David retires to Gath, ver. 1 - 4.
Achish gives him Ziklag, ver. 5 - 7.
David destroys the Canaanites, ver. 8, 9.
Persuades Achish he fought against Judah, ver. 10 - 12.
1: I shall perish - But this was certainly a very great fault in
This proceeded from gross distrust of God's promise and providence; and
that after such repeated demonstrations of God's peculiar care over him.
He forsakes the place where god had settled him, (1Sa 22:5), and
given him both assurance and experience of his protection there.
He voluntarily runs upon that rock, which he cursed his enemies for
throwing him upon, (1Sa 26:19), and upon many other snares and
dangers, as the following history will shew; and withal, deprives the
people of the Lord of those succours which he might have given them, in
case of a battle.
But God hereby designed to withdraw David from the Israelites, that
they might fall by the hand of the Philistines, without any reproach or
inconvenience to David.
4: Sought no more for him - At their meeting Saul's heart was
deeply wounded, and he had said, "Return, my son David, Be with me as
in time past." Nor have we the least proof, that he would have sought
for him again, with any other design.
5: Give me a place - A prudent desire. Hereby David designed to
preserve his people, both from the vices, which conversation with the
Philistines would have exposed them to; and from that envy, and malice,
which diversity of religion might have caused. With thee - Which is too
great an honour for me, and too burdensome to thee, and may be an occasion
of offence to thy people.
6: Gave Ziklag - Not only to inhabit, but to possess it as his own.
Which he did, to lay the greater obligations upon David, whom he
knew so able to serve him. It was given to the tribe of Judah before,(Jos 15:31),
but the Philistines kept the possession of it 'till this time.
And being given by them to David, it now belonged not to the tribe of
Judah; but to the king of Judah, David and his heirs forever.
To this day - This, and some such clauses seem to have been added, after
the main substance of the several books was written.
8: Amalekites - The remnant of those whom Saul destroyed,(1Sa 15:3-9 ), who retired into remote and desert places.
9: Let neither man, &c. - In that part where he came: but there were
more of the Amalekites yet left in another part of that land.
10: David - These and the following words are ambiguous, and contrary
to that simplicity which became David, both as a prince, and as an
eminent professor of the true religion. The fidelity of Achish to him,
and the confidence he put in him, aggravates his sin in thus deceiving him,
which David seems penitently to reflect on, when he prays, Remove
from me the way of lying.