After the men had gone, Ahimaaz and Jonathan climbed up out of the well and went to inform King David, saying, "Get up and cross over the river at once, for Ahithophel has given this advice against you."
And they passed over Jordan, etc. (ver. 22). Leaving Bahurim behind them, David and his company pursued their rough and dreary way along the wilderness of Judah until they descended into the plain of the Jordan; and there in some place (Ayephim, equivalent to "weary," Authorized Version; "The Traveller's Rest") at an easy distance from the ford of the river (opposite Jericho, and near Gilgal, 2 Samuel 19:15
) they rested at nightfall. "Amongst the thickets of the Jordan the asses of Ziba were unladen, and the weary travellers refreshed themselves, and waited for tidings from Jerusalem" (2 Samuel 15:28, 36
; 2 Samuel 16:14
; ver. 16). David had been uncertain whether to cross the river; but during the night the messengers arrived, saying, "Arise," etc.; the encampment was broken up, and "by the morning light there lacked not one of them that was not gone over Jordan." That night was another, memorable one
(1 Samuel 19:8-18
). "It has been conjectured, with much probability that as the first sleep of that evening was commemorated in the fourth psalm, so in the third is expressed the feeling of David's thankfulness at the final close of those twenty-four hours, of which every detail has been handed down, as if with the consciousness of their importance at the time" (Stanley). Psalm 4
. 'An Even-song' -
"In peace will I lay me down and straightway sleep;
For thou, Jehovah, alone wilt make me to dwell securely."
(Psalm 4:8.) Psalm 3. (see inscription), 'A Morning Prayer' -
"I laid me down and slept;
I awaked, for Jehovah sustaineth me."
(Psalm 3:5.) What a brilliant light do these psalms cast upon the inner life of David! Consider him at this time as -
I. BESET BY FEROCIOUS FOES; numerous, powerful, and crafty (2 Samuel 15:12, 13; 2 Samuel 16:15; vers. 1-3); seeking to take away his crown, his honour, and his life; by fraud, treachery, and violence. His trouble represents that of the persecuted and afflicted servant of God in every age.
1. The feeling of trouble is usually intensified with the approach of night, the season of peril and emblem of distress.
2. The good man in trouble seeks relief in God (Psalm 121:4); whilst acknowledging his sins, he is conscious of sincerity, trusts in Divine mercy, and derives from his experience of former mercies an argument for his prayer.
3. He regards his adversaries in no vindictive spirit: and, although he desires their overthrow as the enemies of God, still more he desires their conversion. "The address is directed to the aristocratic party, whose tool Absalom had become" (Delitzsch).
"When I cry, answer me, O God of my righteousness,
Who hast made room for me in straitness;
Be merciful unto me, and hear my prayer!
Ye sons of men! how long shall my glory become shame?
How long will ye love vanity, will ye seek after lies?" etc.
II. AIDED BY FAITHFUL FRIENDS, who sympathize with him, strive to defeat his enemies, give him useful counsel, and share his dangers (2 Samuel 15:15, 21, 23; vers. 7, 15, 17).
1. A time of adversity tests the fidelity of friends; and manifests it, as the night brings out the stars that were unseen by day.
2. It also makes their aid peculiarly precious; and is a sign of the favour of the Eternal Friend.
3. When friends begin to despond in a time of trouble, it is the part of a good man, "strong in faith," to encourage them, by directing their thoughts to the Divine Source of consolation, his own "exceeding joy."
"Many say, Who will show us good?
Lift up the light of thy countenance upon us, O Jehovah!
Thou hast put gladness into my heart
More than when their corn and wine abound," etc.
III. DELIVERED BY DIVINE FAVOUR; shown in his preservation, the salutary warning received during the night, the safe passage of the Jordan, so that "by the morning light," etc. (ver. 22), and the complete defeat of Ahithophel's counsel (vers. 14).
1. In their hostility to the good, wicked men rely on their own wisdom and strength alone, ignoring God; but "the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly," etc. (2 Peter 2:9).
2. Often when a good man is despised as one abandoned of God, he is taken into closer fellowship with him and more signally protected and delivered.
3. In the morning light of every day he perceives fresh tokens of Divine favour. Whilst God "giveth songs in the night" (Job 35:10), "his mercies are new every morning" (Lamentations 3:23; Psalm 5; Psalm 30:5; Psalm 143:8).
