Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 12)

David was now back in his capitol city. He had already paid the price for his sin. But, it seems like there is always something going on.
II Samuel 21:1- Then there was a famine in the days of David three years, year after year; and David enquired of the LORD. And the LORD answered, It is for Saul, and for his bloody house, because he slew the Gibeonites. ​
After three years of famine, David finally asked the Lord "why?". I wonder why David waited three years to ask? It wasn't because of his own sin that this famine was in the land. It was because of a sin that Saul had committed.
That tells us something about God. Some times the bad things we go through aren't our fault. It's not because God is punishing us. But, we still need to remember that how we respond to these bad times will be judged.
II Samuel 21:2-3- And the king called the Gibeonites, and said unto them; (now the Gibeonites [were] not of the children of Israel, but of the remnant of the Amorites; and the children of Israel had sworn unto them: and Saul sought to slay them in his zeal to the children of Israel and Judah.) 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?
King David called the people that were wrong and asked them how to make it right. If we wrong someone we are suppose to confess it to God, but we are also suppose to make it right with the person that we wronged.
II Samuel 21:5-6- And they answered the king, The man that consumed us, and that devised against us that we should be destroyed from remaining in any of the coasts of Israel, Let seven men of his sons be delivered unto us, and we will hang them up unto the LORD in Gibeah of Saul, whom the LORD did choose. And the king said, I will give them.
The Gibeonites wanted to punish Saul. Since Saul was dead, they said that they wanted his sons punished. They wanted 7 of Saul's descendants to die for Saul's transgression.
And David was willing to pay this price with one exception. David was a man of his word, and he was going to make sure that he kept his promise to Jonathan.
II Samuel 21:7- 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.
David found 7 men other than Jonathan's son and delivered them to the Gibeonites.
II Samuel 21:8-9- But the king took the two sons of Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, whom she bare unto Saul, Armoni and Mephibosheth; and the five sons of Michal the daughter of Saul, whom she brought up for Adriel the son of Barzillai the Meholathite: 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.
The Gibeonites took all seven of them and hanged them.
II Samuel 21:10- And Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth, and spread it for her upon the rock, from the beginning of harvest until water dropped upon them out of heaven, and suffered neither the birds of the air to rest on them by day, nor the beasts of the field by night.
The mother of two of the men went out there and kept watch over the bodies. She wouldn't let any of the carrion feed on them. Even after their death she was protecting them.
II Samuel 21:11-14- And it was told David what Rizpah the daughter of Aiah, the concubine of Saul, had done. And David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son from the men of Jabeshgilead, which had stolen them from the street of Bethshan, where the Philistines had hanged them, when the Philistines had slain Saul in Gilboa: 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. And the bones of Saul and Jonathan his son buried they in the country of Benjamin in Zelah, in the sepulchre of Kish his father: and they performed all that the king commanded. And after that God was intreated for the land.
When David heard what this mother was doing, he went and gathered the bones of the men that had been hanged, along with the bones of Saul and Jonathan, and buried them in their grandfather's sepulchre.
The Lord healed the land of the famine. But, the people still did sinful things.
The Lord always punishes us for the wrong that we do. Some times, he allows time to pass before He punishes us. And, some times, like David, we choose the punishment.
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.
God moved David to number the people, even though He had said before that this was a sin.
II Samuel 24:8-9- So when they had gone through all the land, they came to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and twenty days. And Joab gave up the sum of the number of the people unto the king: and there were in Israel eight hundred thousand valiant men that drew the sword; and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand men.
Once the people had been numbered, David realized what he had done.
II Samuel 24:10-12- And David's heart smote him after that he had numbered the people. And David said unto the LORD, I have sinned greatly in that I have done: and now, I beseech thee, O LORD, take away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly. For when David was up in the morning, the word of the LORD came unto the prophet Gad, David's seer, saying, Go and say unto David, Thus saith the LORD, I offer thee three things; choose thee one of them, that I may do it unto thee.
God was going to let David choose what his punishment would be. He gave him three choices.
II Samuel 24:13- 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 thy land? now advise, and see what answer I shall return to him that sent me.
David was told to choose wither seven years famine, three months of being chased by his enemies, or three days of pestilence. Which would you choose?
I'm sure David thought of these three options very carefully. If there was a famine people would starve to death, and there was no telling how many people would die. If they were chased by the enemy there was no guarantee that the enemy wouldn't attack the innocent cities of the land, and a lot of people could die. So David chose the option that would allow him the most mercy.
II Samuel 24:14- And David said unto Gad, I am in a great strait: let us fall now into the hand of the LORD; for his mercies are great: and let me not fall into the hand of man.
David chose the pestilence. That way God would be the one to choose who would die.
II Samuel 24:15-16- So the LORD sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning even to the time appointed: and there died of the people from Dan even to Beersheba seventy thousand men. 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.
An angel of death went through the land killing people. He killed around 70 thousand people when he got to Jerusalem. Once the death angel was near Jerusalem, God told him to stop.
That's the power of God. Just one angel could kill 70,000 people in three days, but with one word God could make him stop.
II Samuel 24:17-18- 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. And Gad came that day to David, and said unto him, Go up, rear an altar unto the LORD in the threshingfloor of Araunah the Jebusite.
David prayed and confessed his sin. He begged for mercy, and God gave him the answer he needed. He was to go build an altar and sacrifice.
II Samuel 24:19-25- And David, according to the saying of Gad, went up as the LORD commanded. And Araunah looked, and saw the king and his servants coming on toward him: and Araunah went out, and bowed himself before the king on his face upon the ground. And Araunah said, Wherefore is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To buy the threshingfloor of thee, to build an altar unto the LORD, that the plague may be stayed from the people. And Araunah said unto David, Let my lord the king take and offer up what seemeth good unto him: behold, here be oxen for burnt sacrifice, and threshing instruments and other instruments of the oxen for wood. All these things did Araunah, as a king, give unto the king. And Araunah said unto the king, The LORD thy God accept thee. And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing. So David bought the threshingfloor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver. And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the LORD was intreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel.
David bought the threshing floor and all the things that went with it, and he built an altar right there and sacrificed to God. God accepted this sacrifice and told the death angel to leave.
It's always hard to apologize for the wrong that we've done. But, when we confess our sins to God we obtain mercy. If we get mad at God for his punishment, then things will only get worse.
David learned this lesson because of all the troubles he went through. We don't have to go through our own troubles to learn. We can learn from the life of David.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 11)

