Russia as a result of this war caused the Russian empire to collapse; we do not know if our involvement pointed Red China and Vietnam toward free enterprise (Ho Chi Minh City—Saigon—is far more capitalistic than the United States). My point in this is, even though the way we left was wrong, the effect of the Vietnam war could have been very beneficial. In that general era, Communism was increasing and taking over more nations; and since then, Communism has been losing ground and even nations that claim to be Communistic, like China and Vietnam, are very capitalistic and they may never return to a completely socialistic government simply because we were there for so many years.

It is easy for the unbeliever to be sucked into anti-war movements. They think that they are making the world a better place to live in; they can give standing to their personal sense of self-righteousness (the self-righteousness of liberals rivals that of the legalistic church goer). However, for the believer, you should be willing to sacrifice for the war effort of your country—even if that sacrifice is so trivial as to be able to endure the fact that you know a war is going on.


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1Chronicles 14:14b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

âmar (ר ַמ ָא) [pronounced aw-MAHR]

to say, to speak, to utter; to say [to oneself], to think

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #559 BDB #55

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to, with reference to, as to, with regards to; belonging to; by

directional/relational preposition with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

No Strong’s # BDB #510

Ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun with the definite article

Strong's #430 BDB #43

lô (אֹל or אל) [pronounced low]

not, no

negates the word or action that follows; the absolute negation

Strong’s #3808 BDB #518

׳âlâh (ה ָל ָע) [pronounced ģaw-LAWH]

to go up, to ascend, to come up, to rise, to climb

2nd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong's #5927 BDB #748

achărêy (י̤רֲח ַא) [pronounced ah-kuh-RAY]

hinder parts; behind, after; following; after that, afterwards

preposition; plural form; with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong’s #310 BDB #29


Translation: ...and Elohim said to him, “You will not go up behind them;... In the Samuel text, it is unclear at this point as to how David is to go up against the Philistines; however, here, God seems to be telling David not to go up behind the Philistines. What makes sense to me is David actually asks God, “Should I circle around behind the Philistines?”


Now, you may wonder, if the Philistines don’t see David and his army straight ahead, won’t they become suspicious? First of all, we do not know if David’s army is right in front of the Philistine army, nor do we know if the Philistines can see David’s army at all. Secondly, in the previous war, David disappeared, going into the stronghold for awhile, and God guided him on the battlefield. We do not know if David is doing this again, going to his stronghold first and inquiring of God—or whether this occurs in his palace when he is given word of the location of the Philistines. However, from God’s instructions, it is apparent that the Philistines are deployed strategically in the valley of Rephaim (if they were merely scattered in the valley, they would have no front and no back).


In any case, I believe the gist is, David’s intention was to circle around behind the Philistines. However, God is going to give him another approach.


1Chronicles 14:14c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

çâbab (ב ַב ָס) [pronounced sawb-VAHBV]

to be brought round, to turn, to change, to march around, to walk around, to go partly around, to circle about, to go on a circuitous march, to make a circuit, to surround, to encompass; to turn over?

2nd person masculine singular, Qal imperative

Strong’s #5437 BDB #685

min (ן ̣מ) [pronounced min]

from, away from, out from, out of from, off, on account of, since, above, than, so that not, above, beyond, more than

preposition of separation

Strong's #4480 BDB #577

׳al (ל ַע) [pronounced ģahl ]

upon, beyond, on, against, above, over, by, beside

preposition of proximity with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

Strong’s #5920, #5921 BDB #752

Together, they mean from upon, from over, from by, from beside, from attachment to, from companionship with, from accompanying [in a protective manner], from adhesion to, from. Some translators rendered this away from.


Translation: ...circle around from beside them... The combination of prepositions used here is quite different from those used in Samuel. In Samuel, they were to circle around toward their behind (the prepositions used are a little difficult to figure out in the Samuel text). Apparently the cover there and David’s knowledge of the landscape, would allow for him to take his men around beside the Philistine army. Even though God is with David and even though this is God’s will, God still instructs David in such a way that He employs strategy and tactics. That is, God does not simply send a few thousand lightening bolts from the sky to wipe out the Philistine army while Israel watches.


Application: People are so confused about what they should or should not do within the plan of God. When you go and apply for a job, do you simply say, here I am; knowing that they will hire you if it is God’s will; or do you dress up in a suit and tie and make certain that a clean, easy-to-follow, eye-catching, up-to-date resume is in their hands before you begin speaking? If you are in an army where your war against evil is unquestionably righteous, do you just go straight ahead, knowing that God will land on the side of the righteous, or do you employ tactics, strategy, intelligence, and training? Here, it is clear that trusting God does not mean that you blunder your way through every situation and allow God to sort out the bodies at the end (I am speaking metaphorically here for non-military applications). God has given you a brain and He has given you Bible doctrine. There is nothing wrong with functioning as if you have some intelligence and some common sense. In David’s situation, God actually supplies him with the proper strategy and tactics; in our lives, God is not going to speak with you directly; He is not going to call you on the phone, speak to you in your dreams, or send you an email. Determining how to function in life is going to be an outworking of Bible doctrine in your soul. The more doctrine, the easier it is to determine what you should do in your life. Obviously, none of this is clear when you are out of fellowship.


1Chronicles 14:14d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

bôw (א) [pronounced boh]

to come in, to come, to go in, to go, to enter

2nd person masculine singular, Qal perfect

Strong’s #935 BDB #97

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to, with reference to, as to, with regards to; belonging to; by

directional/relational preposition with the 3rd person masculine plural suffix

No Strong’s # BDB #510

min (ן ̣מ) [pronounced min]

from, off, out from, out of, away from, on account of, since, than, more than

preposition of separation

Strong's #4480 BDB #577

mûwl (למ) [pronounced mool]

in front of, opposite

preposition

Strong's #4136 BDB #557

The min preposition combined with mûwl mean from before; from the front of; off the front of; close in front of. Literal translators off up a number of additional meanings: opposite (ESV); in front of (LTHB, NKJV); over across (MKJV); over against (WEB) (these renderings are taken from 2Sam. 5:23).

bekâ׳îym (םי.אָכ) [pronounced be-kaw-EEM]

balsam trees, mulberry trees, weeping willow trees; root means to weep

masculine plural noun with the definite article

Strong’s #1057 BDB #113


Translation: ...and come up [lit., you have come up] from the front of [or, possibly, opposite] the weeping willow trees. We do not know what kind of trees these are, Footnote but David knew and he knew where God was directing him. Since this is an entire army, they must have been well-protected from sight.


The text is somewhat different in the parallel passages, giving rise to questions as to just exactly what did Israel do? Let’s compare the two passages:

David’s Tactics in the Second Philistine War

 

2Sam. 5:23

1Chron. 14:14

Literal text:

And so asks David in Yehowah. And so He says, “You will not go up; circle around unto their behind and you have come to them from opposite balsam trees.

And so asks again David in Elohim. And so says to him the Elohim, “You will not go up after them; circle around from upon them and you have come to them from opposite the balsam trees.

