Life Group Questions

1.  Have you ever thought disagreement meant rebellion?  How can you still be in unity when you completely disagree with the authority?  Give examples of this.

2.  Why does it seem unity is so hard to walk in?  What can be done to make it easier?  What are ways the church body as a whole can improve in unity with one another?

3.  Absalom's story shows where the root cause of unresolved pain and wounds comes to harvest in rebellion.  Do you have any unresolved offenses that you need God to heal and set you free from? Many times rebellion is an attitude instead of an action (even though it can lead to action).  Which of these areas have you ever or currently struggle with rebellion in attitude and/or action?
**Mistreated and/or belittled
**Victimized and/or manipulated
**Injustice and/or unfairness
**Under appreciated and/or undervalued

 4.  "Short Cuts to Power" lead to "Short Circuiting of the Power."  When have you tried to take shortcuts to get to your goal? What were the results?  Remember the Star Wars Video Clip.



Where There is Unity, There is Life

Romans 5:17
17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

The Goal is Unity!

1. the state of being one; oneness.
2. A whole or totality as combining all its parts into one.
3. the state or fact of being united or combined into one, as of the parts of a whole; unification.
4. absence of diversity; unvaried or uniform character.
5. oneness of mind, feeling, etc., as among a number of persons; concord, harmony, or agreement.

Romans 15:5
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of UNITY among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus,

John 17:23
I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete UNITY to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

Psalm 133:1-3
Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in UNITY………. For there the Lord has commanded the blessing, life forevermore.

“Short Cuts” to Power Leads to “Short Circuiting” of the Power

1. open, organized, and armed resistance to one's government or ruler.
2. resistance to or defiance of any authority, control, or tradition.
3. the act of rebelling.
Rebellion Against Authority…

  • Main Ingredient of Rebellion
  • Unresolved Offense
  • Mistreated & Belittled
  • Victimized & Manipulated
  • Injustice & Unfairness
  • Under Appreciated, Valued, Utilized
  • … is Primary cause of Selfish Ambition
  • Pride
  • Greed
  • Glory/Power hungry
  • ..... But you become the same thing causing those Offenses in others!!!  (You became what you despised)

The Absalom Story

2 Samuel 11 – David and Bathsheba

2 Sam 12 : 7-14 - Nathan’s Prophecy
From this time on, your family will live by the sword.
Your own household will rebel against you.
Your wives given to another man before your very eyes, and he will go to bed with them in public view. 
Your child will die.

2 Samuel 13 - Rape of Tamar
20 Her brother Absalom saw her and asked, “Is it true that Amnon has been with you? Well, my sister, keep quiet for now, since he’s your brother. Don’t you worry about it.” So Tamar lived as a desolate woman in her brother Absalom’s house.  21 When King David heard what had happened, he was very angry. 22 And though Absalom never spoke to Amnon about this, he hated Amnon deeply because of what he had done to his sister.

2 Samuel 13 - Revenge on Amnon
23 Two years later….. 27 But Absalom kept on pressing the king until he finally agreed to let all his sons attend, including Amnon. So Absalom prepared a feast fit for a king.  28 Absalom told his men, “Wait until Amnon gets drunk; then at my signal, kill him! Don’t be afraid. I’m the one who has given the command. Take courage and do it!” 29 So at Absalom’s signal they murdered Amnon.

2 Samuel 13 - Absalom Flees
37 And David mourned many days for his son Amnon. Absalom fled to his grandfather, Talmai son of Ammihud, the king of Geshur. 38 He stayed there in Geshur for three years. 39 And King David, now reconciled to Amnon’s death, longed to be reunited with his son Absalom.

2 Samuel 14:24 - Joab Arranges for Absalom’s Return
23 Then Joab went to Geshur and brought Absalom back to Jerusalem. 24 But the king gave this order: “Absalom may go to his own house, but he must never come into my presence.” So Absalom did not see the king. The Absalom Story

2 Samuel 14:28 - Lives in Jerusalem
28 Absalom lived in Jerusalem for two years, but he never got to see the king. 

2 Samuel 14 - Joab’s field on fire
29 Then Absalom sent for Joab to ask him to intercede for him, but Joab refused to come. Absalom sent for him a second time, but again Joab refused to come. 30 So Absalom said to his servants, “Go and set fire to Joab’s barley field, the field next to mine.” So they set his field on fire, as Absalom had commanded. 31 Then Joab came to Absalom at his house and demanded, “Why did your servants set my field on fire?” 32 And Absalom replied, “Because I wanted you to ask the king why he brought me back from Geshur if he didn’t intend to see me. I might as well have stayed there. Let me see the king; if he finds me guilty of anything, then let him kill me.” 33 So Joab told the king what Absalom had said. Then at last David summoned Absalom, who came and bowed low before the king, and the king kissed him.

