Bad Advice

Today’s Reading – 2 Samuel 8-11; Proverbs 10

(Second Milers also read – Matthew 19 – 20; Memorize 1 Corinthians 15:14 – 17)

I will resist the temptation this morning to discuss chapters 11 and 12 regarding David, Bathsheeba, and Urriah.  I have spoken much about these passages in times past; and I am sure that most of the people reading this are well familiar with that tragic period in David’s life.  Instead, I would like to focus on chapter 10.  David sincerely wants to shew a kindness to his neighbor to the east, Hanun, the King of the Ammonites.  Apparently Hanun’s father was a friend to David, and David wanted to continue the friendship through Hanun.

When David sends some of his servants into Ammon to see Hanun, no doubt bearing gifts and sending a message of comfort from David regarding the death of Hanun’s father, the advisors of Hanun are distrustful of David’s intentions; and convince the king that David is their enemy.  The Ammonites then do a stupid thing: they humiliate David’s men by shaving off half of their beards and making them go back to Israel naked.  Remember, at this time in history, Israel is the big kid on the block.  Now, because of his stupidity, and because of the bad advice he receives, Hanun is facing an all out war with David.

None of this had to happen.  Hanun acted impulsively because he had counselors around him feeding him with bad information.  We need to be careful about the people we allow in our lives.  We need to be careful about the influences in our lives.  Bad counsel leads to bad decisions.   Let’s surround ourself with balanced, godly people who will be careful to offer only biblically based and prayerful advice to us.

PS – One thought on chapter 11 (I couldn’t resist.)  Among all of the other things that helped cause David’s sin with Bathsheeba, I thought about his lack of accountability.  David had nobody close to him that could stand up and say, “David, what you are about to do is wrong, and I won’t let you do it, or get away with it.”  There were obviously people (servants, etc.) that knew what David was doing, yet nobody challenged him.  We need people around us who will stand for the truth even at the expense of going against us.

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