Bible Highlights: 1 Samuel 26-27-28-29-30-31 > Theocratic Ministry School

Study information for Theocratic Ministry School

Bible reading: 1 Samuel 26-31 (8 min.)


1 SAMUEL 26:5


“David later went to the place where Saul had encamped, and David saw the place where Saul and Abʹner the son of Ner, the chief of his army, were lying asleep; Saul lay asleep in the camp enclosure with the troops camping all around him.”

*** it-1 p. 398 Camp ***
A protective enclosure, as around Saul’s camp, may have been made of baggage, wagons, and animals. (1Sa 26:5, 7) Armies having chariots may have used them to encircle their camps. More permanent campsites were sometimes protected by trenches and dirt mounds round about. Battles were not usually fought at the campsite, except in cases of surprise attack. (Jos 11:7) Hence extensive entrenchment and strong walled enclosures were not usually built.

1 SAMUEL 26:7


“So David and A•bishʹai made their way to the troops by night, and they found Saul lying asleep in the camp enclosure with his spear stuck into the ground next to his head; Abʹner and the troops were lying all around him.”

*** it-1 p. 169 Arms, Armor ***
A spear stuck in the earth might denote a king’s temporary abode.—1Sa 26:7.

*** it-1 p. 398 Camp ***
A protective enclosure, as around Saul’s camp, may have been made of baggage, wagons, and animals. (1Sa 26:5, 7) Armies having chariots may have used them to encircle their camps. More permanent campsites were sometimes protected by trenches and dirt mounds round about. Battles were not usually fought at the campsite, except in cases of surprise attack. (Jos 11:7) Hence extensive entrenchment and strong walled enclosures were not usually built.

1 SAMUEL 26:20


“And now do not let my blood fall to the ground away from the presence of Jehovah, for the king of Israel has gone out to look for a single flea, as if he were chasing a partridge on the mountains.””

*** it-1 p. 840 Flea ***
First Samuel 26:20 conveys a similar thought, but in the Greek Septuagint the words “a single flea” read “my soul.”

*** it-2 p. 580 Partridge ***
The partridge has a delicate flesh and was hunted as food from ancient times, the hunters often using throwing sticks to bring down the bird when it was flushed from cover. Since the partridge seeks escape by running, dodging behind rocks and other obstacles, and seeking out a hiding place in clefts of rocks or similar places of concealment, David, moving from hiding place to hiding place in his endeavor to evade King Saul’s relentless pursuit, aptly likened himself to “a partridge upon the mountains.”—1Sa 26:20; compare La 3:52.

1 SAMUEL 27:2


“So David rose up with the 600 men who were with him and went over to Aʹchish the son of Maʹoch, the king of Gath.”

*** it-1 p. 223 Axis Lords ***
The axis lords dominated Philistia as rulers of individual city-states and as a council of coequals with regard to matters of mutual interest. Achish is called king of Gath. (1Sa 21:10; 27:2) Apparently he was not a king in the usual sense but, rather, was a prince. Consequently the title of ‘prince’ (Heb., sar) is occasionally applied to these rulers.—1Sa 18:30; 29:2-4.

1 SAMUEL 27:6


“So Aʹchish gave him Zikʹlag on that day. That is why Zikʹlag belongs to the kings of Judah down to this day.”

*** it-2 p. 853 Samuel, Books of ***
Writers and Time Covered. Ancient Jewish tradition credits Samuel with the writership of the first part of the book, and Nathan and Gad with the remaining portion. That these three prophets did write is confirmed at 1 Chronicles 29:29. The book itself reports: “Samuel spoke to the people about the rightful due of the kingship and wrote it in a book and deposited it before Jehovah.” (1Sa 10:25) However, on the basis of 1 Samuel 27:6, where there is reference to “the kings of Judah,” numerous scholars place the final compiling of the books of Samuel sometime after the ten-tribe kingdom of Israel came into existence. If the expression “the kings of Judah” denotes only Judean kings of the two-tribe kingdom, this would show that the writings of Samuel, Nathan, and Gad must have been put into final form by someone else. On the other hand, if “the kings of Judah” simply means kings from the tribe of Judah, these words could have been recorded by Nathan, since he lived under the rulership of two Judean kings, David and Solomon.—1Ki 1:32-34; 2Ch 9:29.

1 SAMUEL 27:8


“David would go up with his men to raid the Geshʹur•ites, the Girʹzites, and the A•malʹek•ites, for they were inhabiting the land that extended from Teʹlam as far as Shur and down to the land of Egypt.”

*** it-2 p. 1075 Telam ***
TELAM
(Teʹlam).
Twelve manuscripts of the Greek Septuagint say that Tela(m) was one of the limits of the dwellings of the Geshurites, Girzites, and Amalekites in David’s day. (1Sa 27:8) This would appear to connect Telam with Telaim, referred to at 1 Samuel 15:4, and Telem in southern Judah. (Jos 15:21, 24) At 1 Samuel 27:8, the Hebrew Masoretic text reads “from long ago,” which differs from the expression “from Telam” by only two Hebrew consonants.

1 SAMUEL 27:10


“Then Aʹchish would ask: “Where did you make a raid today?” David would reply: “Against the south of Judah” or “Against the south of the Je•rahʹme•el•ites” or “Against the south of the Kenʹites.””

*** it-2 p. 29 Jerahmeelites ***
JERAHMEELITES
(Je•rahʹme•el•ites) [Of (Belonging to) Jerahmeel].
The descendants of Judah through Jerahmeel son of Hezron. (1Ch 2:4, 9, 25-27, 33, 42) The Jerahmeelites lived in the southern part of Judah, apparently in the same general region as the Amalekites, Geshurites, and Girzites whom David raided while residing among the Philistines as a fugitive from King Saul. When returning from such raids, David would ambiguously report that these raids had been made “upon the south of Judah and upon the south of the Jerahmeelites and upon the south of the Kenites.” Philistine King Achish, therefore, assumed that David had raided Israelites, thus making himself a stench to his countrymen and enhancing his value to Achish. (1Sa 27:7-12) In reality, David later shared spoils of war with the older men “in the cities of the Jerahmeelites.”—1Sa 30:26, 29.

*** it-2 p. 146 Kenite ***
Later, David told Achish that he had made a raid “upon the south of the Kenites.” (1Sa 27:10) But this was part of a subterfuge. Actually, the Kenites were on friendly terms with the Israelites. Thus, David sent some of the spoil seized from the Amalekites “to those in the cities of the Kenites,” probably in the mountainous region of southern Judah.—1Sa 30:29.

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