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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How to raise a bad seed [2]

King David has a beautiful son, whom he cherishes. Absalom, however, has a problem. His major downfall is his pride, which he allows to control him, frequently. He thinks that he should be entitled to all of the power that his father possesses since he is, after all, beautiful and the king's son. His pride and quest for power eventually drive him to his death.

Sadly, to try to gain some perspective, we have to do some history first. David was a great king, anointed and appointed by God. But, he is human. David has not been paying close attention to what’s happening inside his family. In addition to running a country, he’s been busy trying to get his own freak on,a dn that's been a little time-consuming. You know, that whole episode with Bathsheba, and having her husband killed has been a major distraction. Energy and affection that should have been poured into his family duties have been spent elsewhere.

And, this is where we find ourselves. We become consumed with school, building our businesses, answering the call of God, working, that we neglect the very people we claim to be doing it all for. But, lets get back Absalom…

Although he was the heir-apparent to David's throne, David's son Amnon is best remembered for the rape of his half-sister Tamar. Despite the biblical prohibition to sexual relations between half-brothers and sisters (we need this?), Amnon had an overwhelming desire for her. He took the advice from his cousin, Jonadab the son of Shimeah, David's brother, to lure Tamar into his quarters by pretending to be sick and asking her to prepare a special meal for him. While in his quarters, and ignoring her protests, he raped her.

Two years later, to avenge his sister, Absalom, Amnon's half-brother and Tamar's full brother, has his men kill him. Afterwards, he fled in fear of his own life from his father. He escaped and went to Geshur for three years. Although Absalom had his brother murdered, David still loved him very much and wished that he would return to Jerusalem.

Enter Joab. He was one of David's counselors, who we have discussed on the past. Joab knew that David longed to have Absalom with him. So, he had a wise woman dress up and persuade David to ask Absalom to return. Absalom eventually returns, but does not get to see his father face to face for another two years. In time, however, he returned to his father who still loved him and the scripture says that he kissed him (2 Sam. 14:33)

Absalom re-gained the love of the people. He does this by standing by the side of the road and speaking to them before they reach David. The scripture says that:

"...whenever anyone approached him to bow down before him, Absalom would reach out his hand, take hold of him and kiss him. Absalom behaved in this way toward all the Israelites who came to the king asking for justice, and so he stole the hearts of the men of Israel." (2 Sam. 15:5-6)


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