1 Chronicles 10:1-12:40 Comments by Stephen Ricker
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David King
Comments for Study 7

1 Chronicles 10:1-12:40
Memory Verse: 4


Saul and David in this study are in the same type of situations; the lonely leader standing before an enemy that they believe will kill them, their families, and followers. David and Saul dealt with their desperate situation differently. How do we react when our backs are against a wall and a knife is at our throats is important to God. Either our faith in the Lord will fail and we will come to ruin, or we will overcome and grow in faith in God and his wisdom.

I. Saul's Death (10:1-14)

Saul's Death

* See a drawing of the men Jabesh Gilead removing Saul's body from the wall.

>1. What happened to Saul, his sons and to Israel in the big battle with the Philistines? (1-14, 1 Samuel 31:1-12) Why did Saul die? (13-14) What does this say of Saul's character?

* "Now the Philistines fought against Israel; the Israelites fled before them, and many fell slain on Mount Gilboa. 2 The Philistines pressed hard after Saul and his sons, and they killed his sons Jonathan, Abinadab and Malki-Shua. 3 The fighting grew fierce around Saul, and when the archers overtook him, they wounded him. 4 Saul said to his armor-bearer, "Draw your sword and run me through, or these uncircumcised fellows will come and abuse me." But his armor-bearer was terrified and would not do it; so Saul took his own sword and fell on it. 5 When the armor-bearer saw that Saul was dead, he too fell on his sword and died. 6 So Saul and his three sons died, and all his house died together. 7 When all the Israelites in the valley saw that the army had fled and that Saul and his sons had died, they abandoned their towns and fled. And the Philistines came and occupied them. 8 The next day, when the Philistines came to strip the dead, they found Saul and his sons fallen on Mount Gilboa. 9 They stripped him and took his head and his armor, and sent messengers throughout the land of the Philistines to proclaim the news among their idols and their people. 10 They put his armor in the temple of their gods and hung up his head in the temple of Dagon. 11 When all the inhabitants of Jabesh Gilead heard of everything the Philistines had done to Saul, 12 all their valiant men went and took the bodies of Saul and his sons and brought them to Jabesh. Then they buried their bones under the great tree in Jabesh, and they fasted seven days. 13 Saul died because he was unfaithful to the LORD; he did not keep the word of the LORD and even consulted a medium for guidance, 14 and did not inquire of the LORD. So the LORD put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David son of Jesse." (10:1-14)

* The detials that lead to Saul's death is recorded in 1 Samuel 27:1-31:13. Saul's battle against the Philistines that ended his life is in 1 Samuel 31.

* "even consulted a medium for guidance" -The author(s) of Chronicles did not include the details of Saul going to the witch of Endor. That is recorded in 1 Samuel 28:3-15.

* The author(s) of Chronicles did not include David's problem when he returned to Ziklag, the village he, and men, and their families had taken refuge in because Saul had been trying to kill David. (1 Chron. 12:1-7) David's problem in Ziklag is recorded in 1 Samuel 30.

* Those who committed suicide (though for different reasons) in the Bible: Saul, Saul's sword bearer, Absalam's advisor, and Judas.

* All of us should finish the race in faith.

* All Israel suffered because of Saul.

* The people of Gilead honored Saul because of his help during Saul's early kingship.

* Saul had been called from ordinary life to be the first king of Israel. The only extraordinary attribute he had was that he was taller than most. He was not a man of faith. He was the type of man Israel wanted when they asked the Lord to give them a king like the other nations.

Saul was unfaithful to the Lord (13). He did not keep the word of the Lord (13). He did whatever he believed was best for himself. From a human point of view, he was successful. Yet his character shortcomings led him to pursue unwise things.

Saul did not pray (14). He did not seek the Lord. He even consulted a medium for guidance (13; 1 Sam. 28:3-15). His lack of faith and trust in the Lord led to his suicide (4).

