Perhaps more later: my mind is a jumble now.
Today, chapters 19 and 20 of 2nd Samuel.
David was quite a guy. Not perfect, by no means. But neither am I.
His life was marked with nearly constant battles, intrigue including palace intrigues, and truly awful behavior in his own family among his own offspring.
Now, some of that just comes with the territory. I've never been around a kind, czar, duke, etc. But I have been around some very very powerful people. The gut-cutting, scheming, machinations, etc. that go on seem to always be awful, and it's not "just" a matter of the stakes and the power to be gained. A commentator on our world, Ann Coulter I believe, once wrote about a particularly nasty power struggle , " the fights are so nasty because the stakes are so low". Ever see the machinations around leadership in a PTA, a kids' sports team support group, or, Lord forgive us, a women's group in a church? I have. Nasty. This was too.
Added to that propensity is the family arrangement. Many of us have observed at close range that squabbles between kids in a single family. In David's case, as was the case in virtually all kings and princes of that era (and the Moslem lands even today), you had one king and half a dozen or more official wives, plus numerous concubines. What we used to call droid du seigneur was -- and probably still is -- the practice in most places. So you had more than a few would-be inheritors of the crown. By the way, the losers in that struggle, even if they'd never competed, could expect to die as soon as the new king took over. And, as here, more often than not, the would-be heir began that effort while the old king was still breathing. Sometimes, as we've seen here with Absalom, he wouldn't wait for the funeral.
David was quite a man. But not a good father.
1 And it was told Joab, Behold, the king weepeth and mourneth for Absalom.
1 And there happened to be there a man of Belial, whose name was Sheba, the son of Bichri, a Benjamite: and he blew a trumpet, and said, We have no part in David, neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: every man to his tents, O Israel.
1 O give thanks unto the Lord; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people.
Today, chapter 16 in the Acts of the Apostles. This is part of the explosive growth of the early church. Going forth.
I read a brief article this morning that related that some 93% of American Christians never tell anyone about the Lord. Never.
1 Then came he to Derbe and Lystra: and, behold, a certain disciple was there, named Timothy, the son of a certain woman, which was a Jewess, and believed; but his father was a Greek: