Wednesday, November 14, 2012

David-O Absalom, my son, Absalom

By Mary Vee
II Samuel 18

 From Ahimaaz, the Priest's Journal

photo courtesy of
David is going to be furious when he hears his son is dead. And even more angry when he hears Joab disobeyed orders and killed him.

The soldiers gathered in the tents celebrating the victory. David had to be told. This matter could not wait until we returned to the city. I approached Joab. "Let me run and take the news to the king, how the Lord has avenged him of his enemies."

Joab laughed. "No. You will not take the news today, maybe another time. Definitely not today because you will tell David his son is dead."

A Cushite servant stood nearby. Joab turned to him. "Go, tell the king what you have seen." The servant bowed and ran toward the city as instructed.

I know the servant hadn't seen what happened. He will obey and say only what he saw and not what actually happened. David won't learn the truth from that servant. 

Not being able to go frustrated me. David needed to hear the news. I wanted to be with him when he heard. I asked again, "Whatever happens, please let me run behind the Cushite."

Joab laughed again. "You run? What good is that? You have no news to share."

"If anything small, anything, allow me to run to report the news."

Joab rolled his eyes. "Fine. Go ahead and run."

I didn't stop to do anything before leaving. The Cushite had the lead. I figured out a shortcut across the plain. 

I saw the watchman in the tower. He leaned over as if reporting something. They saw me coming. Good. 

By the time I reached the gate I was out of breath. Through gasps I called, "All is well." The guards took me to the king. I bowed low to the ground. "Blessed be the Lord your God, who has delivered up the men who raised the hand against my lord the king."

David signaled for me to stand. "Is my son, Absalom safe?"

I took a few more deep breaths and answered. "When Joab sent me as a messenger, there was quite a problem but I didn't know what it was."

David looked at my eyes. He wanted to know right away. "Stand over here."

A guard stepped into the room. "My lord, a second messenger has arrived."

David nodded. "Send him in."

The Cushite waltzed happily into the room. "Good news, my lord, the king! The Lord has avenged you this day of all those who rose against you."

David said, "Is my son, Absalom safe?"

The Cushite smiled, "May all your enemies get the same punishment as that young man."

This was not the best way to tell him. David practically melted on the floor. He closed his eyes. "Leave me. Everyone. Leave me." He climbed the stairs to the room over the gate and wept. "O my son, Absalom--my son Absalom--if only I had died in your place. O Absalom my son, my son!"

Here is a Psalm we sing. You call it Psalm 11: NKJV

In the Lord I put my trust;
How can you say to my soul,
“Flee as a bird to your mountain”?
 For look! The wicked bend their bow,
They make ready their arrow on the string,
That they may shoot secretly at the upright in heart.
 If the foundations are destroyed,
What can the righteous do?
 The Lord is in His holy temple,
The Lord’s throne is in heaven;
His eyes behold,
His eyelids test the sons of men.
 The Lord tests the righteous,
But the wicked and the one who loves violence His soul hates.
 Upon the wicked He will rain coals;
Fire and brimstone and a burning wind
Shall be the portion of their cup.
 For the Lord is righteous,
He loves righteousness;
His countenance beholds the upright.

1. Who wanted to tell David the news about his son Absalom?
2. Joab was one of the captains of the army for this battle. Who did he choose to report the news?
3. After the Cushite left what did Ahimaaz do?
4. Who arrived first?
5. How did David respond to the news?

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