Life gets hard often. There are times that all looks so unbearable. It seems waves of despair and disaster endlessly pound on us like waves coming to a hurricane beach. We feel worthless. We give want to give up. It is times like these that a soul's character is tested. Will I trust God? Will I believe in his grace and mercy? Will I do the right thing? Saul did not do the right thing because he relied on himself. He had not made himself a custom to seeking God in all situations, whether bad or good. When tested he sank in his self-reliance.

II. David's Kingdom Begins (11:1-47)

* David life can be broken down into four periods:
    1) Shepherd Boy - Not recognized in his family
    2) In Saul's House - Crushed under Saul's Jealousy and Hate
    3) Fugitive - Constantly on the Run and Growth
    4) Kingdom
       a)Over His Own Tribe - Display God's grace
       b)Over All Israel
          i) God's Promise
          ii) Sin
          iii) Restoration

Combat Between the Champions of Ish-Bosheth and David

* See a wood engraving by Gustave Dore (1832-1883) to the right depicting the combat beween the champions of Ish-Bosheth, Saul's son and the champions of David. Dore's drawings were in Bibles that are now in public domain. This one was scanned in by creationism.org.

>2. Why did all the tribes come to David? (1-3) What was the basis of recognizing David as their ruler? (2)

* "All Israel came together to David at Hebron and said, "We are your own flesh and blood. 2 In the past, even while Saul was king, you were the one who led Israel on their military campaigns. And the LORD your God said to you, 'You will shepherd my people Israel, and you will become their ruler.'" 3 When all the elders of Israel had come to King David at Hebron, he made a compact with them at Hebron before the LORD, and they anointed David king over Israel, as the LORD had promised through Samuel." (1-3)

* David crowned King in Hebron located in Judah is recorded in 2 Samuel 2:1-4. Only Judah crowned him at that time. He was king in Hebron for seven years and six months. David's second crowning is recorded in 2 Samuel 5:1-5. The second crowning was when all Israel attended, making him king of all Israel.

* Abner, the commander of Saul's army making Ish-Bosheth son of Saul king of Israel is recorded in 2 Samuel 2:8-11 while David was in Hebron.

* The battle between the house of David and the house of Saul is not mentioned by the author(s) of Chronicles. 2 Samuel 3:1 says it lasted a long time. Abner eventually defected to David (2 Samuel 3:6-21)

* Ish-Bosheth was assasinated by two of his warriors. (2 Samuel 4:1-8)

* David became king of all Israel while in the city of Hebron, the then main city of Judah located south of Jerusalem (1). Yet David's reign came only after a very hard and troubled life. He had many misfortunes and setbacks.

David was the youngest of many brothers, a runt probably born from an illegitimate conception. His brothers and his parents thought little of him giving him the most unwanted family job, watching sheep. (1 Samuel 16:1-3)

When Israel went to war he was not sent while his older brothers were because his family didn't think much of his abilities. (1 Samuel 17:14, 28) After David become a successful warrior Saul, the king of Israel tried repeatedly to kill him. David eventually had to go into exile and live in caves and the shabby desert town Ziklag. Ziklag was outside Israeli territory. (1 Samuel 27:6)

Year and year David had to struggle to find food and shelter. He lived a miserable life for most of his life before he became king of Israel. Through all this, David did not lose faith in God. He prayed continually and wrote many now-famous psalms. The subject of his psalms concerned the Lord and his trust in God. David through hardship grew in faith and in character.

No matter year and year when life is filled with misfortunes and setbacks I should be only concerned that my master asks me every day, "Did you live true to your conscience today. Did you act in the character of Christ?"

David was crowned king in Hebron located in Judah is recorded in 2 Samuel 2:1-4. Only Judah crowned him at that time. He was king in Hebron for seven years and six months. David's second crowning is recorded in 2 Samuel 5:1-5 and here in 1 Chronicles 11. The second crowning was when all Israel attended, making him king of all Israel.

>3. How did David succeed in taking the stronghold Jerusalem, and why? (4-9) How important was it for Israel to have a capital city?

