Larry Hunt's Bible Commentary


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I Samuel 23

Chapter 23


v. 2:  If the phrase, “to inquire of the LORD,” specifically refers to a function of the high priest and his ephod (as in 22:9-10), then Abiathar must be the one inquiring here on David’s behalf, and verse six must not refer to the first time Abiathar meets David.  Perhaps “to inquire of the LORD” is only a general reference to consulting God.  If that is the case, then the prophet Gad may have inquired for David (as he may have done, generally speaking, in 22:5).


v. 3:  The fear they had in Judah was of Saul and his army.


v. 4:  This almost reads as if David asks God, “Are you sure?”


v. 7:  This demonstrates how delusional Saul was at this time.  He actually believed that God was handing David over to him.  See v. 14B.  Although, I suppose that saying, “God has delivered him into my hand” could merely be a common expression, with no more conscious reference to God than when an atheist says, “Thank God,” with relief over some favorable turn of events in his life.


v. 22: The sentence, “They tell me he is very crafty,” seems intended by Saul to make his pursuit of David seem less personal, which has the benefit (for Saul) of making that pursuit appear to be the hunting of a criminal rather than of a rival for the throne.  After all, Saul is quite aware of how crafty David is from personal experience.  Of course, it might also be a humorous understatement, but Saul does not seem to have a very well developed sense of humor (as opposed to Achish, for instance, in 21:15).


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