2 Sam 15-17; Psalms 3, 63; Romans 1
Discuss in the comments section.
The following text is from the English Standard Version.
2 Sam 15-17
After this Absalom got himself a chariot and horses, and fifty men to run before him.
And Absalom used to rise early and stand beside the way of the gate. And when any man had a dispute to come before the king for judgment, Absalom would call to him and say, ”From what city are you?” And when he said, ”Your servant is of such and such a tribe in Israel,”
Absalom would say to him, ”See, your claims are good and right, but there is no man designated by the king to hear you.”
Then Absalom would say, ”Oh that I were judge in the land! Then every man with a dispute or cause might come to me, and I would give him justice.”
And whenever a man came near to pay homage to him, he would put out his hand and take hold of him and kiss him.
Thus Absalom did to all of Israel who came to the king for judgment. So Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.
And at the end of four years Absalom said to the king, ”Please let me go and pay my vow, which I have vowed to the LORD, in Hebron.
For your servant vowed a vow while I lived at Geshur in Aram, saying, ‘If the LORD will indeed bring me back to Jerusalem, then I will offer worship to the LORD.”’
The king said to him, ”Go in peace.” So he arose and went to Hebron.
But Absalom sent secret messengers throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, ”As soon as you hear the sound of the trumpet, then say, ‘Absalom is king at Hebron!”’
With Absalom went two hundred men from Jerusalem who were invited guests, and they went in their innocence and knew nothing.
And while Absalom was offering the sacrifices, he sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David’s counselor, from his city Giloh. And the conspiracy grew strong, and the people with Absalom kept increasing.
And a messenger came to David, saying, ”The hearts of the men of Israel have gone after Absalom.”
Then David said to all his servants who were with him at Jerusalem, ”Arise, and let us flee, or else there will be no escape for us from Absalom. Go quickly, lest he overtake us quickly and bring down ruin on us and strike the city with the edge of the sword.”
And the king’s servants said to the king, ”Behold, your servants are ready to do whatever my lord the king decides.”
So the king went out, and all his household after him. And the king left ten concubines to keep the house.
And the king went out, and all the people after him. And they halted at the last house.
And all his servants passed by him, and all the Cherethites, and all the Pelethites, and all the six hundred Gittites who had followed him from Gath, passed on before the king.
Then the king said to Ittai the Gittite, ”Why do you also go with us? Go back and stay with the king, for you are a foreigner and also an exile from your home.
You came only yesterday, and shall I today make you wander about with us, since I go I know not where? Go back and take your brothers with you, and may the LORD show steadfast love and faithfulness to you.”
But Ittai answered the king, ”As the LORD lives, and as my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king shall be, whether for death or for life, there also will your servant be.”
And David said to Ittai, ”Go then, pass on.” So Ittai the Gittite passed on with all his men and all the little ones who were with him.
And all the land wept aloud as all the people passed by, and the king crossed the brook Kidron, and all the people passed on toward the wilderness.
And Abiathar came up, and behold, Zadok came also with all the Levites, bearing the ark of the covenant of God. And they set down the ark of God until the people had all passed out of the city.
Then the king said to Zadok, ”Carry the ark of God back into the city. If I find favor in the eyes of the LORD, he will bring me back and let me see both it and his dwelling place.
But if he says, ‘I have no pleasure in you,’ behold, here I am, let him do to me what seems good to him.”
The king also said to Zadok the priest, ”Are you not a seer? Go back to the city in peace, with your two sons, Ahimaaz your son, and Jonathan the son of Abiathar.
See, I will wait at the fords of the wilderness until word comes from you to inform me.”
So Zadok and Abiathar carried the ark of God back to Jerusalem, and they remained there.
But David went up the ascent of the Mount of Olives, weeping as he went, barefoot and with his head covered. And all the people who were with him covered their heads, and they went up, weeping as they went.
And it was told David, ”Ahithophel is among the conspirators with Absalom.” And David said, ”O LORD, please turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness.”
While David was coming to the summit, where God was worshiped, behold, Hushai the Archite came to meet him with his coat torn and dirt on his head.
David said to him, ”If you go on with me, you will be a burden to me.
But if you return to the city and say to Absalom, ‘I will be your servant, O king; as I have been your father’s servant in time past, so now I will be your servant,’ then you will defeat for me the counsel of Ahithophel.
