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1 Now it came to pass after the death of Saul, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, and David had abode two days in Ziklag;

2 It came even to pass on the third day, that, behold, a man came out of the camp from Saul with his clothes rent, and earth upon his head: and so it was, when he came to David, that he fell to the earth, and did obeisance.

3 And David said unto him, From whence comest thou? And he said unto him, Out of the camp of Israel am I escaped.

4 And David said unto him, How went the matter? I pray thee, tell me. And he answered, That the people are fled from the battle, and many of the people also are fallen and dead; and Saul and Jonathan his son are dead also.

5 And David said unto the young man that told him, How knowest thou that Saul and Jonathan his son be dead?

6 And the young man that told him said, As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa, behold, Saul leaned upon his spear; and, lo, the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him.

7 And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called unto me. And I answered, Here am I.

8 And he said unto me, Who art thou? And I answered him, I am an Amalekite.

9 He said unto me again, Stand, I pray thee, upon me, and slay me: for anguish is come upon me, because my life is yet whole in me.

10 So I stood upon him, and slew him, because I was sure that he could not live after that he was fallen: and I took the crown that was upon his head, and the bracelet that was on his arm, and have brought them hither unto my lord.

11 Then David took hold on his clothes, and rent them; and likewise all the men that were with him:

12 And they mourned, and wept, and fasted until even, for Saul, and for Jonathan his son, and for the people of the LORD, and for the house of Israel; because they were fallen by the sword.

13 And David said unto the young man that told him, Whence art thou? And he answered, I am the son of a stranger, an Amalekite.

14 And David said unto him, How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the LORD'S anointed?

15 And David called one of the young men, and said, Go near, and fall upon him. And he smote him that he died.

16 And David said unto him, Thy blood be upon thy head; for thy mouth hath testified against thee, saying, I have slain the LORD'S anointed.

17 And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul and over Jonathan his son:

18 (Also he bade them teach the children of Judah the use of the bow: behold, it is written in the book of Jasher.)

19 The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high places: how are the mighty fallen!

20 Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised triumph.

21 Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain, upon you, nor fields of offerings: for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil.

22 From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul returned not empty.

23 Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided: they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions.

24 Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with other delights, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel.

25 How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! O Jonathan, thou wast slain in thine high places.

26 I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.

27 How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war perished!

Commentary for 2 Samuel 1

This book is the history of the reign of king David. It relates his victories, the growth of the prosperity of Israel, and his reformation of the state of religion. With these events are recorded the grievous sins he committed, and the family as well as public troubles with which he was punished. We here meet with many things worthy of imitation, and many that are written for our warning. The history of king David is given in Scripture with much faithfulness, and from it he appears, to those who fairly balance his many virtues and excellent qualities against his faults, to have been a great and good man.Tidings brought to David of the death of Saul. (1-10) The Amalekite is put to death. (11-16) David's lamentation for Saul and Jonathan. (17-27)1-10 The blow which opened David's way to the throne was given about the time he had been sorely distressed. Those who commit their concerns to the Lord, will quietly abide his will. It shows that he desired not Saul's death, and he was not impatient to come to the throne.

11-16 David was sincere in his mourning for Saul; and all with him humbled themselves under the hand of God, laid so heavily upon Israel by this defeat. The man who brought the tidings, David put to death, as a murderer of his prince. David herein did not do unjustly; the Amalekite confessed the crime. If he did as he said, he deserved to die for treason; and his lying to David, if indeed it were a lie, proved, as sooner or later that sin will prove, lying against himself. Hereby David showed himself zealous for public justice, without regard to his own private interest.

17-27 Kasheth, or "the bow," probably was the title of this mournful, funeral song. David does not commend Saul for what he was not; and says nothing of his piety or goodness. Jonathan was a dutiful son, Saul an affectionate father, therefore dear to each other. David had reason to say, that Jonathan's love to him was wonderful. Next to the love between Christ and his people, that affection which springs form it, produces the strongest friendship. The trouble of the Lord's people, and triumphs of his enemies, will always grieve true believers, whatever advantages they may obtain by them.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for 2 Samuel 1

  • Marie
    Did saul go to hell?
  • A disciple
    Ren; The man lied thinking he would get some kind of reward for telling those things to David; but David saw right through his wicked show, and said to him, "How were you not afraid to raise your hand against the LORD's Anointed?" and that was the reason he was put to death! David was in a position to give sentence against such wickedness. But those in power today refuse to execute God's judgment!
  • Ren
    @Brenda I read it the same way as you did.5 And when his armourbearer saw that Saul was dead, he fell likewise upon his sword, and died with him.

    6 So Saul died, and his three sons, and his armourbearer, and all his men, that same day together.
    I believe the other guy was lying and David saw thru it and had him killed. That lie cost him his own life.
  • BSP
    Verse 17: David lamented over the death of both Saul and Jonathan. Though Saul persecuted David, we see that David didn't hold a grudge against Saul or wish evil upon him.
  • Brenda Thompson
    Clearly Irene123, you have read something that I didn't see. Scripture states that Saul fell upon his sword and died. Along with his armourbearer. The only person Saul asked to kill him was his armourbearer. At least that's the only person I read about. Perhaps you could tell me where you found your information.
  • Irene123
    There is no confusion in Saul's trying to commit suicide and the Amalekite killing him. Saul's 'attempted' suicide didn't work; he wasn't dead so he asked the Amalekite to finish him off. A lot of attempted suicides end not working.
  • MARIA
    My view about Saul is this:he knew that his time was up.He'd come to the end of his reign.you know that you are finish when the good Lord's rejected you.the Amelike man, I think was acting with mixed motives.1.He could have easily tell a different storyabout.or find a better way of explaining the situation.So I think that David saw through his story and realized that it did not add up.
  • Dewey J
    Brenda, I believe from the surrounding Scriptures that the Amelakite man expected some sort of reward from David as being the next ruler of saul's kingdom because David had a great reputation for being God's anointed leader. I also think the Amelakite man was near and saw the battle and after the battle was finished he went to get Saul's crown and bracelet to carry them to David. Glory be to God!

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Bible Trivia

After Saul's death, which of his articles did David receive?
  • Sword and shield
  • Crown and bracelet
  • Sandals and tunic
  • Scepter and staff