2 Samuel 23:24
Asahel the brother of Joab was one of the thirty; Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem,
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23:8-39 David once earnestly longed for the water at the well of Bethlehem. It seems to be an instance of weakness. He was thirsty; with the water of that well he had often refreshed himself when a youth, and it was without due thought that he desired it. Were his valiant men so forward to expose themselves, upon the least hint of their prince's mind, and so eager to please him, and shall not we long to approve ourselves to our Lord Jesus, by ready compliance with his will, as shown us by his word, Spirit, and providence? But David poured out the water as a drink-offering to the Lord. Thus he would cross his own foolish fancy, and punish himself for indulging it, and show that he had sober thoughts to correct his rash ones, and knew how to deny himself. Did David look upon that water as very precious which was got at the hazard of these men's blood, and shall not we much more value those benefits for purchasing which our blessed Saviour shed his blood? Let all beware of neglecting so great salvation.etc. The early death of Asahel 2 Samuel 2:32 would make it very likely that his place in the 30 would be filled up, and so easily account for the number 31 in the list. Compare throughout the list in 1 Chronicles 11.
Asahel the brother of Joab was one of the thirty,.... Or rather over the thirty (n), who are next mentioned; since there are thirty reckoned besides him, and the Arabic version calls him the prince of the thirty; Joab is not named at all, because he was general of the whole army, and so not to be reckoned in any of the three classes:

Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem: a townsman of David.

(n) "supra triginta istos", Junius & Tremellius.

Asahel the brother of Joab was one of the thirty; Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem,Heroes of the second class. - 2 Samuel 23:18, 2 Samuel 23:19. Abishai, Joab's brother (see 1 Samuel 26:6), was also chief of the body-guard, like Jashobeam (2 Samuel 23:8 : the Chethib השּׁלשׁי is correct; see at 2 Samuel 23:8). He swung his spear over three hundred slain. "He had a name among the three," i.e., the three principal heroes, Jashobeam, Eleazar, and Shammah. The following words, מן־השּׁלשׁה, make no sense. השּׁלשׁה is an error in writing for השּׁלשׁים, as 2 Samuel 23:23 shows in both the texts (2 Samuel 23:25 of the Chronicles): an error the origin of which may easily be explained from the word שׁלשׁה, which stands immediately before. "He was certainly honoured before the thirty (heroes of David), and became their chief, but he did not come to the three," i.e., he was not equal to Jashobeam, Eleazar, and Shammah. הכי has the force of an energetic assurance: "Is it so that," i.e., it is certainly so (as in 2 Samuel 9:1; Genesis 27:36; Genesis 29:15).
19-39. the first three—The mighty men or champions in David's military staff were divided into three classes—the highest, Jashobeam, Eleazar, and Shammah; the second class, Abishai, Benaiah, and Asahel; and the third class, the thirty, of which Asahel was the chief. There are thirty-one mentioned in the list, including Asahel; and these added to the two superior orders make thirty-seven. Two of them, we know, were already dead; namely, Asahel [2Sa 3:30] and Uriah [2Sa 11:17]; and if the dead, at the drawing up of the list, amounted to seven, then we might suppose a legion of honor, consisting of the definite number thirty, where the vacancies, when they occurred, were replaced by fresh appointments. Asahel - was one of the thirty - Asahel was one of those officers, or troops, called the shalishim. This Asahel, brother of Joab, was the same that was killed by Abner, 2 Samuel 2:23.
2 Samuel 23:23
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