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2 Samuel 2

DAILY DEVOTION

FOR

TUESDAY, MARCH 12

                                                    

SCRIPTURE:2 Samuel 2

BY: Jeremy Witt

I should clarify the accusations that Mr. Josh Boles made against me last week as many of you pointed out on Sunday.  Let’s just say had I not made reference to the devotional on Wednesday of last week, you would have been lacking a devotional.  I will leave it at that. 

Now to the real reason we are here.  Saul and Jonathan have died.  The nation of Israel is in the midst of turmoil, unrest, and the big question is, “who will be king?”  Tradition has the son of Saul as the heir to the throne, yet many know that God has anointed David as the next king.  Essentially the question to the nation is will we follow man’s ways or God’s ways?” 

As we begin chapter 2, David asks the LORD whether he should go to one of the towns of Judah and if so, what town.  The LORD answered David in verse 1, and David and his family moved to Hebron.  You might remember that this was the area that Caleb was promised when the Israelites conquered the land under Joshua’s leadership. 

In verse 4, we see that the men of Judah anointed David as king in a public ceremony.  This was different than the private ceremony with Samuel in 1 Samuel 16:13.  The death of Saul shows a division within the nation.  Most went with the ways of man and sought Ishbosheth, the son of Saul to be king in verse 8.  Notice that the commander of Saul’s army, Abner, initiated this.  This was a power play, as Abner is a cousin of Saul. 

I realize not every person knew of the private anointing of David, but Abner certainly did!  Remember the opportunities that David had to take Saul and did not, and the times that Saul confessed that David would be king.  (1 Samuel 22 and 24)  You might also remember the covenant that David made with Saul.  (1 Samuel 24)  Abner was there and heard it.  Abner took advantage of the moment to grab power.  He was most certainly focused on himself rather than the LORD. 

Ishbosheth was king for 2 years while David ruled over Judah for 7 and ½ years in Hebron.  There is a 5 ½ year gap here.  Many scholars believe that during this gap, Abner was playing a key role in particular against the war with the Philistines.  Abner may have used Ishbosheth as a pawn for him to remain in control. 

The story of Asahel, brother of David’s military commander, and Abner are in verses 18-32 and it shows us the rivalries within both Israel and Judah.  However, you can digest that information for yourself. 

As we conclude today’s reading, I want to focus on Abner in our conclusion.  When people have control, they do not like to let go of it.  Many of us really struggle with this more than others.  We like to be in control or in reality, think that we are in control when ultimately God is in control. 

As we apply these Scriptures to us, it might apply to us as a church in our search for a pastor.  We focus on what we want in a pastor rather than what God knows what we need.  Or maybe the application is for us.  It could apply to us in our job or relationships.  We want to be in control and this control issue may be the problem.  Rather than trusting the LORD God to be in control and leading us, we are actually fighting against the LORD’s will as Abner did.  Do we really want to be fighting against God?  We know that is a losing battle.  Or is that the problem?  Do we think that we know better than God?  Sounds like a Garden of Eden problem like Adam and Eve had.  That is something to think about.

Posted by Jeremy Witt with

2 Samuel 1

DAILY DEVOTION

FOR

MONDAY, MARCH 11

SCRIPTURE: 2 SAMUEL 1

BY: Josh Boles

As we get into 2 Samuel it is important for us to remember where David had been. For the last 10 years previous to 2 Samuel 1, David was an exile with a price on his head. He was waiting on the time when God would place him on the throne. During these difficult times David grew in the Lord. We saw that plainly stated in our last chapter together.

As we closed our last two chapters in 1 Samuel we read of Saving slaughtering the Amalekites, and the Philistines overpowering Saul. At the end of chapter 31, the Philistines killed Saul and his three sons. Scripture gives us 3 accounts of the death of Saul. One in 1 Samuel 31. One in 1 Chronicles 10:1-14, and one here in chapter one. Because of these other accounts we know the messenger in chapter one was a deceitful messenger.

It was clear that the messenger was on the battle field, but most likely searching for the spoils of war. Notice that he takes Saul’s crown and part of Saul’s gold armor. More than likely the messenger was doing this to gain David’s favor, the one who would take Saul’s place.

What we find next I’m sure shocked the messenger and gives us some insight to the character of David. We would assume that David would have rejoiced at the news of Saul's death but instead David and his men mourned and wept. It would be easy to assume that David was mourning only for Jonathan but is clearly says that they mourned and fasted for both Jonathan, and Saul.  Verses 15 and 16 are further evidence to this point. Even though Saul betrayed David many times, he had no desire to kill him. This Amalekite messenger was a son of a sojourner. Sojourners were accepted by the Israelites under God’s commandment, and were subject to the Laws of Israel. This is why David had him executed. 

David’s grief over Saul and Jonathan was sincere, and to help the people remember them he wrote the song we read in verse 19-27 to help them remember. All of this is evidence of David’s heart for the Lord. As we have already discussed, David had made many mistakes, and will continue to do so until the day he dies. What is important is that David through it all, always kept his heart set on the Lord. He wanted God’s plan for his life and for the Nation of Israel to be enacted. Even when by all human standards he had reason to seek revenge, he looks to the Lord. I hope and pray that we can all be like David in this way. 

Posted by Josh Boles with

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