After the death of Absalom, David returns to his royal city to finish up his rule. He has now paid the full price for his sin. His life will never be the same. Sure, the payment had been made, but the scars from the price tag of his sin would never go away.
II Samuel 19:15- So the king returned, and came to Jordan. And Judah came to Gilgal, to go to meet the king, to conduct the king over Jordan.
The king and all his family and his Mighty Men that had fled from Absalom were now going back to Jerusalem. But, there was a man who had cursed David and thrown rocks at him while he was fleeing, and this man was now worried what the consequences of his actions would be.
II Samuel 19:18-20- And there went over a ferry boat to carry over the king's household, and to do what he thought good. And Shimei the son of Gera fell down before the king, as he was come over Jordan; And said unto the king, Let not my lord impute iniquity unto me, neither do thou remember that which thy servant did perversely the day that my lord the king went out of Jerusalem, that the king should take it to his heart. For thy servant doth know that I have sinned: therefore, behold, I am come the first this day of all the house of Joseph to go down to meet my lord the king. ​
Shimei decided it would be better for him if he went to meet David before he got back to Jerusalem. He thought that he could apologize and he was hoping to receive some mercy for his humility.
There were some in David's company who thought that Shimei should be put to death for his acts.
II Samuel 19:21-23- But Abishai the son of Zeruiah answered and said, Shall not Shimei be put to death for this, because he cursed the LORD'S anointed? And David said, What have I to do with you, ye sons of Zeruiah, that ye should this day be adversaries unto me? shall there any man be put to death this day in Israel? for do not I know that I am this day king over Israel? Therefore the king said unto Shimei, Thou shalt not die. And the king sware unto him.
David had mercy on Shimei. He told him that he wouldn't die. David was happy that the Lord had not placed any of the curses on him that Shimei yelled at him. He knew that God wanted him to be king of Israel, and he was glad that the Lord would now bless him.
Mephibosheth also showed up to meet the king. He told the king that he wanted to go with him, but that Ziba didn't get him his horse and let him. The king also forgave Mephibosheth. He could see that Mephibosheth didn't bare him any ill will.
Along with apologies, there were also friends who showed up. One in particular who had been a great blessing to David and his family while they were on the run.
II Samuel 19:31-38- And Barzillai the Gileadite came down from Rogelim, and went over Jordan with the king, to conduct him over Jordan. 32 Now Barzillai was a very aged man, even fourscore years old: and he had provided the king of sustenance while he lay at Mahanaim; for he was a very great man. And the king said unto Barzillai, Come thou over with me, and I will feed thee with me in Jerusalem. And Barzillai said unto the king, How long have I to live, that I should go up with the king unto Jerusalem? I am this day fourscore years old: and can I discern between good and evil? can thy servant taste what I eat or what I drink? can I hear any more the voice of singing men and singing women? wherefore then should thy servant be yet a burden unto my lord the king? Thy servant will go a little way over Jordan with the king: and why should the king recompense it me with such a reward? Let thy servant, I pray thee, turn back again, that I may die in mine own city, and be buried by the grave of my father and of my mother. But behold thy servant Chimham; let him go over with my lord the king; and do to him what shall seem good unto thee. And the king answered, Chimham shall go over with me, and I will do to him that which shall seem good unto thee: and whatsoever thou shalt require of me, that will I do for thee.
Barzillai came to express his delight that David would be going back to sit on the throne. David wanted to invite him to a party, but Barzillai was a very old man. He told David that he wouldn't be able to hear the music or taste the food. He asked that David take his son to the party instead.
But, not everyone was happy to see King David going back to take his place on the throne.
II Samuel 20:1-2- And there happened to be there a man of Belial, whose name was Sheba, the son of Bichri, a Benjamite: and he blew a trumpet, and said, We have no part in David, neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: every man to his tents, O Israel. So every man of Israel went up from after David, and followed Sheba the son of Bichri: but the men of Judah clave unto their king, from Jordan even to Jerusalem.
Israel was now split between two. Some of them followed David, and some of them followed Sheba. The rift that Absalom had caused would not easily be sown up by just one battle.
II Samuel 20:6-7- 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. And there went out after him Joab's men, and the Cherethites, and the Pelethites, and all the mighty men: and they went out of Jerusalem, to pursue after Sheba the son of Bichri.
David knew that if he didn't take care of this now that there would be a greater war coming. Even his nephew, Amasa, had joined with Sheba. David sent Joab and his Mighty Men after Sheba.
II Samuel 20:8-13- When they were at the great stone which is in Gibeon, Amasa went before them. And Joab's garment that he had put on was girded unto him, and upon it a girdle with a sword fastened upon his loins in the sheath thereof; and as he went forth it fell out. And Joab said to Amasa, Art thou in health, my brother? And Joab took Amasa by the beard with the right hand to kiss him. 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. And one of Joab's men stood by him, and said, He that favoureth Joab, and he that is for David, let him go after Joab. And Amasa wallowed in blood in the midst of the highway. And when the man saw that all the people stood still, he removed Amasa out of the highway into the field, and cast a cloth upon him, when he saw that every one that came by him stood still. When he was removed out of the highway, all the people went on after Joab, to pursue after Sheba the son of Bichri.
Joab killed his cousin Amasa. He had no desire to see anyone live who was a threat to the king. Perhaps he still felt guilty about all the trouble Absalom caused; he was the one who talked the king into bringing Absalom home from his exile.
Joab then took the rest of the army to kill Sheba.
II Samuel 20:15- 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.
In his zeal to destroy this new threat, Joab was going to destroy an entire city and it's population.
II Samuel 20:16-22- Then cried a wise woman out of the city, Hear, hear; say, I pray you, unto Joab, Come near hither, that I may speak with thee. And when he was come near unto her, the woman said, Art thou Joab? And he answered, I am he. Then she said unto him, Hear the words of thine handmaid. And he answered, I do hear. Then she spake, saying, They were wont to speak in old time, saying, They shall surely ask counsel at Abel: and so they ended the matter. I am one of them that are peaceable and faithful in Israel: thou seekest to destroy a city and a mother in Israel: why wilt thou swallow up the inheritance of the LORD? And Joab answered and said, Far be it, far be it from me, that I should swallow up or destroy. The matter is not so: but a man of mount Ephraim, Sheba the son of Bichri by name, hath lifted up his hand against the king, even against David: deliver him only, and I will depart from the city. And the woman said unto Joab, Behold, his head shall be thrown to thee over the wall. Then the woman went unto all the people in her wisdom. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and cast it out to Joab. And he blew a trumpet, and they retired from the city, every man to his tent. And Joab returned to Jerusalem unto the king.
The battle was ended by a wise woman. The Bible doesn't tell us how old she was, or how wealthy she was, or even how pretty she was. The Bible doesn't even give us her name. All we know is that she was brave and wise.
Proverbs 4:7- Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.
This woman was so wise, in fact, that she was able to stop her city from being destroyed and her friends and family from being killed. She didn't do this by fighting in the battle. She didn't have to be strong, or cunning with weapons. She just had to be wise.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 10)

