The political life is one that makes us suspicious. We have seen perfect public figures exposed time an again for being hypocrites at home and at work. The pull of power has ever been a corrupting influence. Absalom, David’s son, had an axe to grind with his father when he refused to raise his hand to do justice to Amnon his brother. Also, David didn’t carry out a just response to Absalom’s murder of Amnon. David’s sin with Bathsheba has changed him, in his private life at least he has become impotent. Absalom sees that he must rise up and oppose his father in public.
He starts by launching a political campaign. Read below to see how similar to a modern politician Absalom is.
2 Samuel 15 :1-12
1 In the course of time, Absalom provided himself with a chariot and horses and with fifty men to run ahead of him. 2 He would get up early and stand by the side of the road leading to the city gate. Whenever anyone came with a complaint to be placed before the king for a decision, Absalom would call out to him, “What town are you from?” He would answer, “Your servant is from one of the tribes of Israel.” 3 Then Absalom would say to him, “Look, your claims are valid and proper, but there is no representative of the king to hear you.” 4 And Absalom would add, “If only I were appointed judge in the land! Then everyone who has a complaint or case could come to me and I would see that they receive justice.”
5 Also, whenever anyone approached him to bow down before him, Absalom would reach out his hand, take hold of him and kiss him. 6 Absalom behaved in this way toward all the Israelites who came to the king asking for justice, and so he stole the hearts of the people of Israel.
7 At the end of four[a] years, Absalom said to the king, “Let me go to Hebron and fulfill a vow I made to the LORD. 8 While your servant was living at Geshur in Aram, I made this vow: ‘If the LORD takes me back to Jerusalem, I will worship the LORD in Hebron.[b]’”
9 The king said to him, “Go in peace.” So he went to Hebron.
10 Then Absalom sent secret messengers throughout the tribes of Israel to say, “As soon as you hear the sound of the trumpets, then say, ‘Absalom is king in Hebron.’” 11 Two hundred men from Jerusalem had accompanied Absalom. They had been invited as guests and went quite innocently, knowing nothing about the matter. 12 While Absalom was offering sacrifices, he also sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David’s counselor, to come from Giloh, his hometown. And so the conspiracy gained strength, and Absalom’s following kept on increasing.
1: Why did Absalom sit outside the city gate?
2: Why would Absalom take 200 people with him?
3: What kind of person would you describe Absalom as?
4: How would you describe the similarities and differences between modern political campaigns and that of Absalom?
5: When you vote how can you see through the charade?