2 Samuel 11:18

2 Samuel 11:16-21. - (RABBAH.)
Here are three men: David, a great but sinful king, bent on the destruction of a faithful servant; Uriah, a brave but injured soldier, sent unconsciously to his doom; and Joab, an able but unscrupulous general (2 Samuel 3:22-30), become a willing agent and ready accomplice in his execution "with the sword of the children of Ammon" (2 Samuel 12:9).

1. There is seldom wanting a suitable accomplice in effecting a sinful purpose, however iniquitous it may be. The character of Joab was well known to David. "It was his very wickedness that commended him to the king as the most fitting instrument for carrying out his infamous design." He had formerly deprecated his wickedness (2 Samuel 3:29, 39); but now that he had himself fallen into sin, he associated himself with it, and made use of it for his own ends, although, as he afterwards found, to his own cost. "How Joab must have rejoiced when David sank down to his own level!"

2. In serving another, such an accomplice is chiefly concerned about serving himself. He seeks supremely his own advantage. Joab acted not from loyalty, but self-love. "To make himself great, powerful, indispensable, was the object of his life" (Plumptre). "Possibly he had some information that Bathsheba had been with David" ('Speaker's Commentary'). Anyhow, perceiving the design of the king against Uriah, he served him, in order that he might gain complete power over him; and in this he succeeded. "When David made him a partner and secret agent of his guilty purpose touching Uriah, he sold himself into his hands, and in that fatal letter he sealed away his liberty and surrendered himself up to this his unscrupulous accomplice" (Blunt). "All fellowship in sin begets despotism." Henceforth Joab did with the king very much as he pleased.

3. No authority of man can justify the violation of the Law of God. How often have men imagined that the command or sanction of one in authority has been a sufficient warrant for doing what their own consciences condemned, and laid the blame of their conduct on the instigator thereof rather than on themselves! Joab probably needed little self excuse; but it ever he should want a defence, he might plead the king's letter. He was reckless of human life; to effect his purpose made a greater sacrifice of it than the king intended (ver. 17), and became more hardened than ever in wickedness. "We ought to obey God rather than men."

4. There may be exemption from punishment when there is no exoneration from blame. "How must this example needs harden Joab against the conscience of Abner's blood! while he cannot but think, 'David cannot avenge that in me which he acteth himself'" (Hall). Nevertheless, his guilt, in the sight of God, remains; and judgment comes at last (Ecclesiastes 12:14). - D.

And when David had called him . he made him drunk.
It is a very wicked thing, under any design whatsoever, to make a person drunk. Woe to him that does so (Habakkuk 2:15-16.) God will put a cup of trembling into the hands of those who put into the hands of others the cup of drunkenness. Robbing a man of Ins reason is worse than robbing him of his money, and drawing him into sin worse than drawing him into any trouble whatsoever.

( M. Henry..)

Abimelech, Ammonites, Bathsheba, David, Eliam, Jerubbaal, Jerubbesheth, Joab, Uriah, Urijah
Jerusalem, Rabbah, Thebez
Account, Battle, David, Declareth, Events, Fighting, Full, Joab, Jo'ab, Matters, News, Reported, War
1. While Joab besieges Rabbah, David commits adultery with Bathsheba
6. Uriah, sent for by David to cover the adultery, would not go home.
14. He carries to Joab the letter of his death
18. Joab sends the news thereof to David
26. David takes Bathsheba as his wife

Dictionary of Bible Themes
2 Samuel 11:1-27

     5714   men

2 Samuel 11:3-24

     5305   empires

David's Fall 2Sam 11:27

John Newton—Olney Hymns

How those are to be Admonished with whom Everything Succeeds According to their Wish, and those with whom Nothing Does.
(Admonition 27.) Differently to be admonished are those who prosper in what they desire in temporal matters, and those who covet indeed the things that are of this world, but yet are wearied with the labour of adversity. For those who prosper in what they desire in temporal matters are to be admonished, when all things answer to their wishes, lest, through fixing their heart on what is given, they neglect to seek the giver; lest they love their pilgrimage instead of their country; lest they turn
Leo the Great—Writings of Leo the Great

The Sixth Commandment
Thou shalt not kill.' Exod 20: 13. In this commandment is a sin forbidden, which is murder, Thou shalt not kill,' and a duty implied, which is, to preserve our own life, and the life of others. The sin forbidden is murder: Thou shalt not kill.' Here two things are to be understood, the not injuring another, nor ourselves. I. The not injuring another. [1] We must not injure another in his name. A good name is a precious balsam.' It is a great cruelty to murder a man in his name. We injure others in
Thomas Watson—The Ten Commandments

Alike from the literary and the historical point of view, the book[1] of Samuel stands midway between the book of Judges and the book of Kings. As we have already seen, the Deuteronomic book of Judges in all probability ran into Samuel and ended in ch. xii.; while the story of David, begun in Samuel, embraces the first two chapters of the first book of Kings. The book of Samuel is not very happily named, as much of it is devoted to Saul and the greater part to David; yet it is not altogether inappropriate,
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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