3:1 Now there was a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David: but David waxed stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul waxed weaker and weaker.
(a) That is, without intermission enduring two years, which was the whole reign of Ishbosheth. 3:3 And his second, b Chileab, of Abigail the wife of Nabal the Carmelite; and the third, Absalom the son of Maacah the daughter of Talmai king of Geshur;
(b) Who is also called Daniel, ( 1 Chronicles 3:1 ). 3:5 And the sixth, Ithream, by Eglah Davids wife. These were born to David in c Hebron.
(c) Within seven years and six months. 3:8 Then was Abner very wroth for the words of Ishbosheth, and said, [Am] I a d dogs head, which against Judah do shew kindness this day unto the house of Saul thy father, to his brethren, and to his friends, and have not delivered thee into the hand of David, that thou chargest me to day with a fault concerning this woman?
(d) Do you esteem me no more than a dog, for all my service done to your fathers house? 3:9 e So do God to Abner, and more also, except, as the LORD hath sworn to David, even so I do to him;
(e) We see how the wicked cannot abide being admonished about their faults, but seek their displeasure, who go about to bring them from their wickedness. 3:17 And Abner had f communication with the elders of Israel, saying, Ye sought for David in times past [to be] king over you:
(f) Rather for malice that he bore toward Ishbosheth, than for love he bore to David. 3:19 And Abner also spake in the ears of Benjamin: and Abner went also to speak in the ears of David in Hebron all that seemed good to Israel, and that seemed good to the whole g house of Benjamin.
(g) Who challenged the kingdom, because of their father Saul. 3:22 And, behold, the servants of David and Joab came h from [pursuing] a troop, and brought in a great spoil with them: but Abner [was] not with David in Hebron; for he had sent him away, and he was gone in peace.
(h) From war against the Philistines. 3:24 Then Joab came to the king, and said, i What hast thou done? behold, Abner came unto thee; why [is] it [that] thou hast sent him away, and he is quite gone?
(i) Here appears the malicious mind of Joab, who would have had the king slay Abner for his private grudge. 3:28 And afterward when David heard [it], he said, I and my kingdom [are] k guiltless before the LORD for ever from the blood of Abner the son of Ner:
(k) the Lord knows that I did not consent to his death. 3:30 So Joab and l Abishai his brother slew Abner, because he had slain their brother Asahel at Gibeon in the battle.
(l) Abishai is said to slay him with Joab, because he consented to the murder. 3:31 And David said to Joab, and to all the people that [were] with him, Rend your clothes, and gird you with sackcloth, and mourn m before Abner. And king David [himself] followed the bier.
(m) Meaning before the corpse. 3:33 And the king lamented over Abner, and said, Died Abner n as a fool dieth?
(n) He declares that Abner died not as a wretch or vile person, but as a valiant man might do, being traitorously deceived by the wicked. 3:35 And when all the people came to cause David to eat o meat while it was yet day, David sware, saying, So do God to me, and more also, if I taste bread, or ought else, till the sun be down.
(o) According to their custom, which was to feast at burials. 3:36 And all the people took notice [of it], and it p pleased them: as whatsoever the king did pleased all the people.
(p) It is expedient sometimes not only to conceive inward sorrow, but also that it may appear to others, so that they may be satisfied.