The king was deeply moved and went up to the chamber over the gate and wept. And thus he said as he walked, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!”
– Second Samuel 18:33
What brought the suffering of Absalom’s rebellion upon David? His favoritism. He should have left Absalom in exile rather than accept Joab’s remedy. Joab represents the flesh, with its good plans.
Eventually Absalom was cornered by Joab’s troops and fled on a mule, but his head got caught in a tree and he was left hanging in midair. This made him an easy target for Joab’s spear. When David heard that his son was dead, he mourned greatly over him, saying, “O my son Absalom—my son, my son Absalom—if only I had died in your place!” (2 Sam. 18:33). He could not be comforted.
The entire nation became troubled by this. They had stood with David against Absalom, and now he was inconsolably lamenting the one they had succeeded in killing for his sake. Oh, favoritism is a hard thing to get over!
Adapted from David: After God’s Heart, pages 103-104.
Tomorrow: “The Sin of Favoritism” (6)