Nearly literal text:

David therefore inquired of Yehowah. And He said, “You will not go up [against them]; circle around behind them and come up [lit., you have come up] from the front of [or, possibly, opposite] the weeping willow trees.

David again inquired of Elohim and Elohim said to him, “You will not go up behind them; circle around from beside them and come up [lit., you have come up] to them from the front of [or, possibly, opposite] the weeping willow trees.

Before the attack

The Israelites are to circle around behind the Philistines.

The Israelites are to circle around from beside the Philistines (possibly, next to the Philistines).

Possible explanation

Obviously, one option is always, faulty text, and there are reasons throughout which indicate that the text of Samuel is problematic. However, it is possible that David and his men begin behind the Philistines and circle around them, along side of them, surreptitiously.

The actual attack:

In any case, the texts agree exactly when it comes to David’s attack. Neither text says that David attacks the Philistines from behind; both texts indicate that David attacked the Philistines opposite the weeping willow trees.

There are two problems: (1) Some of the prepositions are somewhat confusing and their meaning or use here is not altogether clear. (2) Although Samuel seems to have the Israeli army circling behind the Philistines and the Chronicles text has them circling around to their side, it is possible that both texts are correct; it is possible that David was poised to strike them from behind, God said no, and then David takes his men from behind the Philistines and circles around to their side.

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Keil and Delitzsch spend no little time on this subject. I will try to edit this to text which is easier to understand; however, it is not a problem if you skip over this entirely and move to the next doctrine.

Keil and Delitzsch Show how 2Samuel 23 and 1Chronicles 14 Agree

In 1Ch_14:14, the divine answer to David's question, whether he should march against the Philistines, runs thus: You will not go up after them; turn away from them, and come upon them over against the baca-bushes; - while in 2Sa_5:23, on the contrary, we read: You will not go up [i.e., advance against the enemy to attack them in front]; turn behind them [i.e., to their rear], and come upon them over against the baca-bushes. Bertheau endeavours to get rid of the discrepancy, by supposing that into both texts corruptions have crept through transcribers' errors [I’ll leave out the specifics here, as this portion gets rather complex]. His supposition, however, stands or falls with the presumption that by in the Samuel text, an attack is forbidden; but for that presumption no tenable grounds exist: it would rather involve a contradiction between the first part of the divine answer and the second. The last clause, “Come upon them from over against the baca-bushes,” shows that the attack was not forbidden; all that was forbidden was the making of the attack by advancing straight forward: instead of that, they were to try to fall upon them in the rear, by making a circuit. The chronicler consequently gives us an explanation of the ambiguous words of 2Samuel, which might easily be misunderstood. David's question was doubtless expressed as it is in 1Ch_14:10, Should I go up against the Philistines? The answer might be understood to mean, “Go not up against them, attack them not, but go away behind them;” but with that the following, “Come upon them from the baca-bushes,” did not seem to harmonize. The chronicler consequently explains the first clauses of the answer thus: “Go not up straight behind them,” i.e., advance not against them so as to attack them openly, “but turn thyself away from them,” i.e., strike off in such a direction as to turn their flank, and come upon them from the front of the baca-bushes. In this way the apparently contradictory texts are reconciled without the alteration of a word.

Yeah, that’s what she said.

I think that is more or less what I said. I edited the text of Keil and Delitzsch for clarity, but I don’t know that I was very successful.

Edited from Keil and Delitzsch, Commentary on the Old Testament; from e-Sword; 1Chron. 14:2–18.

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Critics who look for contradictions ignore some basic principles:

Some Fundamental Principles of Textual Criticism

1.      God has never guaranteed that each and every word of any English translation is inspired by the Holy Spirit.

2.      There are definitely some errors and even additional text which have crept into the Scriptures over the years.

3.      Even with that, the faithfulness of the text is incredible. I have seen Scripture compared to the writings of Shakespear (which came after the invention of the printing press), and there are considerably fewer discrepancies between various Biblical texts and various Shakespear texts.

4.      There are no fundamental doctrinal problems when comparing this or that text. That is, we can come across this and that problem with regards to minor nuances of the text; but, the fundamental and secondary doctrines of the Word are never ever in question. I have given two examples of problematic texts where some fundamental doctrines could be called into question. In the book of 1Samuel, Saul calls for the Ark of God which appears to be a call for guidance; however, other texts have him calling for the Ephod, which makes much more sense. In the discussion of that passage, one might determine with, say, 90% probability, that the actual text should read Ephod. Another example is the end of the final chapter of Mark, where disciples are wandering about lifting up deadly snakes and drinking poison; this text is missing from the earliest manuscripts and seems to have been added a century or two later. This is a famous holy roller text which has spawned some pretty weird cults (see I Handle Snakes by Tonio K).1 Textual criticism tells us that this text is bogus.

5.      There are undoubtedly going to be problematic texts from time to time, and some we will have to simply chalk up to copyist errors. I know that seems like a cop-out, but there are texts where it is clear that such errors have occurred (in fact, many such errors are actually classified into groups).

6.      God has preserved 99% of the text of His Word as well as 100% of what we need to actually know. Again, no matter what the textual problems we come across, never do these problems affect any fundamental or even secondary doctrinal issues.

7.      This passage is a typical example: I am left with three possibilities:

         a.      There is an actual textual transmission problem. For instance, one of the prepositional phrases (behind them) is found in two very different places in these parallel verses.

         b.      We may not really understand these way these prepositions are used here; some are difficult to grasp.

         c.      These passages may be taken together to indicate that David was coming up behind the Philistines, and God told him to circle around them from his position behind them to a position along side of them.

         d.      No matter which of these possibilities is correct, there is no damage which can be imputed to the fundamental or secondary doctrines of Scripture. Since I have not even presented arguments for or against these 3 positions indicates that I do not know for certain which is correct; however, no matter which is correct, there are no doctrinal problems for us, despite the fact that we cannot take a dogmatic position on the exact meaning/understanding of David’s tactics at this point.

8.      Personally, I lean toward harmonizing Scripture; and see no real problems with this passage, given our incomplete knowledge of the meanings of the prepositions found in these two passages. Although I do think that sub-point 3 above is how we should understand this passage, it is not something I would get into a theological fist fight over.

9.      In dealing with the minor textual problem here, one must bear in mind that, the writer of Chronicles used the Samuel text (along with other ancient texts) to compose Chronicles (which appears to be as much the work of an editor as an original author). That means that, the writer of Chronicles looked at the Samuel passage and either copied it directly or made some minor changes in order to get across a certain point or in order to more accurately explain David’s God-guided tactics.

10.    In other words, we do not have a problem of, these two authors need to get their stories straight first; the author of Chronicles presumably had a more accurate text than we have, and he clearly lifted direct quotations right out of the text of Samuel. Therefore, we know there cannot be textual contradictions at this point.

Quite frankly, I have probably made much more out of this text than I needed to; however, I think that it is important to take a critical look at the text now and again. Furthermore, I attempted here to make the actual tactics of David make sense.

