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2 Samuel 11:1

David and Bathsheba

1 In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army. They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem.

Read 2 Samuel 11:1 Using Other Translations

And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem.
In the spring of the year, the time when kings go out to battle, David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel. And they ravaged the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem.
In the spring of the year, when kings normally go out to war, David sent Joab and the Israelite army to fight the Ammonites. They destroyed the Ammonite army and laid siege to the city of Rabbah. However, David stayed behind in Jerusalem.

What does 2 Samuel 11:1 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
2 Samuel 11:1

And it came to pass, that after the year was expired
Or at the end of the year, as the Targum, which concluded with the month Adar or February, the spring of the year:

at the time when kings go forth [to battle];
in the month Nisan, as the Targum on ( 1 Chronicles 20:1 ) ; adds, the same with Abib, which was the first month of the year, ( Exodus 12:2 ) ( 13:4 ) , a fit time to go out to war; when, as the Jewish commentators observe, the rains were over, and there were grass in the fields, and fruit on the trees, and corn ripe, and so food for horse and men. This month was called Nisan, as some think F4, from (Myon) , the military banners then erected; so by the Romans it is called Martius, and by us March, from Mars, the god of war; though some F5 take this to be the month Tisri, answering to part of September, and part of October, when all the fruits of the earth were gathered in, and supposed to be a fit time for war, when the heat of the year was declining:

that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel;
his whole army under Joab as general; in ( 1 Chronicles 20:1 ) ; it is "the power of the army"; the whole body of it: and they destroyed the children of Ammon; burnt their cities, and slew the inhabitants of them, and laid their land waste wherever they came:

and besieged Rabbah;
their chief city, called Rabathamana by Polybius {f}, that is, Rabbah of Ammon, and afterwards. Philadelphia, from Philadelphus, king of Egypt, as it was in the times of Jerom F7:

but David tarried still at Jerusalem;
which is observed for the sake of the following history; it would have been well for him if he had gone forth with the army himself, then the sin he fell into would have been prevented.


FOOTNOTES:

F4 Vid. Bochart. Hierozoic. par. 1. l. 2. c. 50. col. 557.
F5 Weemse of the Judicial Law, c. 28. p. 106.
F6 Hist. l. 5. p. 414.
F7 De loc. Heb. fol. 94. C.
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