Are not Zadok and Abiathar the priests with you there? So whatever you hear from the king’s house, tell it to Zadok and Abiathar the priests.
Behold, their two sons are with them there, Ahimaaz, Zadok’s son, and Jonathan, Abiathar’s son, and by them you shall send to me everything you hear.”
So Hushai, David’s friend, came into the city, just as Absalom was entering Jerusalem.
When David had passed a little beyond the summit, Ziba the servant of Mephibosheth met him, with a couple of donkeys saddled, bearing two hundred loaves of bread, a hundred bunches of raisins, a hundred of summer fruits, and a skin of wine.
And the king said to Ziba, ”Why have you brought these?” Ziba answered, ”The donkeys are for the king’s household to ride on, the bread and summer fruit for the young men to eat, and the wine for those who faint in the wilderness to drink.”
And the king said, ”And where is your master’s son?” Ziba said to the king, ”Behold, he remains in Jerusalem, for he said, ‘Today the house of Israel will give me back the kingdom of my father.”’
Then the king said to Ziba, ”Behold, all that belonged to Mephibosheth is now yours.” And Ziba said, ”I pay homage; let me ever find favor in your sight, my lord the king.”
When King David came to Bahurim, there came out a man of the family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera, and as he came he cursed continually.
And he threw stones at David and at all the servants of King David, and all the people and all the mighty men were on his right hand and on his left.
And Shimei said as he cursed, ”Get out, get out, you man of blood, you worthless man!
The LORD has avenged on you all the blood 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. See, your evil is on you, for you are a man of blood.”
Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, ”Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over and take off his head.”
But the king said, ”What have I to do with you, you sons of Zeruiah? If he is cursing because the LORD has said to him, ‘Curse David,’ who then shall say, ‘Why have you done so?”’
And David said to Abishai and to all his servants, ”Behold, my own son seeks my life; how much more now may this Benjaminite! Leave him alone, and let him curse, for the LORD has told him to.
It may be that the LORD will look on the wrong done to me, and that the LORD will repay me with good for his cursing today.”
So David and his men went on the road, while Shimei went along on the hillside opposite him and cursed as he went and threw stones at him and flung dust.
And the king, and all the people who were with him, arrived weary at the Jordan. And there he refreshed himself.
Now Absalom and all the people, the men of Israel, came to Jerusalem, and Ahithophel with him.
And when Hushai the Archite, David’s friend, came to Absalom, Hushai said to Absalom, ”Long live the king! Long live the king!”
And Absalom said to Hushai, ”Is this your loyalty to your friend? Why did you not go with your friend?”
And Hushai said to Absalom, ”No, for whom the LORD and this people and all the men of Israel have chosen, his I will be, and with him I will remain.
And again, whom should I serve? Should it not be his son? As I have served your father, so I will serve you.”
Then Absalom said to Ahithophel, ”Give your counsel. What shall we do?”
Ahithophel said to Absalom, ”Go in to your father’s concubines, whom he has left to keep the house, and all Israel will hear that you have made yourself a stench to your father, and the hands of all who are with you will be strengthened.”
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.
Now in those days the counsel that Ahithophel gave was as if one consulted the word of God; so was all the counsel of Ahithophel esteemed, both by David and by Absalom.
Moreover, Ahithophel said to Absalom, ”Let me choose twelve thousand men, and I will arise and pursue David tonight.
I will come upon him while he is weary and discouraged and throw him into a panic, and all the people who are with him will flee. I will strike down only the king,
and I will bring all the people back to you as a bride comes home to her husband. You seek the life of only one man, and all the people will be at peace.”
And the advice seemed right in the eyes of Absalom and all the elders of Israel.
Then Absalom said, ”Call Hushai the Archite also, and let us hear what he has to say.”
And when Hushai came to Absalom, Absalom said to him, ”Thus has Ahithophel spoken; shall we do as he says? If not, you speak.”
Then Hushai said to Absalom, ”This time the counsel that Ahithophel has given is not good.”
Hushai said, ”You know that your father and his men are mighty men, and that they are enraged, like a bear robbed of her cubs in the field. Besides, your father is expert in war; he will not spend the night with the people.
Behold, even now he has hidden himself in one of the pits or in some other place. And as soon as some of the people fall at the first attack, whoever hears it will say, ‘There has been a slaughter among the people who follow Absalom.’
