January 7, 2016
2 Samuel 2-Part 5
"Go fight someone else!" Abner warned. 2 Samuel 2:21a
LET IT GLOW
I have made some wrong decisions in my lifetime. I paid the price for them, too. Today we see how David's nephew made a wrong decision and paid for it.
The civil war continues in Israel and weakens her. This internal war was between the north and south (David's kingdom of Judah).
J.V. McGee said it depleted the resources and energy of the nation. It was indeed a tragic thing.
First, let's look at David's side. Did you know David had a sister? We know he had 7 brothers. David's father Jesse brought them to Priest Samuel as he looked for the next king of Israel appointed by God. Then David turned out to be the one, found in 1 Samuel 16. However, there is no mention of David having a sister in that particular story. She is not included in the list of women of the Bible as having achieved or being special in someway. She is known for being the mother of her 3 sons. Anyone know what I'm talking about? Others don't remember your name, but they know you are your son or daughter's mother? Yes, indeed. But that's okay.
Well, Zeruiah, David's sister, had 3 sons mentioned in verse 18: Joab, Abishai, and Asahel. They are in their Uncle David's army.
What do we know about these 3 guys?
- Joab was the leader of David's military force. We already read about his meeting with Abner, who had been Saul's army leader and made Ishbosheth king of the northern section of Israel.
- Abishai accompanied David to the camp of Saul when David had the opportunity to kill Saul and encouraged the murder of Saul, but David refused.
- Asahel is described as being single-minded with dogged determination; though he was extremely flee-footed, his determination proved to be fatal in verse 23. (MacArthur)
How supportive are we to our family members, our extended family members? As age has creped up on me, it seems to have drawn my cousins closer together. This could have been due to our closeness during our childhood. Although, the teen times and young adult times, we went our own ways. It is great to renew these bonds.
LET IT GROW
Now that we know who these guys are, let's look at what they did. Do you will recall that little contest or battle between Abner and Joab's 12 warriors each? They represented Saul and David. All of those men died, thus David's forces defeated Abner. This kind of strife continues.
What happens next?
- Asahel, who runs fast, chases Abner, not stopping for anything.
- Abner asks Asahel if it was him, and he affirmed it.
- Abner tells Abishel to take on one of the younger men, but Abishel does not do so.
- Abner warned Abishel to go away or he'd kill him.
- Abishel refused.
- Abner rammed the butt of his spear through Asahel's stomach, coming out his back. That must have been some force to do that.
- Asahel died and was left where he fell. People would pass by tht spot and see him.
Persistence is a good trait if it is for a worthy cause. But if the goal is only personal honor or gain, persistence may be nor more than stubbornness. Asahel's stubbornness not only cost him his life, but it also spurred unfortunate disunity in David's army for years to come (1 Kings 2:28-35). Before you decide to pursue a goal, make sure it is worth your devotion. (Life Application Study Bible)
What are out motives? Although we should do our best, is our pursuit of a goal going to cost us and others in the long run? Sometimes a promotion requires more time away from family. Is it worth it after all?
LET IT GO
Be sure my motives for doing things are not for selfish gain.
Consider if others will or will not benefit.
Am I being warned to stop a pursuit, like Asahel?
More importantly, is it God's will for me at this time?