For a while there in the last chapter, it looked like David would finally be king of a united Israel. In these next two chapters, he, at last, would be anointed king of all Israel. Here, too, we see what happens when men take it upon themselves to push the will of God along — without asking God first. Let’s dig in…
2 Samuel 4
When Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, heard about Abner’s death at Hebron, he lost all courage, and all Israel became paralyzed with fear. 2 Now there were two brothers, Baanah and Recab, who were captains of Ishbosheth’s raiding parties. They were sons of Rimmon, a member of the tribe of Benjamin who lived in Beeroth. The town of Beeroth is now part of Benjamin’s territory 3 because the original people of Beeroth fled to Gittaim, where they still live as foreigners.
4 (Saul’s son Jonathan had a son named Mephibosheth, who was crippled as a child. He was five years old when the report came from Jezreel that Saul and Jonathan had been killed in battle. When the child’s nurse heard the news, she picked him up and fled. But as she hurried away, she dropped him, and he became crippled.)
5 One day Recab and Baanah, the sons of Rimmon from Beeroth, went to Ishbosheth’s house around noon as he was taking his midday rest. 6 The doorkeeper, who had been sifting wheat, became drowsy and fell asleep. So Recab and Baanah slipped past her. 7 They went into the house and found Ishbosheth sleeping on his bed. They struck and killed him and cut off his head. Then, taking his head with them, they fled across the Jordan Valley through the night. 8 When they arrived at Hebron, they presented Ishbosheth’s head to David. “Look!” they exclaimed to the king. “Here is the head of Ishbosheth, the son of your enemy Saul who tried to kill you. Today the Lord has given my lord the king revenge on Saul and his entire family!”
9 But David said to Recab and Baanah, “The Lord, who saves me from all my enemies, is my witness. 10 Someone once told me, ‘Saul is dead,’ thinking he was bringing me good news. But I seized him and killed him at Ziklag. That’s the reward I gave him for his news! 11 How much more should I reward evil men who have killed an innocent man in his own house and on his own bed? Shouldn’t I hold you responsible for his blood and rid the earth of you?”
12 So David ordered his young men to kill them, and they did. They cut off their hands and feet and hung their bodies beside the pool in Hebron. Then they took Ishbosheth’s head and buried it in Abner’s tomb in Hebron.2 Samuel 4 NLT
The brothers, were acting on what they thought was God’s will, but they were acting on selfish ambitions. They killed an innocent man and later paid for their crime.
You might think, “Why is all this gory stuff in the Bible?” Well, life is gory. The Bible is not just a history book, but it’s God’s way of telling us how to live righteously. What would have been the righteous thing for the brothers to do? Obviously, be diplomats instead of murderers. They could have convinced Ishbosheth to surrender his crown to David because the tribes were defecting anyway. But no. They had to take matters into their own hands and David dealt with them justly.
2 Samuel 5 – Confirmation of a King
Then all the tribes of Israel went to David at Hebron and told him, “We are your own flesh and blood. 2 In the past, when Saul was our king, you were the one who really led the forces of Israel. And the Lord told you, ‘You will be the shepherd of my people Israel. You will be Israel’s leader.’”
3 So there at Hebron, King David made a covenant before the Lord with all the elders of Israel. And they anointed him king of Israel.
4 David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years in all. 5 He had reigned over Judah from Hebron for seven years and six months, and from Jerusalem he reigned over all Israel and Judah for thirty-three years.
David Captures Jerusalem
6 David then led his men to Jerusalem to fight against the Jebusites, the original inhabitants of the land who were living there. The Jebusites taunted David, saying, “You’ll never get in here! Even the blind and lame could keep you out!” For the Jebusites thought they were safe. 7 But David captured the fortress of Zion, which is now called the City of David.
8 On the day of the attack, David said to his troops, “I hate those ‘lame’ and ‘blind’ Jebusites. Whoever attacks them should strike by going into the city through the water tunnel.” That is the origin of the saying, “The blind and the lame may not enter the house.”
9 So David made the fortress his home, and he called it the City of David. He extended the city, starting at the supporting terraces and working inward. 10 And David became more and more powerful, because the Lord God of Heaven’s Armies was with him.
11 Then King Hiram of Tyre (Lebanon) sent messengers to David, along with cedar timber and carpenters and stonemasons, and they built David a palace. 12 And David realized that the Lord had confirmed him as king over Israel and had blessed his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel.
