Reading #1 – Joshua 17
Reading #2 – Psalms 142
Reading #3 – Song of Solomon 7
Reading #4 – John 15
Reading #5 – 2 Samuel 18
2 Samuel 18 – Absolom’s Defeat and Death. Absolom got caught in the thicket by the locks of his hair. Once Joab had heard about what had happened to Absolom, he used the opportunity to kill the young man. I believe the purpose of killing him was in retribution for Absolom burning his field (2 Samuel 14:30). David’s failure may have started the fire but Joab’s mistake was waking up the dog who was at peace in Geshur. We will never understand why Joab wanted David reconciled to Absolom. Maybe it was because of how David was reacting to the death of Amnon and the loss of his son Absolom and Joab just wanted to hear the end of it; either way, one mistake was complicated by another. I like how the young warrior was not willing to violate the king’s order “For my sake, deal gently with young Absalom (5).” Joab had shown his true colors when he murdered Absolom in violation of the king’s orders. Maybe Joab would have rewarded the young man handsomely but he most likely would have also abandoned the man before the king and not have lifted a finger to help the young man should the king have the young man executed for violating the king’s command (10-13). The Ethiopian’s report to the king did not include Joab’s handiwork and Absolom’s burial place highlighted G_d’s word through Nathan “The sword will never leave your house” (2 Samuel 12:10) when he said, “May all of your enemies, my lord the king, both now and in the future, share the fate of that young man (32).
Psalms 142 – A Prayer for My Life. David, as I have said, had many faults but it was his heart that G_d loved so much. David was indirectly responsible for the death of Amnon and Absolom. He was also indirectly responsible for Solomon’s demise. He called for a census for selfish reasons and at the prompting of the Devil. He had Uriah the Hittite one of his valiant warriors killed to cover up the Bathsheba incident. When he was confronted for his crimes, he did not once recoil either on the Prophet Nathan or G_d, he took responsibility for his actions and paid the price for them. When I am overwhelmed, you alone know the way I should turn. Wherever I go, my enemies have set traps for me (3). When we are enjoying good times, the world throngs to our doorstep; conversely, when bad times happen, those who came for the party avoid us. Bring me out of prison so I can thank you. The godly will crowd around me, for you are good to me (7).” Despite my many faults, you oh Lord are still good to me. How can I know all the sins lurking in my heart? Cleanse me from these hidden faults. Keep your servant from deliberate sins! Don’t let them control me. Then I will be free of guilt and innocent of great sin. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.
Song of Solomon 7 – A Love Sonnet.
John 15 – The True Vine. Our relationship with Jesus is much like our wedding vows. We are commanded to remain connected in and out of storms, in good times and bad, in sickness and health, and the only thing that should ever separate us is death. You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name (16). In this world, we may never be liked for our relationship with Jesus any more than they may like our choice in spouses; however, that does not give us the license to abandon our relationship simply to make peace with the world which includes our direct family. If I hadn’t done such miraculous signs among them that no one else could do, they would not be guilty. But as it is, they have seen everything I did, yet they still hate me and my Father (24). It must be understood that no matter how much good we do in this world, we may still not be liked simply because we accepted Jesus offer and followed a different route that brought us to the Kingdom of G_d.