David (biblical character)

In the framework of Hebrew mythology , David was the second king of Israel , and would have lived between 1000 and 962 a. n. and. ). It is mentioned about eight hundred times in the Old Testament (the Hebrew Bible ) and sixty in the New Testament (the second part of the Christian Bible ). The meaning of his name is not known with certainty. Younger son of Jesse, of the tribe of Judah . In the Scriptures this name applies only to him, as a typification of the unique place that he occupies as ancestor, forerunner, and announcer of the Lord Jesus Christ., “The great son of great David”.


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  • 1 Biographical synthesis
    • 1 Anointing and friendship with Saul
    • 2 Saul’s hostility
    • 3 Flight from before Saul
    • 4 King in Hebron
    • 5 King in Jerusalem
  • 2 See also
  • 3 Bibliography
  • 4 External links
  • 5 Sources
  • 6 References

Biographical synthesis

David was a great-grandson of Ruth and Boaz , and the youngest of eight brothers (according to the First Book of Samuel  17:12), and as a boy was a sheepherder. Engaged in this work, he acquired the courage that he later knew how to display on the battlefield (according to the First Book of Samuel  17: 34–35) and the tender care he took towards his pack, which was later to be the subject of his songs. about the attributes of the god Elohim. Like Joseph , he suffered the bad disposition of his older brothers, who envied him, possibly because of the talents with which the Hebrew god had favored him ( First book of Samuel  17:28).

Although modest in his ancestry ( First Book of Samuel  18:18), David was to be the father of a line of notable descendants, as evidenced by the genealogy of our Lord in the Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 1: 1–17 ).

Anointing and friendship with Saul

When the god Elohim rejected King Saul as king of Israel, David was revealed to Samuel as his successor, and so the prophet anointed him in Bethlehem without ostentation ( First Book of Samuel  16: 1–13).

One of the results of Saul’s rejection was that the “spirit of God” withdrew from him, resulting in a great depression in his own spirit. An impressive revelation of divine purpose is seen in the providence by which David, destined to replace Saul in the favor and plans of the Hebrew god Elohim, is chosen to succor the fallen king in his moments of melancholy ( First Book of Samuel  16 : 17–21). In this way, the lives of these two men were intimately linked.

Saul named David as his page of arms or squire. Then the well-known incident with Goliath, the Philistine champion, changed everything ( First book of Samuel  17).

David’s agility and skill with the sling allowed him to defeat the strong and heavy giant, whose death was the signal for Israel’s defeat of the Philistine forces. The way was open for David to endorse the reward promised by Saul: the hand of the king’s daughter, and tax relief for the entire family of his father. But an unexpected factor changed the course of events: the king’s jealousy of the new champion of Israel. When David returned, after killing Goliath, the Israelite women welcomed him, singing “Saul struck his thousands, and David his ten thousand.” Saul, unlike his son * Jonathan in a similar situation, felt hurt and, we are told, “from that day on he did not look kindly at David” ( First book of Samuel 18: 7, 9).

Saul’s hostility

Saul’s dealings with David became less and less friendly, and at one point we see the young national hero being saved from a brutal attack on his life by the king. His military honors were curtailed, he was defrauded as to the promised wife, and married to Saul’s other daughter, Michal, after reaching an arrangement that was intended to cause him to die ( First Book of Samuel  18:25). . It would appear, from what is said in the First Book of Samuel  24: 9, that there was a group at Saul’s court deliberately promoting the disintelligence between Saul and David, and the state of affairs between them gradually deteriorated.

Another unsuccessful attempt by Saul to kill David with his spear was followed by an attempted arrest, which was thwarted by a ploy by David’s wife Michal ( First Book of Samuel  19: 8–17). A notable feature of this period in David’s life is the way Saul’s two sons, Jonathan and Michal, allied themselves with David against their own father.

Flight from before Saul

The next stages in David’s story are characterized by constant escapes in the face of Saul’s relentless persecution . It is not possible for David to rest in one place for long; prophet, priest, national enemy: no one can offer him refuge, and those who offer help are cruelly punished by a king maddened with rage ( First book of Samuel  22: 6–19).

After barely escaping from the military leaders of the Philistines, David finally managed to organize the Adulam gang, which at first was made up of a diverse group of fugitives, but later became an armed force that ravaged the invaders of the Outside, he protected the crops and livestock of the Israelite communities located in remote places, and lived on the generosity of the latter.

Chapter 25 of the First Book of Samuel records the miserable way in which one of these wealthy landowners, Nabal, refused to acknowledge his debt to David; This incident is interesting because it introduces Abigail, who would later be one of David’s women. Chapters 24 and 26 of the same book record two occasions when David spared Saul’s life, as a consequence of a mixture of piety and magnanimity.

