Monday, June 30, 2008
In review, David went into Geshur on a raid while he lived with the Philistines. He took Haggith, the kings daughter, and married her. Her first son was Absalom who also revolted against David but was defeated. Now Adonijah, his brother, is doing the same thing in the same way.
v7 "And he conferred with Joab the son of Zeruiah, and with Abiathar the priest: and they following Adonijah helped him."
David is very old and lying on his bed. He did nothing until Nathan the prophet made a plan with Bathsheba, mother of Solomon, to advise the king and spur him into action. Bathsheba was to go tell the king, then Nathan would come in and confirm all she said. So they put the plan into play while Adonijah has declared himself king with most acknowledging his ploy.
v11 "Wherefore Nathan spake unto Bathsheba the mother of Solomon, saying Hast thou not heard that Adonijah the son of Haggith doth reign, and David our lord knoweth it not?"
So, they told David, basically these words and he set in motion a plan to have Solomon declared king and to sit on his throne. It was a power play and Solomon won. Solomon also had the promise of God on his side making a majority.
v33 "The king also said unto them, Take with you the servants of your lord, and cause Solomon my son to ride upon mine own mule, and bring him down to Gibon: v34 And let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him there king over Israel: and blow ye with the trumpet and say God save king Solomon."
So it was that Solomon became king instead of Adonijah.
v51 "And it was told Solomon, saying Behold Adonijah fearth king Solomon: for lo he hath caught hold on the horns of the altar... v52 And Solomon said, If he will shew himself a worthy man, there shall not an hair of him fall to the earth: but if wickedness shall be found in him, he shall die."
Some of David's people went over to Adonijah and made a grave mistake. Joab was one, Abiathar the priest was another. We will read about them later. We must not forget that God made a covenant with David that his throne was established through the generations. Satan will do what he can to change that.
Psalm 2:2 "The kings of the earth set themselves and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. v4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Bible study, David, Kings, Adonijah, Joab, Nathan, Milton Southerland. David is old. Adonijah tries to become king. Solomon prevails.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Elijah comes on the scene in this book. Solomon becomes king and the temple is built. The kingdom is divided. It covers a period of 118 according to Ussher.
Israel seems destined to be divided between Judah and the rest of the country. It may get a little confusing when we refer to Israel when it has sometimes included Judah and sometimes not. Later the name Samaria comes up and we will try to explore that change.
The old feelings will come back in this book if they ever left as shown in this verse:
I Kings 12:16 "So when all Israel saw that the king hearkened not unto them, the people answered the king, saying What portion have we in David? neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse, to your tents, O Israel, now see to thine own house, David. So Israel departed unto their tents."
Elijah means my God is Jehovah. He was from the highlands of Gilead east of Jordan. He prophesied of things which mostly happened right away for all to see. He was similar to John the Baptist if he was not Elijah himself. Elijah was present at the mount when Christ was transfigured.
I Kings 17:1 "And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead said unto Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word."
So we will see the death of David, rise of Solomon and Elijah and the division of the kingdom. It sounds like an exciting book.
Psalm 119:9 "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word."
It is not enough to know the word. One must take heed.
Keywords: Old Old Story,blog,Bible Study, Kings, Solomon, David, Samaria, Israel David dies and Solomon reigns.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
First off David was not suppose to number the people. He was suppose to depend on the LORD who had been faithful to him and not in the strength of numbers of men. So he got in trouble for doing this and 70,000 died of Israel because of David's sin.
v13 "So Gad came to David, and told him, and said unto him, Shall seven years of famine come unto thee in thy land? or wilt thou flee three months before thine enemies, while they pursue thee? or that there be three days pestilence in the land? now advise, and see what answer I shall return to him that sent me."
Gad was a prophet and it was the LORD who sent him. Just as Samuel had come to Saul after he saved some of the enemy spoils when he was suppose to destroy all of it.
So the angel came through Israel and killed 70,000 but stopped when the LORD told him to and said it was enough. His sword was stretched out over Jerusalem when he stopped at Arunah's threshing floor.
v16 "And when the angel stretched out his hand upon Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed the people, It is enough: stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD was by the threshingplace of Araunah the Jebusite."
Repented here means a change of mind. Another account of these events can be found in I Chronicles 21. David was instructed to build an altar there and so he bought the property and did as he was instructed. Here is David's plea to the LORD.
v17 "And David spake unto the LORD when he saw the angel that smote the people, and said, Lo, I have sinned and I have done wickedly; but these sheep, what have they done? let thine hand, I pray thee be against me, and against my father's house."
Once the offerings were made the event was over and the plague was stayed from Israel.
Now, I know Bible scholars have noticed the difference in verse one of chapter 24 of II Samuel and the first verse of I Chronicles 21. So I will type them both here:
II Samuel 24:1 "And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah."
I Chronicles 21:1 "And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel."
I do not pretend to understand totally, the mystery of God's permissive will. The book of Job gives some insight where Satan was permitted to take Job's family and stuff away because of the conversation Satan had with God. In that case, it was a test of Job and perhaps to show Satan that righteousness transcended what one possesses.
Job 1:8 "And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?"
We know that the story finally had a happy ending but the suffering of Job was very real.
