Ahithophel. Bad guys are so much more interesting than good guys, not because we want to be like them but because we want to find out what makes them tick. In 2 Sam 17, we’ll start with the end of Ahithophel's life and then go back to the beginning. This is a time in David’s life when he is being challenged by his son Absalom. Starting in verse 23 it tells of how Ahithophel hung himself after his counsel was not followed. Why react so strongly to the reaction to his counsel? It was not just one piece of counsel, he was a counselor. 2 Sam 15:12. Absalom declares himself king. Absalom sent for Ahithophel, David’s counselor. And the conspiracy was strong. Now Absalom is even more imposing. Chpt 16:15.: Absalom enters the city and Ahithophel with Him. Absalom makes an impression enough but the fact that Ahithophel was with Him is even more shocking and amazing. Look at verse 23 what was said about the advice of Ahithophel - it was as if someone had inquired of the word of God, such was his advice regarded. David had said back in 15 when he heard that Ahithophel had sided with Absalom, he asked God to make his advice foolishness. He also tells Hushai to go back and thwart the counsel of Ahithophel, not to kill him, but to thwart his counsel. That is how David fears the fact that he has lost his counsel. 16:21, the advice of Ahithophel is for Absalom to go into his father’s concubines in the sight of everyone. He takes his father’s women for himself. You couldn’t have done anything more blatant to show disdain for a father. Absalom didn’t think of that, Ahithophel thought of that. It undermines David’s authority big time and lets everyone know Absalom can do whatever he wants. This is humiliating to David. Why would Ahithophel turn on David? In chapter 11, when he took Bathsheba, she was the daughter of Eliam the son-in-law of Ahithophel. He has taken the granddaughter of Ahithophel and made her pregnant and then tried to kill the grandson-in-law of Ahithophel. And then his great grandson dies as punishment to David for his sin. Ahithophel has borne this quietly until now. Ahithophel then tells Absalom to go get David while he’s on the run, go after him in the caves. Chapter 17. Ahithophel then asks for the opportunity to take David out himself. Let me choose 12,000 men and go after him myself. He wants revenge. This is personal. Absalom says call in Hushai who says just the opposite, David is too sly for that. It’ll never work. Verse 14, the Lord has ordained to thwart the good advice of Ahithophel. Absalom does not follow Ahithophel’s advice which leads him to go kill himself. Lessons: Ahithophel models what the extremes and consequences of what revenge will do. What happened to him and his family ate him up for years but David has not given him a thought. Ever happen to you? Ro 12:19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord. 20 Therefore "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head." 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good..
Don’t take your own revenge.David models the extremes and consequences of sin, sin is never small in the eyes of God. David brought the humiliation that Absalom laid on him upon himself. Had he known of all of the consequences that ensued, do you think he would’ve pursued Bathsheba? Not a chance. Think of how we hurt God and the poor influence we are to others when we commit public sins.
God masterminds all things to His purposes. The best thing we can do is to trust Him, He does all things well