* "David and all the Israelites marched to Jerusalem (that is, Jebus). The Jebusites who lived there 5 said to David, "You will not get in here." Nevertheless, David captured the fortress of Zion, the City of David. 6 David had said, "Whoever leads the attack on the Jebusites will become commander-in-chief." Joab son of Zeruiah went up first, and so he received the command. 7 David then took up residence in the fortress, and so it was called the City of David. 8 He built up the city around it, from the supporting terraces to the surrounding wall, while Joab restored the rest of the city. 9 And David became more and more powerful, because the LORD Almighty was with him." (4-9)

* David conquering Jerusalem is also in 2 Samuel 5:6-16.

David the Refugee

* See maps to the right for Daivd's initual excape from Saul.

* When David was crowned king of Israel in the city of Hebron he was starting anew. He had lived in the remote desert city of Ziglak When Saul died he moved to Hebron where Judah make him king of their tribe. Seven years and six months later all Israel make him king. The Lord was enabling David to slowly improve his life (9).

David, the new king of Israel needed a new capital city to rule from. Partly being a military man for many years he decided to take the fortress city Jebus. When the Lord enabled him to achieve it he renamed it Jerusalem (4).

Partly being a man of faith David may have known that Mt. Zion and Mt. Moriah, the mountains this city was on was the location that Abraham in faith offered his son Jacob as a sacrifice to the Lord (though the Lord stopped Abraham). Also, Melchizedek the priest of the Most High God was from the city, then called Salem (Genesis 14:18).

Partly being an administrator David chose Jebus because it was centrally located. David made it easy for the people to come to him and for him to quickly go to any border to defend the nation.

As the Lord enables me to make small improvements in my life I need to ask and answer questions. Will this decision make my life and my family's life safer? Is this decision good for my relationship with God? Does this decision make practical administrative sense?

Taking the city was not easy (5-6). Yet it was well worth it. This is where God wanted Israel's capital city to be. This is where the Lord wanted his king to rule from. Most importantly, this is where the Lord would rule his people from.


>4. Who was the chief of the three and why? Who was the second of the three and why? Who was the third and why? Who was the three's commander and why? (15-19) What trait do these men have in common? (1 Tim. 1:18-19, 6:11-16) Why did David pour out the gift they brought him?

* "These were the chiefs of David's mighty men--they, together with all Israel, gave his kingship strong support to extend it over the whole land, as the LORD had promised-- 11 this is the list of David's mighty men: Jashobeam, a Hacmonite, was chief of the officers; he raised his spear against three hundred men, whom he killed in one encounter. 12 Next to him was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men. 13 He was with David at Pas Dammim when the Philistines gathered there for battle. At a place where there was a field full of barley, the troops fled from the Philistines. 14 But they took their stand in the middle of the field. They defended it and struck the Philistines down, and the LORD brought about a great victory. 15 Three of the thirty chiefs came down to David to the rock at the cave of Adullam, while a band of Philistines was encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. 16 At that time David was in the stronghold, and the Philistine garrison was at Bethlehem. 17 David longed for water and said, "Oh, that someone would get me a drink of water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem!" 18 So the Three broke through the Philistine lines, drew water from the well near the gate of Bethlehem and carried it back to David. But he refused to drink it; instead, he poured it out before the LORD. 19 "God forbid that I should do this!" he said. "Should I drink the blood of these men who went at the risk of their lives?" Because they risked their lives to bring it back, David would not drink it. Such were the exploits of the three mighty men." (10-19)

* David's mighty men is also in 2 Samuel 23:8-39.

* The Lord had promised David kingship when he was a young teenager. The Lord had promised Israel that he would protect his people with strong support (10). The Lord kept his promise through David.

David did not accomplish and maintain strong support for Israel on his own. He had a group of men appointed as leaders of the army. The leaders of men were assigned based on their ability and courage. None of David's brothers, cousins or uncles were given special places. When a man proved himself David gave him rank.

A great leader doesn't need to be skilled in everything. He only needs to have at least one great skill. Recognize the gift, skill, and potential that God gives someone else and place them in the right position so that gift can be used for God's greater good. David had this skill.

Three of David's showed great devotion to David (15-19). They risked their lives to bring David a drink of water. David poured it out because he recognized that he is not worthy of such devotion and makes the water a drink offering to the Lord. A great leader does not desire self-glory and adoration. A great leader seeks others to admire the Lord's glory and gives the Lord adoration.