David's sin had cost the lives of two of his sons, his daughter to live in isolation, and his other son to flee because of revenge.
II Samuel 14:1- Now Joab the son of Zeruiah perceived that the king's heart was toward Absalom.
The bible doesn't tell us why Joab was so keen to have Absalom come back. But, he went through a lot of trouble to get David to concede to bring Absalom home.
II Samuel 14:2-3- And Joab sent to Tekoah, and fetched thence a wise woman, and said unto her, I pray thee, feign thyself to be a mourner, and put on now mourning apparel, and anoint not thyself with oil, but be as a woman that had a long time mourned for the dead: And come to the king, and speak on this manner unto him. So Joab put the words in her mouth.
Joab brought a wise woman to talk to the king. She told the king that her husband was dead and that she had two sons. The sons got into a fight and the one killed the other. She asked the king to spare the murderer son so that her family could continue on. David was moved with compassion by this story and sware to her that her son wouldn't be killed for his transgression.
II Samuel 14:13- And the woman said, Wherefore then hast thou thought such a thing against the people of God? for the king doth speak this thing as one which is faulty, in that the king doth not fetch home again his banished.
The woman then asked the king why he didn't bring Absalom home. If he were willing to forgive her child whom he had never met, why wouldn't he forgive his son whom he loved?
King David was a wise man. He figured out what was going on.
II Samuel 14:19- And the king said, Is not the hand of Joab with thee in all this? And the woman answered and said, As thy soul liveth, my lord the king, none can turn to the right hand or to the left from ought that my lord the king hath spoken: for thy servant Joab, he bade me, and he put all these words in the mouth of thine handmaid:
The woman told David that Joab was the one who sent her to talk to him. So, the king called Joab and told him that he could tell Absalom to come home.
II Samuel 14:23- So Joab arose and went to Geshur, and brought Absalom to Jerusalem.
Even though David allowed Absalom to come home, he wouldn't see him. He had forgiven him enough to have him home, but he was still too upset to associate with him.
II Samuel 14:28-29- So Absalom dwelt two full years in Jerusalem, and saw not the king's face. Therefore Absalom sent for Joab, to have sent him to the king; but he would not come to him: and when he sent again the second time, he would not come.
After two years, Absalom had had enough. He wanted Joab to talk to the king for him, but Joab wouldn't come see Absalom. Absalom set Joab's fields on fire. He destroyed his crop, and this made Joab come talk to Absalom.
Absalom wanted Joab to tell the king that it would be better for him to remain in banishment than to sit in his home town without being able to see his father. He said that he would rather David killed him than treat him this way.
II Samuel 14:33- 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.
Everything seemed to be going well. But, David hadn't completely paid for his sin. He said that the payment would be four fold, and now that Absalom was home it was only three fold.
Even though David had forgiven Absalom, it seemed that there was some hatred in Absalom's heart for his father. David should have had Amnon killed for hurting his sister, but David had allowed him to live. In fact, we don't read anywhere in the Bible where David punished Amnon for his trespass. And this would certainly upset Absalom.
Absalom decided that he would be a better king than David. So, he got chariots and horsemen to run before him when he went anywhere. And he sat in the gate of the city and made himself a judge. Slowly, he began to win the hearts of the people while planting the idea in their heads that he would make a just king if they would have him.
II Samuel 15:6- And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: so Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.
When Absalom was 40 years old he put his plan into action. He told David that he needed to go to Hebron to pay a vow that he had made. But, he was lying. David didn't see that he was lying and told him to go.
II Samuel 15:10- But Absalom sent spies throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, As soon as ye hear the sound of the trumpet, then ye shall say, Absalom reigneth in Hebron.
Absalom set himself up as king in Hebron. He was going to amass an army and attack Jerusalem. He was willing to kill his father and take the throne by force.
II Samuel 15:13-14- And there came a messenger to David, saying, The hearts of the men of Israel are after Absalom. 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 didn't want a war. He knew innocent people would die if a battle started. So, David gathered his family and those who were loyal to him and they left the capitol city.
David had a few faithful men that he left to see what Absalom would do and to report to him.
II Samuel 15:23, 30- And all the country wept with a loud voice, and all the people passed over: the king also himself passed over the brook Kidron, and all the people passed over, toward the way of the wilderness. 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.
As David went he was met by both friend and foe along the way. His friend, Ziba, brought food for his family. But, he told lies about Mephibosheth- Jonathan's son. Ziba was hoping that whoever won, he and his sons would get Saul's inheritance. If Mephibosheth was disloyal to David, then maybe David would slay him?
Shimei was the foe. He came out and started throwing rocks and David and his family and cursing him. He said that this happened because David had taken Saul's throne by war. We know that God had given David the throne, but Shimei didn't see it that way.
David's mighty men wanted to go kill Shimei for this, but David said "no". David said that maybe the Lord would bless him if he ignored Shimei's rantings. I'm sure this pleased the Lord, because He wants us to bless our enemies. David was certainly a man after God's own heart!
David went to hide in the wilderness while Absalom set up himself in Jerusalem. Now began the war talk. Absalom had received counsel to take the soldier's that he had with him in the city and follow David that night and kill him. But, one of David's loyal friends wanted to give David more time. So, he counseled that Absalom take the time to amass an army before going after David.
Absalom liked this idea. While he was gathering his army, David's friend sent a warning to David.
II Samuel 17:17-20- Now Jonathan and Ahimaaz stayed by Enrogel; for they might not be seen to come into the city: and a wench went and told them; and they went and told king David. Nevertheless a lad saw them, and told Absalom: but they went both of them away quickly, and came to a man's house in Bahurim, which had a well in his court; whither they went down. And the woman took and spread a covering over the well's mouth, and spread ground corn thereon; and the thing was not known. And when Absalom's servants came to the woman to the house, they said, Where is Ahimaaz and Jonathan? And the woman said unto them, They be gone over the brook of water. And when they had sought and could not find them, they returned to Jerusalem.
The loyal spies went to tell David the news. They were almost caught by Absalom's guard, but a brave woman helped them escape.
II Samuel 17:24-26- Then David came to Mahanaim. And Absalom passed over Jordan, he and all the men of Israel with him. 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. So Israel and Absalom pitched in the land of Gilead.
This was truly becoming a family battle. King David was being fought against by his son and his nephew. David hoped that not too many lives would be lost, but I think he knew in his heart that there would be a terrible loss.
Again, David was met by friends- Shobi, Machir, and Brazillai, brought David and his family beds and food. Even though David was being chased by someone who wanted to kill him, he still found that God sent friends along the way to comfort and encourage him. David was never far from the Lord's protection.
David numbered his soldiers. He wanted to lead them into battle, but the people refused. They knew that if David died that Absalom would take over. They wanted to win the battle, but also to win with their king still on the throne. So, David stayed behind while Joab and Abishai led the army.
II Samuel 18:5- 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.
David asked the army that if it were possible Absalom would not be killed.
II Samuel 18:6, 8- So the people went out into the field against Israel: and the battle was in the wood of Ephraim; For the battle was there scattered over the face of all the country: and the wood devoured more people that day than the sword devoured.
Again, the Lord was helping David's army in the battle. More people died from accidents in the woods than from the soldiers.
Absalom had one thing that the bible mentions specifically. It seemed he was very prideful about his looks. He let his hair grow out long and only cut it once a year.
II Samuel 14:25-26- But in all Israel there was none to be so much praised as Absalom for his beauty: from the sole of his foot even to the crown of his head there was no blemish in him. And when he polled his head, (for it was at every year's end that he polled it: because the hair was heavy on him, therefore he polled it:) he weighed the hair of his head at two hundred shekels after the king's weight.
Do you remember someone else who the bible says was prideful about his beauty? The Bible says that Satan was very proud that God made him beautiful. Absalom had the same sin as Satan! And this pride was going to cost him.
II Samuel 18:9- And Absalom met the servants of David. And Absalom rode upon a mule, and the mule went under the thick boughs of a great oak, and his head caught hold of the oak, and he was taken up between the heaven and the earth; and the mule that was under him went away.
Absalom went under a tree and his long hair got tangled around the branches of the tree. He was yanked off his mule and held captive by the object of his vanity.
A soldier went and told Joab where to find Absalom. Joab had hoped that the soldier would have killed Absalom, but the soldier said that he knew David wanted him alive. Joab didn't care. Perhaps he was mad that Absalom was able to accomplish this because it was he who had fought to bring Absalom home from his banishment. We don't know. But, Joab didn't want Absalom to live.
II Samuel 18:14-15- 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. And ten young men that bare Joab's armour compassed about and smote Absalom, and slew him.
Joab and ten of his men killed Absalom while he was tangled up. Then, they threw his body into a pit and covered it with stones.
II Samuel 18:16- And Joab blew the trumpet, and the people returned from pursuing after Israel: for Joab held back the people.
David's army wanted to keep fighting, but Joab knew that the battle was over and there needed not to be any more killing. He called his soldiers off and sent a message back to David.
II Samuel 18:24, 31-32- And David sat between the two gates: and the watchman went up to the roof over the gate unto the wall, and lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold a man running alone. And, behold, Cushi came; and Cushi said, Tidings, my lord the king: for the LORD hath avenged thee this day of all them that rose up against thee. And the king said unto Cushi, Is the young man Absalom safe? And Cushi answered, The enemies of my lord the king, and all that rise against thee to do thee hurt, be as that young man is.
David knew that meant that Absalom was dead. He had now paid the four fold that was required for his sin. His sin took only a few weeks for him to commit, but it took years for him to repay!
II Samuel 18:33- 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! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 9)

David had sinned. He had murdered a man and stolen his wife. He had already faced part of the consequences of his action- the death of the baby. But, that wasn't the end of the price tag for this sin.
He had told Nathan the prophet that the man in the story would repay four fold. The price of the sin was going to cost David 3 more lives.
II Samuel 13:1- 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.
David had a son who thought he was in love with his half sister. He never said anything to anyone, but one friend. He kept his thoughts to himself, but he found it hard to think about anything else and it was making him sick.
II Samuel 13:3-4- But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shimeah David's brother: and Jonadab was a very subtil man. And he said unto him, Why art thou, being the king's son, lean from day to day? wilt thou not tell me? And Amnon said unto him, I love Tamar, my brother Absalom's sister.
Amnon told his friend that he loved his half sister. This friend was a sneaky man. He wasn't wise enough to tell Amnon to do right. He came up with a plan that would help Amnon steal what he wanted.
II Samuel 13:6- So Amnon lay down, and made himself sick: and when the king was come to see him, Amnon said unto the king, I pray thee, let Tamar my sister come, and make me a couple of cakes in my sight, that I may eat at her hand.
Amnon pretended to be very sick, and when the king came to check on him he asked if Tamar could come make him some food. King David didn't think anything about this. He didn't know that Amnon had evil in his heart. And so, he sent Tamar to help her brother get better.
Tamar came to Amnon's house to make him some food so that he could get better. He put his wicked plan into action and ended up hurting his half sister. But, he found that after he had taken what he thought he wanted that he no longer felt that he loved her.
II Samuel 13:17- Then he called his servant that ministered unto him, and said, Put now this woman out from me, and bolt the door after her.
Amnon called a servant and had her thrown out of his house. She was so ashamed that she ran to her brother, Absolom's, house and lived there for the rest of her life without ever leaving.
The second consequence of David's sin was that his daughter would lose her life. Not that she would die, but that she would live without ever really being able to have a life.
II Samuel 13:20b-21- So Tamar remained desolate in her brother Absalom's house. But when king David heard of all these things, he was very wroth.
David was so angry when he heart what had happened. His daughter would now live in seclusion and there was no way for him to make it better. It was a fate worse than death!
But, that wasn't the last price he would have to pay.
II Samuel 13:23- And it came to pass after two full years, that Absalom had sheepshearers in Baalhazor, which is beside Ephraim: and Absalom invited all the king's sons.
Tamar's brother, Absalom, had planned to get revenge. He was a patient man and he waited 2 whole years so that no one would think to warn Amnon. He planned to have a dinner party and he invited all of his brothers.
II Samuel 13:28- 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.
Absalom told his servants to wait until Amnon was drunk, and then to come in and kill him. The servants obeyed him. This act scared the other siblings and they all got up to flee, fearing that they were next.
II Samuel 13:30-31- And it came to pass, while they were in the way, that tidings came to David, saying, Absalom hath slain all the king's sons, and there is not one of them left. Then the king arose, and tare his garments, and lay on the earth; and all his servants stood by with their clothes rent.
Someone ran to tell King David, but they got the story messed up. They told him that Absalom had kill ALL of his children, not just Amnon. David was beside himself with grief.
II Samuel 13:32-33- And Jonadab, the son of Shimeah David's brother, answered and said, Let not my lord suppose that they have slain all the young men the king's sons; for Amnon only is dead: for by the appointment of Absalom this hath been determined from the day that he forced his sister Tamar. Now therefore let not my lord the king take the thing to his heart, to think that all the king's sons are dead: for Amnon only is dead.
The same friend that had told Amnon to take what he wanted was the one who knew that Absalom had only killed Amnon. Some friend! He knew that Absalom was looking to get revenge, but he didn't warn his so-called friend. He let him go off to his death.
Be careful who you call your friend. Be careful from whom you take advice. Some people who call themselves your friend are only out to help you destroy yourself! Jonadab was no friend to Amnon!
II Samuel 13:35-37- And Jonadab said unto the king, Behold, the king's sons come: as thy servant said, so it is. And it came to pass, as soon as he had made an end of speaking, that, behold, the king's sons came, and lifted up their voice and wept: and the king also and all his servants wept very sore. But Absalom fled, and went to Talmai, the son of Ammihud, king of Geshur. And David mourned for his son every day.
David mourned everyday for his son. Now he had two children who had died, one who was living as a hermit, and one who had banished himself because of revenge. If David had known this would be the cost of his sin I'm certain he would never have committed it.
But, that's the lie of the devil. His best device is to convince us that we can get away with our sin. He makes us believe that if no one sees, or we make it vanish, that we won't have to pay the price. But, there is always a price to pay when we make the choice to sin.
And, David still hadn't paid the full cost!

