2 Samuel 23 was likely recorded at the end of David's reign and it records 37 mighty men and guards

2 Samuel 23:1 (NKJV):

"Now these are the last words of David..."

2 Samuel 23:39 (NKJV):

...thirty-seven in all

Yet, in 1 Chronicles 11, 16 extra names are included (1 Chronicles 11:41-47). What could be a possible reason for this?

1 Answer 1


Isn't it possible that the group was in flux and did not have carefully defined boundaries? That's what any student of history would expect. Then the Chronicler could be including former members of the group and/or using a more generous definition of the term "mighty warrior".

  • In some way I think so, 2 Samuels points that the list is the thirty or all men who ever served in "the thirty" while 2 Chronicles says mighty warriors, which may included the thirty AND any mighty warrior not in the thirty.
    – User2280
    Jan 20 at 5:00

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