1 Chronicles 12

David's Supporters in Ziklag

1 1Now these are the ones who came to David at Ziklag, while he was still restricted because * of Saul the son of Kish; and they were among the mighty men who helped him in war.
2 They were equipped with bows, 2using both the right hand and the left to sling stones and to shoot arrows from the bow; 3they were Saul's kinsmen from Benjamin.
3 The chief was Ahiezer, then Joash, the sons of Shemaah the Gibeathite; and Jeziel and Pelet, the sons of Azmaveth, and Beracah and Jehu the Anathothite,
4 and Ishmaiah the Gibeonite, a mighty man among the thirty, and over the thirty. Then Jeremiah, Jahaziel, Johanan, Jozabad the Gederathite,
5 Eluzai, Jerimoth, Bealiah, Shemariah, Shephatiah the Haruphite,
6 Elkanah, Isshiah, Azarel, Joezer, Jashobeam, the Korahites,
7 and Joelah and Zebadiah, the sons of Jeroham of Gedor.
8 From the Gadites there came over to David in the stronghold in the wilderness, mighty men of valor, men trained for war, who could handle shield and spear, and whose faces were like the faces of lions, and 4they were as swift as the gazelles on the mountains.
9 Ezer was the first, Obadiah the second, Eliab the third,
10 Mishmannah the fourth, Jeremiah the fifth,
11 Attai the sixth, Eliel the seventh,
12 Johanan the eighth, Elzabad the ninth,
13 Jeremiah the tenth, Machbannai the eleventh *.
14 These of the sons of Gad were captains of the army; 5he who was least was equal to a hundred and the greatest to a thousand.
15 6These are the ones who crossed the Jordan in the first month when it was overflowing * all its banks and they put to flight all those in the valleys, both to the east and to the west.
16 Then some of the sons of Benjamin and Judah came to the stronghold to David.
17 David went out to meet them, and said to them, "If you come peacefully to me to help me, my heart shall be united with you; but if to betray me to my adversaries, since there is no wrong in my hands, may the God of our fathers look on it and decide."
18 Then 7the Spirit came upon 8Amasai, who was the chief of the thirty, and he said, "We are yours, O David, And with you, O son of Jesse! 9Peace, peace to you, And peace to him who helps you; Indeed, your God helps you!" Then David received them and made them captains of the band.
19 10From Manasseh also some defected to David when he was about to go to battle with the Philistines against Saul. But they did not help them, for the lords of the Philistines after consultation sent him away, saying, "At the cost of our heads he may defect to his master Saul."
20 As he went to Ziklag there defected to him from Manasseh: Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu and Zillethai, captains of thousands who belonged to Manasseh.
21 They helped David against 11the band of raiders, for they were all mighty men of valor, and were captains in the army.
22 For day by day men came to David to help him, until there was a great army 12like the army of God.

Supporters Gathered at Hebron

23 Now these are the numbers of the divisions equipped for war, 13who came to David at Hebron, 14to turn the kingdom of Saul to him, 15according to the word of the LORD.
24 The sons of Judah who bore shield and spear were 6,800 * * *, equipped for war.
25 Of the sons of Simeon, mighty men of valor for war, 7,100 * *.
26 Of the sons of Levi 4,600 * *.
27 Now Jehoiada was the leader of the house of Aaron, and with him were 3,700 * * *,
28 also 16Zadok, a young man mighty of valor, and of his father's house twenty-two * captains.
29 Of the sons of Benjamin, 17Saul's kinsmen, 3,000 *; for until now 18the greatest part of them had kept their allegiance to the house of Saul.
30 Of the sons of Ephraim 20,800 * * *, mighty men of valor, famous men in their fathers' households.
31 Of the half-tribe * of Manasseh 18,000 * *, who were designated by name to come and make David king.
32 Of the sons of Issachar, 19men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their kinsmen were at their command.
33 Of Zebulun, there were 50,000 * who went out in the army, who could draw up in battle formation with all kinds of weapons of war and helped David with 20an undivided * heart.
34 Of Naphtali there were 1,000 captains, and with them 37,000 * * with shield and spear.
35 Of the Danites who could draw up in battle formation, there were 28,600 * * *.
36 Of Asher there were 40,000 * who went out in the army to draw up in battle formation.
37 From the other side of the Jordan, of the Reubenites and the Gadites and of the half-tribe * of Manasseh, there were 120,000 * * with all kinds of weapons of war for the battle.
38 All these, being men of war who could draw up in battle formation, came to Hebron with 21a perfect heart to make David king over all Israel; and all the rest also of Israel were of one mind to make David king.
39 They were there with David three days, eating and drinking, for their kinsmen had prepared for them.
40 Moreover those who were near to them, even as far as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, 22brought food on donkeys, camels, mules and on oxen, great quantities of flour cakes, fig cakes and bunches of raisins, wine, oil, oxen and sheep. There was joy indeed in Israel.

