3:7 Now Saul had a concubine named Rizpah daughter of Aiah. Ish-bosheth 1 said to Abner, “Why did you have sexual relations with 2 my father’s concubine?” 3
2 Samuel 21:8Context
21:8 So the king took Armoni and Mephibosheth, the two sons of Aiah’s daughter Rizpah whom she had born to Saul, and the five sons of Saul’s daughter Merab 4 whom she had born to Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite.
2 Samuel 21:10-11Context
21:10 Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth and spread it out for herself on a rock. From the beginning of the harvest until the rain fell on them, 5 she did not allow the birds of the air to feed 6 on them by day, nor the wild animals 7 by night. 21:11 When David was told what Rizpah daughter of Aiah, Saul’s concubine, had done,
1 tc The Hebrew of the MT reads simply “and he said,” with no expressed subject for the verb. It is not likely that the text originally had no expressed subject for this verb, since the antecedent is not immediately clear from the context. We should probably restore to the Hebrew text the name “Ish-bosheth.” See a few medieval Hebrew
2 tn Heb “come to”; KJV, NRSV “gone in to”; NAB “been intimate with”; NIV “sleep with.”
3 sn This accusation against Abner is a very serious one, since an act of sexual infringement on the king’s harem would probably have been understood as a blatant declaration of aspirations to kingship. As such it was not merely a matter of ethical impropriety but an act of grave political significance as well.
5 tn Heb “until water was poured on them from the sky.”
6 tn Heb “rest.”
7 tn Heb “the beasts of the field.”