David was a great leader. Yet, Jesus is the best example of a leader. He appointed others to carry out the work of the gospel. Jesus was subject to God his Father and showed his followers how to respect his Father. He chose twelve and trained them. Each had a skill that was best for a specific task. No two were alike. Jesus also did not show favor to his brothers.



David Pours Out Water

* The engraving to the right is by Matthias Scheits (1630-1700). It depicts David pouring out the water that three of his soldiers drew from the well near the gate of Bethlehm. Courtesy of the Digital Image Archive, Pitts Theology Library, Candler School of Theology, Emory University: http://www.pitts.emory.edu.

III. David's Forces Grow (12:1-40)

>5. Where was Ziklag? Why was David there? (1) What kind of men came to David while he was at Ziklag? (1-7)

* "These were the men who came to David at Ziklag, while he was banished from the presence of Saul son of Kish (they were among the warriors who helped him in battle; 2 they were armed with bows and were able to shoot arrows or to sling stones right-handed or left-handed; they were kinsmen of Saul from the tribe of Benjamin): 3 Ahiezer their chief and Joash the sons of Shemaah the Gibeathite; Jeziel and Pelet the sons of Azmaveth; Beracah, Jehu the Anathothite, 4 and Ishmaiah the Gibeonite, a mighty man among the Thirty, who was a leader of the Thirty; Jeremiah, Jahaziel, Johanan, Jozabad the Gederathite, 5 Eluzai, Jerimoth, Bealiah, Shemariah and Shephatiah the Haruphite; 6 Elkanah, Isshiah, Azarel, Joezer and Jashobeam the Korahites; 7 and Joelah and Zebadiah the sons of Jeroham from Gedor." (1-7)

* David excaping to Ziklag is recorded in 1 Samuel 27:1 thru 28:2 and 29:1-11.

* "Ziklag" -Ziklag in Saul and David's time was on the boarder of Judah and Philistine territory. In Joshua's time it had been conquered by Simeon and was part of the promised land. Simeon must have lost it by David's time to raiding parties like those mentioned here. See pictures of Ziklag ruins below.

* Achish, a Philistine ruler gave David Ziklag. (1 Samuel 27:5-7) David seemed to be asking for Ziklag. Either way it was a wise choice, beneficial to David and Achish. Neither the Philistines or Saul would attack him and he would also have freedom to do what he seemed to plan to do. For the Philistine, David would protect his southern boarder towns for terrorists. Some have said that David falters in his faith. Can this viewpoint be seen in the result of moving to Ziklag? He did find some rest and he gained Ziklag for his descendants. It is true that David was put in a precarious situation with Israel and Ziklag was attacked. Yet the Lord delivered David from both. Also, whether in Israel running from Saul or in Ziklag David experienced trouble and hardship up to this point. Does the Lord rebuke him? Some of Saul's relatives, Benjamites, left Saul and joined David in Ziklag. (1 Chron. 12:1-2) Brave men from Manasseh also joined him. (1 Chron. 12:20) 1 Chronicles 12:22 states, "Day after day men came to help David, until he had a great army, like the army of God."

* David and Saul make for a good study in character development. What does God desire our character to be like? What characteristics draw people to one person, and away from another? Both men were chosen by God to rule Israel from a meek beginning. While some characteristics are common in the two, some differences are seen.

One stark difference can be drawn from verse 1. Saul was hunting David down not because David was an enemy of Israel. Truthfully, David was a great asset to Israel and Saul's reign. No, David was not Israel's enemy nor was he Saul's enemy. However, Saul had a misguided belief that David was his enemy.

Saul's character was focused on self; what was good for Saul. David's character was focused on others, what was good for Israel. This is why good fighting men deserted Saul and the comfort of a home in Israel to join David who lived in the rugged semi-desert city just outside of Israel's territory in David's time.