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 8)

​Did you know that most sins start out as something that doesn't seem so bad? David was known for a certain sin that he committed. And here's how it started.
II Samuel 11:1- And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem. ​
There was a time when the kings when out to battle. The king should have been there with his army and his general, but instead David stayed home. That doesn't seem like it would be a bad thing, does it?
II Samuel 11:2- And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon.
David wasn't suppose to be home. But as he went out and walked around on the top of his house, he saw a beautiful woman. Did you know that most sin starts with a look. Eve looked at the fruit. Achan looked at the spoils of war. Nadab and Abihu looked at Aaron's position. Sin starts with a look, and then is followed by coveteousness, or the desire to have.
II Samuel 11:3- And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?
God always gives us a way out of sin. When David started to want this woman God sent someone to tell him that she was already married. God promises us that He will always give us a way to not sin, to escape sin.
I Corinthians 10:13- There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
God had provided an escape for David, but David decided that he would rather have the sin. I wonder if David could have seen the cost of his sin if he would still have sinned?
II Samuel 11:4-5- And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house. And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child.
Now, David has a problem. He knows that people are going to find out about his sin. Did you know that there is always someone who knows about your sin? God is always watching, yes. But, sometimes there are other people who you don't even realize are watching.
Instead of confessing his sin and asking for forgiveness, David thinks he can hide his sin. That's another lie from the devil. You can't hide your sin and expect the consequences to vanish!
Proverbs 28:13- He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.
Mercy is not getting the full punishment for something that you have done wrong. David could have asked God for forgiveness and not have paid such a heavy price. But, he wasn't looking at the cost of his sin, yet. He was still hoping to make it vanish.
II Samuel 11:6-9- And David sent to Joab, saying, Send me Uriah the Hittite. And Joab sent Uriah to David. 7 And when Uriah was come unto him, David demanded of him how Joab did, and how the people did, and how the war prospered. And David said to Uriah, Go down to thy house, and wash thy feet. And Uriah departed out of the king's house, and there followed him a mess of meat from the king. But Uriah slept at the door of the king's house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house.
David thought if he could get Uriah to sleep at his house that no one would figure out what he had done. But, Uriah was a Mighty Man and he knew that he was suppose to be in the battle. He wasn't looking for a vacation; he wanted to stay prepared for the fight.
So, David tried another way.
II Samuel 11:13- And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk: and at even he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house.
David figured if he could just get Uriah drunk enough that he would go home. But, even that didn't work. Uriah was a person that anyone would love to have on their side in a battle! He was faithful and loyal! But, David's sin had blinded him to what was right.
And now, he was going to sin more!
II Samuel 11:14-15- And it came to pass in the morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah. And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die.
David sent a letter back to General Joab with Uriah. Uriah was faithful and loyal, so he didn't read the letter. The letter said for Joab to place Uriah in the worst part of the battle and then to let him die.
II Samuel 11:16-17- And it came to pass, when Joab observed the city, that he assigned Uriah unto a place where he knew that valiant men were. And the men of the city went out, and fought with Joab: and there fell some of the people of the servants of David; and Uriah the Hittite died also.
David was now guilty of murder.
II Samuel 11:18, 23-24- Then Joab sent and told David all the things concerning the war; And the messenger said unto David, Surely the men prevailed against us, and came out unto us into the field, and we were upon them even unto the entering of the gate. And the shooters shot from off the wall upon thy servants; and some of the king's servants be dead, and thy servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also.
David acted like everything was normal. Like Uriah dying was just a casualty from the war.
I Chronicles 20:1-2- And it came to pass, that after the year was expired, at the time that kings go out to battle, Joab led forth the power of the army, and wasted the country of the children of Ammon, and came and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried at Jerusalem. And Joab smote Rabbah, and destroyed it. And David took the crown of their king from off his head, and found it to weigh a talent of gold, and [there were] precious stones in it; and it was set upon David's head: and he brought also exceeding much spoil out of the city.
II Samuel 11:26-27- And when the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband. 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.
David displeased the Lord. There were consequences coming.
God told the Prophet Nathan to go and tell David a story.
II Samuel 12:1-4- And the LORD sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor. The rich man had exceeding many flocks and herds: But the poor man had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter. And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man's lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him.
Remember that David grew up as a shepherd. He knew what it was like to take care of the little lambs. He could remember how much he loved his flock. And this story made him mad!
II Samuel 12:5-6- 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: And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.
David pronounced judgement on the man in the story. He would give four times as many lambs back to the man, and then he would die.
II Samuel 12:7a- And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man.
David realized that this story was about him and his sin. He now knew what the cost of his sin would be. He would have to pay back four times the life he took.
II Samuel 12:13-15a- 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. 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. And Nathan departed unto his house.
God told David that the first life would be the little baby that Bathsheba would have.
II Samuel 12:15b-16- And the LORD struck the child that Uriah's wife bare unto David, and it was very sick. David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth.
When the baby got sick, David went and begged God not to take the child. But David was too late. He should have confessed his sin earlier. Now, he wasn't going to receive mercy.
II Samuel 12:18-19- And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead? But when David saw that his servants whispered, David perceived that the child was dead: therefore David said unto his servants, Is the child dead? And they said, He is dead.
We can cry and beg and plead and pray, but that won't make the consequences of sin go away. We know that God says there are consequences to our sins. If we would only accept the escape he has made for us we wouldn't have to pay such heavy price tags!
It would be terribly sad if David's story ended there. But, this part of David's life is something we can learn from.
II Samuel 12:24-25- And David comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went in unto her, and lay with her: and she bare a son, and he called his name Solomon: and the LORD loved him. And he sent by the hand of Nathan the prophet; and he called his name Jedidiah, because of the LORD.
God did forgive David. And he allowed him to have another child. Solomon- the wisest man who ever lived!
Just because we sin, it doesn't mean that God is through with us. We may have to pay the consequences, but we can still go on to accomplish great things for God if we repent.
The shepherd boy who killed Goliath still had giants to defeat.
I Chronicles 20:4-8- And it came to pass after this, that there arose war at Gezer with the Philistines; at which time Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Sippai, that was of the children of the giant: and they were subdued. And there was war again with the Philistines; and Elhanan the son of Jair slew Lahmi the brother of Goliath the Gittite, whose spear staff was like a weaver's beam. And yet again there was war at Gath, where was a man of great stature, whose fingers and toes were four and twenty, six on each hand, and six on each foot: and he also was the son of the giant. But when he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimea David's brother slew him. These were born unto the giant in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants.
David went on to kill four more giants- Goliath's brothers.
Just because we sin, it doesn't mean that we give up! We still have battles to win for the Lord!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 7)

