Following hot on the heels of the rebellion led by David’s son, Absalom, came the rebellion led by Sheba in 2 Samuel 20:1-26. Called a ‘worthless fellow’ in verse 1, Sheba’s rebellion also proved fruitless and only led to more bloodshed, including his own and that of Amasa’s, David’s chief. Thankfully, God in His mercy did not treat our rebellion against Him as a reason not to come in grace and save us, which He did by David’s Son, Jesus who never rebelled but paid the price of death for rebels like us.
With the death of Absalom, the civil war that threatened to undermine David’s kingdom came to an end. On returning to his throne, we find in 2 Samuel 19:1-43 that David immediately sought to put his house in order – rewarding some, ending the service of others and reviewing the actions of those given responsibility. When Jesus the King returns, he will also undertake similar actions and none shall escape his searching eye.
2 Samuel 18:1-33 records how the civil war led by Absalom against his father came to an inglorious end. It was a sad day for David for many reasons, one of which was that this was the culmination of some bad choices and parenting. Yet still, in spite of the tragic nature of the text, David again points us to Jesus who could do and will do what David could not.
After David fled from Absalom, it seemed that his whole kingdom was in danger of falling. Ahithophel, David’s trusted adviser, had gone over to join Absalom, and his counsel would have been dangerous for David. However, God was at work and in 2 Samuel 17:1-29, there are three particular evidences of His providence which meant that David knew that God had not abandoned him and that His plans were being unfolded.
When David left Jerusalem because of Absalom’s push to replace him, 2 Samuel 15 told of 3 men who came to his aid. Following this, 2 Samuel 16:1-33 tells of 3 other men who wanted to achieve just the opposite – either to further their own standing in his eyes, to curse him or to cause his kingdom to crumble. In the end, so much of what David endured points us again to His greater Son, Jesus, who also endured what He did to save His own.
After the events of 2 Samuel 14 where tensions between David and his son Absalom grew in their intensity, 2 Samuel 15:1-37 records how Absalom launched an all-out campaign to usurp David from his throne. As a result of this David fled, and in doing so must have known one of his darkest days, although not without the support of three individuals who came to support him. David’s darkest day points us to Jesus who went one step further, so that all who trust in Him (as David did – see Psalm 3) can find the great comfort and assurance of grace.
When David’s son Absalom killed his brother Amnon in revenge as recorded in 2 Samuel 13, he fled. 2 Samuel 14:1-33 the unfolds the story of the growing tension between King David and his wayward son – something that went on and on but remained unresolved. Davuid was clearly conflicted. He loved his son and could not or would not bring him to justice. It was an untenable situation and one that would backfire badly on David’s rule as king. Another cautionary tale from David’s life and experience!
In 2 Samuel 13:1-39, the text records some dark events that happened in David’s family. While the chapter sets the scene for Absalom’s eventual rebellion against his father, it also portrays the reality of the consequences of David’s sin in chapter 11 being revealed in his own family. It’s a sad tale, but also a much needed cautionary warning.
When David sinned in 2 Samuel 11, he set of a chain of events that would prove to be disastrous for his family, including the son born as a result of his alliance with Bathsheba. The text of 2 Samuel 12:15-31 records how the child died, but also how God’s grace was revealed in the midst of the mess that his sin created.
One thing that the world constantly fails to understand is the seriousness of sin. It is rarely spoken of as something serious and usually only spoken of as if it were something light and easily cast off. The text of 2 Samuel 12:1-15 indicates that sin is not something that can be laughed at. David’s sin was terrible, but equally so, God’s grace to him was amazing. The more we understand how serious sin is, the more we will appreciate the wonder of the gospel.