2 Samuel 1

2 Samuel 1 has David returning from striking down the Amalekites.  A man from Saul’s camp came and fell before David with a report to share.  “I have escaped from the camp of Israel”.  David hasn’t heard what has happened yet.  So this man is asked to fill in the blanks – to tell David what occurred.  Of course his message is that Saul and Jonathan are both dead.  That is news to David but he probes to find out more details.  How does this young man know for sure?

He was there and is actually the one who finished Saul off.  Saul had fallen on his own sword, but hadn’t died yet.  And he desperately wanted to be dead before the Philistines got to him.  So he begged this young guy to kill him, which he did.  “So I stood beside him and killed him, because I was sure that he could not live after he had fallen”.  He must have known that David would wonder, so he took the crown from Saul’s head and the armet from his arm and brought them to David.

That pretty well sealed the deal in David’s mind.  Saul and Jonathan are dead.  “David took hold of his clothes and tore them, and so did all the men who were with him. And they mourned and wept and fasted until evening”.  It was a time of mourning.  David is irritated that this young Amalekite had killed Saul.  He asks what gave this guy the right to kill Saul.  The answer was not satisfactory, even if it was supposedly at Saul’s request.  David has the guy killed.

David wants to keep things quiet.  He doesn’t want the enemy celebrating their victory and Saul’s death. He continues his respect and mourning for Saul and Jonathan.  In spite of the mistreatment he experienced at the hand of Saul, David honors him and calls out his goodness and glory.  But most of all he mourns his friend Jonathan – a kindred heart that was like a brother.  This is a distressing time for David.  He has lost a father in law and a brother that is closer than anyone else.

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