David Returns to Jerusalem

Stephen Olford is without question one of the great Preachers of the World: Son of a missionary to Africa. Did not want to go through the trials and tribulations of a missionary. Was mistreated by Christians in England and rebelled against God. Studied to become an engineer. Deve … More


Joab is told of David’s “weeping” and “mourning” for his son Absalom (vv. 1-2). Instead of majoring on their triumph as an occasion for celebration the people sneak back into the city because cowardice has forced them to flee the battlefield (v. 3). Meanwhile David, with his face covered continues to cry aloud in mourning for his dead son (v. 4). While this is going on Joab comes into the house of the king and accuses David of trading Absalom’s life for those of everyone else by discouraging them (v. 5). Joab’s complaint is that David loves those who hate him and hates those that love him (v. 6). Joab has received the clear impression that the “commanders” and their men mean nothing at all to the king. David says that if the king does not immediately go out and “encourage” his men, no one will remain loyal to him (v. 7). Reluctantly, the king is prodded by Joab’s harsh words to go and sit at the gate (v. 8).

Some people reminded the Israelites that David, despite his flaws rescued them from their enemies, the Philistines, but he is still outside the country (v. 9). They then ask, why do our fellow Israelites “say nothing” about returning David to his rightful place on the throne in Jerusalem (v. 10)? So David sends the priests to ask the elders to bring him back to his own house in Jerusalem (vv.11-12). David now promises to make Amasa the commander of the army in place of Joab (v. 13). Soon the tribe of Judah again become the followers of David, and they ask David to come back and bring his soldiers with him (v. 14).  


When is the last time I have wept over people who are lost? (Psa. 126:6) Lord give me compassion!

II Samuel 19:1-15 (English Standard Version)

It was told Joab, "Behold, the king is weeping and mourning for Absalom." So the victory that day was turned into mourning for all the people, for the people heard that day, "The king is grieving for his son." And the people stole into the city that day as people steal in who are ashamed when they flee in battle. The king covered his face, and the king cried with a loud voice, "O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son!" Then Joab came into the house to the king and said, "You have today covered with shame the faces of all your servants, who have this day saved your life and the lives of your sons and your daughters and the lives of your wives and your concubines, because you love those who hate you and hate those who love you. For you have made it clear today that commanders and servants are nothing to you, for today I know that if Absalom were alive and all of us were dead today, then you would be pleased. Now therefore arise, go out and speak kindly to your servants, for I swear by the LORD, if you do not go, not a man will stay with you this night, and this will be worse for you than all the evil that has come upon you from your youth until now." Then the king arose and took his seat in the gate. And the people were all told, "Behold, the king is sitting in the gate." And all the people came before the king. Now Israel had fled every man to his own home. And all the people were arguing throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, "The king delivered us from the hand of our enemies and saved us from the hand of the Philistines, and now he has fled out of the land from Absalom. But Absalom, whom we anointed over us, is dead in battle. Now therefore why do you say nothing about bringing the king back?" And King David sent this message to Zadok and Abiathar the priests: "Say to the elders of Judah, 'Why should you be the last to bring the king back to his house, when the word of all Israel has come to the king? You are my brothers; you are my bone and my flesh. Why then should you be the last to bring back the king?' And say to Amasa, 'Are you not my bone and my flesh? God do so to me and more also, if you are not commander of my army from now on in place of Joab.'" And he swayed the heart of all the men of Judah as one man, so that they sent word to the king, "Return, both you and all your servants." So the king came back to the Jordan, and Judah came to Gilgal to meet the king and to bring the king over the Jordan.

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