Jul 25, 2021. II Samuel 15:1-12

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ABSALOM’S GRAB FOR POWER.  II Samuel 15:1-12.  7/25/2021.  #32.

2 Samuel 15:1-12 [New King James Version]

1 After this it happened that Absalom provided himself with chariots and horses, and fifty men to run before him. 2 Now Absalom would rise early and stand beside the way to the gate. So it was, whenever anyone who had a lawsuit came to the king for a decision, that Absalom would call to him and say, “What city are you from?” And he would say, “Your servant is from such and such a tribe of Israel.” 3 Then Absalom would say to him, “Look, your case is good and right; but there is no deputy of the king to hear you.” 4 Moreover Absalom would say, “Oh, that I were made judge in the land, and everyone who has any suit or cause would come to me; then I would give him justice.” 5 And so it was, whenever anyone came near to bow down to him, that he would put out his hand and take him and kiss him. 6 In this manner Absalom acted toward all Israel who came to the king for judgment. So Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel. 7 Now it came to pass after forty years that Absalom said to the king, “Please, let me go to Hebron and pay the vow which I made to the Lord. 8 For your servant took a vow while I dwelt at Geshur in Syria, saying, ‘If the Lord indeed brings me back to Jerusalem, then I will serve the Lord.’ ” 9 And the king said to him, “Go in peace.” So he arose and went to Hebron. 10 Then Absalom sent spies throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, “As soon as you hear the sound of the trumpet, then you shall say, ‘Absalom reigns in Hebron!’ ” 11 And with Absalom went two hundred men invited from Jerusalem, and they went along innocently and did not know anything. 12 Then Absalom sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David’s counselor, from his city—from Giloh—while he offered sacrifices. And the conspiracy grew strong, for the people with Absalom continually increased in number.

  1. Weakness invites challenge
    1. Due to David not dealing with the rape of Tamar, the murder of Amnon, and the challenge of Absalom, he loses respect in the kingdom
    1. After Absalom’s de facto banishment, David does nothing to Abs. when they came face to face (just kissed him)
    1. Absalom feels free to do what he wants
      1.  He is certain that David would do nothing
      1.  Ephesians 6:4 nurture + admonition must go together
    1. Absalom gathers horses, chariots, royal footmen, and other regalia of royalty that goes along with being a king
  2. A clueless king blesses his own doom
    1. Absalom then stands outside the king’s gate in Jerusalem
      1.  He tells the people seeking the king for justice, that David had assigned no one to hear their cases
      1.  He informs the people that if he were king, he would surely dispense justice for them
      1.  Added to his handsome appearance, the unjust treatment of his sister and sympathy for what he did is Absalom’s wooing of the people
    1. David is unaware that anything is amiss
      1.  It is hard to imagine that no one is telling David what is going on in sight of his palace windows
      1.  David seems very ill-informed about events and trends in his own kingdom
  3. The surprise obvious plot
    1. After 4 years (not 40, which is a copy error in the Syriac and LXX texts), Abs. had captured the heart of the people
      1.  David does not even notice any change
      1.  Leadership can’t afford to isolated from the people that are being led
    1. Absalom asks permission of David to go to Hebron to pay a vow he made to the Lord while he was in Geshur
      1.  David doesn’t suspect anything
      1.  David sends Absalom away with his blessing
      1.  David invites 200 men from Jerusalem to attend (they know nothing of the plot)
      1.  Absalom invites David’s chief advisor, Ahithophel, to attend (grandfather of Bathsheba)
    1. Abs. wants the throne
      1.  He believes that his father is unjust, weak, and undeserving to rule
      1.  Even though David spared Abs.’s life, Absalom would take David’s life in order to gain the throne
      1.  Ambitious men will go to any extreme to gain their objectives (lie, kill, deceive, bribe, and manipulate)
    1. Seems to be a lack of affection between David and his kids
    1. Absalom had been plotting for 4 years to make his move (7 yrs. after the rape of Tamar)
      1.  When Absalom arrives in Hebron, he sends a signal to all his followers throughout the tribes to blow the trumpets and proclaim, “Absalom rules in Hebron”
      1.  David is not dead yet, so this is a brazen coup
    1. Abs. doesn’t consider that it was God who made David king
      1.  Absalom’s message to Israel: David has forgotten you
      1.  Absalom’s support continues to grow
    1. David is left with Joab and the older veterans