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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 19

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1 a 19:1–19 Cp. 2 Sam. 10:1–19 . Some time afterwards Nahash king of the Ammonites died and was succeeded by his son. 2David said, ‘I must keep up the same loyal friendship with Hanun son of Nahash as his father showed me,’ and he sent a mission to condole with him on the death of his father.

When David's envoys entered the country of the Ammonites to condole with Hanun, 3the Ammonite princes said to Hanun, ‘Do you suppose David means to do honour to your father when he sends envoys to condole with you? These men of his are spies whom he has sent to find out how to overthrow the country.’ 4So Hanun took David's servants, shaved them, and cut off half their garments up to the buttocks, and then dismissed them. 5Hearing how they had been treated, David ordered them to be met, for they were deeply humiliated; he told them to wait in Jericho and not return until their beards had grown again.

6The Ammonites realized that they had given offence to David, so Hanun and the Ammonites sent a thousand talents of silver to hire chariots and horsemen from Aram-naharaim b 19:6 Aram-naharaim: that is Aram of Two Rivers. , Maacah, and Aram-zobah c Maacah, and Aram-zobah: prob. rdg; Heb. Aram-maacah, and Zobah. . 7They hired thirty-two thousand chariots and the king of Maacah and his people, who came and encamped before Medeba, while the Ammonites came from their cities and mustered for battle. 8When this was reported to David, he sent Joab out with all the fighting men. 9The Ammonites came on and took up their position at the entrance to the city, while the allied kings took up theirs in the open country. 10When Joab saw that he was threatened from both front and rear, he detailed some picked Israelite troops and drew them up facing the Aramaeans. 11The rest of his forces he put under his brother Abishai, who took up a position facing the Ammonites. 12‘If the Aramaeans prove too strong for me,’ he said, ‘you must come to my relief; and if the Ammonites prove too strong for you, I shall come to yours. 13Courage! Let us fight bravely for our people and for the cities d 19:13 cities: or altars. of our God. And may the LORD's will be done.’

14Joab and his men engaged with the Aramaeans closely and put them to flight; 15and when the Ammonites saw them in flight, they too fled before his brother Abishai and withdrew into the city. Then Joab came to Jerusalem.

16The Aramaeans, reviewing their defeat by Israel, sent messengers to summon other Aramaeans from the Great Bend of the Euphrates under Shophach, commander of Hadadezer's army. 17Their movement was reported to David, who immediately mustered all the forces of Israel, crossed the Jordan, and advanced against them and took up battle positions. The Aramaeans likewise took up positions facing David and engaged him e 19:17 The Aramaeans…him: so Gk; Heb. When David had taken up positions facing the Aramaeans, they engaged him. , 18but were put to flight by Israel. David slew seven thousand Aramaeans in chariots and forty thousand infantry, killing Shophach the commander of the army. 19When Hadadezer's men saw that they had been worsted by Israel, they sued for peace and submitted to David. The Aramaeans were never willing to help the Ammonites again.

Notes:

a 19:1–19 Cp. 2 Sam. 10:1–19 .

b 19:6 Aram-naharaim: that is Aram of Two Rivers.

c Maacah, and Aram-zobah: prob. rdg; Heb. Aram-maacah, and Zobah.

d 19:13 cities: or altars.

e 19:17 The Aramaeans…him: so Gk; Heb. When David had taken up positions facing the Aramaeans, they engaged him.

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