1 Chronicles Chapter 20

At this point, the host of Ammonites, which fought against the Israelites, had been defeated and no longer had the help of the Syrians in their fight. There was a time of peace between the two nations. This chapter continues with the following:

1 And it came to pass, that after the year was expired, at the time that kings go out to battle, Joab led forth the power of the army, and wasted the country of the children of Ammon, and came and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried at Jerusalem. And Joab smote Rabbah, and destroyed it.
2 And David took the crown of their king from off his head, and found it to weigh a talent of gold, and there were precious stones in it; and it was set upon David’s head: and he brought also exceeding much spoil out of the city.
3 And he brought out the people that were in it, and cut them with saws, and with harrows of iron, and with axes. Even so dealt David with all the cities of the children of Ammon. And David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.

A year passed, and when the time came for the king to lead his people to battle, he sent Joab to lead his army against the children of Ammon. Joab surrounded Rabbah, a chief Ammonite city, and destroyed it, while David stayed in Jerusalem. David removed the crown from the king of the Ammonites. He took the crown for himself because of its gold and jewels, and then took a lot of goods from them. He had the people of Ammon cruelly destroyed in all of their cities, and then returned with his army to Jerusalem. (see also 2 Samuel 11)

4 And it came to pass after this, that there arose war at Gezer with the Philistines; at which time Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Sippai, that was of the children of the giant: and they were subdued.
5 And there was war again with the Philistines; and Elhanan the son of Jair slew Lahmi the brother of Goliath the Gittite, whose spear staff was like a weaver’s beam.
6 And yet again there was war at Gath, where was a man of great stature, whose fingers and toes were four and twenty, six on each hand, and six on each foot: and he also was the son of the giant.
7 But when he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimea David’s brother slew him.
8 These were born unto the giant in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants.

Then, the Philistines came to war against Israel at Gezer. The Philistines were subdued, when Sibbechai, the Hushathite, killed Sippai, of the Philistine giants. They fought again, and Elhanan killed Lahmi, the brother of Goliath. Again, they fought with the Philistines at Gath, a previous place of refuge for David. The fight included the son of a giant, with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot. Jonathan, David’s nephew, killed the Philistine giant. And so, Israel had defeated the Philistines. (see also 2 Samuel 21)

David continued to show that he was a king who could lead his men to protect Israel from their enemies. Sadly, at this time he made some awful choices that led him to be without the spirit of the Lord. It could have been avoided if he had chosen to physically lead his men into battle as was the tradition of the king, rather than allowing Joab to do it for him. In many things, however, David was a good leader for Israel and they were blessed during his reign.

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