Sermon by Pastor Patrick Fish
August 11-12, 2018
2 Samuel 18:5-6, 15, 31-33
This weekend, we return back to the Hebrew story of King David. I want to catch us up and take a moment to reflect back on where we are in the timeline of David’s life and reign as king.
Last time we heard from David, he was inflicting violence against Uriah and selfishly misusing his power in order to be with Bathsheba. David did what God predicted all human kings would do: seek self over serving others.
Well, God did not stand for this behavior by David and sent Nathan as a messenger to speak to David. The prophet Nathan was direct and told David, “You are the man.” You are the man that has done a horrible injustice and you need to repent. David agreed and responded with repentance.
Since David initiated this relationship with Bathsheba and abused his power, violence seems to follow and find him. 
The son he had with Bathsheba was killed. David grieved deeply over the loss of this innocent child.
David’s oldest son, Amnon, raped his half-sister Tamar. And rather than seek restitution, David hesitated and decided to do nothing. He didn’t punish his oldest son or seek justice for what happened. Instead of being a king, David was an idle bystander to the whole thing.
This didn’t sit well with family in David’s house. It created a huge division, and David’s other son, Absalom, took it upon himself to seek vengeance and avenge what happened to his sister. So, Absalom killed Amnon.
Absalom then fled into exile. After a while, David decided to let Absalom return, but the family dysfunction only escalated from there.
Absalom declared and promised that he was a more just man and would be a better king than David. So began Absalom’s counter campaign against his father, vying for prominence to lead the nation of Israel.
And what once was a family dispute, a divided house, became a divided kingdom. Absalom’s anger toward his father turned into a pursuit for power and thrust for the throne.
On one side, we have David’s army and people. On the other, there’s Absalom’s army and people. Full on civil war. Once father and son, now David and Absalom are adversaries and rivals.
This is what God is dealing with. This is what God is sorting out. This mess. This chaos. And this is where we enter today’s story.