2 Samuel 16:9-14
Verse 12 “It may be that the Lord will look upon my misery and restore to me His covenant blessing instead of his curse today.”
This is one of those passages which can cause us to scratch our heads. Likely tired of being pelted with stones by Shimei, one of David’s men, Abishai, starts to complain. He pretty much tells David, “You are still king, do something about this pest.” He is even willing to do the beheading himself if just given the word. It isn’t just irritation which he is showing though, notice the term he uses when referring to Saul’s relative, “dead dog.”
To call someone a dead dog was one of the meanest things you could say to someone. Remember things which were dead were unclean for an Israelite. They had been commanded not to even come close to something which was dead. It was therefore a great insult to compare someone to that which was unclean, but Abishai didn’t care because he had no use for this man cursing the king.
A young David may have been fiery mad at Shimei and allow Abishai to rid him of the man but the king had matured over the years and was in a place where he had decided God may be removing him from the throne. He also knew some of the things being spouted by the hateful man were at the very least close to the truth. David hadn’t killed Saul and his sons but he had been willing to go to war against them. He may not have shot the arrow which killed Uriah but he may as well have. The same was true for Abner and Ishbosheth, he may not have actually killed them but there may have been ways some could think he was behind their deaths.
David was so confident that the Lord was in control, he told Abishai to let the cursing continue because it may be coming because God had ordered it. This may have sounded so strange to Abishai. How could God curse the man He had placed on the throne? David remembered how God had turned His Spirit away from Saul and knew God was still in control.
David knew God had made a covenant with him where his descendants would reign forever but David had no promise from God His favor wouldn’t be removed from the king and given to his son. In fact God said that He wouldn’t remove His love from David’s son (2 Samuel 7:15). This promise was given before Solomon was born and so David may not have yet understood Solomon, and ultimately Jesus, was who God was talking about leaving him to wonder of God could have been talking about Absalom.
Making It Personal
Have you had someone curse you or at least make slanderous remarks about you? Did you respond or react to them? Does what people say about you matter more than what God says about you?
Making It Personal Kids
Have you had someone say mean things about you? Did you get mad at them or ignore them? Does it matter more to you what Jesus says about you or what people say about you?
Father, thank You for this example of wisdom from David. Give us the wisdom to know when to stand up and when to ignore comments made about us and help us remember that You know the truth about us. In Jesus’ name, amen.