Humiliation Marks David’s Journey Into Exile – 2 Samuel 16

Concept of humbling oneself before the Lord:

  • Sometimes we have no choice – the Lord works out our circumstances to humble us.
  • Sometimes we have a choice and can lash back in anger and pride or choose the course of humbling ourselves.

King David embarks upon a journey of humiliation (both forced and chosen) as he flees into exile and his rebellious son Absalom assumes the throne in Jerusalem.

BIG IDEA:
FOUR INCIDENTS THAT HIGHLIGHT THE DEPTHS OF HUMILIATION FOR KING DAVID AS HE FLEES INTO EXILE

I. (:1-4) INCIDENT #1 – DAVID ESTRANGED FROM MEPHIBOSHETH BY THE CONNIVING OF ZIBA – ZIBA INGRATIATES HIMSELF WITH KING DAVID – THROWING MEPHIBOSHETH UNDER THE BUS

  1. (:1) Beware of Cunning Men Bearing Gifts: "Now when David had passed a little beyond the summit, behold, Ziba the servant of Mephibosheth met him with a couple of saddled donkeys, and on them were two hundred loaves of bread, a hundred clusters of raisins, a hundred summer fruits, and a jug of wine."
  2. (:2) Question the Motives: "And the king said to Ziba, ‘Why do you have these?’ And Ziba said, ‘The donkeys are for the king’s household to ride, and the bread and summer fruit for the young men to eat, and the wine, for whoever is faint in the wilderness to drink."
    1. David wanted to know what was going on with these lavish gifts
  3. (:3) Question the Commitment to Faithfulness: "Then the king said, ‘And where is your master’s son?’ And Ziba said to the king, ‘Behold, he is staying in Jerusalem, for he said, Today the house of Israel will restore the kingdom of my father to me.’"
    1. David wanted to know why Ziba was not still faithfully ministering to Mephibosheth
  4. (:4) Don’t Be Gullible = Accepting Answers at Face Value Without Some Investigation: "So the king said to Ziba, ‘Behold, all that belongs to Mephibosheth is yours.’ And Ziba said, ‘I prostrate myself; let me find favor in your sight, O my lord the king.’"
    1. Was this a rash decision on David’s part or was he truly suspicious and just playing along with Ziba at this point?

II. (:5-14) INCIDENT #2 — DAVID SUBMITS TO THE BRAZEN ATTACKS FROM SHIMEI

  1. (:5-8) Brazenness of Shimei In Blasting David
    1. (:5a) His Vested Allegiance – to Household of Saul: "When King David came to Bahurim, behold, there came out from there a man of the family of the house of Saul whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera"
    2. (:5b) His Verbal Attacks: "he came out cursing continually as he came"
    3. (:6) His Arrogant Attacks: "And he threw stones at David and at all the servants of King David, and all the people and all the mighty men were at his right hand and at his left."
    4. (:7-8) His Judgmental Assessment: "And thus Shimei said when he cursed, ‘Get out, get out, you man of bloodshed, and worthless fellow! The Lord has returned upon you all the bloodshed of the house of Saul, in whose place you have reigned; and the Lord has given the kingdom into the hand of your son Absalom. And behold, you are taken in your own evil, for you are a man of bloodshed!’"
  2. (:9-12) Meekness of David Exemplified in His Remarkable Restraint
    1. (:9) Opportunity to Silence Shimei: "Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, ‘Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over now, and cut off his head.’"
    2. (:10-12) Remarkable Restraint
      1. (:10) Submitting to the Lord’s Discipline: "But the king said, ‘What have I to do with you, O sons of Zeruiah? If he curses and if the Lord has told him, Curse David, then who shall say, Why have you done so?’"
      2. (:11) Seeing the Bigger Picture – Argument from the Greater to the Lesser: "Then David said to Abishai and to all his servants, ‘Behold, my son who came out from me seeks my life; how much more now this Benjamite?"
      3. (:12) Seeking the Lord’s Favor and Restoration: "Let him alone and let him curse, for the Lord has told him. Perhaps the Lord will look on my affliction and return good to me instead of his cursing this day."
  3. (:13-14) Wearisomeness of Ongoing Humiliation
    1. (:13) Shimei Dogs David Along the Way: "So David and his men went on the way; and Shimei went along on the hillside parallel with him and as he went he cursed, and cast stones and threw dust at him."
    2. (:14) Rest at the End of a Tiresome Journey: "And the king and all the people who were with him arrived weary and he refreshed himself there."

III. (:15-19) INCIDENT #3 – DAVID’S FRIEND HUSHAI FORCED TO SWEAR ALLEGIANCE TO ABSALOM (IN ORDER TO FUNCTION IN JERUSALEM AS A SPY)

  1. (:15) Triumphal Entry of Absalom: "Then Absalom and all the people, the men of Israel, entered Jerusalem, and Ahithophel with him."
  2. (:16) Profession of Loyalty by Hushai: "Now it came about when Hushai the Archite, David’s friend, came to Absalom, that Hushai said to Absalom, ‘Long live the king! Long live the king!’"
  3. (:17) Suspicious Interrogation by Absalom: "And Absalom said to Hushai, ‘Is this your loyalty to your friend? Why did you not go with your friend?’"
  4. (:18-19) Assurance of Loyalty by Hushai
    1. (:18) Allegiance Not a Personal Choice: "Then Hushai said to Absalom, ‘No! For whom the Lord, this people, and all the men of Israel have chosen, his will I be, and with him I will remain.’"
      1. Not a matter of friendship
    2. (:19) Track Record of Faithful Service: "And besides, whom should I serve? Should I not serve in the presence of his son? As I have served in your father’s presence, so I will be in your presence."

IV. (:20-23) INCIDENT #4 – DAVID’S CONCUBINES VIOLATED BY HIS SON ABSALOM IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE COUNSEL OF AHITHOPHEL (MAKING THE RIFT BETWEEN DAVID AND ABSALOM PERMANENT)

  1. (:20-21) Strategic Counsel of Ahithophel
    1. Soliciting Counsel: "Then Absalom said to Ahithophel, ‘Give your advice. What shall we do?’
    2. Shocking Counsel: "And Ahithophel said to Absalom, ‘Go in to your father’s concubines, whom he has left to keep the house;’"
    3. Shrewd Counsel: "then all Israel will hear that you have made yourself odious to your father."
    4. Successful Counsel: "The hands of all who are with you will also be strengthened."
  2. (:22) Shamelessness of Absalom: "So they pitched a tent for Absalom on the roof, and Absalom went in to his father’s concubines in the sight of all Israel."
  3. (:23) Supreme Respect for Counsel of Ahithophel: "And the advice of Ahithophel, which he gave in those days, was as if one inquired of the word of God; so was all the advice of Ahithophel regarded by both David and Absalom."