The Crown Week 10: Day 3
Optional: Read 2 Samuel 2-4
Read: 2 Samuel 3:22-39
Following the deaths of Saul and Jonathan, we see a civil war break out in Israel. Abner seeks to establish Saul’s son Ish-Bosheth as king, while David has already been anointed king of Judah. These chapters record the struggle for power between the house of Saul and the house of David, and the unnecessary deaths that occur along the way.
Joab was one of David’s nephews and a successful general. What were Joab’s possible motives for killing Abner?
How did David respond to the news of the death of Abner? How is this similar or different to his response to the news of Saul’s death in chapter 1? Do you think David has been loyal to God in the way he addresses Abner’s murder?
In this section, David once again is grieved by the death of his perceived enemy, and he leads Israel to mourn for Abner. However, in contrast to Saul’s death, David does not have Joab killed, which is the proper penalty for his crime. In verse 39 David leaves it to God to repay Joab according to his evil deeds. On the one hand we see David’s continued innocence in the establishment of his kingdom, and on the other hand we see hints of David’s weaknesses and failures begin to emerge.
Even before David’s rule is properly established in Israel, we see the kingdom divided and David’s actions often far from innocent. These chapters are full of characters pursuing their own agendas. Already we feel the need for a consistent, sinless and just king, fulfilled in Christ.
Read Ephesians 4:1-6
As citizens of a new kingdom under Christ, how are we called to treat one another?
Where might there be potential for petty agendas and politics to cause division within our church? How does Christ’s example on the cross motivate us toward unity?
Praise God that he is a just ruler, and that in Jesus we have a perfect King. Thank God that he is able to work out his purposes through weak people, and that he does not leave us in our weakness.
Pray that as a church God would strengthen us against politics and personal agendas. Ask God to be at work in our community, causing us to be unified in Christ.