Notes from the Journey with David – 54

54. Tear your clothes and put on sackcloth and walk in mourning in front of Abner (2 Samuel 3:31).
David’s public grief over Abner was well received. The people applauded the way he demonstrated his brokenness over the death of Abner, but the moment reveals the first step David took on a road that would undo him as a leader. He didn’t deal with Joab. Joab and his brother murdered Abner to avenge their brother, Asahel, but the latter’s death was in battle. Joab’s act was a cold-blooded, pre-meditated killing. David proclaimed his innocence, but Joab should have been put to death for his crime. Throughout David’s life, he proves unable to deal effectively with the sins of those close to him. This is not mercy. It is David’s disassociation with responsibility, and may well be the “blood on his hands” that prevents him from building God’s temple.

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