1 This is a song, by the way, and not a book.


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And he is in your hearing a sound of marching in tops of the weeping willow trees, then you will go up into the battle, for then gone out Elohim to your faces to strike an army of Philistines.”

1Chronicles

14:15

It will be when you hear the sound of rustling in the tops of the trees, then you will go out into battle, for Elohim has gone out before you to strike the Philistine army.”

When you hear the sound of the rustling in the tops of the trees, then you will advance, cutting into the Philistine army, for God has gone before you to strike down the Philistine army.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Latin Vulgate                          And when thou shalt hear the sound of one going in the tops of the pear trees, then shalt thou go out to battle. For God is gone out before thee to strike the army of the Philistines.

Masoretic Text                       And he is in your hearing a sound of marching in tops of the weeping willow trees, then you will go up into the battle, for then gone out Elohim to your faces to strike an army of Philistines.”

Peshitta                                  And it will be, when you hear the sound of howling in the top of the mountain, then you will go out to battle; for the Lord has gone forth before you to strike down the army of the Philistines.

Septuagint                              And it shall be, when you will hear the sound of their tumult in the tops of the pear trees, then you will go into the battle: for God has gone out before you to strike the army of the Philistines.

 

Significant differences:           None.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       Wait there until you hear the treetops making the sound of marching troops. That sound will mean I have marched out ahead of you to fight the Philistine army. So you must then attack quickly!"

The Message                         When you hear a sound like shuffling feet in the tops of the balsams, attack; God will be two steps ahead of you, slaughtering the Philistines."

NJB                                        When you hear the sound of footsteps in the tops of the balsam trees launch your attack, for that will be God going out ahead of you to defeat the Philistine army.’

NLT                                        When you hear a sound like marching feet in the tops of the balsam trees, attack! That will be the signal that God is moving ahead of you to strike down the Philistines.”

REB                                       As soon as you hear a rustling sound in the treetops, hen give battle at once, for God will have gone out before you to defeat the Philistines army.’

TEV                                        When you hear the sound of marching in the treetops, then attack, because I will be marching ahead of you to defeat the Philistine army."


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

BBE                                       And at the sound of footsteps in the tops of the trees, go out to the fight, for God has gone out before you to overcome the army of the Philistines.

God’s Word                         As you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then go out and fight because God has gone ahead of you to defeat the Philistine army."

HCSB                                     When you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then march out to battle, for God will have marched out ahead of you to attack the camp of the Philistines."

JPS (Tanakh)                         And when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the baca trees, then go out to battle, for God will be going in front of you to attack the Philistine forces.”


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, then go out to battle, for God has gone out before you to strike down the army of the Philistines."

MKJV                                     And it shall be, when you hear a sound of marching in the tops of the weeping trees, then you shall go out to battle. For God has gone forth before you to strike the army of the Philistines.

Young’s Updated LT             And it comes to pass, when you hear the sound of the stepping at the heads of the mulberries, then you go out into battle, for God has gone out before you to strike the camp of the Philistines.”


What is the gist of this verse? God tells David that, while he is behind the Philistines to listen to the trees and the noise of the trees, and that would be a sign to him to attack, and cut into the camp of the Philistines. God tells David that He has determined to, in this way, strike down the Philistine army.


1Chronicles 14:15a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

hâyâh (ה ָי ָה) [pronounced haw-YAW]

to be, is, was, are; to become, to come into being; to come to pass

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect; apocopated

Strong's #1961 BDB #224

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

shâma׳ (ע ַמ ָש) [pronounced shaw-MAHĢ]

to listen [intently], to hear, to listen and obey, [or, and act upon, give heed to, take note of], to hearken to, to be attentive to, to listen and be cognizant of

Qal infinitive construct with the 2nd person masculine singular suffix

Strong's #8085 BDB #1033

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

qôwl (לק) [pronounced kohl]

sound, voice, noise; loud noise, thundering

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #6963 BDB #876

tse׳âdâh (הָדָעצ) [pronounced tseh-ģaw-DAW]

marching, steps

feminine singular noun with the definite article

Strong’s #6807 BDB #857

This word is only found in two parallel passages, so its meaning is rather difficult to ascertain. However, its cognates all are related to marching, stepping, or walking; actually or metaphorically.

The Targum calls this a noise; the Arabic has it as the noise of horses’ hoofs. Footnote

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

rôsh (שאֹר) [pronounced rohsh]

heads, princes, officers, captains, chiefs; company, band, division

masculine plural construct

Strong's #7218 BDB #910

bekâ׳îym (םי.אָכ) [pronounced be-kaw-EEM]

balsam trees, mulberry trees, weeping willow trees; root means to weep

masculine plural noun with the definite article

Strong’s #1057 BDB #113


Translation: It will be when you hear the sound of rustling in the tops of the trees,... We do not know exactly what the feminine singular noun in this verse means. Its cognates are related to marching, stepping, or walking. However, there is a noise which David will hear, that David understands, and this noise will be the thing which causes David to move forward.


It is my contention that it will sound possibly like marching or like an army is coming through these trees; and that, with David coming up at them from one side, opposite the trees, and with sounds in those trees as if any army is coming through them, traps the Philistine army, causing them to panic.

 

McGee: A pastor friend of mine came to tell me about a church he was going to serve, and because I knew things about the church, I advised him not to go. He asked, “Why?” I answered, “You had better wait until you hear the ‘sound of going in the tops of the mulberry trees’ before you go there.” You see, there are times when you and I are simply to wait until there is no doubt that God is preparing the way for us. This talk of stepping out on faith may not be faith at all. It may be presumption. Instead of trusting God, we may be tempting God. We need to wait for the Lord to give the signal, for that sound in the tops of the mulberry trees. We need to be very careful that what we call stepping out on faith isn’t simply a foolish move. Sometimes we are tempting God instead of trusting Him. Footnote


1Chronicles 14:15b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

âz (ז ָא) [pronounced awz]

then, at that time, in that case (when following an if or though), now, as things are; that being so

adverb

Strong’s #227 BDB #23

yâtsâ (אָצָי) [pronounced yaw-TZAWH]

to go out, to come out, to come forth; to rise; to flow, to gush up [out]

2nd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong's #3318 BDB #422

The Samuel text has the verb which follows instead:

chârats (ץַרָח) [pronounced khaw-RATS]

to cut, to cut into; to mutilate; to sharpen [used metaphorically for the tongue]; figuratively used to mean to decide, to determine, to decree

2nd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong’s #2782 BDB #358

Barnes gives the meaning as fixed, settled. I believe the connection is that when something is cut into stone, it is permanently decreed.

The couple words which follow are not in the Samuel text:

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

milechâmâh (הָמָח׃ל ̣מ) [pronounced mil-khaw-MAW]

battle, war

feminine singular noun with the definite article

Strong’s #4421 BDB #536


Translation: ...then you will go out into battle,... I listed all of the opinions about the rustling of the trees in the Samuel text. We did not really come to a definite conclusion. As mentioned in the previous phrase, my thinking was, The sound of marching in the trees on one side of the Philistines along with the sound of David’s men coming the other side, made the Philistines think they are surrounded.