I've also thought of Jesus and how he was tempted. After 40 days he was offered bread. Then the earthly kingdom, then he dared him to jump off a building to prove he was indeed God. Jesus had nothing to prove. Satan knew who he was talking to.
Sometimes it is hard not to wonder why Satan is given so much slack in his leash. We know God could confine him to hell now just as easily as later and the suffering would be over. I think it goes to our acceptance that God is God and we cannot understand all his ways and all his purpose for what he does and allows to happen. We do know the last of the story and must simply trust him in the mean time.
Jeremiah 17:5: "Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD."
In the apparent difference in the two verses above, I believe it is a simple matter of the LORD allowing Satan to tempt David for reasons of His own. We can speculate but would still not know. Did David need to learn something? Was it a judgment on the 70,000? Was it as I said to remind David and Israel that the LORD still was their deliverer (and destroyer) and not man. The old song said "We will understand it better bye and bye."
Psalm 89:6-7 "For who in the heavens can be compared unto the LORD? who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the LORD? God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Bible Study, David, Samuel, Joab, Jerusalem, Israel, Milton Southerland. David numbers the people.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
This chapter contains some of the last words of David and a recap of why the mighty men were mighty. The story can also be found in I Chronicles 11:10-47. I think David is giving credit to his men who fought for and with him down through the years. These were those who came to him when he was at his lowest and hiding in a cave.
v11-13 "And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. And the Philistines were gathered together into a troop, where was a piece of ground full of lentiles: and the people fled from the Philistines. But he stood in the midst of the ground, and defended it, and slew the Philistines: and the LORD wrought a great victory."
These verses are but one example where one man stood his ground and fought while others fled. David also remembers to give God the glory for the victories.
I suggest reading the entire chapter. It gives insight into what it was like for some magnificent warriors of David's time. David must have been a fierce fighter to rise above such men.
Psalm 112: 7 "He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Bible Study, David, Philistines, mighty men, Milton Southerland
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
David is getting very old. He fainted in battle in our previous chapter and was told by the people that they would not let him go on the battlefield anymore. You can refer to Psalm 18 also for this song.
There is so much in this song. A teacher or preacher could glean a number of outlines from it. I personally noticed the text verses where David describes who the LORD is to him: rock, shield, salvation, hightower, refuge, saviour. A hightower would certainly be valuable in those days so they could see far and what the enemy was doing. But also, a refuge when there was no other place to run. A shield when the enemy strikes. A saviour to reach down and get you when there was no hope.
Then there are the things David faced:
v5-6 "When the waves of death, compassed me, the floods of ungodly men made me afraid; The sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me;"
I'm sure David was familiar with death staring him in the face but he has been a warrior for a long time and although he was killing the enemies of Israel, I also think he just got tired of seeing all the death before him. Then he prayed: we know that David prayed a lot. The results are shown in the next verses.
The LORD got involved and David describes the way it looked to him.
v8 "Then the earth shook and trembled: the foundations of heaven moved and shook, because he was wroth. v9 There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of the mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. v10 He bowed the heavens also and came down, and darkness was under his feet."
This is the picture of an angry God who came down to help his anointed when enemies tried to defeat him. The chapter goes on to tell of the deliverance. it is beautiful to read. Just a short outline here: v7 the LORD did hear v10 He came down. v18 He delivered.
v51 "He is the tower of salvation for his king, and sheweth mercy to his anointed, unto David, and to his seed for evermore."
The last part is a reminder to us of the Davidic Covenant that the line of David would not fail and Christ would sit on his throne and rule Israel.
Psalm 54:2 "Hear my prayer, O God; give ear to the words of my mouth."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Bible Study, Samuel, David. David's Song of Deliverance. Milton Southerland
Monday, June 23, 2008
Vows are taken very seriously by the LORD. This passage refers back to Joshua 9 when the Gibeonites came to Israel (in disguise) and the result was that the princes of Israel promised that they would not harm them. Yet Saul apparently did attack them and the house of Saul is still responsible for breaking the vow made by the princes of Israel.
v3 "Wherefore David said unto the Gibeonites, What shall I do for you? and wherewith shall I make the atonement, that ye may bless the inheritance of the LORD?"
The Gibeonites decided they did not want monetary recompenses but rather seven sons of the house of Saul. David gave them but spared Mephibosheth. David had made a promise to Mephibosheth that he would eat at the kings table.
v9 "And he delivered them into the hands of the Gibeonites, and they hanged them in the hill before the LORD: and 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."
It was a sad thing to do. I can't say I understand it but it did satisfy the breaking of the vow. David then took the bones of them and Saul and Jonathan and buried them.
v12 "And David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son from the men of Jabesh-gilead, which had stolen them from the street of Beth-shan, where the Philistines had hanged them, when the Philistines had slain Saul in Giboa: v13 And he brought up from thence the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son and they gathered the bones of them that were hanged."
The chapter switches gear in verse 15 and deals with another war with the Philistines. Verse 15 tells of the first time when David got tired in battle. It is a sign that he is getting older and the people told him that he would not go into battle anymore.
v15 "Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel, and David went down and his servants with him and fought against the Philistines and David waxed faint."