David's character is seen in the way he dealt with the Benjamites who came to him (16-18). Saul was of the tribe of Benjamin. Naturally, David would be skeptical about the intention of a group of fighting Benjamites arriving at his refuge city. David did the attack them. Nor did he turn them away. Rather, David accepted them trusting that the God of their fathers knew their intentions and would deal with them (17). This took faith in God which strengthens a person's courage.

The character that God looks for is one that trusts and loves him. A character that does so is one who is after God's own heart. They want to be like Christ who is the exact representation of God's being. A character that trusts God overcomes fear with faith. They have peace of mind because their thoughts are not on themselves but on God and others. Do I rely on God, or myself?


David the Refugee

>6. Who were the Gadites? (8-15) Who did they defect from? What did they go through to get to David? (15) What does this say about the men? What does this say about David's character?

* 1 Chronicles 12:8-15 "Some Gadites defected to David at his stronghold in the desert. They were brave warriors, ready for battle and able to handle the shield and spear. Their faces were the faces of lions, and they were as swift as gazelles in the mountains. 9 Ezer was the chief, Obadiah the second in command, Eliab the third, 10 Mishmannah the fourth, Jeremiah the fifth, 11 Attai the sixth, Eliel the seventh, 12 Johanan the eighth, Elzabad the ninth, 13 Jeremiah the tenth and Macbannai the eleventh. 14 These Gadites were army commanders; the least was a match for a hundred, and the greatest for a thousand. 15 It was they who crossed the Jordan in the first month when it was overflowing all its banks, and they put to flight everyone living in the valleys, to the east and to the west."

* "Gadites" -The men of Gad were from Transjordan.

* "crossed the Jordan in the first month when it was overflowing all its banks" -Melting snows to the north would have brought the Jordan to flood stage in the first month of the Hebrew calendar (March-April) at the time of their crossing. The first month of the Hebrew calendar (Abid) includes the feast of Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the Day of the Wave Sheaf.
See chart of the Hebrew feasts here.

* The most appropriate time for this incident would have been in the period of David's wandering in the regions of the Dead Sea (1 Sam. 23:14; 24:1; 25:1; 26:1) (NIV Study Bible)


>7. What was Amasai's words to David? (18) Where did this come from? What does this say about God's Spirit? What did God have to say to David?

* 1 Chronicles 12:18 "Then the Spirit came upon Amasai, chief of the Thirty, and he said: "We are yours, O David! We are with you, O son of Jesse! Success, success to you, and success to those who help you, for your God will help you." So David received them and made them leaders of his raiding bands."

* "the Spirit came on Amasai"

* "chief of the Thirty"

* "We are yours!"

* "Success, success to you, and success to those who help you, for your God will help you."

* "So David received them and made them leaders of his raiding bands."


Ziklag Ruins 1

>8. Where was Manasseh? At what occasion did they defect from Saul? (19) Why didn't David help the Philistines? How did the men of Manasseh help David? (21) How is David's army described? (22) How does this reveal the future Messiah?

* 1 Chronicles 12:19-22 "Some of the men of Manasseh defected to David when he went with the Philistines to fight against Saul. (He and his men did not help the Philistines because, after consultation, their rulers sent him away. They said, "It will cost us our heads if he deserts to his master Saul.") 20 When David went to Ziklag, these were the men of Manasseh who defected to him: Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu and Zillethai, leaders of units of a thousand in Manasseh. 21 They helped David against raiding bands, for all of them were brave warriors, and they were commanders in his army. 22 Day after day men came to help David, until he had a great army, like the army of God."

* "Manasseh" -The tribe of Manasseh was from one of at least two sons born to Joseph by Asenath (Gen. 41:50-51). Manasseh was adopted by Jacob as one to receive his blessing. When the Promised Land was apportioned, half of the tribe of Manasseh settled on the east bank of the Jordan and half on the west.

* "when he went with the Philistines to fight against Saul" -The incident is recorded in 1 Samuel 27.

* "They helped David against raiding bands"

* "Day after day men came to help David"

* "like the army of God" -Messianic overtones are given with this phrase.

* "Ziklag" -see question 5 for a brief description of Ziklag. The 3 pictures are of Ziklag ruins to the right. The exact location of Ziklag is debated. Most believe it was here. Daivd final refuge from Saul was in Ziklag.


