A Mandate from God! (Part II)
“Absalom” is a name from the Bible that reminds us of great evil. He “stole the hearts of the men of Israel” away from King David (2 Sam. 15:6). He had sexual relations with David’s ten concubines on a roof for all to see (v.16). He had his brother Amnon killed (2 Sam. 13:28). He purposed to kill his own father, David, and become king. Why would Absalom be so overcome with darkness? He was a son of David. Scripture said that he was beautiful (2 Sam. 14:25). He had favor with the people (2 Sam. 15). What was wrong?
I believe that Absalom’s heart became hardened over the events surrounding the way his father, David, handled another son, Amnon, in raping his half-sister, Tamar. Absalom’s and Tamar’s mother was David’s concubine, Maacah. Amnon was their oldest half-brother whose mother was Ahinoam. Amnon lusted for Tamar. He pretended to be sick and requested of David that she come to him and prepare food. David sent Tamar to him. She brought him food, and he grabbed her requesting that she lie with him” (2 Sam. 13:11). She pleaded with him to not commit this evil. She said, “And I, how could I rid myself of my shame…” (v. 13 Amp.) He disregarded her plea and raped her. The Bible says that “Amnon hated her exceedingly; so that the hatred wherewith he hated her was greater than the love wherewith he had loved her.” Amnon then demanded her to “Arise, be gone.” He had his servants to remove her from his room and had the door bolted behind her (v. 15-17).
Tamar had come into Amnon’s room wearing bright colors as the daughters of kings that were virgins wore. …But now, upon leaving Amnon’s room, she tore her beautiful garments and placed ashes upon her head. She placed her hand upon her head and kept on crying (v. 18&19). Scripture tells us that Tamar remained desolate (ruined) in her brother, Absalom’s house (v. 20). Absalom saw the devastation in his sister. Her name was Tamar which means “to be erect like a palm tree”, but she was now bent over with grief and shame.
David heard about his oldest son, Amnon’s sin against Tamar. David was angry but he did nothing to rectify the evil. I believe that Absalom’s hurt over Tamar grew into bitterness, anger, and hatred towards Amnon and his father, David. After two years, he made a plan for Amnon to be killed. His servants killed him, and Absalom fled. David knew why Absalom had killed his brother. He called for Absalom to come back to Jerusalem; yet, he refused to see him for two years. Absalom’s wife had three sons and a daughter. He named his daughter, Tamar, after his sister.
Absalom is reunited to his father, David. He kisses Absalom. David’s affection came too late. He needed it early in life. Absalom rises up with a desire now to once again vindicate his sister. He wins the hearts of the people in Jerusalem after four years of giving them counsel and care. Absalom has a mission. He will gain the favor of the people; he will rule, and drive out his father. Absalom and his followers rise up against David. David flees. Absalom commits adultery with David’s concubines. He continues in his attempts to destroy his father, David; but while riding upon his mule, his head caught in the branches of an oak tree. He was left hanging in the tree, still yet alive. Joab came along and killed him. Once again, David weeps over the death of a son.
Was David there to train up his son, Absalom, in the way he should go (Prov. 22:6)? I don’t think so, and many people suffered because of it.