2 Samuel 2:3
David also took the men who were with him, each with his household, and they settled in the towns near Hebron.
Sermons
Divine GuidanceB. Dale 2 Samuel 2:1-4
Strength and WeaknessH. E. Stone.2 Samuel 2:1-32
David's Reign At HebronW. G. Blaikie, M. A.2 Samuel 2:3-4
Fresh AnointingF. B. Meyer, B. A.2 Samuel 2:3-4
2 Samuel 2:1-4. - (ZIGLAG, HEBRON)
David inquired of the Lord (ver. 1). A new chapter in the life of David now opens. By the death of Saul and Jonathan the obstacles to his accession were, in part, removed. The time of patient waiting was gone, and the time for decisive action come. As he had not run before he was sent, so he did not expect, without running, to attain. But he would not take a step without the approval and direction of God. His inquiry pertained to the Divine purpose he was chosen to fulfil, and the Divine guidance he needed for its accomplishment. In this inquiry, as in his subsequent conduct and experience, he was a pattern to us; since there is forevery man a Divine plan and purpose of life, which he should seek to ascertain and strive to realize. Consider Divine guidance (in the way to a crown) as -

I. URGENTLY NEEDED. We are liable (like travellers in a strange country) to go astray from the right path and fall into danger.

1. This liability arises from many erroneous paths presented to our view; their attractive appearance and strong temptations. "There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death" (Proverbs 14:12).

2. And from the imperfection of our own nature; our ignorance, and our disposition to please ourselves rather than deny ourselves and please God. "O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself," etc. (Jeremiah 10:23).

3. It is evident from experience of past failures. David had taken many false steps. And there is no man but has reason to feel, in looking back over departed years, that his greatest folly has been to walk in the light of his own wisdom, and his greatest wisdom to depend upon the wisdom of God.

4. The need of it is specially felt by us when about to enter upon a new enterprise, or a course of action to which we are impelled by outward circumstances or inward conviction, but the exact nature of which is uncertain, or which is dependent for its success upon the disposition and cooperation of other persons.

II. DILIGENTLY SOUGHT. Although the Urim and Thummim are gone (see 1 Samuel 14:16-23; 1 Samuel 23:1-12), yet:

1. There are certain means which must be employed for a similar purpose - such as considering our own capacities and condition; listening to the voice of conscience; seeking the advice of good men; observing the ways of Providence; studying "the Scriptures of truth;" and, above all, offering prayer to the Father "in the Name" of Christ.

2. And to their proper employment a right spirit is essential; viz. sincerity, docility, trustfulness, perseverance. Such was the spirit of David, as it appears in his psalms; and therefore, while Saul exclaimed, "God answereth me no more" (1 Samuel 28:15), he could say, "I sought the Lord, and he heard me" (Psalm 34:4).

III. GRACIOUSLY AFFORDED.

1. In various ways, in accordance with the means just mentioned, and especially by the Holy Spirit, who prepares the heart, teaches the meaning and application of the written Word, and produces impressions and impulses in harmony therewith. "Ye have an unction from the Holy One, and know all things" (l John 2:20; John 16:13).

2. Individually, and in a measure fully adequate to the requirements of the case and the capacity of profiting by it.

3. Certainly. As of old, so now. God is as desirous as he is able to lead us in the way wherein we should go, and he has given many faithful promises to this effect. "I will guide thee with mine eye" (Psalm 32:8; Psalm 37:23; Psalm 48:14). "Thine ears shall hear a voice behind thee," etc. (Isaiah 30:21; Isaiah 42:16; Proverbs 3:6).

IV. FAITHFULLY FOLLOWED. "And David went up thither" (ver. 2).

1. With humble obedience and entire dependence, as a child relying on the superior wisdom of his father.

2. Without hesitation, questioning, or delay.

3. With cheerfulness, zeal, and energy. It is always given with a practical end in view.

V. GRADUALLY CONFIRMED in the experience of him who obeys. "And his men... and they dwelt in the cities of Hebron" (ver. 3). God went before them and prepared their way, so that they met with a peaceable reception and found "a city of habitation."

1. The operations of Providence concur with the teachings of the Word and the Spirit.

2. A stronger assurance of the Divine leading is possessed. "If any man willeth to do his will," etc. (John 7:17).

3. More light is given for further advancement. "Then shall we know, shall follow on to know the Lord. His going forth is fixed like the morning dawn" (Hosea 6:3); and it will brighten on our path into the radiance of perfect day.

