June 21, 2017
2 Samuel 2
Shawn Bumpers / General
In chapter 1, David received news that Saul and his sons were dead.
It was an Amalekite who brought the news to David … expecting a handsome reward.
As for David, he was broken hearted over the death of Saul and Jonathan.
And when we might expect David to perhaps have shown sorrow on the outside, but relief on the inside.
Today, as we move into chapter 2, the focus of the text shifts to David.
While David mourned the death of Saul, it meant that he was no longer on the run.
David was Israel’s lawful king.
He had been living in Philistine territory only to avoid Saul.
From chapter 23 through the end of 1 Samuel, we have seen David making inquiries of the Lord using the ephod under the guidance of Abiathar the priest.
It may also be that he asked Gad the prophet to pray to God for guidance as Gad had done in chapter 22.
David was from Judah, so it was logical that he go to live among his own people, but in which city should he reside?
It was 12 to 18 years before this (16 or 17 chapters ago) that David was anointed king over Israel.
In verse 1, God gave David permission to return to Judah and told him to live in Hebron.
2 Timothy 2:12 NKJV
If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us.
But hardship can also reveal who is saved and who is not.
When David returned to Judah and settled in Hebron, this was the signal for his people to recognize him as their leader.
So the men of Judah anointed David and made him a king.
We know from 1 Chronicles 12 that while David was living in Ziklag, volunteers had come to him from the tribes of Benjamin, Gad, and Manasseh.
This meant he not only had a large and experienced army but also representatives from some of the other tribes.
David was a man with a shepherd’s heart who cared about his people.
One of his first concerns was the fate of Saul and the three sons who died with him.
The people of Jabesh Gilead allowed their affection for Saul to blind them to God’s plan for the nation.
Augustine of Hippo, an early church theologian said, “Jesus Christ will be Lord of all or He will not be Lord at all.”
We know from 1 Samuel 14 that Abner was Saul’s cousin.
He was also the commander of his army.
The people of Judah obeyed God’s will and anointed David as their king.
But Abner disobeyed the Lord and made Saul’s one remaining son, Ish-Bosheth, the king of, as it says in verse 9, “all Israel.”
So then, IshBosheth was all that remained of the royal family.
Scripture doesn’t say much about IshBosheth.
But it is clear that he was a weak puppet ruler and he was manipulated by Abner.
2 Samuel 3:11 NKJV
And he could not answer Abner another word, because he feared him.
But when we do a little math we find that it took at least 5 years for Abner to persuade the tribes (without Judah) to follow their new king.
When Abner made IshBosheth king, he was actually declaring war on David.
But by now Abner had all the tribes except Judah behind him.
Zeruiah was David’s sister and she had 3 sons, Joab, Abishai, and Asahel.
However, that doesn’t mean David was older than them.
How was it that Asahel was impaled by the butt end of the spear?
Well, the butt end of a spear was often sharpened so the spear could be thrust into the ground and be ready for action (1 Sam. 26:7).
Asahel’s two brothers, Joab and Abishai, must have been following close behind.
And despite what happened to their brother, they continued the pursuit.
Judah and Benjamin were brothers, both sons of Jacob.
However, Abner had another plan … remember, he was in this for himself.
He had a plan in mind that would give him both armies without having to shed blood.