Ziklag Ruins 2

>9. What was the total number of men defecting Saul and going to David? (23-37) Where were they from? What does this say about Daivd's reputation?

* 1 Chronicles 12:23-37 "These are the numbers of the men armed for battle who came to David at Hebron to turn Saul's kingdom over to him, as the LORD had said: 24 men of Judah, carrying shield and spear--6,800 armed for battle; 25 men of Simeon, warriors ready for battle--7,100; 26 men of Levi--4,600, 27 including Jehoiada, leader of the family of Aaron, with 3,700 men, 28 and Zadok, a brave young warrior, with 22 officers from his family; 29 men of Benjamin, Saul's kinsmen--3,000, most of whom had remained loyal to Saul's house until then; 30 men of Ephraim, brave warriors, famous in their own clans--20,800; 31 men of half the tribe of Manasseh, designated by name to come and make David king--18,000; 32 men of Issachar, who understood the times and knew what Israel should do--200 chiefs, with all their relatives under their command; 33 men of Zebulun, experienced soldiers prepared for battle with every type of weapon, to help David with undivided loyalty--50,000; 34 men of Naphtali--1,000 officers, together with 37,000 men carrying shields and spears; 35 men of Dan, ready for battle--28,600; 36 men of Asher, experienced soldiers prepared for battle--40,000; 37 and from east of the Jordan, men of Reuben, Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh, armed with every type of weapon--120,000."

* "all Isreal" -The emphasis of the Chronicler(s) is that all Israel was leaving Saul and going to David.

* 13 tribes are named. They are grouped in order to maintain the traditional number of 12 tribes.

* "Dan, ready for battle--28,600" -Dan is the northern most tribe of Israel. They sent the most men. David's support was vast and strong.

* The numbers in this section seem quite high. Essentially two approaches are followed on this question:
    1. It is possible to explain the numbers so that a lower figure is actually attained. The Hebrew word for "thousand" may respresent a unit of a tribe, each having its own commander. In this case the numbers would be read not as a total figure, but as representative comanders. For example, the 6,800 from Judah (24) would be read either as six commanders of 1,000 and eight commanders of 100, or possibly as six commanders of thousands and 800 men. Reducing the numbers in this fashion fits well with 13:1 and with the list of commanders alone found for Zadok's family (28) and the tribe of Isachar (32). Taking the numbers as straight totals would require the presence of 340,800 persons in Hebron for a feast at the same time.
    2. Another approach is to allow the numbers to stand and to view them as hyperbole on the part of the Chronicler(s) to achieve a number "like the army of God" (22). This approach would fit well with the authors' glorification of David as with the banquet scene that follows. (NIV Study Bible)

Ziklag Ruins 3

>10. Why did men come to David in Hebron? (38) What did they do while in Hebron? (39) How where they supplied? (40) How does this reflect Jesus' second coming?

* 1 Chronicles 12:38-40 "All these were fighting men who volunteered to serve in the ranks. They came to Hebron fully determined to make David king over all Israel. All the rest of the Israelites were also of one mind to make David king. 39 The men spent three days there with David, eating and drinking, for their families had supplied provisions for them. 40 Also, their neighbors from as far away as Issachar, Zebulun and Naphtali came bringing food on donkeys, camels, mules and oxen. There were plentiful supplies of flour, fig cakes, raisin cakes, wine, oil, cattle and sheep, for there was joy in Israel."

* "three days there with Daivd, eating and drinking" -Isaiah 25:6-8 speaks of the future Messiah in this way, a great banquet. Isaiah was a prophet centuries before the book of Chronicles was written. The imagery of the Messianic banquet becomes prominent in the Bible after the Judeans returned from captivity. The Lord's Super also anticipates that coming banquet. (Matt 26:29; Mark 14:25; Luke 22:15-18; 1 Cor. 11:23-26)

* "for their families had supplied provisions for them"

* "Issachar, Zebulun and Naphtali came bringing food on donkeys, camels, mules and oxen"

* "there was joy in Israel"