Scripture: In the course of time, Absalom provided himself with a chariot and horses and with fifty men to run ahead of him. He would get up early and stand by the side of the road leading to the city gate. Whenever anyone came with a complaint to be placed before the king for a decision, Absalom would call out to him, “What town are you from?” He would answer, “Your servant is from one of the tribes of Israel.” Then Absalom would say to him, “Look, your claims are valid and proper, but there is no representative of the king to hear you.” And Absalom would add, “If only I were appointed judge in the land! Then everyone who has a complaint or case could come to me and I would see that he gets justice.” Also, whenever anyone approached him to bow down before him, Absalom would reach out his hand, take hold of him and kiss him.
Absalom behaved in this way toward all the Israelites who came to the king asking for justice, and so he stole the hearts of the men of Israel. At the end of four years, Absalom said to the king, “Let me go to Hebron and fulfill a vow I made to the Lord. While your servant was living at Geshur in Aram, I made this vow: ‘If the Lord takes me back to Jerusalem, I will worship the Lord in Hebron.’ ” The king said to him, “Go in peace.” So he went to Hebron. Then Absalom sent secret messengers throughout the tribes of Israel to say, “As soon as you hear the sound of the trumpets, then say, ‘Absalom is king in Hebron.’ ” Two hundred men from Jerusalem had accompanied Absalom. They had been invited as guests and went quite innocently, knowing nothing about the matter. While Absalom was offering sacrifices, he also sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David’s counselor, to come from Giloh, his hometown. And so the conspiracy gained strength, and Absalom’s following kept on increasing. 2 Samuel 15:1-12 NIV
Observation: Absalom schemes to take his father’s throne.
Application: As I was reading these passages today I couldn’t help but see the similarities between this story and today’s political campaign process. Most politicians would sell their soul to gain political advantage, not unlike Absalom. In most recorded instances David always considered God when he made decisions. Even as Absalom was moving on Jerusalem, David considered that he may be acting as God intended for him to act. However, Absalom was not lead by God but by evil. We need to consider where our guidance comes from. We should weigh our intentions against what we know God expects of us. When we use that as our gauge we won’t fail our Lord.
Prayer: Father, help me to always base my life decisions on your expectations of me. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen