Archive for September 10th, 2012

2 Samuel 19

2 Samuel 19 has David mourning the death of Absalom his son.  Seems a bit strange as Absalom had tried to take away his kingdom and kill him.  But David was mourning and carrying on.  Joab was one of the leaders who had caught and killed Absalom as leader of the army.  He had done his job, and was very upset with how David was acting.  After all, this was the outcome that was needed to restore the king to power and put the kingdom back where it belongs.  Joab decides he is the one who needs to jar the king out of his funk.  Joab takes a strong stance and delivers the message that David is focused on the wrong things.

“Then Joab came into the house to the king and said, “You have today covered with shame the faces of all your servants, who have this day saved your life and the lives of your sons and your daughters and the lives of your wives and your concubines, because you love those who hate you and hate those who love you. For you have made it clear today that commanders and servants are nothing to you, for today I know that if Absalom were alive and all of us were dead today, then you would be pleased”.  How’s that for tough love and straight talk.  It was a risky move, but a leadership moment for Joab as he makes it clear that David is not focused on the right things.

How did that turn out for Joab?  Not exactly as he expected.  David replaces him as commander of the army.  He puts Amasa in charge and takes Joab out of power.  Leadership sometimes has a huge price.  Joab delivered the right message.  He didn’t necessarily do it in the right way, but it was what needed to be said.  The army had risked their life to protect the king and his people, and they had won.  So Joab’s leadership was rebuffed and he was removed.  Tough response from a king that wasn’t ready for the message in his sorrow.

David begins to restore the tribes of Israel to his kingdom.  As they begin to return and lineup, a funny thing happens.  They begin to jockey for position.  “Why have our brothers the men of Judah stolen you away and brought the king and his household over the Jordan”.  The tribes begin to get territorial and thinking they should have more power or position than another tribe.  They base it on their relationship, their past history, their performance – all kinds of justification for why they should be the center of attention.  Amazing how power corrupts people.  Not long before they didn’t want anything to do with David as king.  In fact, they were not even aligned with him.  And now, they think they own him, the kingdom and the power.  That is people in action.  All about self.  All about power.  All about taking.  Oh how some things never change!

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