Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 5

How David fought battles

2 Samuel 5:18-19

In 2 Samuel 5:17-25, we have two examples of how King David fought battles. It is interesting to see David’s attitudes, as a very holy man, on such occasions.

Firstly, in these battles, and probably in later wars too, David was not using war to gain power or importance. Rather, David fought these wars to defend his nation from cruel attackers.

So, here we see that Philistia’s army had entered Israel. They were in the valley called Rephaim, which is close to Jerusalem.

Secondly, we see that David’s reaction to these troubles was to pray. Most army leaders would simply gather their army to attack the enemy. They would make their own plans; and then, perhaps, they would ask God to help them. However, David was asking God to show him what to do. Even in such a situation, David was unwilling to fight unless God directed him to do that.

Then, we see that David did not depend on the strength of his army. He trusted in God alone to win the battle (Psalm 20:7-8). If God handed over the enemy to him, then David would win. If not, it would be impossible, even with the strongest army, to win the battle.

Lastly, God did direct David very clearly what he should do on each occasion. This may have been by the Urim and Thummim, a special way that God directed Israel’s chief priest (compare Numbers 27:21). However, God has many ways by which he may direct his people (1 Samuel 28:6). What is important is not the method; it is that David obeyed God.

Next part: The Lord who breaks out (2 Samuel 5:20-21)


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