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19. David’s Battles

January 19, 2010

Text:    II Samuel 10:1-13:22

Harmony Texts:    I Chronicles 19:1-19; 20:1-3; Psalm 32

Outline:      I. David Battles the Ammonites      II Samuel 10:1-18

                          II. David Battles Lust      II Samuel 11:1-27

                         III. David Battles the Lord      II Samuel 12:1-31

                         IV. David Battles within His Family      II Samuel 13:1-39

Context/Discussion/Comments:

     Once again this is a very long scripture passage but I did not want to break it up because it seems to have a common theme, “Battles”.

     David sends a delegation to Ammon to mourn and express sympathy for their king who had died. But the Ammonite nobles expressed concern to Hanun, the new king, that David’s men were there to spy. So Hanun seized David’s men and humiliated them. The Ammonites realize their error and hire 20,000 Aramean soldiers, 1000 from Maucah, and 12,000 from Tob instead of expressing their regrets, asking forgiveness, and seeking peace. David responds by sending Joab and the Israeli army to the Ammonite city gate while the Ammonite soldiers take their place in the open country. Joab is forced to fight on two fronts, one against the Arameans and one against the Ammonites. Joab and his troops rout the Arameans but the Arameans regroup and David’s army proceed to kill 700 charioteers and 40,000 soldiers before peace was made.

     David sends Joab out to war against the Ammonites again but David stays home and lusts for a woman, Bathsheba, whom he sees bathing. David sends for her, sleeps with her, and she becomes pregnant. David sends for her husband Uriah to come home for a rest from the war but Uriah does not go into his home because his fellow soldiers are encamped. David even gets Uriah drunk but he still refuse to go home. David then sends Uriah back to the battle front with a note to Joab to put Uriah in a position where he can be killed by the enemy. Joab follows orders and reports back that Uriah is dead. David sends words of encouragement to Joab, Bathsheba mourns, and David takes her as his wife.

     Nathan is sent by the Lord to visit David to tell him a parable about a rich man who takes advantage of a poor man. David pronounces judgment against the rich man and learns that he is the rich man Nathan was revealing. The Lord through Nathan chastises David by reminding David of His blessings and yet David has chosen to despise the Word of the Lord. David is told he will suffer the consequences for his sin. One of his wives will be given to another. David confesses his sin and the Lord forgives him but his son will die. David pleads to God for his son’s life and fasts but the son dies of illness on the seventh day. David chooses to worship God instead of mourning, acknowledging God’s sovereignty over his life. Bathsheba conceives again and bears a son named Solomon. Joab summons David to the battle front to be present when Israel is victorious over the Ammonites so David can receive all the credit. Israel’s plunder was significant.

     David’s oldest son, Amnon, falls in love with his half sister Tamar who is the sister of Absalom. Amnon is frustrated because he cannot get the attention of Tamar. So his friend suggests a scheme by which Amnon can get Tamar into his bedroom by feigning illness. The scheme was successful and Amnon’s lust for Tamar is greater than asking the King’s permission to marry her and so he rapes her. Amnon’s heart immediately changes from love to hatred and he asks Tamar to leave. She refuses so she is thrown out. Tamar is humiliated and moves into her brother’s house. David is furious and Absalom shows hatred toward Amnon. Two years later, Absalom asks David and all his officials, including the King’s sons, to come to a sheep-shearing party near the border of Ephraim. David refuses but finally relents and lets his sons go, including Amnon. Absalom orders his men to kill Amnon when he is drunk. Amnon is killed and the King’s sons all flee. David first hears that all his sons have died at the hand of Absalom but Jonadab, David’s brother who devised Amnon’s scheme, tells him not to worry that only Amnon is dead. Jonadab’s message is true and David mourns.

     Absalom flees to Geshur for 3 years even though David had forgiven him for his act against Amnon.

Lessons/Applications:

     Life is full of battles. It makes no difference whether one is rich or poor, an official or a servant, an adult or a child. These battles can be with external forces such as national or personal enemies. They can be internal forces as a result of our sin nature [lust, hatred, etc]. They can be with the Lord because we are ignoring His Word and only focusing on self-gratification. They can be with family members because of death, deceit, and lack of justice or discipline. The foundation of all battles is our sinful nature. Acknowledging our sin and seeking the Lord for forgiveness brings inner peace but not necessarily outer peace. Sin has its’ consequences because God is holy, righteous, and just.

   1. Battles can be avoided and peace restored is we just take time to check out the truthfulness and accuracy of the advise we are being given. When advice is being received, make sure the advice is not self-serving in any way or form to the one advising.

   2. Family must always take top priority. Only God should receive a higher priority and in so doing, take to heart the advice He gives. Take time to know the hearts of those in your care.

   3. Correct and timely discipline is necessary to keep a family [or any organization] functioning smoothly and peacefully. Sober judgment and discernment is better than anger or hatred.

   4. Simple and straightforward solutions to fulfill our desires are always better than deceit.

   5. When you are battling sin in your life you are always battling on two fronts. One is with the sin and the other is with the Lord.

   6. When experiencing family battles, look to yourself. Amnon and Absalom practiced deceit but so did David. Make sure you are not the source of your family strife.

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