Dec 26, 2021. II Samuel 21:1-11

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MERAB’S NIGHTMARE. II Samuel 21:1-11. 12/26/2021. #51.

2 Samuel 21:1-11 [New King James Version]

1 Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year; and David inquired of the Lord. And the Lord answered, “It is because of Saul and his bloodthirsty house, because he killed the Gibeonites.” 2 So the king called the Gibeonites and spoke to them. Now the Gibeonites were not of the children of Israel, but of the remnant of the Amorites; the children of Israel had sworn protection to them, but Saul had sought to kill them in his zeal for the children of Israel and Judah. 3 Therefore David said to the Gibeonites, “What shall I do for you? And with what shall I make atonement, that you may bless the inheritance of the Lord?” 4 And the Gibeonites said to him, “We will have no silver or gold from Saul or from his house, nor shall you kill any man in Israel for us.” So he said, “Whatever you say, I will do for you.” 5 Then they answered the king, “As for the man who consumed us and plotted against us, that we should be destroyed from remaining in any of the territories of Israel, 6 let seven men of his descendants be delivered to us, and we will hang them before the Lord in Gibeah of Saul, whom the Lord chose.” And the king said, “I will give them.” 7 But the king spared Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, because of the Lord’s oath that was between them, between David and Jonathan the son of Saul. 8 So the king took Armoni and Mephibosheth, the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bore to Saul, and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite; 9 and he delivered them into the hands of the Gibeonites, and they hanged them on the hill before the Lord. So they fell, all seven together, and were put to death in the days of harvest, in the first days, in the beginning of barley harvest. 10 Now Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth and spread it for herself on the rock, from the beginning of harvest until the late rains poured on them from heaven. And she did not allow the birds of the air to rest on them by day nor the beasts of the field by night. 11 And David was told what Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, the concubine of Saul, had done.

  1. The Gibeon Gambit
    1. Josiah 9 – the Gibeonites fooled Joshua into believing that their city was far off, so he made a covenant with them
      1.  Gibeon was in Canaan 17 miles away over the ridge
      1.  Soon, Joshua had to defend Gibeon from attack
    1. Due to the Gibeonite deception Joshua made them servants
      1.  Gibeon was spared from destruction
      1.  Joshua had not consulted the Lord first
      1.  The Gibeonites were to be perpetual choppers of wood and drawers of water for the Tabernacle
  2. Brass sky
    1. For 3 years a drought gripped the land of Israel
      1.  David recognized this as punishment
      1.  David inquired of the Lord as to its cause
    1. God informs David that this was punishment for Saul massacring a number of Gibeonites
      1.  Saul treated the Gib. as undesirable aliens
      1.  Saul had no command from Lord to do this
      1.  Punishment came in David’s day; not Saul’s
    1. Saul was a rebellious self-willed tyrant
      1.  Saul did what he felt like doing
      1.  Saul sacrificed before battle instead of waiting for Samuel in battle against Philistines
      1.  He kept King Agag and the Amalekite livestock alive
      1.  He makes a foolish vow, curtailing his own victory
      1.  He seeks to kill David, who slayed Goliath and many Philistines in battle
      1.  With no provocation, he kills the Gibeonites
  3. The face of revenge
    1. David asks the Gibeonites what would appease them
      1.  Implication is that God would accept their price
      1.  Since Saul was dead, they wanted to execute seven male descendants of Saul at Gibeah (Saul’s town)
    1. The moral dilemma of the request
      1.  Ezekiel 18:20-32 a person is not supposed to be punished for another person’s crimes
      1.  Moral inversions: the sins of the fathers are visited on the 3rd and 4th generations (Exodus 34:5-7), Job’s 10 children die to test Job, Aachen’s family dies with Aachen, Jeroboam’s newborn son dies for his sins (1 Kings 14), Bathsheba’s son dies…
    1. David honors the request
      1.  He takes all 5 of Merab’s sons
        1.  Not Micah (copy error), who was childless
        1.  Merab could have been David’s wife
        1.  Merab was David’s sister-in-law + married to Adriel, Barzillai’s son (David’s benefactor)
      1.  David takes the 2 sons of Rizpah, Saul’s concubine
        1.  Ishbosheth accused Abner of lying with her
        1.  Rizpah stays with bodies night and day, chasing away birds and predators
      1.  After the executions, rain returned to the (vs. 14)
        1.  God accepted the price for Saul’s sins
        1.  Saul’s line would not prosper
      1.  Often the innocent are devoured with the guilty
        1.  Grief must be solaced by faith (purpose)
        1.  Only God understands moral inversions