And the princes of the children of Ammon said to Hanun
His nobles and prime ministers, the courtiers that were about him:
thinkest thou that David doth honour thy father, that he
comforters unto thee?
could he imagine that David was sincere, and that he really meant to do honour to the memory of his father, and comfort him under the loss of him, by sending his ambassadors to him on such an errand? there was no reason, they thought, to believe this, since an Israelite was forbidden to seek their peace and prosperity, or ask of it, nor might Ammonite enter into their congregation unto the tenth generation, ( Deuteronomy 23:3 Deuteronomy 23:6 ) ; and indeed some have thought that David did not do a right thing in sending this embassy, and was justly requited; but it is certain he acted according to the laws of friendship, and was cordial and sincere in what he did, though these courtiers of Hanun put an ill construction on his conduct, their minds being filled with enmity against the Israelites:
hath not David [rather] sent his servants unto thee to
search the city,
and to spy it out, and to overthrow it?
to reconnoitre the place, to observe, as they walked about in it, which were the weakest and most defenceless parts of it, and what avenues there were to it, and which were most accessible, that they might the better know how to attack it, and destroy it; these surmises and suspicions they endeavoured to fill the king's head with, to set him against them, and treat them ill.