2 Samuel 21
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.||
"The LORD answered, It is for Saul, and for his bloody house."
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 had done.
God's 83rd Killing
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.)
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
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.
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
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
"Let seven men of his sons be delivered unto us,
and we will hang them up unto the LORD."
To appease God and end the famine that was
caused by his predecessor (Saul), David agrees to have two of Saul's sons and five of his grandsons
killed and hung up "unto the Lord."
Did all of Saul's family die with him?
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.
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:||
(21:8) "The five sons of Michal"|
How many children did Michal have?
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.||
"They hanged them in the hill before
Does God approve of human sacrifice?
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.||
And it was told David what Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, the concubine of
Saul, had done.||
(21:12) "The Philistines had slain Saul."|
Who killed Saul?
(21:13-14) "They gathered the bones of them that were hanged ... And after
that God was intreated for the land."
God stopped the famine after Saul's two sons and five grandsons were killed and hung up for him.
"Ishbibenob, which was of the sons of the giant"
"Saph, which was of the sons of the giant"
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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.||
(21:19) "Elhanan slew [the brother of] Goliath."|
(The editors of the King James Version added the words "the brother of" to
avoid the obvious contradiction. This is shown by the italics in the KJV.) But 1 Samuel 17:23, 50 says that David killed Golliath.
Who killed Goliath?
Whom did Elhanan kill?
"There ... 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."
"These four were born to the giant in Gath."
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
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.
And when he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimeah the brother of
David slew him.
These four were born to the giant in Gath, and fell by the hand of David,
and by the hand of his servants.