"Jehovah, how many are mine adversaries!
Many rise up against me,
Many say of my soul,
There is no help for him in God.
But thou, Jehovah, art a Shield about me,
My Glory and the Lifter-up of my head.
I cry to Jehovah with my voice,
And he answereth me from his holy mountain," etc.
IV. INCITED TO VICTORIOUS CONFIDENCE; by the contemplation of what God is to him and has done for him (Genesis 15:1); as, having now escaped his most immediate peril, he travels on "by the morning light" toward Mahanaim (ver. 24). Troubles do not always "pass away with light." Enemies still threaten (Psalm 3:1), and with each returning day the servant of God has to begin the conflict afresh (2 Samuel 5:22, 23). But:
1. Even when most formidable, they do not terrify him whose hope is in Jehovah.
2. They are regarded as if already overthrown.
3. And to Jehovah alone is the victory ascribed.
"I will not be afraid of ten thousands of the people
Who have set themselves against me round about.
Arise, O Jehovah! Help me, O my God!
For thou smitest all mine enemies on the cheek,
Thou breakest the teeth of the ungodly.
To Jehovah belongeth the victory!
Upon thy people be thy blessing!"
(Psalm 3:7-9.) To the period of David's exile beyond Jordan have been also referred many other psalms: Psalm 61., 62., 63. (see inscription), 143. (Septuagint, "when his son pursued him"), 26., 27., 28., etc. "A man who can, like David, amidst the first mutterings of an unexpected storm display such lofty composure and submission, and then amidst its fiercest outbursts sing hymns like the third and fourth psalms, penetrated with the purest trust in God, is already raised in an eminent degree above human weakness and frailty, and, whatever be his outward fate, he can only quit this life as one of God's victors" (Ewald). - D.
The counsel of Hushai the Archite.
Hushai saw that it was essential to gain time, "in order," to quote the words of Tacitus, "to give the disaffected time to repent, and the loyal time to unite: crimes gain by hasty action, better counsels by delay." His scheme was cleverly devised to appeal to Absalom's vanity and love of display. It seemed safe and easy: it was a far more attractive idea for Absalom to march in person against, David at the head of an immense army than for him to let Achithophel complete the revolution by a decisive action at once. His vanity proved his ruin. He forgot that s general levy would involve no slight delay: he forgot that the rising was by no means certain to be general, and that when the first surprise of the insurrection was over many would return their allegiance to David. But Absalom and his counsellors were blinded by a divinely-ordered infatuation.
, Jordan River
TopicsAdvised, Ahithophel, Ahith'ophel, Ahithophel's, Arise, Counseled, Counselled, Cross, David, Declare, Departed, Designs, Hastily, Inform, News, Pass, Quickly, Rise, River, Servants, Thus, Water-hole, Waters
Outline1. Ahithophel's counsel is overthrown by Hushai's15. Secret intelligence is sent unto David23. Ahithophel hangs himself25. Amasa is made captain27. David at Mahanaim is furnished with provisions
Dictionary of Bible Themes2 Samuel 17:21-23
Library"The King Kissed Barzillai. " 2 Sam. xix. 39
And no wonder, for David could appreciate a real man when he saw him, and so does David's Lord. I.--LOYALTY IS PRECIOUS TO THE KING OF KINGS. In the days when the son of Jesse had but few friends, it was a precious thing to be treated in the style Barzillai and his neighbours entertained him (see 2 Sam. xvii. 27-29). They were rich farmers, and had land which brought forth with abundance, so were able to act with princely hospitality to the fugitive monarch. But plenty may live with avarice, and …
Thomas Champness—Broken Bread
The Nations of the South-East
Israel was cut in two by the Jordan. The districts east of the Jordan were those that had first been conquered; it was from thence that the followers of Joshua had gone forth to possess themselves of Canaan. But this division of the territory was a source of weakness. The interests of the tribes on the two sides of the river were never quite the same; at times indeed they were violently antagonistic. When the disruption of the monarchy came after the death of Solomon, Judah was the stronger for the …
Archibald Sayce—Early Israel and the Surrounding Nations
BY REV. GEORGE MILLIGAN, M.A., D.D. "There is nothing," says Socrates to Cephalus in the Republic, "I like better than conversing with aged men. For I regard them as travellers who have gone a journey which I too may have to go, and of whom it is right to learn the character of the way, whether it is rugged or difficult, or smooth and easy" (p. 328 E.). It is to such an aged traveller that we are introduced in the person of Barzillai the Gileadite. And though he is one of the lesser-known characters …