While David was on the run from Saul, he had made some acquaintances in the heathen countries where he fled. One of those was the king of the children of Ammon.
II Samuel 10:1-2- And it came to pass after this, that the king of the children of Ammon died, and Hanun his son reigned in his stead. Then said David, I will shew kindness unto Hanun the son of Nahash, as his father shewed kindness unto me. And David sent to comfort him by the hand of his servants for his father. And David's servants came into the land of the children of Ammon.​
The king, Nahash, had died and David wanted to show some kindness to his son. So, David sent some men to show that he was sorry for the young man's loss. But, the rulers of the children of Ammon thought that something else was going on.
II Samuel 10:3-And the princes of the children of Ammon said unto Hanun their lord, Thinkest thou that David doth honour thy father, that he hath sent comforters unto thee? hath not David rather sent his servants unto thee, to search the city, and to spy it out, and to overthrow it?
THe princes thought that David had sent these men on a reconnaissance mission to gather intel so that David could attack them.
II Samuel 10:4- Wherefore Hanun took David's servants, and shaved off the one half of their beards, and cut off their garments in the middle, even to their buttocks, and sent them away.
The new king took the men and shaved half of their faces and cut up their clothes and sent them away in shame.
I Chronicles 19:5- Then there went certain, and told David how the men were served. And he sent to meet them: for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and then return.
David heard about it and told the men to stay in a different city until their beards grew back so that they wouldn't be mocked.
I Chronicles 19:6-7- And when the children of Ammon saw that they had made themselves odious to David, Hanun and the children of Ammon sent a thousand talents of silver to hire them chariots and horsemen out of Mesopotamia, and out of Syriamaachah, and out of Zobah. So they hired thirty and two thousand chariots, and the king of Maachah and his people; who came and pitched before Medeba. And the children of Ammon gathered themselves together from their cities, and came to battle.
II Samuel 10:7- And when David heard of it, he sent Joab, and all the host of the mighty men.
The children of Ammon hired a massive army to prepare for war. David told Joab that it was time to gather the Israelite army and go fight the children of Ammon. It seemed like David was always on the brink of war!
I Chronicles 19:9-13- And the children of Ammon came out, and put the battle in array before the gate of the city: and the kings that were come were by themselves in the field. Now when Joab saw that the battle was set against him before and behind, he chose out of all the choice of Israel, and put them in array against the Syrians. And the rest of the people he delivered unto the hand of Abishai his brother, and they set themselves in array against the children of Ammon. 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 help thee. Be of good courage, and let us behave ourselves valiantly for our people, and for the cities of our God: and let the LORD do that which is good in his sight.
General Joab saw that the opposing army was very large. In fact, they split into two smaller armies and were attacking the Israelite army from two different sides! Joab split his army as well; he led one part while his brother, Abishai, led the other. Their plan was to fight as best they could, but help the other out if the need arose.
I Chronicles 19:14-15- So Joab and the people that were with him drew nigh before the Syrians unto the battle; and they fled before him. And when the children of Ammon saw that the Syrians were fled, they likewise fled before Abishai his brother, and entered into the city. Then Joab came to Jerusalem.
The enemy army started to fight, but one part was losing and so they decided to leave. The other part saw their retreat and they also started to run away. They ran into their city to hide.
The Israelite army went back to their capitol city of Jerusalem.
But, the Syrians weren't finished fighting. They retreated to their city, but then called for reinforcements.
II Samuel 10:15-17- And when the Syrians saw that they were smitten before Israel, they gathered themselves together. And Hadarezer sent, and brought out the Syrians that were beyond the river: and they came to Helam; and Shobach the captain of the host of Hadarezer went before them. And when it was told David, he gathered all Israel together, and passed over Jordan, and came to Helam. And the Syrians set themselves in array against David, and fought with him.
David gathered his army and any other Israelites that could fight and went to try to finish this war once and for all!
I Chronicles 19:17b-19- So when David had put the battle in array against the Syrians, they fought with him. But the Syrians fled before Israel; and David slew of the Syrians seven thousand men which fought in chariots, and forty thousand footmen, and killed Shophach the captain of the host.
II Samuel 10:19= 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.
With God's help, David's army destroyed the Syrian army. The remaining kings who commanded the armies made peace with David. They promised to be his servants if he would let them live. David consented to those terms, and the war with the Syrians ended.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 6)

Now that David has been established, he starts to think back over his life and he remembers that he made someone a promise.
II Samuel 9:1-3- And David said, Is there yet any that is left of the house of Saul, that I may shew him kindness for Jonathan's sake? And there was of the house of Saul a servant whose name was Ziba. And when they had called him unto David, the king said unto him, Art thou Ziba? And he said, Thy servant is he. 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 on his feet.
David remembered his promise to Jonathan all those years ago. He called one of the servants from Saul's house and asked if there was anyone left of Saul's house. The servant said there was one man- one of Jonathan's sons- but he was a cripple.
II Samuel 4:4- And Jonathan, Saul's son, had a son that was lame of his feet. He was five years old when the tidings came of Saul and Jonathan out of Jezreel, and his nurse took him up, and fled: and it came to pass, as she made haste to flee, that he fell, and became lame. And his name was Mephibosheth.
Mephibosheth was five years old when his dad and grandfather died. His nanny wanted to get him out of there so that if anyone came to destroy the rest of the family he could survive. But, in her haste to leave, he was injured.
Saul's servant told David about Mephibosheth and where to find him.
II Samuel 9:5- Then king David sent, and fetched him out of the house of Machir, the son of Ammiel, from Lodebar.
Can you image what was going through Mephibosheth's mind? Perhaps he was afraid because he thought David would kill him so that he wouldn't try to take the throne.
II Samuel 9:6-7- Now when Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, was come unto David, he fell on his face, and did reverence. And David said, Mephibosheth. And he answered, Behold thy servant! 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.
Oh the relief! We don't know what stories Mephibosheth had been told about David. We don't even know if Mephibosheth knew that his father and David were best friends. But, what Mephibosheth did know was that David was going to take care of him.
II Samuel 9:8- And he bowed himself, and said, What is thy servant, that thou shouldest look upon such a dead dog as I am?
David had made a promise and he fully intended to keep it.
II Samuel 9:9-10- Then the king called to Ziba, Saul's servant, and said unto him, I have given unto thy master's son all that pertained to Saul and to all his house.Thou therefore, and thy sons, and thy servants, shall till the land for him, and thou shalt bring in the fruits, that thy master's son may have food to eat: but Mephibosheth thy master's son shall eat bread alway at my table. Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.
David gave Mephibosheth back all of Saul's property. He even gave him back his grandfather's servant to take care of the property. But, Mephibosheth wouldn't be sent away. He would get to eat with the king!
II Samuel 9:11-13- Then said Ziba unto the king, According to all that my lord the king hath commanded his servant, so shall thy servant do. As for Mephibosheth, said the king, he shall eat at my table, as one of the king's sons. And Mephibosheth had a young son, whose name was Micha. And all that dwelt in the house of Ziba were servants unto Mephibosheth. So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king's table; and was lame on both his feet.
What a beautiful story! You see, Mephibosheth hadn't done anything to deserve this honor. He didn't win any battles like the Mighty men. He wasn't a ruler or a dignitary. He was a cripple who benefitted from the choice of someone else, and the promise of a stranger.
We are a lot like Mephibosheth. Did you know that? We aren't strong or mighty. We aren't noble or royal. But, Christ made a choice that affects us. He died for our sins. And God made a promise
to save all who accepted salvation through Christ's death. We didn't do anything to deserve it, but we get the chance to sit at the table of the KING!

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 5)

Now that David had been established as the king of all Israel, he wanted to make sure that the ark of God was close so he could worship God and seek His counsel.
II Samuel 6:1-2- Again, David gathered together all the chosen men of Israel, thirty thousand. And David arose, and went with all the people that were with him from Baale of Judah, to bring up from thence the ark of God, whose name is called by the name of the LORD of hosts that dwelleth between the cherubims.
David gathered 30,000 men together to go get the ark and bring it to Jerusalem.
II Samuel 6:3-11- And they set the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab that was in Gibeah: and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drave the new cart. And they brought it out of the house of Abinadab which was at Gibeah, accompanying the ark of God: and Ahio went before the ark. And David and all the house of Israel played before the LORD on all manner of instruments made of fir wood, even on harps, and on psalteries, and on timbrels, and on cornets, and on cymbals. And when they came to Nachon's threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of God. And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzzah: and he called the name of the place Perezuzzah to this day. And David was afraid of the LORD that day, and said, How shall the ark of the LORD come to me? So David would not remove the ark of the LORD unto him into the city of David: but David carried it aside into the house of Obededom the Gittite. And the ark of the LORD continued in the house of Obededom the Gittite three months: and the LORD blessed Obededom, and all his household.
David was so excited to bring the ark of God to Jerusalem that he went about it the wrong way.
While the ark was on a cart being carried by oxen the ark shifted in the cart. One of the men who was accompanying it put his hand out to keep the ark from falling. No one was allowed to touch the ark except the priests, so God killed him.
Uzza's death was pretty frightening. David wasn't sure how to react, so he told the people to leave the ark where it was. The took the ark into the house of the man who owned the land and left it there.
While it was there, God blessed them man. For three months this man lived with the representation of God and His blessing.
Meanwhile, David has been thinking the whole scenario over. He came to realize that he had made a mistake. God wanted the priests to carry the ark, not a cart pulled by animals.
I Chronicles 15:11-14- And David called for Zadok and Abiathar the priests, and for the Levites, for Uriel, Asaiah, and Joel, Shemaiah, and Eliel, and Amminadab, And said unto them, Ye are the chief of the fathers of the Levites: sanctify yourselves, both ye and your brethren, that ye may bring up the ark of the LORD God of Israel unto the place that I have prepared for it. For because ye did it not at the first, the LORD our God made a breach upon us, for that we sought him not after the due order. So the priests and the Levites sanctified themselves to bring up the ark of the LORD God of Israel.
You see, God wants to have a relationship with you, but it has to be done His way. We can't keep having our way and thinking that everything between us and God is okay. It's not, and it never will be until we are ready to be obedient to His ways.
II Samuel 6:12-15- And it was told king David, saying, The LORD hath blessed the house of Obededom, and all that pertaineth unto him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obededom into the city of David with gladness. And it was so, that when they that bare the ark of the LORD had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings. And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.
David was so happy he was dancing around and praising the Lord. People all throughout Jerusalem were praising the Lord. But, it seems that whenever you start to serve God someone is always there to criticize you.
II Samuel 6:16- And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal Saul's daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart.
Michal saw David leaping around and she got mad. Perhaps it was because David didn't act this way when she came back. Or maybe, she thought a king shouldn't act that way. The Bible doesn't tell us why she was upset.
II Samuel 6:17-19- And they brought in the ark of the LORD, and set it in his place, in the midst of the tabernacle that David had pitched for it: and David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. And as soon as David had made an end of offering burnt offerings and peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts. And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine. So all the people departed every one to his house.
David was just so happy that he had a feast! He gave all the people some bread and meat and drink and everyone went home happy.
Then David went to bless his own home.
II Samuel 6:20-22- Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel to day, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself! And David said unto Michal, It was before the LORD, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel: therefore will I play before the LORD. And I will yet be more vile than thus, and will be base in mine own sight: and of the maidservants which thou hast spoken of, of them shall I be had in honour.
Michal thought that she could rebuke David for his attitude. But, David knew that God used foolish things.
I Corinthians 1:27- But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
David didn't worry about what Michal was saying because he knew that God was pleased with his actions.
But, God doesn't take it lightly when someone goes after his chosen. And, because of this rebuke Michal gave David, God was going to punish Michal.
II Samuel 6:23- Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death. children with Phaltiel, her second husband. But, God cursed her so that she never had any more.
If God tells you to do something, don't worry about what other people think. It's His will that we must obey and He is the one whom we should please. Do right, and let God deal with the other people.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 4)

