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to do.

How the offence was avenged.

What became of Absalom.

What Abdalam. Absalom, therefore, determined to take the law into his own hands; but was unable for some time to carry his project into execution.

After the lapse of two years, when all supposed the matter was forgotten, Absalom invited Amnon to a feast, and there murdered him. (B.C. 1026.)

He then fled for protection to the court of his grandfather, king of Geshur, where he remained three years,

and then returned to Jerusalem.

His father being reconciled to him, he looked upon himself as presumptive heir to the crown, set up a magnificent equipage, and tried to ingratiate himself with all the people.

He had many popular qualities, especially a most beautiful person, and very winning manner. How he pro- Having won the hearts of the people, he next persuaded them to re

How he behaved,

Whence his popularity arose.



Name the most important revolter.

How his plans were counteracted.

volt. Thousands flocked to his standard, and David was obliged to flee from the kingdom in order to save his life.

Amongst the revolters was Ahith'ophel, one of David's most valued friends; a very politic counseller, and powerful adherent.

David, fearing the counsel of Ahithophel, persuaded Hushai to feign revolt, join Absalom's party, and undermine his schemes.

Ahith'ophel induced Absalom openly to abuse his father's concubines, in order that the breach might be irreparable; he next advised him to pursue the fugitive king without delay, before he could recover from his panic. How Hushai count- To this politic advice Hushai, who was in David's secret interest, objected. He recommended delay; saying, it would be hard to fight against the desperate, and that no one knew exactly where the king lay concealed.

Ahithophel's counsel.

What followed.

The effect produced.

What became of Absalom.

The advice of Hushai was adopted; and Ahith'ophel, seeing the rebels could not succeed, went away and hanged himself.

This delay was ruin to Absalom; for David in the meantime was enabled to prepare for battle; and, when the rebels came up, they suffered a complete defeat.

Absalom fled for his life; but, as he was passing through a forest, his long hair became entangled in an oakhis mule passed from under him, and he was left hanging to the tree. How he died. Before he could extricate himself, Joab, the captain of David's army, came up; despatched him with an arrow, and returned to David with the important news. (B.C. 1019.)

David greatly lamented the loss of his favourite son; and though he was restored to his kingdom, passed the rest of his life in almost unmitigated troubles. (2 Sam. xviii. 33.)

How David was affected.

Section III.


B.C. 10191010.




How David's last years were clouded.

The sorrows which clouded the latter days of the reinstated king arose chiefly from three sources:

(1.) The rebellion of Sbeba, who was joined by the remnants of Absa

lom's army;

Why the plague was sent.

(2.) A dreadful famine, which lasted three years; and

(3.) A fearful plague, which destroyed 70,000 persons in three days.

The sin which brought the plague upon the kingdom was pride of heart; for, as the scripture saith : “Satan provoked David" to number Israel.” (1 Chron. xxi. 1.)

This census was taken by David that he might know bis strength, but he forgot that his strength was God and not man. It was a similar spirit of pride which induced the people after the food to

How David was

build the tower of Babel; and which, at a future period, made Nabuchadnezzar boast: "Is not this Babylon a mighty city which I have built in the greatness of my power ?" The builders were punished by the confusion of tongues, and the arrogant monarch by raving madness.

Probably David's intention was to push his conquests into foreign countries, an enterprise distinctly forbidden by God.

God sent the prophet Gad to reproved. give David the choice of three evils :

(1.) A famine for seven years ;
(2.) A defeat for three months; or

(3.) A pestilence for three days. Devido reply to David replied: "Let me fall David's the prophet. into the hands of the Lord and not into the hands of man!”. Accordingly God sent on the kingdom à fearful plague. How the plagte When the plague had raged for three days, David feil on his face before the Lord, beseeching him to spare the people: “Lo! it is I who have sinned and done wickedly; but as for these sheep, what have they

was arrested.

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