2 Samuel 5 Bible Commentary

John Darby’s Synopsis

(Read all of 2 Samuel 5)
David made king: the energetic man

David, the king of Judah in Hebron for seven years and a half, becomes the king of all Israel upon Ishbosheth's death And now David is no longer the man of faith who, himself the head of the armies of Israel walking in dependence upon God, guided the enterprises which the circumstances of Israel required of faith; but he is a king who can exalt whom he will The man very soon appears, the energetic man, but not the man of God. "Whosoever getteth up to the gutter," the king said should be rewarded; "he shall be chief and captain" (chap. 5: 8). Joab goes up, and he has natural claims upon David [1].

Nevertheless, in the main David is guided by God, and he takes the city which God had chosen for His throne upon the earth. It was on this account he could say of those who had it in possession, "they are hated of David's soul"; for in fact they who possess the true seat of God's power, the place which He loves, and who, trusting to their natural strength, resist and scoff at the king whom God has chosen, are more hateful than any people, and are hated by those who have the Spirit of the Lord who establishes His throne upon the earth.

David and Solomon as types of Christ

It is well to remark here, that David is a type of Christ in rejection, and of Christ making war in power for the establishment of the millennium; as Solomon is of Christ reigning in millennial peace. David's wars with the Philistines are subsequent to the taking of Jerusalem, and to the entire subjugation of Israel to David. It is not David, neither is it Christ reigning over the earth, who takes Jerusalem. Christ will descend from heaven for the destruction of Antichrist; but He destroys the enemies of Israel by means of His own people, after having established His throne in Zion (compare Zech. 9 and 10). I do not enlarge upon this; I merely point out the grand features which the word supplies on this subject.

Awakened by danger David turns to God

David establishes himself in Zion; he is acknowledged by some friendly Gentiles; he is conscious too that it was God who made him king. But the natural heart soon shews itself. Strengthened in his kingdom by Jehovah, he does what he likes, he follows his own will (compare Deut. 17: 17).

Nevertheless the consolidation of his power does not overthrow the hopes of his former enemies [2]; it excites their jealousy. They neither know the arm of his strength, nor the purpose of Jehovah who exalted him. They rush on to destruction. And now, with the danger that awakens him, we find again the man of God, the type of the Lord Jesus, inquiring of Jehovah, and obedient to His word. He gains signal victories under the express guidance of God, whose strength goes before him and puts his enemies to flight. Accordingly he gives God the glory.

[1] Joab was evidently clever and enterprising: but it is remarkable that he is not named among those who distinguished themselves by brilliant exploits, when individual faith had to fight for God's glory When it is a question of being chief and captain, a place which David had held till then, Joab immediately comes forward.

[2] It is evident, from many Old Testament prophecies, that it will be the same when Christ returns to the earth. And yet at that period, if man exalts himself, it will be but for sudden destruction.