Now that David had been established as the king of all Israel, he wanted to make sure that the ark of God was close so he could worship God and seek His counsel.
II Samuel 6:1-2- Again, David gathered together all the chosen men of Israel, thirty thousand. And David arose, and went with all the people that were with him from Baale of Judah, to bring up from thence the ark of God, whose name is called by the name of the LORD of hosts that dwelleth between the cherubims.
David gathered 30,000 men together to go get the ark and bring it to Jerusalem.
II Samuel 6:3-11- And they set the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab that was in Gibeah: and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drave the new cart. And they brought it out of the house of Abinadab which was at Gibeah, accompanying the ark of God: and Ahio went before the ark. And David and all the house of Israel played before the LORD on all manner of instruments made of fir wood, even on harps, and on psalteries, and on timbrels, and on cornets, and on cymbals. And when they came to Nachon's threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of God. And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzzah: and he called the name of the place Perezuzzah to this day. And David was afraid of the LORD that day, and said, How shall the ark of the LORD come to me? So David would not remove the ark of the LORD unto him into the city of David: but David carried it aside into the house of Obededom the Gittite. And the ark of the LORD continued in the house of Obededom the Gittite three months: and the LORD blessed Obededom, and all his household.
David was so excited to bring the ark of God to Jerusalem that he went about it the wrong way.
While the ark was on a cart being carried by oxen the ark shifted in the cart. One of the men who was accompanying it put his hand out to keep the ark from falling. No one was allowed to touch the ark except the priests, so God killed him.
Uzza's death was pretty frightening. David wasn't sure how to react, so he told the people to leave the ark where it was. The took the ark into the house of the man who owned the land and left it there.
While it was there, God blessed them man. For three months this man lived with the representation of God and His blessing.
Meanwhile, David has been thinking the whole scenario over. He came to realize that he had made a mistake. God wanted the priests to carry the ark, not a cart pulled by animals.
I Chronicles 15:11-14- And David called for Zadok and Abiathar the priests, and for the Levites, for Uriel, Asaiah, and Joel, Shemaiah, and Eliel, and Amminadab, And said unto them, Ye are the chief of the fathers of the Levites: sanctify yourselves, both ye and your brethren, that ye may bring up the ark of the LORD God of Israel unto the place that I have prepared for it. For because ye did it not at the first, the LORD our God made a breach upon us, for that we sought him not after the due order. So the priests and the Levites sanctified themselves to bring up the ark of the LORD God of Israel.
You see, God wants to have a relationship with you, but it has to be done His way. We can't keep having our way and thinking that everything between us and God is okay. It's not, and it never will be until we are ready to be obedient to His ways.
II Samuel 6:12-15- And it was told king David, saying, The LORD hath blessed the house of Obededom, and all that pertaineth unto him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obededom into the city of David with gladness. And it was so, that when they that bare the ark of the LORD had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings. And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.
David was so happy he was dancing around and praising the Lord. People all throughout Jerusalem were praising the Lord. But, it seems that whenever you start to serve God someone is always there to criticize you.
II Samuel 6:16- And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal Saul's daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart.
Michal saw David leaping around and she got mad. Perhaps it was because David didn't act this way when she came back. Or maybe, she thought a king shouldn't act that way. The Bible doesn't tell us why she was upset.
II Samuel 6:17-19- And they brought in the ark of the LORD, and set it in his place, in the midst of the tabernacle that David had pitched for it: and David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. And as soon as David had made an end of offering burnt offerings and peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts. And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine. So all the people departed every one to his house.
David was just so happy that he had a feast! He gave all the people some bread and meat and drink and everyone went home happy.
Then David went to bless his own home.
II Samuel 6:20-22- Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel to day, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself! And David said unto Michal, It was before the LORD, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel: therefore will I play before the LORD. And I will yet be more vile than thus, and will be base in mine own sight: and of the maidservants which thou hast spoken of, of them shall I be had in honour.
Michal thought that she could rebuke David for his attitude. But, David knew that God used foolish things.
I Corinthians 1:27- But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
David didn't worry about what Michal was saying because he knew that God was pleased with his actions.
But, God doesn't take it lightly when someone goes after his chosen. And, because of this rebuke Michal gave David, God was going to punish Michal.
II Samuel 6:23- Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death. children with Phaltiel, her second husband. But, God cursed her so that she never had any more.
If God tells you to do something, don't worry about what other people think. It's His will that we must obey and He is the one whom we should please. Do right, and let God deal with the other people.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 3)

