2 Sam 19:1-43
The war was over, but one man remained sad and sorrowful. David remained inconsolable by the death of his son Absalom, and his sorrow started to affect the remainder of the people until Joab stepped in. Joab confronted the king and made him understand that his actions undermined the contribution of his men and servants who had all laid down their life for him at battle. Which would he prefer, for them all to die and Absalom being alive? He then told David to address all the people and speak comfortably with them.
David stood up eventually and went to the gate, and from there he took charge back of his kingdom which had been in disarray, with the king fleeing, and Absalom dead. So he sent men and arranged for his return back to Jerusalem. David went back to Jerusalem, and was met by men who welcomed him back, including Ziba, Shimei and Mephibosheth. It was surprising that despite what Shimei did when David left the kingdom, he came back with his men to apologize, and David forgave him, telling Abishai not to smite him. David also sought and received the explanation for Mephibosheth’s faulure to follow him out of Jerusalem when he departed.
David’s return however also brought strife between the men of Judah and the men of Israel, as the Israelites wondered how Judah ‘stole’ the king away from them. The men of Judah claimed in return that they were closer kinsmen to David and had every right to claim ten parts in David.
Have we seen the last of David’s struggles as he entered his twilight years? Having escaped Absalom’s troubles, what lies ahead of him? We shall wait and see.
Some verses to remember
vs 5-6: And Joab came into the house to the king, and said, Thou hast shamed this day the faces of all thy servants, which this day have saved thy life, and the lives of thy sons and of thy daughters, and the lives of thy wives, and the lives of thy concubines; In that thou lovest thine enemies, and hatest thy friends. For thou hast declared this day, that thou regardest neither princes nor servants: for this day I perceive, that if Absalom had lived, and all we had died this day, then it had pleased thee well.
vs 8: Then the king arose, and sat in the gate. And they told unto all the people, saying, Behold, the king doth sit in the gate. And all the people came before the king: for Israel had fled every man to his tent.