2 Samuel 21

Seven sons are hung up before the Lord to end a famine
(that God sent to punish people for something a former king did)
21:1-14

21:1 Then there was a famine in the days of David three years, year after year; and David enquired of the LORD. And the LORD answered, It is for Saul, and for his bloody house, because he slew the Gibeonites.

21:2 And the king called the Gibeonites, and said unto them; (now the Gibeonites were not of the children of Israel, but of the remnant of the Amorites; and the children of Israel had sworn unto them: and Saul sought to slay them in his zeal to the children of Israel and Judah.)

A famine is sent on David's kingdom for three years.

When David asks God why, God answers: "It is for Saul, and his bloody house, because he slew the Gibeonites."

So God sent a famine to punish a kingdom for something that a former king supposedly did. [1]

21:3 Wherefore David said unto the Gibeonites, What shall I do for you? and wherewith shall I make the atonement, that ye may bless the inheritance of the LORD?

So David asked the Gibeonites, "What can I do for you to make atonement?"

21:4 And the Gibeonites said unto him, We will have no silver nor gold of Saul, nor of his house; neither for us shalt thou kill any man in Israel. And he said, What ye shall say, that will I do for you.

21:5 And they answered the king, The man that consumed us, and that devised against us that we should be destroyed from remaining in any of the coasts of Israel,

The Gibeonites answered, "We don't want any silver or gold, or anything else in Saul's house. And you don't have to kill anyone in Israel."

David said, "Well, what do you want me to do. I'll do whatever you ask."

21:6 Let seven men of his sons be delivered unto us, and we will hang them up unto the LORD in Gibeah of Saul, whom the LORD did choose. And the king said, I will give them.

21:7 But the king spared Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan the son of Saul, because of the LORD's oath that was between them, between David and Jonathan the son of Saul.

They answered, "Give us seven of Saul's sons, and we'll hang them up to the Lord."

David said, "Okay. I'll give them to you."

21:8 But the king took the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bare unto Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite:

21:9 And he delivered them into the hands of the Gibeonites, and they hanged them in the hill before the LORD: and they fell all seven together, and were put to death in the days of harvest, in the first days, in the beginning of barley harvest.

So David took two of Saul's sons and five of his grandsons and gave them to the Gibeonites to hang up before the Lord.

Did all of Saul's family die with him?

The five sons of Michal
How many children did Michal have?

And the Gibeonites hanged them on the hill before the Lord.

DWB: 84. Famine and human sacrifice: Seven sons of Saul are hung up before the Lord

21:10 And Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth, and spread it for her upon the rock, from the beginning of harvest until water dropped upon them out of heaven, and suffered neither the birds of the air to rest on them by day, nor the beasts of the field by night.

21:11 And it was told David what Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, the concubine of Saul, had done.

Rizpah, the mother of five of Saul's five grandsons, chased the flesh-eating birds and the beasts away from her sons' bodies as they hung before the the Lord.

21:12 And David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son from the men of Jabeshgilead, which had stolen them from the street of Bethshan, where the Philistines had hanged them, when the Philistines had slain Saul in Gilboa:

The Philistines had slain Saul.

Who killed Saul?

21:13 And he brought up from thence the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son; and they gathered the bones of them that were hanged.

21:14 And the bones of Saul and Jonathan his son buried they in the country of Benjamin in Zelah, in the sepulchre of Kish his father: and they performed all that the king commanded. And after that God was intreated for the land.

David gathered and buried the bones of Saul and Jonathan, and the bones of the Saul's sons and grandsons that were hung before the Lord. After that God stopped starving people with the famine.

Does God approve of human sacrifice?

More wars and giant killing
21:15-22

21:15 Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines: and David waxed faint.

Israel and the Philistines have another war. David went along, but he was just too tired to fight.

21:16 And Ishbibenob, which was of the sons of the giant, the weight of whose spear weighed three hundred shekels of brass in weight, he being girded with a new sword, thought to have slain David.

Meanwhile, Ishbibenob, who was the son of a giant, had a spear that weighted 300 shekels (~ 3.5 kilograms) and planned to kill David with his new sword.

21:17 But Abishai the son of Zeruiah succoured him, and smote the Philistine, and killed him. Then the men of David sware unto him, saying, Thou shalt go no more out with us to battle, that thou quench not the light of Israel.

But Abishai killed Ishbibenob.

David's men said to Abishai, "You'll never fight with us again, so you won't quench the light of Israel." (Whatever that might have meant.)

21:18 And it came to pass after this, that there was again a battle with the Philistines at Gob: then Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Saph, which was of the sons of the giant.

Oh yeah, and then there was another battle with the Philistines at Gob.

Thankfully, Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Saph, which was also a son of a giant.

21:19 And there was again a battle in Gob with the Philistines, where Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim, a Bethlehemite, slew [the brother of] Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver's beam.

And then there was another battle with the Philistines at Gob.

In this battle, Elhanan killed [the brother of] Goliath. [2]
Who killed Goliath?
Whom did Elhanan kill?

21:20 And there was yet a battle in Gath, where was a man of great stature, that had on every hand six fingers, and on every foot six toes, four and twenty in number; and he also was born to the giant.

21:21 And when he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimeah the brother of David slew him.

And there was another battle in Gath, where a man of great stature was killed. He had six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot, and was also a son of a a giant.

21:22 These four were born to the giant in Gath, and fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants.

All four of these sons of the giant were killed by David and/or his men.