1Chronicles 14:15c

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

kîy (י̣) [pronounced kee]

for, because; that; when

explanatory conjunction; preposition

Strong's #3588 BDB #471

yâtsâ (אָצָי) [pronounced yaw-TZAWH]

to go out, to come out, to come forth; to rise; to flow, to gush up [out]

3rd person masculine singular, Qal perfect

Strong's #3318 BDB #422

Ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun with the definite article

Strong's #430 BDB #43

YHWH (הוהי) [pronunciation is possibly yhoh-WAH]

transliterated variously as Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehowah

proper noun

Strong’s #3068 BDB #217

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

pânîym (םי̣נָ) [pronounced paw-NEEM]

face, faces countenance; presence

masculine plural noun (plural acts like English singular); with the 2nd person masculine singular suffix

Strong’s #6440 BDB #815

Together, they mean before you, before your face, in your presence, in your sight, in front of you. When used with God, it can take on the more figurative meaning in Your judgment.


Translation: ...for Elohim has gone out before you... God has determined all of the knowable, and has already decreed the outcome of this battle, but not in the way that you might think. This does not mean that God has gone through and supernaturally destroyed the Philistine army. If that were the case, there would be no reason for David to circle around to the back of the Philistine army. The idea is, God going before Israel means that, God knows all the knowable, and He has determined that David will be victorious with this flanking movement.


I discussed briefly the location in time of these two battles. I personally am unable to place them, although I think that it is reasonable to assume that they occurred shortly after David was anointed king over all Israel and shortly after he moves to Jerusalem. David will battle the Philistines at a later date on several occasions, so these two battles are not the only wars which David fights with these men. However, the context, the location in Scripture and what is written here does suggest that these are two short but decisive wars (or battles) fought shortly after David makes Jerusalem his capital city (that would fit in with the theme of this chapter).


Another reason these battles are placed here are to contrast Hiram king of Tyre with the Philistines. There were two ways a nearby country could react (or respond) to David. Hiram responded to David by building a palace for him; the Philistines respond to David by attacking him. These responses indicate the heart of these people, and their relationship to God.


There were a number of applications from this verse (far more than one would have expected), so I decided to leave them in (all the following applications are also found in 2Sam. 5):


Application: Although there are no doubt occasional supernatural events in Scripture—possibly many at the hands of Jesus—there is no reason to read a supernatural occurrence every time that God acts. There is no reason to assume that God only really functions when He is outside the realm of normal, human reality (e.g., acting outside the laws of physics). 90% of what are often seen as miraculous events of Scripture are often events which have a logical explanation. God did not go first into the Philistine army and kill then, and David shows up here and picks up the bodies. There is no indication that anything supernatural occurred here. Again, if God acted supernaturally here, then there would have been no reason for David to come up from behind or to adhere to a strict timetable. How does this apply to you? We’re getting there, trust me.


Application: This is an area which confuses almost all believers. God can overrule the laws of physics, chemical laws, and any law of science. He can do it instantaneously and without effort. This is truly easy. God can, at any time He wants, step into human history and overrule anything; any person’s volition, any event, any scientific law, anything. However, there is no indication that God does this regularly. There are things which Jesus did which were, no doubt, supernatural—His walking on water, his transfiguration on the Mount of Transfiguration, his feeding of the 5000, His raising of Lazarus from the dead are examples of God acting outside the laws of science which He set up. However, there are a great number of events in Scripture—e.g., most of the plagues which occurred in Egypt, some of the healings which our Lord did (when he rubbed mud in the eye of a blind man), this battle—where God’s hand is there, but not in such a way to overrule human volition or the laws of science (again, a misnomer).


Application: It is more complex and marvelous when God takes into the account all human actions and decisions, and puts His plan into action right within the realm of human history, with the normal results of cause and effect. It is quite amazing that God could have decreed in eternity past, before man existed, that David would win this battle decisively, and through asking God what to do. Now, how does this apply to you? You do not need to pray for a miracle; you do not need for God to supernaturally enter into the events of your life and fix and overrule your volition and the volition of those around you; and to overrule the laws of science, physics, medicine, etc. Maybe you are in a desperate jam; God has dealt with that in eternity past. Now listen to me carefully: don’t expect for God to wave a magic wand and for everything to be all better instantly. God is not our personal genie; God works with us, a step at a time. When we move forward spiritually, by being filled with God the Holy Spirit through rebound, Footnote and through learning Bible doctrine, then God has, in eternity past, worked things out to fix the life which you have so royally screwed up. If you are a recovering drug addict, for instance, God is not going to wave some magic wand, and the wife who left you, the house you lost, the car you wrecked, the banks account syou drained, will all magically come back to you. it is a step at a time. Someone who sees you a year later may not even recognize you; but from day to day, there may seem to be little or no change in your life.


Application: In other words, don’t think that you can behave like an ass throughout your life, make mistake after mistake after mistake, and that, through the power of prayer, everything will be instantly made better. Again, God is not your personal genie Whom you turn on and off through fervent prayer. If you have spent 10 years digging the hole that you are standing in right now, then realize that God is not going to lift you out of that hole in an instant.


Application: Now, how do we know all of this? Right here, in this little passage—God tells David to circle around to a particular side of this Philistine army and to attack them from there when David hears the signal. God could have wiped out this army in an instant. God could have spoken the word, and wiped these Philistines out with a storm, with hail, or even struck each individual simultaneously with lightening. God does not do that here. If fact, God rarely does that (as discussed before, there are relatively few miracles to be found in the Bible, given the great history that it covers). David has apparently been in fellowship for a great deal of the past several months (or years), and the Philistines, who could have just let things be, were so filled with hatred for the Jews, that they had to attack. God has a plan, a plan which He decreed in eternity past, a plan which allows David to deal with these Philistines. For every one of us, God has a plan for us; He has decreed in eternity past what we should do. Furthermore, he is not going to contact us by telephone, email, or by a still, quiet voice while we meditate. God has provided His Word and His Holy Spirit to guide us; all we have to do is make use of that which He has given us, and then we advance, one step at a time, one day at a time.


1Chronicles 14:15d

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

lâmed (ל) (pronounced le)

to, for, towards, in regards to

directional/relational preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #510

nâkâh (ה ָכ ָנ) [pronounced naw-KAWH]

to smite, to assault, to hit, to strike, to strike [something or someone] down, to defeat, to conquer, to subjugate

Hiphil infinitive construct

Strong #5221 BDB #645

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

machăneh (ה נ ֲח ַמ) [pronounced mah-khuh-NEH]

camp, encampment; an army camp; those who are camped [army, company, people]; the courts [of Jehovah]; the heavenly host

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #4264 BDB #334

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun)

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814


Translation: ...to strike the Philistine army.” This tells us what God has done first; He has decreed the striking down of the Philistine army, which will be done by means of David’s army.


And so does David as which mandated Yehowah. And so they strike down an army of Philistines from Gibeon and as far as Gezer.