David was now the king of Israel. He reigned from his castle in Jerusalem. And he was kept strong by some special men. These men were first heard about when David was hiding from Saul in a cave. At that time they weren't very brave. But, through time and overcoming trouble while faithfully following their leader, they became known as David's mighty men!
I Chronicles 11:10- These also are the chief of the mighty men whom David had, who strengthened themselves with him in his kingdom, and with all Israel, to make him king, according to the word of the LORD concerning Israel.
Here are David's mighty men and what they were known for.
I Chronicles 11:11- And this is the number of the mighty men whom David had; Jashobeam, an Hachmonite, the chief of the captains: he lifted up his spear against three hundred slain by him at one time.
Jashobeam was known for taking out three hundred men all by himself!
I Chronicles 11:12-14- And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo, the Ahohite, who was one of the three mighties. He was with David at Pasdammim, and there the Philistines were gathered together to battle, where was a parcel of ground full of barley; and the people fled from before the Philistines. And they set themselves in the midst of that parcel, and delivered it, and slew the Philistines; and the LORD saved them by a great deliverance.
DO you think fighting someone over a farm would make someone think of you as mighty? Well, God and David did. Eleazar led an assault on the Philistines and saved a farm earning him the status of a Mighty Man of David.
I Chronicles 11:15-19- Now three of the thirty captains went down to the rock to David, into the cave of Adullam; and the host of the Philistines encamped in the valley of Rephaim. And David was then in the hold, and the Philistines' garrison was then at Bethlehem. And David longed, and said, Oh that one would give me drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem, that is at the gate! And the three brake through the host of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David: but David would not drink of it, but poured it out to the LORD, And said, My God forbid it me, that I should do this thing: shall I drink the blood of these men that have put their lives in jeopardy? for with the jeopardy of their lives they brought it. Therefore he would not drink it. These things did these three mightiest.
There were three who fought their way into a Philistine garrison at Bethlehem just to get David a drink of water.
I Chronicles 11:20-21- And Abishai the brother of Joab, he was chief of the three: for lifting up his spear against three hundred, he slew them, and had a name among the three. Of the three, he was more honourable than the two; for he was their captain: howbeit he attained not to the first three.
Many of David's mighty men operated in groups of three. Abishai was the chief of one of these groups, and he was known for killing 300.
I Chronicles 11:22-25- Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, the son of a valiant man of Kabzeel, who had done many acts; he slew two lionlike men of Moab: also he went down and slew a lion in a pit in a snowy day. And he slew an Egyptian, a man of great stature, five cubits high; and in the Egyptian's hand was a spear like a weaver's beam; and he went down to him with a staff, and plucked the spear out of the Egyptian's hand, and slew him with his own spear. These things did Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and had the name among the three mighties. Behold, he was honourable among the thirty, but attained not to the first three: and David set him over his guard.
Have you ever known anyone who killed a lion? Benaiah was known for that! In fact, he was known for killing two Moabite warriors who people said were fierce like lions. Plus, he killed an Egyptian warrior with his own weapon!
I Chronicles 11:26-47- Also the valiant men of the armies were, Asahel the brother of Joab, Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem, Shammoth the Harorite, Helez the Pelonite, Ira the son of Ikkesh the Tekoite, Abiezer the Antothite, Sibbecai the Hushathite, Ilai the Ahohite, Maharai the Netophathite, Heled the son of Baanah the Netophathite, Ithai the son of Ribai of Gibeah, that pertained to the children of Benjamin, Benaiah the Pirathonite, Hurai of the brooks of Gaash, Abiel the Arbathite, Azmaveth the Baharumite, Eliahba the Shaalbonite, The sons of Hashem the Gizonite, Jonathan the son of Shage the Hararite, Ahiam the son of Sacar the Hararite, Eliphal the son of Ur, Hepher the Mecherathite, Ahijah the Pelonite, Hezro the Carmelite, Naarai the son of Ezbai, Joel the brother of Nathan, Mibhar the son of Haggeri, Zelek the Ammonite, Naharai the Berothite, the armourbearer of Joab the son of Zeruiah, Ira the Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite, Uriah the Hittite, Zabad the son of Ahlai, Adina the son of Shiza the Reubenite, a captain of the Reubenites, and thirty with him, Hanan the son of Maachah, and Joshaphat the Mithnite, Uzzia the Ashterathite, Shama and Jehiel the sons of Hothan the Aroerite, Jediael the son of Shimri, and Joha his brother, the Tizite, Eliel the Mahavite, and Jeribai, and Joshaviah, the sons of Elnaam, and Ithmah the Moabite, Eliel, and Obed, and Jasiel the Mesobaite.
The Bible doesn't list what accomplishments each of David's mighty men made to gain the status of a mighty man. But, it does say that there were 31 in all.
Not only did David have these mighty men, but he also had an army that he gathered as he was running from Saul. And some of their talents were pretty impressive!
He had archers.
I Chronicles 12:1-2- Now these are they that came to David to Ziklag, while he yet kept himself close because of Saul the son of Kish: and they were among the mighty men, helpers of the war. They were armed with bows, and could use both the right hand and the left in hurling stones and shooting arrows out of a bow, even of Saul's brethren of Benjamin.
And, he had warriors.
I Chronicles 12:8-  And of the Gadites there separated themselves unto David into the hold to the wilderness men of might, and men of war fit for the battle, that could handle shield and buckler, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and were as swift as the roes upon the mountains;
These were his men who fought with him before he became the king. But, once Israel decided to accept him as their ruler, there came more soldiers.
I Chronicles 12:22- For at that time day by day there came to David to help him, until it was a great host, like the host of God.
A great host, the Bible says. If you were to add up the number of soldiers in the next few verses you would find out that there were 340,822!
I Chronicles 12:38- All these men of war, that could keep rank, came with a perfect heart to Hebron, to make David king over all Israel: and all the rest also of Israel were of one heart to make David king.

All these soldiers showed up when David was crowned king of Israel. Now, David was a king with a castle and a kingdom and now a great army!

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 2)

David is now reigning as king over the tribe of Judah, but the rest of Israel is being ruled by Ishbosheth, Saul's living son. Ishbosheth isn't doing well. His army captain has turned to helping David, and has been killed by Joab after getting 20 elders of Israel to back David as the king.
II Samuel 4:1-2, 5-7- And when Saul's son heard that Abner was dead in Hebron, his hands were feeble, and all the Israelites were troubled. And Saul's son had two men that were captains of bands: the name of the one was Baanah, and the name of the other Rechab, the sons of Rimmon a Beerothite, of the children of Benjamin: (for Beeroth also was reckoned to Benjamin: And the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, Rechab and Baanah, went, and came about the heat of the day to the house of Ishbosheth, who lay on a bed at noon. And they came thither into the midst of the house, as though they would have fetched wheat; and they smote him under the fifth rib: and Rechab and Baanah his brother escaped. For when they came into the house, he lay on his bed in his bedchamber, and they smote him, and slew him, and beheaded him, and took his head, and gat them away through the plain all night.
Ishbosheth's other 2 captains now had turned against him and they killed him while he was lying in bed. They took his head with them and ran to show David what they had done.
Why is it that these people think that David is going to be pleased with them? He's already shown that he thinks it is wrong to murder royalty even if they are trying to kill you! But, here once again he has murderers standing before him boasting about their kill.
II Samuel 4:8-11- And they brought the head of Ishbosheth unto David to Hebron, and said to the king, Behold the head of Ishbosheth the son of Saul thine enemy, which sought thy life; and the LORD hath avenged my lord the king this day of Saul, and of his seed. And David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, and said unto them, [As] the LORD liveth, who hath redeemed my soul out of all adversity, When one told me, saying, Behold, Saul is dead, thinking to have brought good tidings, I took hold of him, and slew him in Ziklag, who thought that I would have given him a reward for his tidings: How much more, when wicked men have slain a righteous person in his own house upon his bed? shall I not therefore now require his blood of your hand, and take you away from the earth?
David knew that God wanted him to be king over all of Israel. But, David was willing to be patient and wait for God to bring it to pass. He wasn't looking for rebels to start a war to get him that position.
David also knew that God said that murderers should die.
II Samuel 4:12- And David commanded his young men, and they slew them, and cut off their hands and their feet, and hanged them up over the pool in Hebron. But they took the head of Ishbosheth, and buried it in the sepulchre of Abner in Hebron.
Now, all of Israel was ready to accept David as their king.
I Chronicles 11:1-3- Then all Israel gathered themselves to David unto Hebron, saying, Behold, we are thy bone and thy flesh. And moreover in time past, even when Saul was king, thou wast he that leddest out and broughtest in Israel: and the LORD thy God said unto thee, Thou shalt feed my people Israel, and thou shalt be ruler over my people Israel. Therefore came all the elders of Israel to the king to Hebron; and David made a covenant with them in Hebron before the LORD; and they anointed David king over Israel, according to the word of the LORD by Samuel.
So David became the ruler of all Israel at 37 years of age.
II Samuel 5:4-5- David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. In Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months: and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty and three years over all Israel and Judah.
David was now a king with a kingdom! But, every king needs a place to rule from, and David had chosen such a place. The only problem was that heathen were living there.
I Chronicles 11:4-5, 7-9- And David and all Israel went to Jerusalem, which is Jebus; where the Jebusites were, the inhabitants of the land. And the inhabitants of Jebus said to David, Thou shalt not come hither. Nevertheless David took the castle of Zion, which is the city of David. And David dwelt in the castle; therefore they called it the city of David. And he built the city round about, even from Millo round about: and Joab repaired the rest of the city. So David waxed greater and greater: for the LORD of hosts was with him.
II Samuel 5:10-12- And David went on, and grew great, and the LORD God of hosts was with him. And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house. And David perceived that the LORD had established him king over Israel, and that he had exalted his kingdom for his people Israel's sake.
God gave David everything that He promised because David was willing to wait for God to give it. Now, he was a king with a castle and a kingdom. And kings of other lands were recognizing him, and befriending him. But, David's enemies were acknowledging him as a threat.
II Samuel 5:17-18- But when the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines came up to seek David; and David heard of it, and went down to the hold. The Philistines also came and spread themselves in the valley of Rephaim.
Even though David had become a famous man, he never forgot that it was God who had gotten him there. He knew he needed God no matter how great or small he was. And he was willing to trust and obey God no matter what God said.
II Samuel 5:19-21- And David enquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up to the Philistines? wilt thou deliver them into mine hand? And the LORD said unto David, Go up: for I will doubtless deliver the Philistines into thine hand. And David came to Baalperazim, and David smote them there, and said, The LORD hath broken forth upon mine enemies before me, as the breach of waters. Therefore he called the name of that place Baalperazim. And there they left their images, and David and his men burned them.
David defeated the Philistines with God's help and he took their idols that they had left and burnt them so that no one in Israel would be tempted to worship the Philistines false gods.
But, the Philistines were very stubborn. They didn't like David and they didn't want him to be ruling Israel. IN fact, they didn't even want him alive!
II Samuel 5:22-25- And the Philistines came up yet again, and spread themselves in the valley of Rephaim. And when David enquired of the LORD, he said, Thou shalt not go up; but fetch a compass behind them, and come upon them over against the mulberry trees. And let it be, when thou hearest the sound of a going in the tops of the mulberry trees, that then thou shalt bestir thyself: for then shall the LORD go out before thee, to smite the host of the Philistines. And David did so, as the LORD had commanded him; and smote the Philistines from Geba until thou come to Gazer.
The next time the Philistines showed up, God had changed the battle plan. It was a good thing that David was use to asking God what He wanted, or he wouldn't have known how to fight this battle. God didn't want a head on attack. This time, David was to use the element of surprise!
David obeyed God's battle plan and God made sure that David won the battle.
Whenever we ask God what He wants in our lives and obey what He says no matter how silly it sounds or how hard it seems, God will help us to accomplish what He asked of us. We can always be victorious if we will just seek God's will for our lives and obey it!