We deal here with relatives of Goliath. When David was almost killed by one of the giants, Abishai rescued him and killed the giant named Ishbi-benob. v16.
Another giant was killed by Sibbechai. The giants name was Saph.
Elhanan of Bethlehem slew Goliath's brother. Then one with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot was slain by David's nephew.
v22 "These four were born to the giant in Gath, and fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants."
It's a little funny and I heard a preacher say it once. The question was why did David get so many stones when he fought Goliath when he only needed one? The answer was that David heard that Goliath had brothers and wanted to take care of all of them. Anyway, I don't know what David was thinking but here we have the rest of the story.
Psalm 51:17 "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise."
Key words: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Goliath's family, Philistines, Gibeonites, Milton Southerland. Seven hanged. Four giants killed.
Friday, June 20, 2008
The tribe of Benjamin appears to me to be the instigator for a lot of trouble. Saul was of that tribe and the son of Kish. He was the first anointed king but was rejected for disobedience. So, maybe it is just the tribes reluctance to accept another king of a different tribe. It seems, though, that Israel (10 tribes) have chosen on several occasions to split off. They did it with Absalom and now with Sheba.
v6 "And David said to Abishai, Now shall Sheba the son of Bichri do us more harm than did Absalom; take thou thy lord's servants and pursue after him, lest he get him fenced cities and escape us."
David had first told Amasa to assemble the men of Judah but he was late. He then spoke to Abishai about it. Joab ended up leading the pursuit of Sheba. Joab met Amasa on the way and pretended to kiss him. Joab's sword had fallen out but he had it in his hand. Amasa did not know that and was unaware when Joab stabbed him in the fifth rib.
v10 "But Amasa took no heed to the sword that was in Joab's hand: so he smote him therewith in the fifth rib, and shed out his bowels to the ground, and struck him not again; and he died. So Joab and Abishai his brother pursued after Sheba the son of Bichri."
These brothers were sticking together and apparently found no place for a stranger, even if he was chosen by David to lead the army. They went on after Sheba but the people stopped for Amasa was bleeding in the road. Someone finally moved him to the side and covered him, then they followed on.
v15 "And they came and besieged him in Abel of Bethmaachah, and they cast up a bank against the city and it stood in the trench and all the people that were with Joab battered the wall, to throw it down."
A woman came to the wall to talk to Joab. Joab would stop only if Sheba was turned over to them. The woman got the men together and cut off Sheba's head and threw it over the wall. The battle and another rebellion was over.
Joab is over all the host of Israel. Then the last verses tell of those who kept up with things and recorded them.
Psalm 51:10 "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Joab, Amasa, Abishai, Sheba, Milton Southerland. Sheba rebells against David.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
There is so much in this chapter that we will have to break it down by subject:
-Israel and Judah conflict over bringing David back to Jerusalem
v1 "And it was told Joab, Behold, the king weepeth and mourneth for Absalom."
The king was upset over Absalom and went privately to weep but the people heard of it and were distressed instead of being happy for their victory. Joab was upset with David for causing the people stress and confronted him, a little too boldly I think. But the king did come down to the gate and greet the people.
v5 "And Joab came into the house to the king, and said, Thou hast shamed this day the faces of all thy servants, which this day have saved thy life, and the lives of thy sons and of thy daughters, and the lives of thy wives, and the lives of thy concubines; v6 In that thou lovest thine enemies and hatest thy friends..."
Quiet bold I'd say. Maybe it was not the time to weep for Absalom but it was Joab who killed him against the king's wishes. I had a colonel once who called me by my first name instead of by my rank (Marines). I was flattered but I never called him Joe. He was sir to me, no matter what he called me. I think a subordinate can get too familiar with his leader.
David did not got marching back into Jerusalem after his victory. He wanted to be asked to come back. Israel now remembered the victories David had won for them and was ready to bring him back even though they had rebelled against him. Judah had not done so and David rebuffed the for it.
v12-13 "Ye are my brethren, ye are my bones and my flesh: wherefore then are ye the last to bring back the king? And say ye to Amasa, Art thou not my bone, and of my flesh? God do so to me and more also, if thou be not captain of the host before me continually in the room of Joab."
It seems Joab has been demoted and replaced with Amasa. Amasa is mentioned in chapter 17 verse 25. "And Absalom made Amasa captain of the host instead of Joab: which Amasa was a man's son, whose name was Ithra an Israelite that went in to Abigail the daughter of Nahash, sister to Zeruiah Joab's mother." See also I Chronicles 2:17. This Abigail was not the wife of David but another who was the sister of Joab's mother. Amasa was Joab's first cousin I think.
It was told David that Mephibosheth had gone over to the other side by Ziba but he had not. He had intended to ride to David but Ziba took his donkey and he could not walk because of his lame feet.
v25-26 "And it came to pass, when he was come to Jerusalem to meet the king, that the king said unto him, Wherefore wentest not thou with me, Mephibosheth? And he answered, My lord, O king, my servant deceived me; for thy servant said, I will saddle me an ass, that I may ride thereon, and go to the king; because thy servant is lame."
The old argument started up again over who the king belonged to Judah or Israel. The next chapter tells of the trouble that caused.
v43 "And the men of Israel answered the men of Judah an said, We have ten parts in the king and we have also more right in David than ye: why then did ye despise us, that our advice should not be first had in bringing back our king? And the words of the men of Judah were fiercer than the words of the men of Israel."