1Chronicles

14:16

So David did as God commanded, and they [David and his army] struck down Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.

David did exactly as God has commanded him, and they chased the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Masoretic text                        And so does David as which mandated Yehowah. And so they strike down an army of Philistines from Gibeon and as far as Gezer.

Peshitta                                  And David therefore did as the Lord commanded him, and they struck down the army of the Philistines from Gibeon even to Gadar.

Septuagint                              And he did as God commanded him: and he smote the army of the Philistines from Gabaon to Gazera.

 

Significant differences:           None.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       David obeyed God and he defeated the Philistines. He even chased them all the way from Gibeon to the entrance to Gezer.

NAB                                       David did as God commanded him, and they routed the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.

NJB                                        David did as God had ordered, and they beat the Philistine army rom Gibeon to Gezer.

NLT                                        So David did what God commanded, and he struck down the Philistine army all the way from Gibeon to Gezer.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

BBE                                       And David did as the Lord had said; and they overcame the army of the Philistines, attacking them from Gibeon as far as Gezer.

God’s Word                         David did as God ordered him, and his men defeated the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.

HCSB                                     So David did exactly as God commanded him, and they struck down the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And David did as God commanded him, and they struck down the Philistine army from Gibeon to Gezer.

Young’s Updated LT             And David does as God commanded him, and they strike the camp of the Philistines from Gibeon even unto Gazer.


What is the gist of this verse? David obeys God’s commands, and he strikes down the Philistines from Gibeon to an escape route to Gezer.


1Chronicles 14:16a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

׳âsâh (הָָע) [pronounced ģaw-SAWH]

to do, to make, to construct, to fashion, to form, to prepare, to manufacture

3rd person masculine singular, Qal imperfect

Strong's #6213 BDB #793

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

kên (ן ֵ) [pronounced kane]

so, thus; upright, honest; rightly, well; [it is] so, such, so constituted;

properly, an active participle; used primarily as an adverb

Strong's #3651 BDB #485

kaph or ke ( ׃) [pronounced ke]

like, as, according to; about, approximately

preposition

No Strong’s # BDB #453

ăsher (רשֲא) [pronounced ash-ER]

that, which, when, who, whom

relative pronoun

Strong's #834 BDB #81

tsâvâh (ה ָו ָצ) [pronounced tsaw-VAW]

to commission, to mandate, to lay charge upon, to give charge to, charge, command, order

3rd person masculine singular, Piel perfect; with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong's #6680 BDB #845

Ělôhîym (מי̣הֹלֱא) [pronounced el-o-HEEM]

gods, foreign gods, god; God; rulers, judges; superhuman ones, angels; transliterated Elohim

masculine plural noun with the definite article

Strong's #430 BDB #43


Translation: So David did as Elohim commanded him,... David called upon God to guide him, and he does exactly as God directed him. Instead of striking the Philistines from the position that he intended to, David hit them from the side in a surprise attack.


1Chronicles 14:16b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore; because

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

nâkâh (ה ָכ ָנ) [pronounced naw-KAWH]

to smite, to assault, to hit, to strike, to strike [something or someone] down, to defeat, to conquer, to subjugate

3rd person masculine plural, Hiphil imperfect

Strong #5221 BDB #645

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

machăneh (ה נ ֲח ַמ) [pronounced mah-khuh-NEH]

camp, encampment; an army camp; those who are camped [army, company, people]; the courts [of Jehovah]; the heavenly host

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #4264 BDB #334

Pelishetîy (י. ש ̣ל) [pronounced pe-lish-TEE]

transliterated Philistines

masculine plural gentilic adjective (acts like a proper noun); with the definite article

Strong’s #6430 BDB #814

min (ן ̣מ) [pronounced min]

from, off, out from, out of, away from, on account of, since, than, more than

preposition of separation

Strong's #4480 BDB #577

Gibe׳ôn (ןע׃ב ̣) [pronounced gibve-ĢOHN]

hill, hill-city; transliterated Gibeon

proper noun, masculine singular

Strong’s #1391 BDB #149

The text in Samuel reads:

Geba׳ (ע-ב∵) [pronounced GEHb-vahģ]

transliterated Geba

proper noun

Strong’s #1387 BDB #148

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

׳ad (דַע) [pronounced ģahd]

as far as, even to, up to, until

preposition

Strong’s #5704 BDB #723

This prepositions min and ׳ad combined with the Qal infinitive construct of to go, to come can be rendered from ___ to ___; from ___ as far as ___; from ___ to as far as ___.

Gezer (ר∵ז∵) [pronounced GEH-zer]

a piece, a portion; and is transliterated Gezer

proper singular noun; location; pausal form

Strong’s #1507 BDB #160


1chron14.gifTaken from http://www.bible.org/assets/netbible/map7.jpg. This portion of the map which has northwest at the highest point, rather than north. Geba is actually due north of Jerusalem.

Translation: ...and he struck down Philistines from Gibeon to Gezer. We do have the problem that we find Gibeon in the Chronicles text and Geba in the Samuel text. You may recall that Geba is a city in Benjamin which we have come across several times in the past. It is due north of Jerusalem, and fits in very well with this narrative in terms of geography and past history (the Philistines often struck Israel from the center). At that time, Gezer was probably their territory.


Our problem is this: in 2Sam. 5:25, David pushed the Philistines from Geba to Gezer; in 1Chron. 14:16, he pushes them from Gibeon to Gezer. Which is correct? What happened here? Is this a contradiction which cannot be explained? Let me allow Keil and Delitzsch to weigh in first:

Keil and Delitzsch on Gibeon or Geba

Because of the parallel passage, Keil and Delitzsch discuss whether the beginning point was Geba or Gibeon: David did this, and smote the Philistines from Geba to the neighbourhood of Gezer. In the Chronicles we find “from Gibeon” instead of from Geba. The former is unquestionably the true reading, and Geba an error of the pen: for Geba, the present Jeba, was to the north of Jerusalem, and on the east of Ramah (Chephar-ammoni, Ophni, Geba--twelve cities with their villages: Gibeon, Ramah, Beeroth—Joshua 18:24–25); so that it is quite unsuitable here. But that is not the case with Gibeon, the present el Jib, on the north–west of Jerusalem (As soon as all the kings who were beyond the Jordan in the hill country and in the lowland all along the coast of the Great Sea toward Lebanon, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, heard of this, they gathered together as one to fight against Joshua and Israel. But when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and to Ai,...—Joshua 9:1–3); for this was on the way to Gezer, which was four Roman miles to the north of Amws, and is probably to be sought for on the site of the present el Kubab (Then Horam king of Gezer came up to help Lachish. And Joshua struck him and his people, until he left none remaining—Joshua 10:33). Footnote

Not to worry: if that was too dense, I will keep on covering this topic, and break it don for you.

Return to Chapter Outline

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In 1Sam. 13, we studied the cities, Gibeah, Gibeon and Geba in a full and complete doctrine. What we need here are just a few points to bear in mind from that doctrine. If you find yourself falling asleep, then simply go to the summary points below and proceed from there.

