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The contents of this chapter are the same with ( 2 Samuel 6:1-11), only Davidís consultation with the principal men of Israel concerning the affair herein transacted is premised in the first four verses of this.
Ver. 1 . And David consulted with the captains of thousands, and hundreds, and with every leader .] With the chiliarchs and centurions, and every officer in that large body of armed men in every tribe, who met to make and crown him king: for at that time was this consultation had, and therefore is connected with it; though the affair advised about was not yet done, as Dr. Lightfoot observes, and was not done until some considerable time afterwards. Advice being taken, the several officers went with their men to their respective countries, to meet again at a certain time and place to put the thing projected into execution; and between this and that time were Hiramís message to David on his accession to the throne, the taking of Jerusalem, and the two battles with the Philistines, as the same writer notes; most of which are recorded before this in the book of Samuel, and follow here.
Ver. 2 . And David said unto all the congregation of Israel , etc.] To the above persons, as representatives of it: if it seem good unto you, and that it be of the Lord our God ; if it could be thought by them a good and useful thing, and agreeable to the will of God, and would make for his glory: let us send abroad unto our brethren everywhere that are left in all the land of Israel ; that were not then present with them, even all the common people; whom David, though king, owns as his brethren; nor is his antitype ashamed to own this relation between him and his people, ( Hebrews 2:11) and with them also to the priests and Levites which are in their cities and suburbs : given to them in the several tribes to dwell in, (see Chronicles 6:54-81), that they may gather themselves unto us ; at a certain time and place appointed.
Ver. 3 . And let us bring again the ark of our God to us , etc.] The symbol of the divine Presence, than which nothing was more desirable to David, and he chose to begin his reign overall Israel with it: for we inquired not at it in the days of Saul ; he being indifferent to religion, and careless about it, and the enjoyment of the presence of God, and having direction from him; and the people also content with worship at the tabernacle at Gibeah, though the token of the divine Presence was absent.
Ver. 4 . And all the congregation said that they would do so , etc.] They unanimously agreed to the motion: for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people ; they saw the propriety, necessity, and usefulness of it.
Ver. 5 . So David gathered all Israel together , etc.] The principal of them, even 30,000 select men, ( 2 Samuel 6:1) from Shihor of Egypt ; or the Nile of Egypt, as the Targum and other Jewish writers, called Shihor from the blackness of its water, (see Jeremiah 2:18) though some think the river Rhinocurura is meant, which both lay to the south of the land of Israel: even unto the entering of Hamath ; which the Targum interprets of Antiochia, which lay to the north of the land; so that this collection of the people was made from south to north, the extreme borders of the land: to bring the ark of God from Kirjathjearim ; where it then was, and had been a long time, (see 1 Samuel 7:1), from hence to the end of the chapter the account is the same with ( 2 Samuel 6:1-11), see the notes there; what little variations there are, are there observed.