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Beginning Of The Kings- King David (Part 1)

Saul and 4 of his sons died in the battle with the Philistines. David had been sent home from this battle only to find that Amalekites had invaded his home, Ziklag. David went after the Amalekites and was able to recover all of his things. He went back home to Ziklag, but he didn't know how everything had gone with the battle.
II Samuel 1:1-2- Now it came to pass after the death of Saul, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, and David had abode two days in Ziklag; It came even to pass on the third day, that, behold, a man came out of the camp from Saul with his clothes rent, and earth upon his head: and so it was, when he came to David, that he fell to the earth, and did obeisance.
This man came to give David an update on the battle.
II Samuel 1:4- And David said unto him, How went the matter? I pray thee, tell me. And he answered, That the people are fled from the battle, and many of the people also are fallen and dead; and Saul and Jonathan his son are dead also.
David wanted to know how this man knew that Saul and Jonathan were dead. And this man did something very unwise.
This man told a lie. He said that Saul had been wounded in battle and had asked him to kill him, but remember, Saul and his armorbearer killed themselves. This man must have found Saul's body before the Philistines got to it because he had Saul's crown and bracelet, which was what he showed David to prove that he was telling the truth.
How do you think David took this report?
II Samuel 1:11-12- Then David took hold on his clothes, and rent them; and likewise all the men that were with him: And they mourned, and wept, and fasted until even, for Saul, and for Jonathan his son, and for the people of the LORD, and for the house of Israel; because they were fallen by the sword.
David was so upset. He never wanted Saul dead, and he certainly didn't want his best friend to die that way! Remember, anytime someone wanted to kill Saul David wouldn't let them. He said that you shouldn't kill the Lord's anointed.
II Samuel 1:13-15- And David said unto the young man that told him, Whence art thou? And he answered, I am the son of a stranger, an Amalekite. And David said unto him, How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the LORD'S anointed? And David called one of the young men, and said, Go near, and fall upon him. And he smote him that he died.
David knew that the Lord required murderers to be put to death. And this man said he was a murderer. His lie cost him his life. But, why would he lie? He lied because he thought David would reward him.
II Samuel 4:10- When one told me, saying, Behold, Saul is dead, thinking to have brought good tidings, I took hold of him, and slew him in Ziklag, who thought that I would have given him a reward for his tidings:
David didn't give him the reward he expected. And David was very upset that Saul and Jonathan had died in battle!
II Samuel 1:17- And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul and over Jonathan his son:
Now what was David to do? He would ask God what to do, because he learned long ago not to do anything unless God wanted him to.
II Samuel 2:1- And it came to pass after this, that David enquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah? And the LORD said unto him, Go up. And David said, Whither shall I go up? And he said, Unto Hebron.
David had been on the run from Saul for years! He had amassed an army, and gained wealth and  a family. How old do you think David was?
II Samuel 5:4- David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years.
II Samuel 2:4a- And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah.
The men of Judah readily accepted David as their king. At 30 years old they annointed him the king over Judah. But, Israel was still trying to follow Saul.
II Samuel 2:8-10- But Abner the son of Ner, captain of Saul's host, took Ishbosheth the son of Saul, and brought him over to Mahanaim; And made him king over Gilead, and over the Ashurites, and over Jezreel, and over Ephraim, and over Benjamin, and over all Israel. Ishbosheth Saul's son was forty years old when he began to reign over Israel, and reigned two years. But the house of Judah followed David.
It seemed that David would be struggling with Saul's family for a while longer. If Jonathan had just gone with David like he knew he should have, David would be reigning with Jonathan at his side and the fighting would have ended. But Jonathan didn't want to obey God, and so he died with his father on the battle field and left his country to battle for the throne. Oh, how much it costs us when we do things our way instead of God's way!
II Samuel 2:11- And the time that David was king in Hebron over the house of Judah was seven years and six months.
For seven and one half years the people of Israel argued and battled about who would be the king- Saul's son or David. Abner was the captain of Ishbosheth's army (Saul's son) and Joab was the captain of David's army.
II Samuel 2:17-  And there was a very sore battle that day; and Abner was beaten, and the men of Israel, before the servants of David.
Many people died in this battle, including Joab's brother. And Joab blamed Abner for his death.
II Samuel 2:25-26- And the children of Benjamin gathered themselves together after Abner, and became one troop, and stood on the top of an hill. Then Abner called to Joab, and said, Shall the sword devour for ever? knowest thou not that it will be bitterness in the latter end? how long shall it be then, ere thou bid the people return from following their brethren?
Both Abner and Joab knew that if they kept fighting there wouldn't be anyone left to need a king. Around 380 soldiers had died in that one fight.They decided to call the battle off before it got too bloody. But the war raged on.
II Samuel 3:1- Now there was long war between the house of Saul and the house of David: but David waxed stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul waxed weaker and weaker.
God wanted David to rule over all Israel. He had anointed David back when he was a young teenager by the hand of Samuel. God knew what He wanted and He was going to work things out His way.
God allowed things to happen in Ishbosheth's army that turned his captain, Abner against him. Abner contacted David and told him he was willing to help David become the king.
II Samuel 3:12-  And Abner sent messengers to David on his behalf, saying, Whose is the land? saying also, Make thy league with me, and, behold, my hand shall be with thee, to bring about all Israel unto thee.
David knew that this could be a trap, so he made a request.
II Samuel 3:13- And he said, Well; I will make a league with thee: but one thing I require of thee, that is, Thou shalt not see my face, except thou first bring Michal Saul's daughter, when thou comest to see my face.
David loved his two new wives, but he still loved Michal. Michal was the wife who saved his life and stood by him against her own father, the king Saul.
II Samuel 3:15-16- And Ishbosheth sent, and took her from her husband, even from Phaltiel the son of Laish. And her husband went with her along weeping behind her to Bahurim. Then said Abner unto him, Go, return. And he returned.
Abner took Michal from the second husband that Saul made her marry and brought her back to David. Her new husband, Phaltiel, didn't want to lose her, but he couldn't stop what was happening.
Once David had Michal, Abner went about talking to all the leaders of the town and cities in Israel. He reminded them of how wonderful a captain David was in Saul's army when he was first king. He told them that David had been chosen by God to take over after Saul's death. He got 20 of the elders of Israel to come to a feast that David prepared.
II Samuel 3:20-21- So Abner came to David to Hebron, and twenty men with him. And David made Abner and the men that were with him a feast. And Abner said unto David, I will arise and go, and will gather all Israel unto my lord the king, that they may make a league with thee, and that thou mayest reign over all that thine heart desireth. And David sent Abner away; and he went in peace.
David had sent Abner away in peace. Joab wasn't around for this feast. And he wasn't too happy to hear that his brother's killer had been allowed to live.
Joab didn't care that Abner was going to help David gain the kingdom. All Joab could see was his desire for revenge.
II Samuel 3:26-27, 30- And when Joab was come out from David, he sent messengers after Abner, which brought him again from the well of Sirah: but David knew it not. And when Abner was returned to Hebron, Joab took him aside in the gate to speak with him quietly, and smote him there under the fifth rib, that he died, for the blood of Asahel his brother.  So Joab and Abishai his brother slew Abner, because he had slain their brother Asahel at Gibeon in the battle.
Oh, Joab! This move for revenge could have destroyed any chance of David getting the kingdom without a longer and more bloody war! David would have to act very wisely.

II Samuel 3:31-32, 35-37- And David said to Joab, and to all the people that were with him, Rend your clothes, and gird you with sackcloth, and mourn before Abner. And king David himself followed the bier. And they buried Abner in Hebron: and the king lifted up his voice, and wept at the grave of Abner; and all the people wept.  And when all the people came to cause David to eat meat while it was yet day, David sware, saying, So do God to me, and more also, if I taste bread, or ought else, till the sun be down. And all the people took notice of it, and it pleased them: as whatsoever the king did pleased all the people. For all the people and all Israel understood that day that it was not of the king to slay Abner the son of Ner.