2 Samuel 18:30
"Move aside," said the king, "and stand here." So he stepped aside.
When a Young Man is InsecureThain Davidson, D. D.

2 Samuel 18:29. - (MAHANAIM.)
Youth is a season of intense activity, favourable opportunities, and glowing promise.

"The passion, which in youth
Drives fast downhill, means that the impulse gained
Should speed us up the hill that's opposite."

(Sir H. Taylor.) This question is specially suggestive of -

I. DANGER. No soldier on the battlefield, no traveller on "dark mountains," no ship on a tempestuous sea, is exposed to greater peril than a young man. Of what? Not so much of physical suffering and death, as of sin - the only real evil, and one which involves the loss of his highest life (Matthew 10:28). From what? Chiefly from himself - his "own heart" (Jeremiah 17:9); inexperience; susceptibility to impressions; personal endowments (2 Samuel 14:25); "youthful lusts" (2 Timothy 2:22), the love of pleasure, excitement, "name and fame;" impatience of control, self-confidence, rashness, and presumption. Also from false friends (2 Samuel 13:3), rather than open enemies; sceptical and sensuous literature; "the defilements [miasma] of the age" (2 Peter 2:20); and the peculiar temptations of the place, the occupation, and the society with which he is connected. "Rejoice, O young man," etc. (Ecclesiastes 11:9).

II. SAFETY. "To be forewarned is to be forearmed." "Wherewithal, etc. 9 By taking heed thereto according to thy Word" (Psalm 119:9). The most essential thing is a right state of heart; its supreme affection set on God, its ruling purpose directed to the doing of his will (Proverbs 4:23), its varied powers "united to fear his Name" (Psalm 86:11; Proverbs 1:7). There is also need of watchfulness (1 Corinthians 16:31), keeping out of the way of temptation, trusting in God to be kept by him, unceasing prayer, association with good men, the cultivation of proper habits, profitable reading, seasonable recreation, useful employment, and advancement toward the true end of life. "If ye do these things, ye shall never stumble," etc. (2 Peter 1:10, 11).

III. ANXIETY; on the part of parents, instructors, Christian friends; arising from sincere affection, a clear perception of his danger, and an ardent desire for his welfare; expressed in fervent prayer, appropriate endeavour (ver. 5), and frequent inquiries (ver. 32). Alas! that a young man for whom others are so tenderly concerned should recklessly and wilfully "lose himself and become castaway"! - D.

Thou art worth ton thousand of us.
? — King David was loved doubtless as much for the amiability and manliness of his character as for the throne on which he sat.

I. TRUE WORTH SHOULD BE RECKONED BY CHARACTER AND NOT BY MONEY. In the civilised world, money is an idol served by many people. If a man possess plenty of gold, he carries a key which unlocks doors that are closed against one that is poorer but more worthy. The world, of course, respects honour and genius, bug it loves money. When you ask, "What is that man worth?" people do not say that he possesses an amiable yet manly character, or a vain and cowardly nature; they tell you he is worth so much a year, or that he is somebody's son. A man is valued from what he has, rather than for what he is. An Atheist one day said to me, "You talk of Christian people being true friends! Why, the best friend anybody can have is a five-pound note; and my aim is not to get religion, but to get money; for if a man can always have a few of these handy, he will find friends on whom he can rely in every time of need!" Money, in itself, is a gift of God; for it is not money that is the root of evil, but the love of it that harms men and ruins women.

II. DO NOT BE TOO ANXIOUS TO POSSESS THAT WEALTH WHICH IS NOT YOUR TRUE WORTH. Our trade is suffering from the madness of people who, in their eagerness for money, have speculated recklessly, and brought themselves and others to ruin. Some people try to get money at all hazards. Have any of you obtained money in a wrong way? If so, I am sure your experience has been that such ill-gotten gains never blesses you. It is "easy come, easy go." An angler employs many kinds of bait and fishing tackle. The trout is a sharp, suspicious, and dainty fish, and to catch it the angler uses a very fine silk line which cannot be seen in the water, and chooses his sharpest hook, baiting it with the greatest care; and the trout, seeing the bait only, swallows it and the hidden hook. So, when you grab at money wrongfully, the devil is angling for you skilfully with the rod and line of covetousness, baited with "great wealth," "sudden riches," "worldly honour," and other tempting flies to catch gudgeons.

III. SEER THE TRUE RICHES OF CONTENTMENT AND MANHOOD. Do you say you are poor and in trouble? Well, you can exhibit the highest qualities in your poverty. When trees are planted they are often protected with a prop; but when each tree has grown a little, the prop is taken away, and it stands firmly amidst the storms. So God would have you who are trees of His planting to stand firmly in your simple manhood. Why do you need the prop of gold, or the fence of possessions? Stand firmly grounded in Gospel righteousness. Men and women, what are you worth? Be possessed of Jesus Christ and His Spirit; be possessed of pardon, holiness, and heaven. May God give us these true riches. Amen.

(W. Birch.)

Abishai, Absalom, Ahimaaz, Cushi, David, Israelites, Ittai, Joab, Zadok, Zeruiah
King's Valley, Mahanaim
Aside, Round, Stand, Standeth, Station, Stepped, Stood, Thyself, Turn, Turneth, Turning, Wait
1. David viewing the armies in their march gives them charge of Absalom
6. The Israelites are sorely smitten in the wood of ephraim
9. Absalom, hanging in an oak is slain by Joab, and cast into a pit
18. Absalom's place
19. Ahimaaz and Cushi bring tidings to David
33. David mourns for Absalom

Dictionary of Bible Themes
2 Samuel 18:19-32

     5426   news

2 Samuel 18:21-32

     5178   running

2 Samuel 18:28-33

     5087   David, reign of

The Wail of a Broken Heart
'Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and reared up for himself a pillar, which is in the king's dale; for he said, I have no son to keep my name in remembrance; and he called the pillar after his own name: and it is called unto this day, Absalom's Place. 19. Then said Ahimaaz the son of Zadok, Let me now run, and bear the king tidings, how that the Lord hath avenged him of his enemies. 20. And Joab said unto him. Thou shalt not bear tidings this day, but thou shalt bear tidings another day; but
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Church and the Young Man.
A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, November 4, 1866, In The First Presbyterian Church, Troy, At The Request of The Young Men's Christian Association. 2 Sam. xviii, 5. "And the king commanded Joab and Abishai and Ittai saying, deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom." There are few passages of Holy writ more beautiful or suggestive than this. Notwithstanding the astounding character of Absalom's rebellion; though the mind of the sovereign and father of his people is
Rev. Marvin R. Vincent.—Amusement: A Force in Christian Training

Alike from the literary and the historical point of view, the book[1] 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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