One day they followed Absalom and sought to kill the king, the next they are ready to kill each other over him. It would have been a good thing for them to just settle down and enjoy the land that flowed with milk and honey.
Psalm 51:8 "Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice."
keywords: Old Old Story, Bible study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Joab, Israel, Judah, Amasa, Mephibosheth, Milton Southerland. David returned to Jerusalem to more strife between Israel and Judah.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Absalom led the battle against David's servants. David divided his warriors into three groups and would have gone with them but the people would not hear of it. The three leaders were: Joab, Abishai his brother and Ittai the Gittite.
We know of Joab and Abishai but Ittai was a stranger and exile from his own land. David had asked him to return to Jerusalem when they fled because he was not required to fight being a stranger and not yet in the country long. Ittai declined to go and stated he would live or die with the king.
v5 "And the king commanded Joab and Abishai and Ittai saying Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom. And all the people heard when the king gave all the captains charge concerning Absalom."
Absalom rode upon a mule through the forest of Mount Ephraim and his hair was caught in the branches of a great oak tree.
v16 "And a certain man saw it and told Joab and said, Behold I saw Absalom hanged in an oak."
Joab went to the place and found Absalom still alive and hanging by his hair. He then wondered to the man why he had not killed Absalom. The man reminded Joab of David's orders and made this statement.
v12 "And the man said unto Joab, Though I should receive a thousand shekels of silver in mine hand, yet would I not put forth mine hand against the king's son; for in our hearing the king charged thee and Abishai and Ittai, saying Beware that one touch the young man Absalom."
Joab did not take the warning but killed Absalom.
v14 "Then said Joab, I may not tarry thus with thee. And he took three darts in his hand, and thrust them through the heart of Absalom, while he was yet alive in the midst of the oak. v15 And ten young men that bare Joab's armour compassed about and smote Absalom, and slew him. v16 And they took Absalom and cast him into a great pit in the wood, and laid a very great heap of stones upon him: and all Israel fled every one to his tent."
The balance of the chapter is a story in its self. It is the story of two runners. One had a message the other did not. David is waiting at the gate for word of the battle and particularly Absalom. The first runner was at first denied to run but insisted but Joab said to go ahead an run but he did not have the message to tell David. He told David that all was well but David was concerned about Absalom and found out only when the second runner came that he was dead.
v33 "And the king was much moved and went up to the chamber over the gate and wept and as he went thus he said, O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! I would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!
So ends the rebellion of Absalom.
Cost of David's sin with Bathsheba or the effort to break the Davidic Covenant by the Enemy.
-the child dies that was conceived by David and Bathsheba
-Amnon -David's first born raped Tamar his half-sister
-Absalom-brother of Tamar- killed Amnon
-Absalom came home
-David lost Israel to Absalom
-David back in charge
Psalm 51:5 "Behold I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Absalom, Joab, Ittai, Abishai, Milton Southerland. Absalom is killed by Joab and his men.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Aphithophel was David's counsellor. See chapter 15 verse 12. His counsel to Absalom was to immediately take 12,000 men and pursue David and kill him only and bring the people back. v1-2
Hushai advised against that and said it would be better to gather all the people and go after David. v11 You see, Aphithophel's counsel would probably have worked but Hushai was on David's side and diverted that plan, most likely, saving David's life.
v14 "And Absalom and all the men of Israel said, The counsel of Hushai the Archite is better than the counsel of Ahithophel. For the LORD had appointed to defeat the good counsel of Ahitophel, to the intent that the LORD might bring evil upon Absalom."
Hushai told the priests Zadok and Abiathar what Aphithophel had said and sent them to warn David. verse 16. Hushai is apparently a spy for David.
The two men went to warn David but were in danger of getting caught when a woman hid them in a well.
v19 "And the woman took and spread a covering over the well's mouth, and spread ground corn thereon, and the thing was not known."
David got the message and escaped by passing over Jordan. Aphithophel seeing his plan was scraped and betrayal was known went home and hanged himself. verse 23.
v26 "So, Israel and Absalom pitched in the land of Gilead."
But the LORD took care of David and refreshed him in the wilderness. A man called Shobi, Machir, and Barzillai all brought provisions for David and the people. So while Absalom and his army are pitched in Gilead, David is being cared for by the LORD and is getting strong for battle.
v28-29 "Brought beds, and basons, and earthern vessels, and wheat, and barley, and flour, and parched corn, and beans, and lentiles, and parched pulse, And honey, and butter, and sheep, and cheese of kine, for David, and for the people that were with him, to eat: for they said, The people is hungry, and weary, and thirsty, in the wilderness."
As I said before, it takes more than being in the king's house to make a king. A battle is about to be fought. On one side is Absalom and all Israel. On the other side is David, his mighty men and the LORD. Next chapter.
Psalm 51:7 "Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Keywords: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Bible study, Samuel, David, Absalom, Milton Southerland. David and Absalom prepare for battle.
