None to be so much praised as Absalom - It was probably his personal beauty that caused the people to interest themselves so much in his behalf; for the great mass of the public is ever caught and led by outward appearances.
There was no blemish in him - He was perfect and regular in all his features, and in all his proportions.
David does not manifest the spirit of an unconverted man. If he had possessed the spirit of the rulers of the nations around him, he would not have borne from Nathan the picture of his crime before him in its truly abominable colors, but would have taken the life of the faithful reprover. But notwithstanding the loftiness of his throne, and his unlimited power, his humble acknowledgment of all with which he was charged, is evidence that he still feared and trembled at the word of the Lord. 4aSG 89.1
David was made to feel bitterly the fruits of wrongdoing. His sons acted over the sins of which he had been guilty. Amnon committed a great crime. Absalom revenged it by slaying him. Thus was David's sin brought continually to his mind, and he made to feel the full weight of the injustice done to Uriah and Bath-sheba. 4aSG 89.2
Absalom, his own son, whom he loved above all his children, rebelled against him. By his remarkable beauty, winning manners, and pretended kindness, he cunningly stole the hearts of the people. He did not possess benevolence at heart, but was ambitious and, as his course shows, would resort to intrigue and crime to obtain the kingdom. He would have returned his father's love and kindness by taking his life. He was proclaimed king by his followers in Hebron, and led them out to pursue his father. He was defeated and slain. 4aSG 89.3Read in context »
David had neglected the duty of punishing the crime of Amnon, and because of the unfaithfulness of the king and father and the impenitence of the son, the Lord permitted events to take their natural course, and did not restrain Absalom. When parents or rulers neglect the duty of punishing iniquity, God Himself will take the case in hand. His restraining power will be in a measure removed from the agencies of evil, so that a train of circumstances will arise which will punish sin with sin. PP 728.1
The evil results of David's unjust indulgence toward Amnon were not ended, for it was here that Absalom's alienation from his father began. After he fled to Geshur, David, feeling that the crime of his son demanded some punishment, refused him permission to return. And this had a tendency to increase rather than to lessen the inextricable evils in which the king had come to be involved. Absalom, energetic, ambitious, and unprincipled, shut out by his exile from participation in the affairs of the kingdom, soon gave himself up to dangerous scheming. PP 728.2
At the close of two years Joab determined to effect a reconciliation between the father and his son. And with this object in view he secured the services of a woman of Tekoah, reputed for wisdom. Instructed by Joab, the woman represented herself to David as a widow whose two sons had been her only comfort and support. In a quarrel one of these had slain the other, and now all the relatives of the family demanded that the survivor should be given up to the avenger of blood. “And so,” said the mother, “they shall quench my coal which is left, and shall not leave to my husband neither name nor remainder upon the earth.” The king's feelings were touched by this appeal, and he assured the woman of the royal protection for her son. PP 728.3Read in context »