Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Pain of Empty Arms

O. T. #730  "The Pain of Empty Arms"
April 6, 2016
2 Samuel 18-Part 2
Oh my son...  2 Samuel 18:33


I have not personally experienced loosing a child, yet we have lost grandchildren through miscarriages. Sitting here now, I can name 6 sets of parents who have lost their child as a teenager, child, or baby; several other children were adults when they passed away. I have seen the pain and anguish of a broken heart that death brings to those empty arms. David experienced it earlier in chapter 12 and now again in chapter 18. Needless to say, the pain of loosing a child is one pain that never goes away. It only subsides.
Yet the loving arms of Jesus can comfort like no other, giving hope and strength to carry on. If you have lost a child, my heart goes out to you. I am so sorry for your loss dear one. I can say nothing comforting but cling to Jesus. He is your hope of one day being with them again. Some things we will not understand until we ask our Savior the reason why it happened. Look to Jesus.

As a review, David's general, Joab, took matters into his own hands, killing Absalom, David's son, considering it for the good of the king. Since Absalom lead the revolt against the king, the battle was over with his death. They threw Absalom's body into a pit in the forest, denying him burial in his family's tomb and dishonoring him in his death.
One runner represented the bearer of good news, two runners indicated bad news. David saw two runners. Ahimaaz announced David's victory without specifically mentioning Absalom's death. Perhaps he didn't know.

It was as though Ahimaaz was a loss for words:
Today the LORD has rescued you from all those who rebelled against you. (verse 31 NLT)

There are many messengers running about today telling the human family that God says all is well-but all is not well. Man is a sinner. He needs a Savior. Man needs to know that the Son of God died on the Cross for him. Man needs to be born again.

Friend, has the Lord Jesus rescued you from your sins? Do we know others who are sinners in need of a Savior? Do we see the Lord rescuing us from those who rebell against us?


What about Absalom?

In verse 32, Cushi gently tells David about Absalom's death:
May all of your enemies, my lord the king, both now and in the future, share the fate of that young man.

The reply was not what David wanted to hear. It never is-the death of a loved one.
The kingdom was David's once again, but at a high price. Sometimes victory comes at a high price.

David's cry comes from a truly broken heart. He realizes that this is part of the judgment of God for his own sin, and his parental love would have preferred his own death to that of his son. (Falwell)

The phrase  deeply moved, found in The Jeremiah Study Bible, means literally, quaked or quivered. David grieved the loss of a son whom he loved and the loss of any hope of reconciliation with that son. Grieving is a healthy thing to do, but David's mistake was that he allowed his grief to  keep him from fulfilling his duties to the troops (19:1-8).

Five times in verse 33 David says, my son.
John MacArthur explains:
In spite of all the harm that Absalom had caused, David was preoccupied with his personal loss in a melancholy way that seems to be consistent with his weakness as a father.

Others may have seen Absalom as a bad or worthless person, yet his father loved Absalom as his child, even through the finality of death.

Letting God

Go with God through whatever valley He leads me with faith.

Trust God for all that happens, that He has a purpose for all things.

Comfort others in their loss.

Support them after the funeral with a listening ear of love.

What a time in heaven we will have when we are reunited with our loved ones! Can you only imagine?!

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