Then even the valiant man, whose heart is like the heart of a lion, will utterly melt with fear, for all Israel knows that your father is a mighty man, and that those who are with him are valiant men.
But my counsel is that all Israel be gathered to you, from Dan to Beersheba, as the sand by the sea for multitude, and that you go to battle in person.
So we shall come upon him in some place where he is to be found, and we shall light upon him as the dew falls on the ground, and of him and all the men with him not one will be left.
If he withdraws into a city, then all Israel will bring ropes to that city, and we shall drag it into the valley, until not even a pebble is to be found there.”
And Absalom and all the men of Israel said, ”The counsel of Hushai the Archite is better than the counsel of Ahithophel.” For the LORD had ordained to defeat the good counsel of Ahithophel, so that the LORD might bring harm upon Absalom.
Then Hushai said to Zadok and Abiathar the priests, ”Thus and so did Ahithophel counsel Absalom and the elders of Israel, and thus and so have I counseled.
Now therefore send quickly and tell David, ‘Do not stay tonight at the fords of the wilderness, but by all means pass over, lest the king and all the people who are with him be swallowed up.”’
Now Jonathan and Ahimaaz were waiting at En-rogel. A female servant was to go and tell them, and they were to go and tell King David, for they were not to be seen entering the city.
But a young man saw them and told Absalom. So both of them went away quickly and came to the house of a man at Bahurim, who had a well in his courtyard. And they went down into it.
And the woman took and spread a covering over the well’s mouth and scattered grain on it, and nothing was known of it.
When Absalom’s servants came to the woman at the house, they said, ”Where are Ahimaaz and Jonathan?” And the woman said to them, ”They have gone over the brook of water.” And when they had sought and could not find them, they returned to Jerusalem.
After they had gone, the men came up out of the well, and went and told King David. They said to David, ”Arise, and go quickly over the water, for thus and so has Ahithophel counseled against you.”
Then David arose, and all the people who were with him, and they crossed the Jordan. By daybreak not one was left who had not crossed the Jordan.
When Ahithophel saw that his counsel was not followed, he saddled his donkey and went off home to his own city. He set his house in order and hanged himself, and he died and was buried in the tomb of his father.
Then David came to Mahanaim. And Absalom crossed the Jordan with all the men of Israel.
Now Absalom had set Amasa over the army instead of Joab. Amasa was the son of a man named Ithra the Ishmaelite, who had married Abigal the daughter of Nahash, sister of Zeruiah, Joab’s mother.
And Israel and Absalom encamped in the land of Gilead.
When David came to Mahanaim, Shobi the son of Nahash from Rabbah of the Ammonites, and Machir the son of Ammiel from Lo-debar, and Barzillai the Gileadite from Rogelim,
brought beds, basins, and earthen vessels, wheat, barley, flour, parched grain, beans and lentils,
honey and curds and sheep and cheese from the herd, for David and the people with him to eat, for they said, ”The people are hungry and weary and thirsty in the wilderness.”
O LORD, how many are my foes! Many are rising against me;
many are saying of my soul, there is no salvation for him in God. Selah
But you, O LORD, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.
I cried aloud to the LORD, and he answered me from his holy hill. Selah
I lay down and slept; I woke again, for the LORD sustained me.
I will not be afraid of many thousands of people who have set themselves against me all around.
Arise, O LORD! Save me, O my God! For you strike all my enemies on the cheek; you break the teeth of the wicked.
Salvation belongs to the LORD; your blessing be on your people! Selah
O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory.
Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you.
So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands.
My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips,
when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.
My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.
But those who seek to destroy my life shall go down into the depths of the earth;
they shall be given over to the power of the sword; they shall be a portion for jackals.
But the king shall rejoice in God; all who swear by him shall exult, for the mouths of liars will be stopped.
Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God,
which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures,
concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh
and was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord,
through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations,
including you who are called to belong to Jesus Christ,
To all those in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints:Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world.
For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you
always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God’s will I may now at last succeed in coming to you.
For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you–
that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.
I want you to know, brothers, that I have often intended to come to you (but thus far have been prevented), in order that I may reap some harvest among you as well as among the rest of the Gentiles.
I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish.
So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, ”The righteous shall live by faith.”
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.
For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them.
For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
Claiming to be wise, they became fools,
and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.
Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves,
because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature;
and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.
And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.
They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips,
slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents,
foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.
Though they know God’s decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.