Monday, June 16, 2008
II Samuel 16:13-14 "And as David and his men went by the way, Shimei went along on the hill's side over against him, and cursed as he went, and threw stones at him, and cast dust. And the king, and all the people that were with him, came weary, and refreshed themselves there."
v5 "And when king David came to Bahurim, behold thence came out a man of the family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera: he came forth, and cursed still as he came.
David is on the run from Absalom. I believe his first concern was to get his people to safety. No doubt, he is also praying and working out the why's of the situation. He may remember Absalom going to Geshur, the home of his mother, after he killed Amnon for raping his sister. Absalom must have built up a resentment for his father during this time and especially when David refused to see him after Joab went to get him from Geshur.
In this chapter, David and his people are on their journey to the wilderness. A man of Saul's family walks beside them on the opposite hill and cursed David. Some of David's men wanted to go take off his head but David told them to let him curse. It seems David may have thoughthe had it coming.
v9-10 "Then said Abishai the son of Zeruiah unto the king, Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? let me go over, I pray thee and take off his head. And the king said, What have I to do with you, ye son of Zeruiah? so let him curse, because the LORD hath said unto him. Curse David, Who shall then say, Wherefore hast thou done so?"
So, David appears to have lost the kingdom but it takes more to make a king than dwelling in the king's house. He is being cursed by one of Saul's family. He is also approached by one who is suppose to be looking after a crippled man. Ziba was the servant of Mephibosheth. Ziba lies that Mephibosheth has gone over to Absalom.
v3 "And the king said, And where is thy master's son? And Ziba said unto the king, Behold he abideth at Jerusalem: for he said To day shall the house of Israel restore me the kingdom of my father."
David had already given Mephibosheth all the property back that was due him. Ziba had the story wrong for we will see soon that Mephibosheth is in bad shape when David got back to Jerusalem for he had not taken care of himself at all in David's absence. II Samuel 19:24.
Absalom now enters Jerusalem and sought advice from two advisers: Hushai and Ahithophel.
Absalom asked Hushai why he changed loyalty and he replied that he served whom the people chose. Ahithopel told him to have relations with David's concubines so that the people could see that David would not hate Absalom and thus win favor with the people.
v22 "So they spread Absalom a tent upon the top of the house; and Absalom went in unto his father's concubines in the sight of all Israel."
Needless to say, this was a shameful act and unnecessary. Absalom obviously had the favor of the people already for many followed him.
There is the situation: David is on the run with his people to the wilderness. Absalom is in the king's house and has already shamed it. This seems to be a very low point for David. The list of his problems after his sin with Bathsheba grows or is it as I suggested an attempt by Satan to break the Davidic Covenant.
There baby conceived out of wedlock died
Amnon raped his sister
Absalom fled to Geshur
Absalom led a rebellion against David
David is hiding in the wilderness
Psalm 51:1 "Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness, according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Absalom,Milton Southerland. David fled from Absalom.
Friday, June 13, 2008
Refer to Judges 9 particularly verses 29 and 38.
Absalom waited and played politics at the gate of the city. He promised the people to take care of their conflicts. Of course, we know that in and conflict someone is wrong and another is right, so promising all to get favor was deceptive. But Absalom stood at the gate early in the mornings and pandered the people.
Gradually, he won them over. There came a day when he felt he was strong enough to take over, then he went to Hebron and declared himself ruler. He was so strong and so many followed him that it forced David to flee for his life. Absalom is the son of the daughter of Geshur, a place David invaded and where Absalom went during his flight after killing Amnon.
v2 And Absalom rose up early, and stood beside the way of the gate: and it was so, that when any man that had a controversy came to the king for judgment, then Absalom called unto him, and said, Of what city art thou? And he said Thy servant is of one of the tribes of Israel."
You get the picture. 'Hi there. Where are you from?'
There are a few things wrong with how Absalom assumed power. First of all it was not ordained of God. Secondly, he lied at the outset to cover his move to Hebron.
v8 "For thy servant vowed a vow while I abode at Geshur in Syria saying If the LORD shall bring me again indeed to Jerusalem, then I will serve the LORD."
I don't know if he vowed a vow or not but he lied in that paying a vow was not his purpose for going to Hebron. It was a way to go without making David suspicious.
So Absalom gathered some important people of the kingdom to give his move creditability and the deed was done.
v13 "And there came a messenger to David, saying, The hearts of the men of Israel are after Absalom. v14 And David said unto all his servants that were with him at Jerusalem, Arise, and let us flee; for we shall not else escape from Absalom: make speed to depart lest he overtake us suddenly and bring evil upon us, and smite the city with the edge of the sword."
David was an old warrior. He knew the importance of speed and of making strategic moves. He left not only to save himself and his servants but to avoid having Jerusalem besieged and damaged.
David sorted out the people. Most went with him but some were sent back to be spies. Some were sent back because they would slow down their flight. The ark was sent back to Jerusalem.
v25 "And the king said unto Zadok, Carry back the ark of God into the city: if I shall find favour in the eyes of the LORD, he will bring me again, and shew me both it and his habitation: v26 But if he thus say, I have no delight in thee, behold here am I, let him do to me as seemeth good unto him."
David had faith that he would be back in Jerusalem if it was the LORD's will. He was content to die if not.
v30 "And David went up by the ascent of mount Olivet and wept as he went up and had his head covered and he went barefoot, and all the people that was with him covered every man his head and they went up weeping as they went up."