VI. WIDELY BENEFICIAL. More especially it contributes to the good of those who are associated with him, and who, having shared his perplexity and distress, now share his prosperity. Those who are guided by God are thereby enabled and disposed to guide and bless others (Numbers 10:39).

VII. GLORIOUSLY TERMINATING. "They anointed David king" (ver. 4). And all who truly fulfil the Divine plan and purpose as David did (Acts 13:22) are made "kings unto God," and receive exalted honour among men, increased power over them, and at length a crown of life, of righteousness, and of glory. But, alas! how many go stumbling through life without an aim, or only with one which is unworthy, and contrary to the will of God, and then sink into "the blackness of darkness forever"! "The wise shall inherit glory; but shame shall be the promotion of fools" (Proverbs 3:35). - D.







And they dwelt in the cities of Hebron, and the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David.
The death of Saul did not end David's domestic troubles, and did not leave him free, for a considerable number of years, to employ his energies for the good of the whole kingdom. It appears that his chastisement for allying himself with Achish was not yet exhausted. The more remote fruits of that step were now only beginning to emerge, and years elapsed before its evil influence ceased to be felt. The close alliance which had subsisted between him and the great enemy of his country, arid author of its disasters, could hardly fail to render him an object of distrust and suspicion to many of his countrymen. All his former achievements against the Philistines — the cruel injustice of Saul which had driven him in despair to Achish — his recent services against the Amalekites — the generous use he had made of the spoil — and the influence of his high personal character, however powerfully they might tell is his immediate neighbourhood, would have but little weight in his favour in the more distant parts of the kingdom. For after a great disaster, the public mind is often exasperated, and ready to lay an enormous amount of blame on any one who can be assailed with any plausibility. Beyond all doubt, David would come in for his full share of such attacks. It was, therefore, in every way the most expedient course for David to establish his quarters immediately in one of the cities of Judah. But in the admirable frame of mind in which he now was, he declined taking this step, indispensable though it seemed, until he had obtained Divine direction regarding it The form in which he made the inquiry shows how clear the expediency of going up to one of the cities of Judah was to his own mind. The city of Hebron, situated about eighteen miles to the south of Jerusalem, was the place to which he was directed to go. In was a spot abounding in holy and elevating associations. It was among the first, if not the very first haunt of civilised men in the land — so ancient, that it is said to have been built seven years before Zoan in Egypt (Numbers 13:22). The Father of the Faithful had often pitched his tent under its spreading oaks, and among its olive groves and vine-clad hills the gentle Isaac had meditated at eventide. There, Abraham had watched the last breath of his beloved Sarah, the companion of his wanderings and the partner of his faith; and there, from the sons of Heth, he had purchased the sepulchre where so much holy and venerable dust was deposited, in the hope of a glorious resurrection. Thither Joseph and his brethren had brought up the body of Jacob, laying it, in fulfilment of his dying command, beside the bones of Leah. It had been s, halting-place of the twelve spies, when they went up to search the land; and the cluster of grapes which they carried back was cut from the neighbouring valley, where the finest grapes of the country are still found. The sight of its venerable cave had doubtless elevated the faith and courage of Joshua and Caleb, when the other spies became so faithless and fearful. In the division of the land it had been assigned to Caleb, one of the noblest spirits the nation ever produced; and afterwards it had been made one of the Levitical cities of refuge. No place could have recalled more vividly the lessons of departed worth, and the victories of early faith, or abounded more in memorials of the blessedness of following the Lord. It was a token of God's kindness to David that He directed him to make Hebron his headquarters. And it was a further token of His goodness, that no sooner had David gone to Hebron, than "the men of Judah came and anointed him king over the house of Judah."

(W. G. Blaikie, M. A.)

Anointed first by Samuel in the secrecy of his lather's house, he was now anointed king over his own people; just as the Lord Jesus, of whom he was the great exemplar and type, was anointed first by the banks of the Jordan, and again as the representative of His people, when He ascended for them into the presence of the Father, and was set as King on the holy hill of Zion. We cannot turn from this second anointing without emphasising the obvious lesson that at each great crisis of our life, and especially when standing on the threshold of some new and enlarged sphere of service, we should seek and receive a fresh anointing to fit us to fulfil its fresh demands. There should be successive and repeated anointings in our life-history as our opportunities widen out in ever-increasing circles.

(F. B. Meyer, B. A.)

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