Gibeon and Geba

1.      These are clearly different cities, as we see them differentiated in Joshua 18:24–25, 28 and Judges 20:33.

2.      Since the problem we are dealing with is a difference between the Hebrew and the Greek (in 1Sam. 13:15–16), we should note which transliteration matches with which:

         a.      Hebrew: Gibeon; Greek: Gabaon.

         b.      Hebrew: Geba; Greek: Gabæ .

3.      Unfortunately, there is no clear correspondence between the Hebrew, the Greek and the Latin with regards to Geba and Gibeah.

         a.      We cannot go to the Greek or Latin texts to verify or substantiate that we find one city rather than the other in this or that passage.

4.      These two cities are found near each other and in the territory of Benjamin in central Israel, west of the Jordan River.

5.      Gibeon is to the west and Geba is a little to the east.

6.      The names of these cities cities have the same root.

7.      Most of the time, these cities match their counterparts in the Greek Septuagint.

8.      Gibeon:

         a.      This is the city of the men who made a treaty with Joshua by deceiving him.

         b.      There is more Scripture with this city named than the other two; and there is a group of people who are not Jews who are associated with Gibeon.

9.      Geba:

         a.      During the time of Saul, Jonathan commanded a standing army in Gibeah and used them to strike a Philistine garrison in nearby Geba (1Sam. 13:2–3).

         b.      Many years later, King Josiah, king of Judah, the southern kingdom, defiled the idolatrous high places from Geba (northern Judah) to Beersheba (southern Judah). This tells us that Judah took in Benjamin as its territory and, for the southern kings, this replaced the saying from Dan to Beersheba, which was used for all Israel. 2Kings 23:8

10.    As one would expect, these names are so similar that there are passages where one is confounded with the other—some examples of this would be: Judges 20:10, 31, 33 1Sam. 13:3, 16 2Sam. 5:25 and 1Chron. 14:16. A fuller explanation is found with the doctrine itself. Unfortunately, as we found in the full doctrine, we could not simply go to the Greek or the Latin and confirm Geba, Gibeath and/or Gibeah. See the chart below:

At any time, you may go to the short set of summary points below:

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Let’s take a quick look at a table where we can quickly compare the Hebrew to the other ancient languages and see if there is any consistency to be found in these parallel verses:

The Hebrew, Latin, Greek and Syriac: Gibeon, Gezer and Geba

Verse

Hebrew

Greek

Latin

Syriac

2Sam. 5:25

from Geba to Gezer

Gabaon [Gibeon] to Gazera [Gaza or Gezer?]

Gabaa to Gezer

Geba to Gadar

1Chron. 14:16

from Gibeon to Gezer

Gabaon [Gibeon] to Gazera [Gaza or Gezer?]

Gabaon [Gibeon] to Gazera [Gaza or Gezer?]

Gibeon to Gadar

May I remind you that I take the Latin and Syriac from the English translation of those languages.

Notice that we have a general agreement between the languages, but not a complete one. The Greek has Gibeon in both places, but this is not backed up by the Latin or Syriac.

Notice that when we throw in the ancient languages, we have just as big of a problem when it comes to, where are these Philistines pushed—Gezer or Gaza? Instead of spending another hour on that, let me simply point out that these are both Philistine cities (Gezer apparently gets traded back and forth between Israel and Philistia) and both involve the Philistines first going north, and then making a right turn and going west. Our general picture is unchanged, and, regardless of the text, there are no doctrines in jeopardy, no matter which you believe is true.

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Let me sum this up in just a few points:

Summary: Is it Gibeon or should this Passage Read Geba?

1.      Geba and Gibeon are geographaically close to one another; saying that the Philistines were chased from Geba to Gezer (or Gaza) and roughly saying the same thing as the Philistines were chased from Gibeon to Geba (Gaza?). There is not really a contradiction here.

2.      We do not have the backing of enough texts here to dogmatically state that it is Geba in 2Sam. 5 and Gibeon in 1Chron. 14 (although that is the general agreement).

3.      Since the Philistines are pushed north (those who escaped), some may have gone to Geba and then made a right turn, and some may have gone to Gibeon and made a right turn. Again, there is no contradiction taking the texts just as they read.

I realize that we have beat this dead horse for far too long. I did this so that you don’t have to if you are teaching this passage. The summary points which I made are painstakingly backed up, and you can simply lead with the summary points, which quickly and easily deals with the textual problems of 2Sam. 5:25 and 1Chron. 14:16.


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The short version is this: the Philistine army is camped in a large valley which is outside of Jerusalem. David attacks them from the side, forcing the Philistines who were alive after the initial attack, to retreat to the north to Geba and Gibeon (recall that the Philistines had earlier conquered much of that area when they defeated Saul in 1Sam. 31). However, since David’s army kept coming at them, their retreat changed direction, so that they began retreating westward toward Gezer, which is more towards the traditional border lines between Israel and Philistia. I don’t want you to miss exactly what is happening here. The Philistines, when they defeated Saul, took over this central area to which they are retreating—Geba and Gibeon of Benjamin—but, David’s army keeps coming and keeps killing them, so they cannot stop here, even though, for a time, they apparently had control of this area. They cannot go north from here, as that would take them into northern Israel, which they do not control. Therefore, they need to suddenly move westward toward territory that the Philistines have historically occupied and controlled. What David has done here is, he has pushed the Philistines out of Israel. He has taken back control of the Israeli area over which they had control. This second Jewish-Philistine returns the boundaries between these nations to the more traditional location.


The distance between Gibeon (or, Geba) and Gezer is roughly 20 miles, and there is a road from Gezer through upper and lower Beth-horon to Gibeon, which is possibly the route which was followed in pursuit and retreat. This would be the road to take from the coastal plain to the central ridge, where Jerusalem stood. Footnote


Although the narrative here is short and quite straightforward, David’s defeat of the Philistines here is another of his most significant acts during his reign as king over all Israel. From this point on for nearly 300 years, the Philistines will cease being a constant, national threat to Israel. Whereas, it seems as if the Philistines seemed to pop up in about every 3rd chapter or so Israel took the land, we will only hear from them now and again, and the bulk of the remaining passages actually look back on historical events (e.g., the chapter which lists David’s mighty men, giving reasons why they are known as David’s mighty men).


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David’s Fame

And so goes out a name of David in all the lands and Yehowah gave the fear of him upon all the Gentiles [or, nations].

1Chronicles

14:17

Therefore, David’s reputation went out to all the [surrounding] lands and Yehowah gave the fear of him on all the Gentile nations.

Therefore, David’s reputation became known throughout all the surrounding lands and Jehovah made certain that all the Gentile nations feared and respected David.


Here is how others have translated this verse:


Ancient texts:

 

Latin Vulgate                          And the name of David became famous in all countries, and the Lord made all nations fear aim.

Masoretic Text                       And so goes out a name of David in all the lands and Yehowah gave the fear of him upon all the Gentiles [or, nations].