1 Chronicles 12 Commentary

Chapter 12

Those who came to David at Ziklag. (1-22) Those who came to Hebron. (23-40)

Verses 1-22 Here is an account of those who appeared and acted as David's friends, while he was persecuted. No difficulties or dangers should keep the sinner from coming to the Savior, nor drive the believer from the path of duty. Those who break through, and overcome in these attempts, will find abundant recompence. From the words of Amasai we may learn how to testify our affection and allegiance to the Lord Jesus; his we must be throughly; on his side we must be forward to appear and act. If we are under the influence of the Spirit, we shall desire to have our lot among them, and to declare ourselves on their side; if in faith and love we embrace the cause of Christ, he will receive, employ, and advance us.

Verses 23-40 When the throne of Christ is set up in a soul, there is, or ought to be, great joy in that soul; and provision is made, not as here, for a few days, but for the whole life, and for eternity. Happy are those who wisely perceive it to be their duty and interest, to submit to the Saviour Jesus Christ, the Son of David; who renounce for his sake all that is not consistent; whose earnest endeavours to do good are directed by the wisdom that God giveth, through acquaintance with his word, experience, and observation. If any man lack this wisdom, let him ask it of God, who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him.

Cross References 22

  • 1. 1 Samuel 27:2-6
  • 2. Judges 3:15; Judges 20:16
  • 3. 1 Chronicles 12:29
  • 4. 2 Samuel 2:18
  • 5. Deuteronomy 32:30
  • 6. Joshua 3:15; Joshua 4:18
  • 7. Judges 3:10; Judges 6:34
  • 8. 1 Chronicles 2:17
  • 9. 1 Samuel 25:5, 6
  • 10. 1 Samuel 29:2-9
  • 11. 1 Samuel 30:1
  • 12. Genesis 32:2; Joshua 5:13-15
  • 13. 2 Samuel 2:3, 4
  • 14. 1 Chronicles 10:14
  • 15. 1 Chronicles 11:10
  • 16. 2 Samuel 8:17; 1 Chronicles 6:8, 53
  • 17. 1 Chronicles 12:2
  • 18. 2 Samuel 2:8, 9
  • 19. Esther 1:13
  • 20. Psalms 12:2
  • 21. 2 Samuel 5:1-3; 1 Chronicles 12:33
  • 22. 1 Samuel 25:18

Footnotes 11

Chapter Summary


This chapter gives an account of those that came to David at different times, and joined and assisted him both before the death of Saul, and when persecuted by him, and after he was made king of Judah in Hebron, and before he was king of all Israel, in order to it; of the Benjaminites that came to him when at Ziklag, 1Ch 12:1-7 of the Gadites that came to him when in the hold, 1Ch 12:8-15 of some of Judah and Benjamin, who came to him in the same place, 1Ch 12:16-18, and of the Manassites at the time he came with the Philistines against Saul, 1Ch 12:19-22 and the number of the several tribes are given, that came to him at Hebron to make him king over all Israel, 1Ch 12:23-40.

1 Chronicles 12 Commentaries

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