Survey of the Bible - II Samuel
Text: II Samuel 23:1-7
I. The book of I Samuel covered the life of Samuel, the kingship of Saul, and the pre-kingship days of David
A. II Samuel continues the account, covering the reign of David
B. Why is it still called “Samuel?” Samuel is the judge who anointed both Saul and David. So the books of Samuel chronicle the results of what Samuel established.
II. The Early Years of David’s Reign - II Samuel 1-10
A. Lament for Saul - II Samuel 1
1. While Saul was fighting the Philistines in the north and had lost, David was in the south battling the Amalekites and the results are described as a slaughter - II Samuel 1:1
2. An Amalekite comes with proof of Saul’s death. He claims that Saul had attempted suicide but wasn’t successful and had asked him to kill him.
3. Whether the story the man brings is true or not, the critical fact is that he claims to have killed a king.
a. Since his story doesn’t match I Samuel 31 or I Chronicles 10, the man was a liar hoping to get a reward from David.
4. For that David has him put to death. I’m sure it didn’t help that he was an Amalekite either. II Samuel 1:16
5. The story gives us insight into the character of David, Right and wrong is not based on how he was benefitted. Murder was wrong, even when requested – something those advocating assisted suicide should take note of.
B. Struggle to gain the kingdom - II Samuel 2 - 4
1. David goes to Hebron where he is made king of Judah
2. But Abner, Saul’s commander and his uncle (I Samuel 14:50), made Ishbosheth king over the northern tribes - II Samuel 2:8-10
3. The armies of David and Ishbosheth meet, but it appears no one wanted to start a civil war. A contest is proposed involving twelve men from each side. They ended up killing each other, so none survived and war broke out.
4. Abner was losing, fled the battle, but was pursued by Asahel, a brother of Job known for his speed in running. Abner tried to stop him using the butt end of his spear, but ended up killing him.
5. Abner convinces Joab that civil war had to stop - II Samuel 2:26-28
6. But the war continued - II Samuel 3:1
7. Ishbosheth makes the mistake of accusing Abner of sleeping with one of his father’s concubines. Abner is so angry that he promises to deliver all of Israel into David’s hand and he switches sides.
a. As token of his loyalty, David asks him to return his wife Michal, Saul’s daughter, to him
b. Saul later gave her to another man, who clearly loved her deeply though he had no right to her.
8. Joab doesn’t trust Abner and he was still angry about Asahel’s death. He murdered Abner
a. David declares that he did not order this and pronounces a curse on Joab and his house.
b. David gives Abner a funeral and fasted - II Samuel 3:31-37
9. Ishbosheth is then murdered in his bed. The two men who did it thought they could bring evidence of Ishbosheth’s death and be rewarded. Instead they were put to death for murder.
C. David assumes the throne - II Samuel 5
1. With no opposition, David is then made king over all of Israel
2. He also conquered Jerusalem and made it his capital
3. He also defeated the Philistines
D. Attempt to bring the tabernacle to Jerusalem - II Samuel 6
1. David wanted the tabernacle at his new capital, but he didn’t ask God about it.
2. He had the ark carted, contrary to what the Scriptures taught (Numbers 4:15-20) and consequently Uzzah, the man driving the cart, was struck dead.
3. David sees his mistake and tries again later doing it properly.
4. Michal sees David dancing before the ark and despises him, likely angered over losing the man who loved her.
E. Plans to build a temple to God - II Samuel 7
1. David wanted to build a permanent house, a temple, for God, but God declines
2. Instead God promises David to establish David’s house, an eternal throne for his descendants
F. Military successes - II Samuel 8-10
1. David defeats the Philistines and the Moabites - II Samuel 8:1-2
2. He defeats the Arameans - II Samuel 8:3-8
3. Hamath submits to David - II Samuel 8:9-10
4. David then launches a campaign defeating Aram, Moab, the Philistines, Amalek, and Edom - II Samuel 8:11-18
5. David also seeks out the last surviving member of Jonathan’s house and takes him in - II Samuel 9
6. David sends a peace delegation to the new king of Ammon, but he insults them.
a. Seeing how upset they made David, they tried hiring mercenary soldiers from Aram
b. They were soundly defeated
III. The Troubled Years - II Samuel 11-18
A. Adultery and attempted cover up - II Samuel 11-12
1. David, like all of us, was not without his weaknesses. He committed adultery with another man’s wife. She became pregnant.
2. He tried to cover it up, but the husband, not knowing what was going on, was too honorable to sleep with his wife while Israel his brethren were in battle.
3. David orders his death and then marries his widow.
4. God sends the prophet Nathan to denounce David’s sins.
a. David repents, but the consequences of his sins remained - II Samuel 12:10-14
b. The child does die, but later Bathsheba has another son, Solomon
B. Absalom’s rebellion - II Samuel 13-19
1. One of David’s sons Amnon rapes his half-sister, Tamar - II Samuel 13:1-19
a. Tamar’s brother, Absalom, finds out. When David does nothing about Amnon, Absalom murders him.
b. And here we see another weakness of David. He was just with others, but he couldn’t bring himself to restrain his own sons.
c. Absalom flees into exile for three years, but David is conflicted - II Samuel 13:37-39
2. Joab convinces David to recall Absalom, but David refuses to see him for another two years, but finally relents - II Samuel 14
3. Absalom then begins to plan to overthrow his father and accomplishes it. All that God said would happen came to pass - II Samuel 15
4. David flees for his life. - II Samuel 16-17
a. Mephibosheth sends aid, but his servant claims the credit and get’s Mephibosheth’s property as a result.
b. But David leaves a councilor behind who begins giving Absalom seemingly good advice that always manages to go bad. He also keeps David informed of where Absalom planned to strike next so David was one step ahead.
5. Eventually David and Absalom’s men fight - II Samuel 18
a. David gives strict orders that Absalom is not to be harmed, but Joab takes it upon himself to murder Absalom when he got trapped in a tree.
b. David is grief-stricken over Absalom’s death - II Samuel 19
6. Joab finally scolds David for putting his sympathies with the wrong person
a. David’s kingdom is restored and various people are rewarded or punished for the roles they played during the rebellion
b. But David’s position was weakened - II Samuel 19:40-43
7. A man named Sheba led’s a revolt against David which Joab puts down - II Samuel 20
IV. David’s Final Years - II Samuel 21-24
A. God sends a three year famine to punish Israel for allowing Saul to unjustly harm the Gibeonites - II Samuel 21:1-14
1. To settle the claim, the Gibeonites demand that seven of Saul’s sons be given them to be put to death.
2. David then reburies Saul, Jonathan, and the sons who just died in an honorable fashion and the famine ended.
B. David again defeats the Philistines - II Samuel 21:15-22
C. David’s Psalm - II Samuel 22
D. David’s Last Psalm and an honor roll of David’s mighty men - II Samuel 23
E. Numbering Israel - II Samuel 24
1. Satan again led David astray. He decided to number the people, something that was contrary to God’s law.
2. Joab warns David against doing it, but David overrules him
3. But afterwards, David felt guilty and apologized to God.
a. God gives David a choice of three punishments - II Samuel 24:13-14
b. David chooses the shortest, but harshest punishment.
4. Where David builds an altar to end the plague is where the temple is eventually build by Solomon.
V. What we learn
A. Consequences of choices have greater impact than we might imagine
1. Many evils done at one time come back to haunt those who did them later
2. But also the good people did is often remembered as well
B. Sins are punished. Even when the sinner is forgiven, punishment still comes.
1. It is when sins are left unpunished, as in the case of Amnon and Absalom, that we see things spiral out of control