1 Chronicles 12:18 MEANING

1 Chronicles 12:18
(18) Then the spirit came upon Amasai.--Literally, and spirit clothed Amasai. The term for "God" (Elohim) has probably fallen out of the Heb. ext. (Comp. 2 Chronicles 24:20, and Judges 6:34.) We, in these days, may word it differently, and say, Under a sudden impulse of enthusiasm, Amasai exclaimed, &c. But if we look deeper, and seek a definite interpretation of our terms, we shall allow that the impulses of spirit are spiritual, and that enthusiasm for truth and right is indeed a sort of divine possession. The Syriac renders: "The spirit of valour clothed Amasai." Comp. Isaiah 11:2.) The spirit of Jehovah is the source of true courage, as of all other spiritual gifts.

Amasai.--Perhaps the same as Amasa (1 Chronicles 2:17), son of Abigail, David's sister, whom Joab murdered out of jealousy (2 Samuel 17:25; 2 Samuel 20:4-10).

Chief of the captains.--The Heb. text reads, "head of the Thirty," with which the LXX., Svr., and Vulg. agree. The Heb. margin (Qri) has "knights," or "chariot-soldiers" (Authorised Version, "captains"), which is less probable. Amasai's name is not given in the catalogue of the Thirty (1 Chronicles 11), and he is here called "chief of the Thirty" by anticipation.

Thine are we, David.--The structure of Amasa?s inspired utterance is poetical--

"To thee, David!

And with thee, son of Ishai!

Peace, peace to thee.

And peace to thine helper;

For thy God hath holpen thee!

On thy side.--Heb., with thee. (Comp. 1 Chronicles 11:10; and our Saviour's "He that is not with me is against me.")

Peace, peace be unto thee.--David had said, "If ye be come for peace"--that is, with friendly intent. Amasai answers, We will be fast friends with thee, and with all who befriend thee, because God is on thy side. (Comp, the usual Oriental greeting, Salam 'alaikum--Peace to you!) David's past history gave ample evidence of Divine support.

Then David received them.--A late Heb. word (qibb?l). The chronicler resumes his narrative.

Made them captains of the band.--Literally, and bestowed them among the heads of the band--made them officers of his little army, which was continually growing by such adhesions, (Comp. 1 Samuel 22:2, and 1 Samuel 23:13.)

Verse 18. - The response of the band, by the mouth of Amasai was worthy of the character of the appeal that David made, both in its heartiness and its high tone. Amasai. Possibly the same with Amasa (1 Chronicles 2:17), the son of Abigail (David's sister), wife of Jether (2 Samuel 17:25; 2 Samuel 18:6; 2 Samuel 19:13; 2 Samuel 20:10). Ewald discusses this point ('Genesis Int.,' 2:544). He was made captain of the host by Absalom, afterwards by David, and Joab put an end to his life. The Spirit (see Numbers 11:26; Nehemiah 9:30). The more literal translation of the verb came upon is clothed. Most interesting and instructive is the subject of the gradually developing manifestation of the agency of the eternal Spirit from the beginning of the world. Through the ascending illustrations of his natural work in creation (Genesis 1:2), his relation to human bodily life (Genesis 2:7; Job 27:3), his intellectual work of various kinds (Genesis 41:38; Exodus 28:3; Numbers 24:2; Judges 9:29), we are led on to his highest spiritual functions.

12:1-22 Here is an account of those who appeared and acted as David's friends, while he was persecuted. No difficulties or dangers should keep the sinner from coming to the Savior, nor drive the believer from the path of duty. Those who break through, and overcome in these attempts, will find abundant recompence. From the words of Amasai we may learn how to testify our affection and allegiance to the Lord Jesus; his we must be throughly; on his side we must be forward to appear and act. If we are under the influence of the Spirit, we shall desire to have our lot among them, and to declare ourselves on their side; if in faith and love we embrace the cause of Christ, he will receive, employ, and advance us.Then the spirit came upon Amasai,.... Or "clothed" (f) him; a spirit of fortitude, as the Targum, of strength, courage, and presence of mind, with which he was endowed, covered, and clothed as with a garment; this was a sister's son of David's, see 2 Samuel 17:25.

who was chief of the captains; of them that came at this time with him to David; he was afterwards Absalom's general, and designed to be David's, but was murdered by Joab:

and he said, thine are we, David, and on thy side, thou son of Jesse; which being spoken in this short and concise manner, as the supplement shows, denotes the vehemency with which he spake, and is expressive of their cordial fidelity to him, and their resolution to abide by him at all events:

peace, peace be unto thee, and peace be to thine helpers; wishing all prosperity, temporal and spiritual, to him and all his confederates and auxiliaries, among whom they reckoned themselves:

for thy God helpeth thee; which they perceived by the remarkable deliverances of him out of the hand of Saul, when in imminent danger; the Targum is,"for the Word of the Lord is for thy help:"

then David received them; into the hold, and admitted them as his friends:

and made them the captains of the band; they brought with them; or in later times, when he came to the throne.

(f) "induit", Pagninus, Montanus, &c.

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