2 Samuel Chapter 4

David had become the king of Judah and was leading his men in a long war with the men of Israel. Israel was ruled by a man name Ish-bosheth, who was a son of Saul. Ish-bosheth had offended the captain of his army, Abner, and Abner had gone to help Judah against them. Abner had been killed by men in Judah, before he was able to help them to defeat Israel. This chapter begins as follows:

1 And when Saul’s son heard that Abner was dead in Hebron, his hands were feeble, and all the Israelites were troubled.
2 And Saul’s son had two men that were captains of bands: the name of the one was Baanah, and the name of the other Rechab, the sons of Rimmon a Beerothite, of the children of Benjamin: (for Beeroth also was reckoned to Benjamin:
3 And the Beerothites fled to Gittaim, and were sojourners there until this day.)
4 And Jonathan, Saul’s son, had a son that was lame of his feet. He was five years old when the tidings came of Saul and Jonathan out of Jezreel, and his nurse took him up, and fled: and it came to pass, as she made haste to flee, that he fell, and became lame. And his name was Mephibosheth.
5 And the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, Rechab and Baanah, went, and came about the heat of the day to the house of Ish-bosheth, who lay on a bed at noon.
6 And they came thither into the midst of the house, as though they would have fetched wheat; and they smote him under the fifth rib: and Rechab and Baanah his brother escaped.
7 For when they came into the house, he lay on his bed in his bedchamber, and they smote him, and slew him, and beheaded him, and took his head, and gat them away through the plain all night.
8 And they brought the head of Ish-bosheth unto David to Hebron, and said to the king, Behold the head of Ish-bosheth the son of Saul thine enemy, which sought thy life; and the Lord hath avenged my lord the king this day of Saul, and of his seed.

Ish-bosheth learned that Abner was dead, and he and his people became worried about their situation. Judah had proven to be the stronger army in their fight against one another. Ish-bosheth had a captain named Baanah and Rechab of Benjamin, but their people fled to a place called Gittaim. Mephibosheth, Ish-bosheth’s lame nephew, had had an accident when they heard of the death of his father, Jonahthan, and grandfather, Saul. The captains came from Gittaim and went to the house of Ish-bosheth. They snuck in and killed him in the middle of the day. They beheaded him and then, they escaped. They took his head to David and said that the enemy of David had been killed to avenge David of his enemy.

9 And David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, and said unto them, As the Lord liveth, who hath redeemed my soul out of all adversity,
10 When one told me, saying, Behold, Saul is dead, thinking to have brought good tidings, I took hold of him, and slew him in Ziklag, who thought that I would have given him a reward for his tidings:
11 How much more, when wicked men have slain a righteous person in his own house upon his bed? shall I not therefore now require his blood of your hand, and take you away from the earth?
12 And David commanded his young men, and they slew them, and cut off their hands and their feet, and hanged them up over the pool in Hebron. But they took the head of Ish-bosheth, and buried it in the sepulchre of Abner in Hebron.

David asked them who had brought him out of his adversity, knowing that when Saul had been killed the murderer was killed for it. Why would they had done the same thing, expecting a reward for killing Ish-bosheth. He accused them of being wicked men who had killed an innocent man in his own bed. He called for his servants to kill them and make an example of them to others. Then he had the head of Ish-bosheth buried with Abner.

This idea, that one can do whatever they want, even that which is wrong, in order to get the desired result, still exists today. There is a mindset, that as long as we are aiming for those things that would be right, it doesn’t matter how we get there. There are many things causing problems in the world today, but one of the lies of the adversary, is that we can sin or do things that are wrong in order to get there. These men knew that David had an enemy which he was fighting, but the man deserved to fight for himself in their battles on the field. He did not deserve to be killed in his sleep in his own home, because that was just simply cold-blooded or premeditated murder. This was strictly prohibited in the law of Moses. The punishment for this, was death, and they received their reward. It is good for each of us to examine our own lives and see if we are doing something like this. Do we make excuses for the things we are doing, because we will get the end result and will be doing what is right in the end? If so, we need to stop and turn instead to the support of the Lord in order to accomplish those things that are good and righteous. The Lord will lead us in the paths of righteousness and the results will be good for many, as opposed to good for those we think deserve it. God’s ways are better than our ways, but they will often time require more work and more sacrifice in order to get there. The righteous should be willing to wait on the Lord’s timing, just as David had done with Saul.

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