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CHAPTER 21 Aug. 3 
David Atones for Saul's Bloodshed
There was a famine in the days of David three years, year after year; and David sought the face of Yahweh. Yahweh said, There is bloodguilt on Saul and on his house, because he put to death the Gibeonites. 2The king called the Gibeonites and said to them (now the Gibeonites were not of the children of Israel, but of the remnant of the Amorites; and the children of Israel had sworn to them: and Saul sought to kill them in his zeal for the children of Israel and Judah); 3and David said to the Gibeonites, What shall I do for you? And with what shall I make atonement, that you may bless the inheritance of Yahweh? 4The Gibeonites said to him, It is no matter of silver or gold between us and Saul, or his house; neither is it for us to put any man to death in Israel. He said, Whatever you say, that will I do for you. 5They said to the king, The man who consumed us, and who devised against us, that we should be destroyed from remaining in any of the borders of Israel, 6let seven men of his sons be delivered to us, and we will hang them up to Yahweh in Gibeah of Saul, the chosen of Yahweh. The king said, I will give them. 7But the king spared Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan the son of Saul, because of Yahweh’s oath that was between them, between David and Jonathan the son of Saul. 8But the king took the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bore to Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she bore to Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite. 9He delivered them into the hands of the Gibeonites, and they hanged them in the mountain before Yahweh, and all seven of them fell together. They were put to death in the days of harvest, in the first days, at the beginning of barley harvest. 10Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth, and spread it for her on the rock, from the beginning of harvest until water was poured on them from the sky. She allowed neither the birds of the sky to rest on them by day, nor the animals of the field by night. 11It was told David what Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, the concubine of Saul, had done. 12David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son from the men of Jabesh Gilead, who had stolen them from the public square of Beth Shan, where the Philistines had hanged them, in the day that the Philistines killed Saul in Gilboa; 13and he brought up from there the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son: and they gathered the bones of those who were hanged. 14They buried the bones of Saul and Jonathan his son in the country of Benjamin in Zela, in the tomb of Kish his father: and they performed all that the king commanded. After that God responded to the prayer for the land.
War against the Philistines
15The Philistines had war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines. David grew faint; 16and Ishbibenob, who was of the sons of the giant, the weight of whose spear was three hundred shekels of brass in weight, he being armed with a new sword, was about to have slain David. 17But Abishai the son of Zeruiah helped him, and struck the Philistine, and killed him. Then the men of David swore to him saying, You shall go no more out with us to battle, that you don’t quench the lamp of Israel. 18It came to pass after this, that there was again war with the Philistines at Gob: then Sibbecai the Hushathite killed Saph, who was of the sons of the giant. 19There was again war with the Philistines at Gob; and Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim the Bethlehemite killed Goliath the Gittite’s brother, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam. 20There was again war at Gath, where there was a man of great stature, who had on every hand six fingers, and on every foot six toes, twenty four in number; and he also was born to the giant. 21When he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimei, David’s brother, killed him. 22These four were born to the giant in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants.


21:1 There was a famine- Innocent people suffered because of others’ sin. This is why babies die and why we all suffer as the result of Adam’s sin. The sinfulness of sin is largely in the effect which it has upon others. God will not force people not to sin, because He has given humanity genuine freewill; and because of this, He will not shield others from the consequences of sin, because sin and its consequence cannot be divided; sin is the consequence of the sin.
21:16,18 The “mighty men” of Gen. 6:4 weren’t anything other than ordinary men, even if they were very large in size; that text is no proof for misguided ideas about Angels sleeping with women on earth. Here and in Dt. 3:11, the same term is used about ordinary men who could be killed; the Rephaim had children like other human beings, inhabiting an area known as the valley of Rephaim (Josh. 15:8).
21:22 These four were born to the giant in Gath- David killed Goliath but took five stones to do the job, only one of which he used (1 Sam. 17:40). He was spiritually ambitious (as we should be), and so he had planned to kill Goliath’s four giant sons too. Our notes on 1 Sam. 17 show that David’s victory over Goliath was typical of Christ’s conquest of sin on the cross; this should inspire us to rise up against the other giants of sin which we encounter, inspired by Christ’s victory there. Hence we read that Goliath’s sons died at the hand of David’s men and in that sense also at David’s hand.