Septuagint                              And the name of David was in all the land; and the Lord gave the terror of him on all the nations.

 

Significant differences:           The first verb is significantly different, as the verb found in the Greek and in the Hebrew are both extremely common verbs. The English translation of the Latin matched what I had as an incorrect English rendering from the Greek, so I don’t know if the verb to be famous is the proper representation of the Latin. In any case, there is not a huge difference between the Greek and the Hebrew: the Greek verb is to be; the Hebrew verb is to go out. The Syriac text is equivalent to the Hebrew, and, apart from the first verb, all the ancient texts are in perfect agreement.


Thought-for-thought translations; paraphrases:

 

CEV                                       From then on, David became even more famous, and the LORD made all the nations afraid of him.

The Message                         David was soon famous all over the place, far and near; and GOD put the fear of God into the godless nations.

GNB (TEV)                            David's fame spread everywhere, and the LORD made every nation afraid of him.

NAB                                       Thus David’s fame was spread abroad through every land, and the Lord made all the nations fear him.

NJB                                        David’s fame spread to every country, and Yahweh made him feared by every nation.

REB                                       David’s fame spread through every land, and the Lord inspred all nations with dread of him.


Mostly literal renderings (with some occasional paraphrasing):

 

God’s Word                         David's fame spread through all lands, and the LORD made all the nations fear him.

HCSB                                     Then David's fame spread throughout the lands, and the LORD caused all the nations to be terrified of him.

JPS (Tanakh)                         David became famous throughout the lands, and the Lord put the fear of him in all the nations.


Literal, almost word-for-word, renderings:

 

ESV                                       And the fame of David went out into all lands, and the LORD brought the fear of him upon all nations.

Young’s Updated LT             And the name of David goes out into all the lands, and Jehovah has put his fear on all the nations.


What is the gist of this verse? Because of David’s clear victories over the Philistines, his reputation went out to all the surrounding countries, and the various nations feared and respected him.


1Chronicles 14:17a

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

wa (or va) (ַו) [pronounced wah]

and so, and then, then, and; so, that, yet, therefore

wâw consecutive

No Strong’s # BDB #253

yâtsâ (אָצָי) [pronounced yaw-TZAWH]

to go out, to come out, to come forth; to rise; to flow, to gush up [out]

3rd person masculine singular, Qal perfect

Strong's #3318 BDB #422

shêm (ם ֵש) [pronounced shame]

name, reputation, character

masculine singular construct

Strong’s #8034 BDB #1027

Dâvid (ד ̣וָ); also Dâvîyd (די.וָ) [pronounced daw-VEED]

beloved and is transliterated David

masculine proper noun

Strong’s #1732 BDB #187

be (׃) [pronounced beh]

in, into, through; at, by, near, on, upon; with, before, against; by means of; among; within

a preposition of proximity

No Strong’s # BDB #88

kôl (לֹ) [pronounced kohl]

the whole, all of, the entirety of, all; can also be rendered any of

masculine singular construct followed by a definite article

Strong’s #3605 BDB #481

erets (ץ ר א) [pronounced EH-rets]

earth (all or a portion thereof), land, ground, soil

feminine plural noun with the definite article

Strong's #776 BDB #75


Translation: Therefore, David’s reputation went out to all the [surrounding] lands... David’s reputation (literally, his name) went out to all of the surrounding lands. People within Israel and people just outside of Israel knew who David was. They knew of his military prowess.


Application: Ideally, this is how the United States should be seen, particularly because we are the only superpower at this moment in time. Obviously, it would be wrong to simply pick some arbitrary nation, destroy them, and re-establish ourselves as a superpower to be feared. However, we do have real enemies, and enemies who, if we did what we ought to do, would fear us.


Application: This is one of the most destructive philosophies of evolution: people thing that, despite the overwhelming evidence all around them, that man is getting better. This leads to such goofy things as the peace movement. History has clearly shown us that, in order to have peace, in order to have respect, you have to destroy those who would destroy you. Again, I am not talking about arbitrarily picking on a few nations and making their lives miserable as a bully might. I am talking about intelligently picking and choosing our battles and winning them by beating our enemy into the ground. At this point in time, a good choice would be Iran. We know where all 14 nuclear sites are, and we should devastate that area for perhaps a 5 mile radius. If anyone questions us on this action, we simply point out that they have been developing nuclear weapons, they would not allow themselves to be examined by a UN force, and they continually threatened our ally Israel and ourselves. Furthermore, they continually poured in troops into an area that we are attempting to stabilize (Iraq). After the smoke cleared, North Korea would be at a peace table, asking where to sign, and they would offer up their nuclear weapons.


Application: Perhaps you are completely offended by the above. Then we drop leaflets at these 14 sites telling the people that they have 10 hours to vacate these 14 areas. Their leaders are told, “You have 10 hours during which to allow UN inspectors in to examine and, when necessary, dismantle these nuclear facilities. This will be the only time that we will warn you in advance; next time, we simply flatten these areas without warning, populated or not.” This would take a president with nerve, and it would require probably the cooperation and accompaniment of Israel and Britain. Of course, we could always do what was done on the 90's: have the president of the United States deliver nuclear technology to them in exchange for a promise that they will never use it for evil purposes.


Application: Most people do not realize how dedicated a significant minority of Muslims are to spreading their evil. They do not, for the most part, fear for their lives, as they expect their eternities to be far better than their awful existence on earth. They are bloodthirsty, and, if there was a button which they could push, and the result would be one dead American, they would be lined up for miles to push that button. They despise all that there is in the west. Now, none of them realize that, destroy the west and suddenly, there will be no more demand for oil, which will ruin them economically; but hatred is rarely reasonable. Most people simply do not recognize just how evil, evil can be. It just does not fit into their brain. It does not fit into their world view. To them, the Muslims are no different than the Christian right. They are just as screwed up. But, they do not see radical Islam as a threat.

 

McGee comments on David’s great power: David was one of the great world leaders. His kingdom wsa one of the great world kingdoms at that particular time God was with this man. That little nation in that insignificant land became a great world power. This should not strike us as strange. There have been other instances like it in the history of the world. Venice, the city of Venice, ruled the world at one time—and it was just a city so it is not a surprise that a little nation like Israel could be a world power. We are told the reason for it. Verse 2 told us that David perceived that the Lord had confirmed him king over Israel, and verse 17 tells us that the Lord brought the fear of him upon all nations. It was God who brought David to world power. Footnote


1Chronicles 14:17b

Hebrew/Pronunciation

Common English Meanings

Notes/Morphology

BDB and Strong’s Numbers

we (or ve) (ו) [pronounced weh]

and, even, then; namely; when; since, that, so that; though

simple wâw conjunction

No Strong’s # BDB #251

YHWH (הוהי) [pronunciation is possibly yhoh-WAH]

transliterated variously as Jehovah, Yahweh, Yehowah

proper noun

Strong’s #3068 BDB #217

nâthan (ן ַתָנ) [pronounced naw-THAHN]

to give, to grant, to place, to put, to set; to make

3rd person masculine singular, Qal perfect;