David, unable to stop Saul’s hostility, reached an agreement with the Philistine king, Achish of Gath, and was granted the border town of Siclag as a reward for the occasional use of his band of warriors.

However, when the Philistines decidedly launched to fight Saul, their military leaders were somewhat suspicious of the presence of David’s troops in their ranks, fearing that at the last minute a change in loyalty might occur, which is why David did not he took part in the Gilboa tragedy, a tragedy that he later lamented in one of the most beautiful elegies known ( First Book of Samuel  1: 19–27).

King in Hebron

Once Saul died , David sought to know the will of the Hebrew god Elohim, who guided him to return to Judah, the area of ​​his own tribe, where his compatriots anointed him king. David established his royal residence in Hebron . He was already 30 years old, and reigned in Hebron for seven and a half years.

The first two years were occupied in a civil war between the defenders of David and the ancient courtiers of Saul, who had consecrated Es-baal (Is-boset), the son of Saul, as king at Mahanaim. It is very likely that Es-baal was nothing more than a puppet in the hands of Abner, Saul’s faithful follower.

When these were killed, all organized opposition against David ended, and he was anointed king over the twelve tribes of Israel in Hebron. From there he immediately transferred the capital of his kingdom to Jerusalem ( First book of Samuel  3 to 5).

King in Jerusalem

From this moment the most successful period of David’s long reign began, which was to last another 33 years. Due to an excellent combination of personal courage and skillful military leadership, he directed the Israelites towards a systematic and decisive subjugation of all their enemies (Philistines, Canaanites, Moabites, Aramaeans, Edomites, and Amalekites), in such a way that his name would have acquired fame. in history regardless of its significance to the divine plan of redemption.

The weakness of the powers of the Nile and Euphrates valleys at the time allowed him, through conquests and alliances, to extend his sphere of influence from the Egyptian border and the Gulf of Ababa to the upper Euphrates.

After conquering the supposedly impregnable citadel of the Jebusites, Jerusalem, he transformed it into the capital of his kingdom, from where he could watch over the two great divisions of his dominions, which later became the two divided kingdoms of Judah and Israel. A palace was built, roads were built, trade routes were restored, the material prosperity of the kingdom was assured. However, this could not be the only, or even the main, ambition of a “man according to the heart of God,” and David’s religious zeal soon becomes apparent. He brought back the ark of the covenant from Quiriat-jearim, and placed it in a special tabernacle built for that purpose in Jerusalem.

During the return trip of the ark the incident occurred that caused the death of Uza ( Second book of Samuel  6: 6-8). Much of the religious organization that was to later enrich temple worship owes its origin to the arrangements for religious service in the tabernacle built by David at that time. In addition to its strategic and political importance, Jerusalem thus acquired even greater significance from a religious perspective, with which its name has since been associated.

It should be a matter of awe and awe for the believer to keep in mind that it was during this period of outward prosperity and apparent religious fervor that David committed the sin mentioned in the Scriptures as “concerning Uriah the Hittite” ( Second Book of Samuel  11 ).

The significance and importance of this sin, both for its atrocity and for its consequences in the entire subsequent history of Israel, cannot be overstated. David deeply repented, but the fact had been consummated, and has remained as a demonstration of how sin ruins the purposes of the Hebrew god Elohim for his children. The pathetic and anguished cry with which he received the news of Absalom’s death was but a faint echo of the agony of a heart that knew that death, and many more, were part of a harvest that was the fruit of lust and deception sown by himself in previous years.

Absalom’s rebellion, in which the northern kingdom remained loyal to David, was soon followed by an uprising by the northern kingdom itself organized by the Benjaminite Sheba. This uprising, like that of Absalom, was crushed by Joab. David’s last days were embittered by the machinations of Adonijah and Solomon, who aspired to the throne, as well as because he realized that Nathan’s prophesied legacy of wrestling had yet to be fully fulfilled.

In addition to the standing army, commanded by his relative Joab, David had a personal guard recruited mainly from warriors of Philistine origin, whose loyalty to him never wavered. There is abundant evidence in historical records, to which reference has already been made, of David’s ability to compose odes and elegies ( Second Book of Samuel  1.19–27; 3: 33–34; 22; 23: 1–7) . An old tradition describes him as “the sweet singer of Israel” ( Second book of Samuel  23: 1), while later writings of the Old Testament refer to him as the director of the musical cult of Israel, as the inventor of musical instruments that he played skillfully, and as a composer (Nehemiah 12:24, 36, 45–46; Amos 6: 5).

In the Bible there are 73 psalms attributed to “David”, some of them presented in such a way that there is no doubt that he was their author. But what is most convincing in this regard is that our Lord Himself spoke of David as the author of at least one psalm (Luke 20:42), using a quote from it to clarify the character of his messianism.


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