We can see the likeness of David's journey here, after he was rejected as king, with the journey of Christ after his rejection. In verse 23 David crossed the brook Kidron, in verse 30 he ascended Mount Olivet.
v37 "So Hushai David's friend, came into the city and Absalom came into Jerusalem."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Absalom,Milton Southerland. Absalom takes the kingdom from David.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Absalom is in Geshur after killing Amnon by the hand of his servants because he had raped his sister Tamar. David wants Absalom to come home but is reluctant to send for him. Joab got this woman to pretend to be mourning and that people were trying to harm her. David goes along with her and promises protection, then she brought up the subject of Absalom or the banished. David then realized that Joab was behind the whole thing. Joab is called and sent to get Absalom but still the king refused to see Absalom face to face.
v7 "And behold the whole family is risen against thine handmaid, and they said Deliver him that smote his brother, that we may kill him, for the life of his brother whom he slew: and we will destroy the heir also: and so they shall quench my coal which is left, and shall not leave to my husband neither name nor remainder upon this earth."
The story reminds me of the story of Cain and Abel where Abel was killed and Cain banished. After David sees through the tale and Joab gets Absalom to bring him home there seems to be that slow hatred building in Absalom. He waited years before he avenged Tamar by killing Amnon, now he waits again.
Absalom, after two years, decided it was time for him to see his father the king so he sent for Joab but Joab would not come. Absalom had a way of getting Joab's attention though.
v30 "Therefore he said unto his servants, See, Joab's field is near mine and he hath barley there; go and set it on fire. And Absalom's servants set the field on fire."
Joab showed up then to see what Absalom wanted and to ask why he set his fields on fire. The answer was that he had been sent for and would not come. He then gave Joab a message for the king.
v32 "And Absalom answered Joab, Behold I sent unto thee, saying Come hither, that I may send thee to the king, to say Wherefore am I come from Geshur? it had been good for me to have been there still now therefore let me see the king's face; and if there be any iniquity in me, let him kill me."
Absalom is quite a character. During this two years of waiting, Absalom had three sons and a daughter born in his family and he named the daughter after his sister Tamar.
v33 "So Joab came to the king, and told him: and when he had called for Absalom he came to the king and bowed himself on his face to the ground before the king, and the king kissed Absalom.
We will hear more from Absalom.
After David's sin, he suffers loss. Or as an alternative I proposed that it could be Satan trying to wipe out the line of David because of the Davidic Covenant.
-Bathsheba's child died.
-Amnon the firstborn has raped his sister and been killed by Absalom
-Absalom was banished and has now returned
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Absalom, Joab, Amnon, Tamar, Milton Southerland. Absalom returns to Jerusalem.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
A note to start: The name Ammon (with two m's) was a place where battles were fought, the name Amnon is the name of one of David's sons.
v1 "And it came to pass after this, that Absalom the son of David had a fair sister, whose name was Tamar: and Amnon the son of David loved her."
It is important to remember the relationships here. Absalom was the daughter of the king of Geshur where David made a raid in a previous chapter. Amnon was Absalom's half brother and was born of a Jezureelitess (those original inhabitants who were not cast out of Jerusalem). Amnon was David's firstborn in Hebron. (Chapter 3) I cannot find who the mother of Tamar was but she may have been of Absalom's mother since verse 1 points out that Absalom had a fair sister.
Without going into great detail, Amnon tricked Tamar into cooking for him in his sight, using his sickness as an excuse. When he got her alone, he forced himself on her. She begged him not to and to only ask the king for her, but Amnon took the cheap way.
v15 "Then Amnon hated her exceedingly; so that the hatred wherewith he hated her was greater than the love wherewith he had loved her. And Amnon said unto her, Arise, be gone."
Even then Tamar told him to not send her away that sending her away after the act was worse than the act herself. No one likes to be used and cast aside.
Absalom told his sister to hold her peace. He then hatched a two year plan to get back at Amnon. He was neutral with Amnon during this time. He had a slow burning hatred for him.
In sheep shearing time, Absalom invited all the sons of David to the celebration. While there he had his servants kill Amnon while he was merry with wine. Then Absalom fled to the country of his mother's birth, Geshur.
v28 "Now Absalom had commanded his servants,saying Mark ye now when Amnon's heart is merry with wine, and when I say unto you, Smite Amnon; then kill him, fear not, have not I commanded you? Be courageous, and be valiant."
I'm of two minds concerning why this is happening in David's household. On the one had, I remember many sermons where it is said that this was all part of the punishment for David's great sin with Bathsheba. But we learned that the Lord laid that sin aside although taking the child to remove any reward for sin. On the other hand, I think of the Davidic Covenant where it is promised that David's kingdom would be established forever. We find in Chronicles that Satan, himself, showed up to tempt David to sin in numbering the people. So, I've thought that these things may have been an effort on the part of Satan to destroy the Davidic Covenant and prevent the establishment of the forever kingdom. (Remember Cain and Abel) Regardless, we all know that Satan is always on the job doing his destruction to God's children.
v39 "And the soul of king David longed to go forth unto Absalom: for he was comforted concerning Amnon, seeing he was dead."
