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Bible Pathways - April 16, 2006

April 16, 2006

Read 2 Samuel 15

In Today's Reading:

Absalom wins over national leaders; he leads a revolt and overthrow of David; David flees in fear of his son; Absalom's death

After Absalom had been in exile three years (II Samuel 13:34-38), Joab, his nephew and commander-in-chief of David's army, initiated a clever plot which persuaded David to bring Absalom home.

About two years after Absalom had returned from exile (14:28), with an arrogant, shameless, and defiant attitude, he demanded that Joab arrange to have the king see him. David promptly forgave Absalom, who then began an ambitious and deceptive scheme of conspiracy to overthrow his father and declare himself king of Israel. Absalom prepared him chariots and horses, and fifty men to run before him. 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 . . . he pretended a deep concern. And Absalom said unto him, See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed of (representing) the king to hear thee. . . . Oh that I were made judge in the land, that every man which has any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice! (15:1-4). Soon the shocking news reached David that the hearts of the men of Israel are after (with) Absalom (15:13).

It is sad to read that David, the brokenhearted old king, left Jerusalem, running barefoot down the rocky, rugged hills to the Brook Kidron and up the Mount of Olives, weeping, fleeing Jerusalem in fear of his own beloved son (15:30). During this time, he had no thought of self-pity, bitterness, or revenge. David's great concern was to avoid bloodshed in Jerusalem, the city of God.

After learning he had been betrayed by his trusted counselor, David committed himself to God and prayed: O LORD, I pray Thee, turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness (15:31). Then, he sent Hushai his longtime friend (15:37; I Chronicles 27:33) back to Jerusalem with instructions as to how he could become Absalom's adviser and, thus, refute Ahithophel's counsel (II Samuel 15:33-35).

Wicked men are often used by our holy God to correct those whom He loves. David later confessed: Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept Thy Word (Psalm 119:67).

Word Studies:

15:27 seer = prophet; 15:28 certify = inform; 16:5 still = continuously.

Christ Portrayed:

By David as he rebuked his followers when they wanted to execute his enemies (II Samuel 16:10-11; compare I Samuel 26:8-9). When Jesus' disciples wanted to do the same, He rebuked them saying: Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of Man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them (Luke 9:54-56).

Prayer Needs:

Pray for Government Officials: Rep. Tom Allen (ME) and Rep. Clifford Stearns (FL) Country: Rwanda (8 million) in central Africa · Major languages: Kinyarwanda and French · Religious freedom · 40% Roman Catholic; 21% Protestant; 14% belief in false gods, ancestor worship, and spirit-possession cults; 9% Muslim · Prayer Suggestion: Ask the Lord to forgive you of all ill will, grudges, or hatred you may hold in your heart toward another person (Matthew 6:14-15).

Optional Reading: Acts 17

Memory Verse for the Week: II Samuel 22:31

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