Oh Absalom [Part 2]
Are you ready for some good news?
When you are in Christ, you’re God’s child – no matter what.
“And the king was deeply moved and went up to the chamber over the gate and wept. And as he went, he said, ‘O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!’” (2 Samuel 18:33, ESV)
Absalom was a traitor, a murderer, a liar, a coveter, and a self-proclaimed enemy to his father, David. After having murdered his half-brother Amnon, Absalom spent three years in exile before returning and pretending to hold affection for his father. David was duped by his son who formed allegiances against David and eventually revolted. David fled Jerusalem and one day heard the news that Absalom had been killed.
Yesterday, we looked at David’s first shocking words to the messenger, “Is it well with the young man Absalom?” Even though his son was a traitorous enemy to the throne, David cared about Absalom’s well-being more than anything else. Then, when David learned that Absalom was dead, his next words showed his heart: “Oh Absalom, my son, my son!”
David wept for all that had been and could have been and all that would be. He wept for the fact that it need not have ended that way. He wept for the love that transcended the sins of the son.
What moves me in this verse is the repetition: “… my son, my son.” David didn’t call Absalom murderer, rebel, traitor, or liar, though Absalom was all those things. He called him son. This wasn’t a king with a thick skin who glossed over sin and moved on. This was a vulnerable, fatherly king who was wracked with pain because of the great love he had for the sinner who was his son.
Such is the love of God. Jesus wept similarly over the city: “Oh Jerusalem, Jerusalem….” Like the father of the prodigal, no amount of human sin makes God disown His children. If David called Absalom son, how much more does the Father call you His own? And that’s the Gospel!
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