Read 2 Samuel 18:5-9, 15, 31-33
5He gave orders to Joab, Abishai, and Ittai: “For my sake don’t harm the young man Absalom.” And all the troops heard David give this command to his officers.
6 David’s army went out into the countryside and fought the Israelites in the forest of Ephraim. 7The Israelites were defeated by David’s men; it was a terrible defeat, with 20,000 men killed that day. 8The fighting spread over the countryside, and more men died in the forest than were killed in battle.
9 Suddenly Absalom met some of David’s men. Absalom was riding a mule, and as it went under a large oak tree, Absalom’s head got caught in the branches. The mule ran on and Absalom was left hanging in mid air.
15Then ten of Joab’s soldiers closed in on Absalom and finished killing him.
31 Then the Ethiopiana slave arrived and said to the king, “I have good news for Your Majesty! Today the Lord has given you victory over all who rebelled against you!”
32 “Is the young man Absalom safe?” the king asked.
The slave answered, “I wish that what has happened to him would happen to all your enemies, sir, and to all who rebel against you.”
33 The king was overcome with grief. He went up to the room over the gateway and wept. As he went, he cried, “O my son! My son Absalom! Absalom, my son! If only I had died in your place, my son! Absalom, my son!”
David's affair with Bathsheba is just a part of his complicated family history. Terrible things happen - one of David's sons Amnon, rapes his half sister Tamar (2 Sam 13). Absalom kills him in revenge.
There is great tension between David and Absalom - Absalom attempts to take over the Kingdom (Chapter 15). Chapter 18 tells the story of Absalom's final battle against David - and Absalom's death.
Lord, my disobedience and sin does not end with me - it causes harm to my friends, my family and the world I live in.
Help me to take responsibility for my part in the brokenness of the world.
And help me to realise your power to redeem me and my brokenness.