Sunday, February 25, 2024

2 Samuel 16:5-14, 19:16-23 & Psalm 39

David’s claim over Israel was in serious trouble when his son Absalom staged a coup d’état and claimed the throne for himself. David was forced to flee from Absalom’s rebellion. While he did, a bitter relative of the former king Saul taunted David vociferously.

Starting Out:
1. Have you ever competed against someone who played dirty? How did their decisions affect your attitude and behavior?

Read 2 Samuel 16:5-14:
2. What accusations did Shimei lob at king David?
3. Were Shimei’s accusations just or unfounded?
4. What reasoning does David give his men for not resisting the taunts of Shimei?

Read Psalm 39:
5. How does David feel in the presence of foolish taunting?
6. How does David’s relationship with God determine how he handles unjust criticism from his enemies?
7. Why might David draw a connection between persecution from enemies and discipline from God?

Read 2 Samuel 19:16-23:
8. After David puts down Absalom’s rebellion, he returns to rule from Jerusalem. How might David have felt when Shimei begs for mercy?
9. Do you think Shimei’s apology was sincere? Do you think David thought it was sincere?
10. What was Abishai’s reasoning for wanting to execute Shimei? Why might that argument have appealed to David?
11. King David had enough power and cause to execute Shimei on the spot. Why did he choose not to? Do you think his motives motivated by a gracious heart or political strategy?

Taking it Home:
12. Have you ever seen a mature Christian unjustly criticized? What was admirable about the way they handled that situation?
13. Why is there such a strong emotional reaction when something unjust is done or said against us? What can we learn from David’s example and introspection in Psalm 39?

Other Scriptures to engage with this week:
Colossians 1:15-23, Genesis 42-43