Psalm 51:7 "Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Absalom, Tamar, Amnon, Geshur, Milton Southerland. Amnon's sin with is sister.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
It's tough to write about David in his worst time. Here is a great warrior and a great king who shows kindness to his people. He has yielded to temptation and sinned against God. He realized and accepted the truth when Nathan, the prophet, came to him with the story of a man who only had one lamb. A rich man, who had many, took the one lamb from the man. David was angry at this point.
v5 "And David's anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, As the LORD liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die:"
Then Nathan drops the bombshell:
v7 "And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel and I delivered the out of the hand of Saul:"
He goes on to tell David of the good things God had done for him and of the cost of David's sin. David is heartbroken and repented.
v13 "And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die."
David did not die then but lived to be an old man, as we will see. But there was still the cost of sin to be paid. There is an old saying that 'God says what he means and means what he says.' Too many people look upon God like they would look upon a leader of a country. They can do as they please and dare them to catch them. They can ignore commands and think there is no consequence.
The LORD is the maker of the universe. He is the one who raises up kings and leaders for nations. He is also the one who removes them as he did Saul when Saul disobeyed. I believe in the lovingkindness of God. I also believe that obeying him is not optional. A too small view of God is dangerous. He is not a playmate on the playground of life. He will be a friend but he is always God and in control.
David sinned with Bathsheba and the result of that sin is taken away from them in the form of the death of the child.
v14 "Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die."
The child became sick and died in seven days. David fasted and mourned but the decision was not reversed. Even kings must obey the LORD.
David took Bathsheba as his wife after this and they were blessed with another child. His name was Solomon.
The balance of the chapter is David going off to war with Joab and defeating the Ammons.
We learn from this chapter that sin does not pay. We also learn that God's commands are not to be ignored. We also learned that sin gives occasion to the enemies of the LORD.
Psalm 6:6 "I am weary with my groaning: all the night make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible study, Old Testament, Samuel, David, Bathsheba, Ammon, Milton Southerland. David finds that sin has a cost.
Monday, June 09, 2008
Perhaps, the most told Bible story about David except maybe the story of Goliath.
Bathsheba was a beautiful woman and married. A series of events took place in this chapter leading to this great sin of David. He was home while his army was out fighting. v1 "...the time when kings go forth to battle..." . He acted on the temptation by enquiring after the woman. Then, he ignored the fact that she was another man's wife. v3 "...the wife of Uriah the Hittite.."
With that information, still he sent for the woman and lay with her. She conceived a child then another series of events lead to another great sin. He had a man killed who was Uriah, Bathsheba's husband, to cover up the first sin.
But first, he sent for Uriah to come home. David did all he could do to get Uriah to go home to his wife which would have cleared David in the eyes of men. But Uriah would not go home:
v11 "And Uriah said unto David, The ark and Israel and Judah abide in tents, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields: shall I then go unto mine house, to eat and to drink and to be with my wife? as thy soul liveth, I will not do this thing."
It is here that David gives Uriah a message to carry to Joab. It is his own death sentence. Uriah is put in the heat of the battle and is killed. David then took Bathsheba and marries her.
v27 "And when the mourning was past, David sent and fetched her to his house, and she became his wife and bare him a son. But the thing that David had done displeased the LORD."
Although all appeared to be hidden, that last phrase will explain what happens next: it displeased the LORD.
Psalm 119:77 "Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Bible Study, Old Testament, Samuel, Uriah, David, Bathsheba. David's great sin with Bathsheba.
Friday, June 06, 2008
David is at rest from war. The king of Ammon has died. David seeks to show kindness to his son Hanun as the king of Ammon had shown to David.
Hanun had some bad advisers. They convenience Hanun that David was sending spies in preparation for an attack. So the shameful act in our text verse was done. David met the men and told them to stay in Jericho until their beards grew back.
v6 "And when the children of Ammon, saw that they stank before David; the children of Ammon sent and hired the Syrians of Bethrehob, and the Syrians of Zoba, twenty thousand footmen, and of king Maacah a thousand men, and of Ishtob twelve thousand men."
Joab is sent out at first with his army to fight. He is confronted by the enemy on two fronts. I'm reminded of one of the Marines heroes, Chesty Puller, who was once surrounded by the enemy. He is quoted as saying "We got them right where I want them now, we can't miss." Well Joab came up with a great battle plan.
v9 When Joab saw that the front of the battle was against him before and behind, he chose of all the choice men of Israel, and put them in array against the Syrians: v10 And the rest of the people he delivered into the hand of Abishai his brother, that he might put them in array against the children of Ammon. v11 And he said, If the Syrians be too strong for me, then thou shalt help me: but if the children of Ammon be too strong for thee, then I will come and help thee."
The enemy was defeated in that battle but they brought up more Syrians from across Jordan with Shobach as captain. David then joined the war and defeated that army killing Shobach.
v19 "And when all the kings that were servants to Hadarezer saw that they were smitten before Israel, they made peace with Israel and served them. So the Syrians feared to help the children of Ammon any more."
That pretty much settled things for the time being. Time has passed since David became king. We can see from reading that David's sons were already rulers in Israel.
