Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 22

David’s complete success against his enemies

2 Samuel 22:38-43

David describes his complete success against his enemies. At the same time, he is speaking about God’s future king, called the Messiah or Christ, who would come from his family (7:12). The Messiah will defeat every evil force to establish God’s perfect rule over the whole world (Psalm 110; Isaiah 11:1-9; Revelation 19:11 to 20:6).

An ancient battle began with a fight and ended with a chase. During the initial fight, the soldiers were trying to work out which side was stronger. The soldiers on the weaker side would then turn their backs towards their enemy (verse 41), and try to run away. However, the other side could not simply allow them to escape. If enough soldiers escaped, they would soon gather together again for another attack. There would be constant battles, and there could never be peace.

So, David describes how he and his soldiers chased after their enemies. They did not stop until they had achieved complete success. They defeated the nations that had attacked them. They gained control over their countries, so that those nations could not rule themselves again. Instead, David had authority over them (verses 38 and 39).

Again, David insisted that God had done this great thing. God gave David the strength to fight against the enemy; and God caused the enemy to suffer defeat. Either they died in the battle, or they accepted David’s rule over them (verses 40 and 41).

In a truly desperate situation, an evil person does not depend on the things that he formerly trusted, for example, his false gods. Even wicked people will sometimes, in that situation, pray to the true God (1 Kings 2:28-34). In his great kindness, God sometimes hears those prayers (1 Kings 21:24-29); however, often, he does not. The time for judgment has come, and they cannot escape their punishment (22:42). So, David defeated those evil enemies completely. They fell to the ground, dead, in front of him, and he passed over them (Verses 39 and 43).

Next part: David's attitude towards foreigners (2 Samuel 22:44-46)


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