David’s mother. Few references to David’s mother appear in the Scriptures, and she is never named. This is surprising, considering sixty-six chapters are used to tell of David’s life.
This has led to speculation that there was some stigma connected with her.
Since David, while a fugitive, entrusted his mother and father to the king of Moab (1 Sam. 22:3), some suggest that Jesse may have taken a Moabitess wife, as had his grandfather, Boaz.
Other speculation centers on this perplexing sentence in Psalm 51: “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me” (v. 5). Calvinists use this as a proof
text for their doctrine of Total Hereditary Depravity, but the Scriptures teach that we are not “born in sin”—that each is responsible for his own sins, not the sin of his ancestors,
including Adam (Eccles. 7:29; Ezek. 18:4,19, 20; Zech. 12:1; Mt. 18:3; 19:14; Acts 17:29; Rom. 2:6; 1 Cor. 14:20; 2 Cor. 5:10; Gal. 6:5; etc.).
David was not referring to his own sinfulness, but rather to the sinful environment in which he was conceived and born. The words may be a poetic reference to a sinful world—
the words “In sin my mother conceived me.” The psalm is about the sin of adultery; could David have been saying that his mother was guilty of that
sin? Some believe that David was an
but there may be a darker meaning in illegitimate, unwanted child, an embarrassment to the rest of the family.
We may never unravel the mystery of David’s mother, but every indication is that he was fond of her and took care of her (1 Sam. 22:3; 2 Sam. 19:37).
David’s sisters. David’s two sisters, Zeruiah and Abigail, and their offspring are named in 1 Chron. 2:16, 17. One of Zeruiah’s sons was named Joab. When Abigail (or Abigal) is
mentioned in 2 Sam. 17:25, she is identified as Zeruiah’s sister (who had a son named Joab). It is stated that she was “the daughter of Nahash,” instead of Jesse.
Various explanations have been given:
(1) “Nahash” was another name for Jesse.
(2) "Nahash” was the name of one of Jesse’s wives.
(3) Jesse married a widow with two daughters, who had previously been married to a man named Nahash.
Too little information is given to be dogmatic on the point.
David’s relationship with the rest of the family. Putting all of the speculation together, it is possible that David was a halfbrother or stepbrother to all or some of his siblings. This might
help explain why he was something of an outsider.
(1.) King of the Ammonites in the time of Saul. The inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead having been exposed to great danger from Nahash, sent messengers to Gibeah to inform Saul of their extremity. He promptly responded to the call, and gathering together an army he marched against Nahash. "And it came to pass that they which remained were scattered, so that two of them [the Ammonites] were not left together" (1 Sam. 11:1-11).
(2.) Another king of the Ammonites of the same name is mentioned, who showed kindness to David during his wanderings (2 Sam. 10:2). On his death David sent an embassy of sympathy to Hanun, his son and successor, at Rabbah Ammon, his capital. The grievous insult which was put upon these ambassadors led to a war against the Ammonites, who, with their allies the Syrians, were completely routed in a battle fought at "the entering in of the gate," probably of Medeba (2 Sam. 10:6-14). Again Hadarezer rallied the Syrian host, which was totally destroyed by the Israelite army under Joab in a decisive battle fought at Helam (2 Sam. 10:17), near to Hamath (1 Chr. 18:3). "So the Syrians feared to help the children of Ammon any more" (2 Sam. 10:19).
(3.) The father of Amasa, who was commander-in-chief of Abasolom's
army (2 Sam. 17:25). Jesse's wife had apparently been first married to
this man, to whom she bore Abigail and Zeruiah, who were thus David's
sisters, but only on the mother's side (1 Chr. 2:16).
Smith's Bible Dictionary
W. W. Davies