13 After moving from Hebron to Jerusalem, David married more concubines and wives, and they had more sons and daughters. 14 These are the names of David’s sons who were born in Jerusalem: Shammua, Shobab, Nathan, Solomon, 15 Ibhar, Elishua, Nepheg, Japhia, 16 Elishama, Eliada, and Eliphelet.
David Conquers the Philistines
17 When the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king of Israel, they mobilized all their forces to capture him. But David was told they were coming, so he went into the stronghold. 18 The Philistines arrived and spread out across the valley of Rephaim. 19 So David asked the Lord, “Should I go out to fight the Philistines? Will you hand them over to me?”
The Lord replied to David, “Yes, go ahead. I will certainly hand them over to you.”
20 So David went to Baal-perazim and defeated the Philistines there. “The Lord did it!” David exclaimed. “He burst through my enemies like a raging flood!” So he named that place Baal-perazim (which means “the Lord who bursts through”). 21 The Philistines had abandoned their idols there, so David and his men confiscated them.
22 But after a while the Philistines returned and again spread out across the valley of Rephaim. 23 And again David asked the Lord what to do. “Do not attack them straight on,” the Lord replied. “Instead, circle around behind and attack them near the poplar trees. 24 When you hear a sound like marching feet in the tops of the poplar trees, be on the alert! That will be the signal that the Lord is moving ahead of you to strike down the Philistine army.” 25 So David did what the Lord commanded, and he struck down the Philistines all the way from Gibeon to Gezer.2 Samuel 5 NLT
Points to Ponder
- David got a 3rd anointing. This time as king over a united Israel fulfilling God’s promise. Even born-again believers need a fresh anointing of the Holy Spirit every once in a while. Especially when we’re facing big decisions in life.
- The key here is to ASK GOD FIRST. Then, you must be patient. That’s the smart thing to do. God answers prayers when they are asked with the right motives. Leave selfish motives behind.
- Verse 13 tells of David marrying more women, which clearly violates Deuteronomy 17:17 – “The king must not take many wives for himself, because they will turn his heart away from the Lord.” This comes to bite him later on.
- Baal-perazim means the “Lord of Breakthroughs”. That’s our God! Whenever we’re stuck, if we sincerely ask Him for guidance, He will help us break through whatever we’re facing. I know, it happened to me.
- The sound of the wind in the top of the trees symbolizes the Holy Spirit. It’s so wonderful to know that we, as believers, have the Holy Spirit in our hearts at our beck and call, 24/7!
The New Jerusalem
Jerusalem today, though still the capital of Israel since David conquered it, is still somewhat divided. The Dome of the Rock, which is the prominent building, is an Islamic monument. Next to it is the Al-Aqsa Mosque. In other words, the Muslims own the Temple Mount. We’ll talk about the 3rd Temple soon. Check out the video below to see the archeological discovery of the City of David.
Nevertheless, Jesus promises us believers a New Jerusalem. And we KNOW that God keeps His promises!
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. 2 And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
3 I heard a loud shout from the throne (King Jesus), saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. 4 He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”
5 And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.” 6 And he also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life. 7 All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children.
8 “But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”Revelation 21:1-8 nLT
My question to you right now is — do YOU fall into any of the descriptions in that last verse? Be honest! Remember, God SEES and KNOWS EVERYTHING!
The Good News!
If you do, and, believe me, I fell into a few of those categories, Jesus came to take away your sins — past, present and future! He’ll wash you clean so you can enter Heaven. The ONLY WAY is THROUGH JESUS! Nothing you can do will EVER make you good enough!
If you’re not sure if you’re saved or not, if you truly want to be born again and have the assurance of salvation, receive the Holy Spirit, and get a 1-way, non-stop ticket to Heaven after you die, or that you won’t be left behind at the Rapture, this is what you have to do…
Believe. Repent. Be Baptized. Receive the Holy Spirit.
- Believe — have Faith — that Jesus is the Christ and He died taking your sins away forever and that He rose from the dead 3 days later.
- Repent of your sins — stop sinning! Do a complete 180 in your life and surrender your life to Him.
- Be Baptized — show the world and yourself that you have died to your old life and are born again in Christ.
- Receive the Holy Spirit in your heart.