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Thursday, May 8 2014
2 Samuel 19: King David's Return To Jerusalem
"And all the people came before the king"
David's victory over his treasonous son's rebellion (see 2 Samuel 17: The Spirit Of Traitors) was bittersweet. David had been expecting the traitor, who would have killed David if he could, to be taken alive and treated gently ("18:5 And the king commanded Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying, Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom." 2 Samuel 18:5 KJV). When it didn't happen (see 2 Samuel 18: The Fall Of The Rebel Prince), David's response almost cost him the throne all on his own. Once again, Joab, a nephew of King David (a son of David's sister Zeruiah) was a key figure in David's victory.
"19:1 And it was told Joab, Behold, the king weepeth and mourneth for Absalom. 19:2 And the victory that day was turned into mourning unto all the people: for the people heard say that day how the king was grieved for his son. 19:3 And the people gat them by stealth that day into the city, as people being ashamed steal away when they flee in battle. 19:4 But the king covered his face, and the king cried with a loud voice, O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son!
With David's sensibility returned, he was faced with the task of re-uniting the kingdom after the liberal-led rebellion because "all the people were at strife throughout all the tribes of Israel."
"19:9 And all the people were at strife throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, The king saved us out of the hand of our enemies, and he delivered us out of the hand of the Philistines; and now he is fled out of the land for Absalom. 19:10 And Absalom, whom we anointed over us, is dead in battle. Now therefore why speak ye not a word of bringing the king back?
David's victory and return occurred much to the chagrin of those who had celebrated when the coup against David appeared successful. Among them was Shimei who had cursed David and pelted him with dirt and stones as he was leaving Jerusalem (see 2 Samuel 16: Sticks and Stones). For the sake of national unity in the peace at hand, David did not immediately do to Shimei what Shimei had wanted to do to David (David had Solomon attend to Shimei later: "2:8 And, behold, thou hast with thee Shimei the son of Gera, a Benjamite of Bahurim, which cursed me with a grievous curse in the day when I went to Mahanaim: but he came down to meet me at Jordan, and I sware to him by the LORD, saying, I will not put thee to death with the sword. 2:9 Now therefore hold him not guiltless: for thou art a wise man, and knowest what thou oughtest to do unto him; but his hoar head bring thou down to the grave with blood." 1 Kings 2:8-9 KJV).
"19:16 And Shimei the son of Gera, a Benjamite, which was of Bahurim, hasted and came down with the men of Judah to meet king David. 19:17 And there were a thousand men of Benjamin with him, and Ziba the servant of the house of Saul, and his fifteen sons and his twenty servants with him; and they went over Jordan before the king. 19:18 And there went over a ferry boat to carry over the king's household, and to do what he thought good.
Mephibosheth also greeted the king with the explanation that Ziba had given David a false report about his loyalty to David (see 2 Samuel 16: Sticks and Stones). The Scriptures do not state which of them, Mephibosheth or Ziba, was the liar. David apparently didn't know - so he divided Mephibosheth's property, that had been given to Ziba, equally between them. Their due would also come in the time of Solomon.
"19:24 And Mephibosheth the son of Saul came down to meet the king, and had neither dressed his feet, nor trimmed his beard, nor washed his clothes, from the day the king departed until the day he came again in peace. 19:25 And it came to pass, when he was come to Jerusalem to meet the king, that the king said unto him, Wherefore wentest not thou with me, Mephibosheth?
Barzillai, from the Hebrew meaning made of iron, was a wealthy man of Gilead who made himself a loyal ally of King David during Absalom's rebellion. David never forgot who his enemies were; he also never forgot who his true friends were (see Barzillai).
"19:31 And Barzillai the Gileadite came down from Rogelim, and went over Jordan with the king, to conduct him over Jordan. 19:32 Now Barzillai was a very aged man, even fourscore years old: and he had provided the king of sustenance while he lay at Mahanaim; for he was a very great man. 19:33 And the king said unto Barzillai, Come thou over with me, and I will feed thee with me in Jerusalem.
