21:1 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 a Gibeonites.
(a) Thinking to gratify the people, because these were not of the seed of Abraham. 21:3 Wherefore David said unto the Gibeonites, b What shall I do for you? and wherewith shall I make the atonement, that ye may bless the inheritance of the LORD?
(b) With what may your wrath be appeased, that you may pray to God to remove this plague from his people. 21:4 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 c any man in Israel. And he said, What ye shall say, [that] will I do for you.
(c) Save only of Sauls stock. 21:6 Let seven men of his d sons be delivered unto us, and we will hang them up e unto the LORD in Gibeah of Saul, [whom] the LORD did choose. And the king said, I will give [them].
(d) Of Sauls kinsmen. 21:8 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 f Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite:
(e) To pacify the Lord.
(f) Here Michal is named for Merab Adriels wife, as it appears in ( 1 Samuel 18:19 ) for Michal was the wife of Paltiel, ( 1 Samuel 25:44 ) and never had a child ( 2 Samuel 6:23 ). 21:9 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 g first [days], in the beginning of barley harvest.
(g) Which was in the month Abib or Nisan which contained part of March and part of April. 21:10 And Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took h sackcloth, and spread it for her upon the rock, from the beginning of harvest until i 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.
(h) To make her a tent in which she prayed to God to turn away his wrath. 21:14 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 k intreated for the land.
(i) Because drought was the cause of this famine, God by sending rain showed that he was pacified.
(k) For where the government permits faults to go unpunished, there the plague of God lies on the land. 21:16 And Ishbibenob, which [was] of the sons of l the giant, the weight of whose spear [weighed] three hundred m [shekels] of brass in weight, he being girded with a new [sword], thought to have slain David.
(l) Or, of Haraphah, the race of giants. 21:17 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 n light of Israel.
(m) Which amounts to 9 3/4 pounds.
(n) For the glory and wealth of the country stands in the preservation of the godly magistrate. 21:18 And it came to pass after this, that there was again a battle with the Philistines at o Gob: then Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Saph, which [was] of the sons of the giant.
(o) Called Gezer, and Saph is called Sippai, ( 1 Chronicles 20:4 ). 21:19 And there was again a battle in Gob with the Philistines, where Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim, a Bethlehemite, slew [the brother of] p Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear [was] like a weavers beam.
(p) That is, Lahmi the brother of Goliath, whom David slew, ( 1 Chronicles 20:5 ).