George Milligan—Men of the Bible; Some Lesser-Known
In addition to the psalms already considered, which are devoted to the devout contemplation of nature, and stand in close connection with David's early days, there still remains one universally admitted to be his. The twenty-ninth psalm, like both the preceding, has to do with the glory of God as revealed in the heavens, and with earth only as the recipient of skyey influences; but while these breathed the profoundest tranquillity, as they watched the silent splendour of the sun, and the peace of …
Alexander Maclaren—The Life of David
David and Jonathan's Son
'And David said, is there yet any that is left of the house of Saul, that I may shew him kindness for Jonathan's sake? 2. And there was of the house of Saul a servant whose name was Ziba. And when they had called him unto David, the king said unto him, Art thou Ziba? And he said, Thy servant is he. 3. And the king said, Is there not yet any of the house of Saul, that I may shew the kindness of God unto him? And Ziba said unto the king, Jonathan hath yet a son, which is lame on his feet. 4. And the …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
Mr. John Bunyan's Dying Sayings.
OF SIN. Sin is the great block and bar to our happiness, the procurer of all miseries to man, both here and hereafter: take away sin and nothing can hurt us: for death, temporal, spiritual, and eternal, is the wages of it. Sin, and man for sin, is the object of the wrath of God. How dreadful, therefore, must his case be who continues in sin! For who can bear or grapple with the wrath of God? No sin against God can be little, because it is against the great God of heaven and earth; but if the sinner …
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3
Letter xxxvi (Circa A. D. 1131) to the Same Hildebert, who had not yet Acknowledged the Lord Innocent as Pope.
To the Same Hildebert, Who Had Not Yet Acknowledged the Lord Innocent as Pope. He exhorts him to recognise Innocent, now an exile in France, owing to the schism of Peter Leonis, as the rightful Pontiff. To the great prelate, most exalted in renown, Hildebert, by the grace of God Archbishop of Tours, Bernard, called Abbot of Clairvaux, sends greeting, and prays that he may walk in the Spirit, and spiritually discern all things. 1. To address you in the words of the prophet, Consolation is hid from …
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux—Some Letters of Saint Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux
King of Kings and Lord of Lords
And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a name written, K ING OF K INGS AND L ORD OF L ORDS T he description of the administration and glory of the Redeemer's Kingdom, in defiance of all opposition, concludes the second part of Messiah Oratorio. Three different passages from the book of Revelation are selected to form a grand chorus, of which Handel's title in this verse is the close --a title which has been sometimes vainly usurped by proud worms of this earth. Eastern monarchs, in particular, …
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 2
Tiglath-Pileser iii. And the Organisation of the Assyrian Empire from 745 to 722 B. C.
TIGLATH-PILESER III. AND THE ORGANISATION OF THE ASSYRIAN EMPIRE FROM 745 to 722 B.C. FAILURE OF URARTU AND RE-CONQUEST Of SYRIA--EGYPT AGAIN UNITED UNDER ETHIOPIAN AUSPICES--PIONKHI--THE DOWNFALL OF DAMASCUS, OF BABYLON, AND OF ISRAEL. Assyria and its neighbours at the accession of Tiglath-pileser III.: progress of the Aramaeans in the basin of the Middle Tigris--Urartu and its expansion into the north of Syria--Damascus and Israel--Vengeance of Israel on Damascus--Jeroboam II.--Civilisation …
G. Maspero—History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, V 7
Alike from the literary and the historical point of view, the book of Samuel stands midway between the book of Judges and the book of Kings. As we have already seen, the Deuteronomic book of Judges in all probability ran into Samuel and ended in ch. xii.; while the story of David, begun in Samuel, embraces the first two chapters of the first book of Kings. The book of Samuel is not very happily named, as much of it is devoted to Saul and the greater part to David; yet it is not altogether inappropriate, …
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament
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