When David crossed the Jordan on the way to Jerusalem, he immediately encountered the national "crease" that would appear again and again through Israel's history (see The Crease Of Israel). Although they were again united, the tension between Judah and the rest of the tribes of Israel became a permanent source of stress (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel and Judah).
"19:39 And all the people went over Jordan. And when the king was come over, the king kissed Barzillai, and blessed him; and he returned unto his own place.
Fact Finder: When did King David first make Jerusalem the capital city of the united kingdom of Israel?
This Day In History, May 8
413: Amidst the political and military crumbling of the Roman Empire, Emperor Honorius signed an edict for tax relief for the Italian provinces of Tuscia, Campania, Picenum, Samnium, Apulia, Lucania and Calabria, who were then being plundered by the Visigoths because Rome could no longer defend its own internal borders (see also Israel In History and Prophecy: Roman Judea and Israel In History and Prophecy: Aelia Capitolina). The original Roman Empire was superseded by Germany (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
589: Reccared I, the Visigothic King of Hispania (the ancient Roman name for Spain), Septimania (an area that is today part of southern France) and Galicia (an area that is today a part of northern Portugal and Spain), summoned the Third Council of Toledo.
1429: The siege of Orleans ended when French troops stormed the English forts in the Hundred Years War.
1541: Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto discovered (it wasn't a discovery for the tribes of native people who lived there) the Mississippi River. He called it Rio de Espiritu Santo ("the Holy Spirit River").
1559: The Act of Supremacy was passed by which the new Queen Elizabeth I became "Supreme Governor" of the Church of England; the Act of Uniformity was passed and a Common Prayer book was introduced.
1792: British captain George Vancouver sighted and named Mount Rainier on the west coast of the continent of North America.
1794: Antoine Laurent Lavoisier, "the father of modern chemistry" (he identified the element oxygen) was guillotined in Paris by the Revolutionary Convention.
1811: The British under the Duke of Wellington defeated the French in Portugal.
1821: During the Greek War of Independence, the Greeks defeated the Turks at the Battle of Gravia Inn.
1852: The Treaty of London was signed by Britain, France, Russia, Prussia, Austria and Sweden, guaranteeing the integrity of Denmark.
1882: The vast Northwest Territories of Canada were divided into 4 districts: Alberta, Saskatchewan, Assiniboia and Athabaska.
1886: Atlanta pharmacist John Styth Pemberton invented Coca Cola as a pain killer and stimulant patent medicine. As its name indicates, the original formula for "coke" contained coca, from which cocaine is produced. The present-day version replaced coca with high amounts of caffeine and sugar.
1895: China ceded Taiwan to Japan under the Treaty of Shimonoseki.
1902: The eruption of Mt. Pelee, near St. Pierre, Martinique, destroyed the town within minutes, killing all but 2 of the town's 30,000 inhabitants.
1921: Capital punishment was abolished in Sweden.
1943: Mordecai Anielewicz, 24, the leader of the Jewish "Warsaw Uprising" against the Nazi Waffen-SS, was killed in battle.
1945: Near the end of the Second World War (1939-1945), "V-E Day" (Victory in Europe Day). Nazi German military forces agreed to an unconditional surrender.
1949: The Basic Law, the constitution of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), was adopted by the Parliamentary Council at Bonn.
1972: Four "Black September" terrorists hijacked Sabena (the Belgian national airline) Flight 571. Israeli special forces freed the airliner the following day.
1973: A 71-day standoff between the U.S. Government and the "American Indian Movement" members who were occupying the Pine Ridge Reservation at Wounded Knee, South Dakota ended with the surrender of the militants.
1977: David Berkowitz pleaded guilty to the "Son of Sam" (also known as the "44 Caliber Killer") shootings that terrorized New York City. He was sentenced to 365 years in prison.
1980: The eradication of smallpox was proclaimed by the World Health Organization.
1987: Canada officially minted the first $1.00 coins. Made of a nickel with a gold-colored aureate coating, the "loonie" (a nickname from the picture of the aquatic bird, known in North America as the loon, on one side of the coin) is estimated to have a lifespan of 20 years, as compared to 9 months for the traditional $1.00 bill that it replaced.