Strong's #5414 BDB #678

êth (ת ֵא) [pronounced ayth]

generally untranslated; occasionally to, toward

indicates that the following substantive is a direct object

Strong's #853 BDB #84

pachad (דַחַ) [pronounced PAH-khahd

fear, terror, dread, a thing which is feared, that which is feared

masculine singular noun with the 3rd person masculine singular suffix

Strong’s #6343 BDB #808

׳al (לַע) [pronounced ģahl ]

upon, beyond, on, against, above, over, by, beside

preposition of proximity

Strong’s #5921 BDB #752

kôl (לֹ) [pronounced kohl]

the whole, all of, the entirety of, all; can also be rendered any of

masculine singular construct followed by a definite article

Strong’s #3605 BDB #481

gôwyîm (ם̣י) [pronounced goh-YEEM]

Gentiles, [Gentile] nation, people, peoples, nations

masculine plural noun with the definite article

Strong’s #1471 BDB #156


Translation: ...and Yehowah gave the fear of him on all the Gentile nations. David has just clearly defeated one of the military super-powers of his day. He did not negociate with them; he killed them on the battlefield.


David became, in a manner of speaking, God’s representative on earth (as are we, by the way). We have seen in this chapter the two basic reactions to David: Hiram, king of Tyre, was eager to forge a bond with David; the Philistines hated David and attempted to war with him (we do not know what has happened to Achish king of Gath, Footnote in all of this). Just as the world watches him, so it will watch us.


Application: Now, you might think the first thing that you need to do, when you are saved, is to (a) tell everyone you are a Christian and then (b) give everyone your testimony; but, let me suggest that you hold back for awhile, learn at least the doctrine of salvation first; learn how to rebound, and find a place where you learn God’s Word (hour long sermons, the Bible is covered verse by verse, and you study God’s Word at least 3 lessons a week (that is a bare minimum). Yes, I am fully aware of Jesus Christ telling us not to keep our light hidden under some covering, and I am not contradicting that. Let me see if I can give you an analogy. What a baby knows how to do vocally is cry; they can be pretty good at that. They don’t have enough in their souls to do much else. Well, we don’t want to hear them crying all the damn time! In fact, for the most part, we don’t want to hear crying at all, except maybe a slight sniffle to indicate one of their needs is at hand. You are a Christian baby and, quite frankly, you don’t know how to do much more than cry. For some believers, this might be a relief—you’ve been saved for a month and already your church wants you to give your testimony or share your feelings or give your opinion on this verse of that (maybe tell everyone how it makes you feel?). If this is going on, and you have even a lick of sense, you might realize that something is wrong here. As a believer, there is a time to sit on your hands, just, as a child, your communication skills are going to be rather limited. Until you actually know what it means to be a believer in Jesus Christ, there is nothing wrong with keeping your mouth shut. At some point in time, yes, you will witness, or share your faith, or do something which indicates that you are a believer. However, as a new believer, you need some time to grow up and some time to get oriented to your faith.


We have several parallel passages to this verse: Before Israel is about to conquer some evil men outside of the Land of Promise, Moses tells them: 'Rise up, set out on your journey and go over the Valley of the Arnon. Behold, I have given into your hand Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land. Begin to take possession, and contend with him in battle. This day I will begin to put the dread and fear of you on the peoples who are under the whole heaven, who shall hear the report of you and shall tremble and be in anguish because of you.' (Deut. 2:24–25). After the destruction of Jericho, we read this about Joshua: So the LORD was with Joshua, and his fame was in all the land (Joshua 6:27; see also Joshua 2:9–11 9:24). We read in 1Chron. 17:10: And the fear of the LORD fell upon all the kingdoms of the lands that were around Judah, and they made no war against Jehoshaphat. 2Chron. 20:29: And the fear of God came on all the kingdoms of the countries when they heard that the LORD had fought against the enemies of Israel. 2Chron. 26:15: In Jerusalem he made engines, invented by skillful men, to be on the towers and the corners, to shoot arrows and great stones. And his fame spread far, for he was marvelously helped, till he was strong. This is a principle that we have forgotten throughout the United States: peace is purchased on the battlefield; peace comes when the enemy knows who you are and is afraid of you. If there are any enemies left alive, they are afraid of you—that is how you achieve peace.


Application: Living during the time that I live in, quite frankly, the application it just too easy to make. This is the 6th year of President George Bush, and we have troops in Iraq, which is experiencing a great deal of violence (as is Lebanon at this moment). There are a majority of Democrats calling for the withdrawal of our troops, because the war has become more intense and they claim it is a civil war; Republicans generally side with Bush; however, there are a few who are beginning to side with the Democrats on this one. What have we observed in this chapter? David soundly defeats the Philistines. He does this two times. He does not back down and he does not negociate. That the Philistines are his enemies is absolutely clear; that they want to kill him is also absolutely clear. In these wars which I have mentioned, the enemy is not the people or Iraq nor is it the people of Lebanon. The enemy in both cases is Iran, who sends in soldiers, weapons and supplies to fuel the fire. Iran does not fear us; Iran does not respect us. Our indecision in Iraq makes it clear to them that making the war difficult, and keeping up the pressure is all they need to do. The Democrat majority (in the House and Senate) are responding exactly as Iran expects them to respond.


Application: Although many politicians keep pointing at Iraq and saying “This is Viet Nam,” the true situation is, militant Islam is acting exactly as Hitler did in the 1930's. They have sent men into all nations; they have begun to attempt to grab pieces of land from this or that nation (Thailand and Malaysia are a classic examples of this); and they are making a piece by piece grab of every nation they are able to. Right now, Muslims exert great influence in France and Spain, and radical Muslim factions are taking control of significant portions of Lebanon and the leading force are Syria and Iran. Now, this does not mean that all Muslims need to be destroyed; this does not mean that America should declare war on Muslims; however, we need a president with enough backbone to recognize that Iran is the greatest threat that we will face in this generation and it will not get any better.


Application: I have heard many liberals call for negotiations; however, you may have noticed, David did not negociate with the Philistines. They came at Israel as Israel’s enemies, and David properly responded by killing as many of htem as possible. President Bill Clinton, who is brilliant and a great speaker, tried negotiating with North Korea. If any American could have brokered a deal through talking, Clinton could. The end result was, he gave them nuclear capabilities, which could be the greatest mistake made by any president in the past 50 years (his second greatest mistake was decimating our military). What we need to do is, level all 14 sites where nuclear technology is being developed in Iran. Then we should talk and demand the capitulation of their government to a Democratic government. When that doesn’t work, we level one city after another until they are willing to capitulate. The name of the United States would go out to all the Muslim world, and the fear of the United States would be upon every Muslim nation. We will probably never do this; the few who read my application right here might pass this off as the ramblings of a war-mongering conservative. However, we will see, in the next 50 years, a nation by nation take down by Muslim extremists. By the time that we do respond to this, the death toll will be much greater; as it was in World War II when Satanically-inspired Hitler was ignored for many years.