Psalm 34:19 "Many are the afflictions of the righteous; but the LORD delivereth him out of them all."
Keywords: Bible study, Old Testament, David, Samuel, Syria, Ammon, Milton Southerland.
Thursday, June 05, 2008
I'm sure David misses his old friend. He could sure use him now. Jonathan had said that they would be together when David was king but he was killed and it did not happen.
In this chapter, we have a picture of grace. David enquires of some descendant of Jonathan's and he is found but crippled. David brought him into the king's house and made him as one of his sons. He was to eat with the king and those of the house where he had been were to be his servants to tend the land of Saul which David gave to Mephibosheth. See my lesson here.
v3 "And the king said, Is there not yet any of the house of Saul, that I may shew the kindness of God unto him? And Ziba said unto the king, Jonathan hath yet a son, which is lame of his feet."
David did not care about Mephibosheth's condition. As a lame man, he would be no use in war. He could do little work. In fact, I can see no way he could benefit the king at all. It was all done for Mephibosheth's sake.
v7 "And David said unto him, Fear not: for I will surely shew thee kindness for Jonathan thy father's sake, and will restore thee all the land of Saul thy father; and thou shalt eat bread at my table continually."
Mephibosheth had lost the kingdom. Saul was rejected of God because of his sin. Jonathan was David's friend though and because of Jonathan, Mephibosheth received the kindness of the king. Remember Adam lost it all when he sinned. Man wondered on earth with no hope. Then came Jesus and gave his life for sinners. So for Jesus sake, we are shown the kindness of God.
v13 "So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king's table; and was lame on both his feet."
One song says 'Empty and broken I came back to Him...'
Psalm 40:2 "He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock and established my goings."
Bible Study, Old Testament, David, Mephibosheth, Samuel, grace, Milton J Southerland, . Mephibosheth is brought to the king's table by David.
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
In this chapter the nation is united. Israel and Judah have come together under David as one nation Israel.
David secures the kingdom by conquering nations surrounding its borders. He defeated the Philistines and others. Garrisons were established in Syria and others.
v2 "And he smote Moab..." v3 "David smote also Hadadezer the son of Rehob, king of Zobah, as he went to recover his border at the river Euphrates."
v5 "And when the Syrians of Damascus came to succour Hadadezer king of Zobah, David slew of the Syrians two and twenty thousand men."
The spoils of war, the gold and brass, David brought to Jerusalem and dedicated them to the LORD. The brass was used by Solomon to make the sea of brass.
How were these things known later to be written in these books so accurately. This verse explains:
v16 "And Joab the son of Zeruiah was over the host; and Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was recorder; v17 And Zadok the son of Ahitub, and Ahimelech the son of Abiathar, were the priests; and Seraiah was scribe;"
So, as the actions were taken, the people were on the spot to take down everything that happened. It is a blessing for us that they were doing so.
David's kingdom is established and pretty much secure now. At least, until someone tries David's patience in chapter 10.
Psalm 68:17 "The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place."
Key words: Old Old Story, Old Testament, David, Samuel, Milton Southerland. David establishes his kingdom.
Monday, June 02, 2008
The Davidic Covenant (v8-17)is very important, perhaps most important, in our studies. It refers to the reign of Jesus Christ on the throne of David.
There have been many covenants made through our studies. Each represented a time in the development of the nation Israel. The Davidic Covenant gives four points: 1) the posterity of the family (house) v16 2) royal authority (throne) v13 3) it is perpetual (for ever) v13 4) the kingdom itself (sphere of rule) v10 v16. (modified from Scofield's notes)
v16 "And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever."
The LORD will make it happen.
The chapter opens with David and Nathan sitting in his new cedar house. The wars are over for a time of rest for David. Now David gets the idea to build a house for the LORD. He did not think it right that he should have a cedar house and the LORD be in a tent tabernacle.
v2 "That the king said unto Nathan the prophet, See now, I dwell in an house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains."
Nathan told him to go ahead but the LORD met Nathan that night and change the plans. I believe the LORD was impressed with David's desire but it was not to be so. the LORD gave a review of His years walking in the tent wherever Israel went. Then he told David he would build him a house. It was not to be another cedar house but a family-tree that reached to the Son of God.
Here we see David's posterity spoken of as a son. Sometimes it seems to be referring to Solomon and Israel as a whole but prophetically it speaks of Christ too.
v13 "He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. v14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: v15 But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee."
Acts 2:30 "Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;" Suggest reading surrounding verses.
So David will not get to build the LORD a house or the temple but he was blessed in that his legacy would never pass away. David is overwhelmed and praises the LORD in a long prayer that takes the rest of the chapter.
v27 "For thou, O LORD of hosts, God of Israel, hast revealed to thy servant, saying I will build thee an house: therefore hath thy servant found in his heart to pray this prayer unto thee."
It is a chapter to remember. This covenant, the Davidic Covenant, is established for ever. We should remember it. We know that Solomon built the temple when he was king. The Davidic Covenant covers an eternal house.
Psalm 107:8-9 "O that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness."
Keywords: Old Old Story, Old Testament, Bible Study, Bible, gospel, Davidic Covenant, David, temple, house, Samuel, Milton Southerland. God has revealed the Davidic Covenant to David.