Shmuel 2-Chapter 23: Dovid’s last song and list of warriors

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Chapter 23: Dovid’s last song and list of warriors

1. The last song of Dovid:

  • The following are the last words of Dovid. “Says Dovid the son of Yishaiy and says the man who was appointed as king and aristocrat by the G-d of Jacob and says the man who sings pleasant melodies for Israel. The spirit of G-d speaks through me, and his words are on my tongue. G-d instructed me that I shall be a leader over the Jewish people, and I will be a righteous and G-d-fearing ruler over the nation. G-d promised me that my power will spread like the morning sunrise and will shine greater than the sun shines after rainfall. My house will never darken as I keep the word of G-d and guard his Torah, and therefore no other king will reign after my monarchy. However, the wicked men will not last like the weeds of the field. Man will not route them out with his hands and will need to wear a shield of iron to uproot them. However, G-d will burn them away.

2. The warriors of Dovid:

  • The following are the names of the warriors under Dovid:
  • Adino Hatzani: Adino Hatzani was part of the Sanhedrin, and a leader in both strength and wisdom, and he had killed 800 enemy soldiers in a single battle.
  • Elazar Ben Dodo: The next warrior was Elazar Ben Dodi, the son of Achochi, who was one of the three warriors of Dovid who fought against the Philistines. He got up and fought against the Philistines and swung his sword successfully to the point that his arm ached from all the blows. G-d had done a great salvation for them on that day and the rest of the nation simply returned to strip the bodies of their valuables.
  • Shama Ben Agei: The next warrior was Shama Ben Agei Harari. In his time the Philistines had gathered like a herd of animals and intimidated the Jewish people from gathering the lentils in the field, causing them all to flee from the Philistines. Shama Ben Agei stood in the portion of the field and saved it from the Philistines and smote them, and G-d did a great salvation for them on that day.
  • The three generals of Dovid: Three of the generals of Dovid went to meet him in the cave of Adulam [where he hid when he was running away from Shaul[1]], and at that time the Philistines were camping by the Valley of Refaim with the governor living in Bethlehem. Dovid was thirsty and desired to drink and asked as to who can bring him water from the well in Bethlehem which sits by the gate. So, the three warriors broke through the lines of the Philistines and drew water from the well in Bethlehem that sat by the gates and brought the water to Dovid. However, Dovid refused to drink the water and rather poured them as a libation front of G-d, stating “G-d forbid that I do this and drink the blood of these men [as they put their lives in danger to get the water for me],” and therefore he did not desire to drink from it. These are the actions of the three warriors of Dovid.
  • Avishaiy the brother of Yoav: Avishaiy the brother of Yoav the son of Tzeruyah was one of the three generals who broke the lines of the Philistines. He was so strong that he was able to still continue fighting after killing 300 men. He was the most prestige of the three generals [who had broken through the lines of the Philistines to bring Dovid water], and was considered their leader, although did not reach the heights of the three warriors mentioned above.
  • Benayahu Ben Yehoyada: Benayahu Ben Yehoyada was a mighty man of war who was a man of action, from the city of Kabtzel. He annihilated two castles of Moav, and he had killed a lion that was hiding in a well on a snowy day. He had killed an Egyptian man who was of mighty strength and intimidating posture. The Egyptian man was holding a spare coming towards him while he was holding a mere stick. He managed to take the spear from the hand of the Egyptian and killed him with his own spear. All this was done by Benayahu Ben Yehoyada, and he was one of the three generals [who had broken through the lines of the Philistines to bring Dovid water[2]]. He was the most respected of the three generals [who brought Dovid the water] but was not as great as the original three warriors. Dovid appointed him to become his advisor.

3. List of warriors:

  • Asaheil the brother of Yoav was considered one of the three warriors to be discussed.
  • Elchanon Ben Dodo from Bethlehem was the first of the warriors.
  • Shama Hacharudi
  • Elika Hacharudi
  • Cheletz Hapalti
  • Ira the son of Ikeish from Takoa.
  • Aviezer the Anotite, from the children of Chushasi
  • Tzalmon the Achochi from the mountains of Nitofosi
  • Cheilev the son of Baanah from Nitofosi
  • Itaiy the son of Rivai from the Valley of the children of Benjamin.
  • Benayahu Pirasani Hidaiy from the channels of Gaash.
  • Avi Elbon the Arvosi
  • Azmaves the Barchumi
  • Elyachba the Shalovani
  • Yehonason the son of Yashan
  • Shama the Harari
  • Achiam the son of Sharar the Arari
  • Elifelet the son of Achsibaiy the son of Machasi
  • Eliam the son of Achitofel the Golanite
  • Chetzrai the Carmelite
  • Paraiy the Arbi
  • Yigal the son of Nathan from Tzovah
  • Bani the Gadite
  • Tzelek the Amonite
  • Nachrai the Beirosi, who was the weapon carrier of Yoav the son of Teruyah
  • Ira the Jethrite
  • Garev the Jethrite
  • Uria the Hitite
  • In total Dovid had 37 warriors [most of which were counted above although some were not[3]].


[1] Radak 23:13

[2] Pirush Riy Karo 23:22

[3] Rashi 23:39

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