2 Samuel 15 - Absalom’s Rebellion Begins
15 After this, Absalom bought a chariot and horses, and he hired fifty bodyguards to run ahead of him. 2 He got up early every morning and went out to the gate of the city. When people brought a case to the king for judgment, Absalom would ask where in Israel they were from, and they would tell him their tribe. 3 Then Absalom would say, “You’ve really got a strong case here! It’s too bad the king doesn’t have anyone to hear it. 4 I wish I were the judge. Then everyone could bring their cases to me for judgment, and I would give them justice!”

2 Samuel 15 - 4 Years of Wooing
5 When people tried to bow before him, Absalom wouldn’t let them. Instead, he took them by the hand and kissed them. 6 Absalom did this with everyone who came to the king for judgment, and so he stole the hearts of all the people of Israel.

2 Samuel 15 - Goes to Hebron, Deceives 200
7 …(Absalom deceives David to let him go to Hebron)…

So Absalom went to Hebron. 10 But while he was there, he sent secret messengers to all the tribes of Israel to stir up a rebellion against the king. “As soon as you hear the ram’s horn,” his message read, “you are to say, ‘Absalom has been crowned king in Hebron.’” 11 He took 200 men from Jerusalem with him as guests, but they knew nothing of his intentions. 12 While Absalom was offering the sacrifices, he sent for Ahithophel, one of David’s counselors who lived in Giloh. Soon many others also joined Absalom, and the conspiracy gained momentum.

2 Samuel 15 - David flees with 600 men with their families
13 A messenger soon arrived in Jerusalem to tell David, “All Israel has joined Absalom in a conspiracy against you!” 14 “Then we must flee at once, or it will be too late!” David urged his men. “Hurry! If we get out of the city before Absalom arrives, both we and the city of Jerusalem will be spared from disaster.”
……. (David’s Key Attitude)…
25 Then the king instructed Zadok to take the Ark of God back into the city. “If the Lord sees fit,” David said, “he will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. 26 But if he is through with me, then let him do what seems best to him.”

2 Samuel 15 : 30-37Ahithophel Disloyalty
31 When someone told David that his adviser Ahithophel was now backing Absalom, David prayed, “O Lord, let Ahithophel give Absalom foolish advice!”

VS33 - David told Hushai to return to Jerusalem and tell Absalom, ‘I will now be your adviser, O king, just as I was your father’s adviser in the past.’ Then you can frustrate and counter Ahithophel’s advice. 
2 Samuel 16:10 – Shimei Curses David
5 As King David came to Bahurim, a man came out of the village cursing them. It was Shimei ….6 He threw stones at the king and the king’s officers and all the mighty warriors who surrounded him. 7 “Get out of here, you murderer, you scoundrel!” he shouted at David. 8 “The Lord is paying you back for all the bloodshed in Saul’s clan. You stole his throne, and now the Lord has given it to your son Absalom. At last you will taste some of your own medicine, for you are a murderer!” 9 “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king?” Abishai … demanded. “Let me go over and cut off his head!” 10 “No!” the king said. “Who asked your opinion, … If the Lord has told him to curse me, who are you to stop him?” 11 Then David said to Abishai and to all his servants, “My own son is trying to kill me. Doesn’t this relative of Saul have even more reason to do so? Leave him alone and let him curse, for the Lord has told him to do it.12 And perhaps the Lord will see that I am being wronged and will bless me because of these curses today.”13 So David and his men continued down the road, and Shimei kept pace with them on a nearby hillside, cursing and throwing stones and dirt at David.

2 Samuel 16:20 Absalom’s Defeat!
20 Then Absalom turned to Ahithophel and asked him, “What should I do next?”

Ahithophel counsels Absalom:

  • to take David’s wives (vs. 21)
  • Let him take 12,000 to kill David (vs. 17:1)
  • Husai counters, then warns David (vs. 17:5-28)
  • David’s 600 kills 20,000 (vs. 18:6)
  • David orders men not to kill Absalom (vs. 18:12)
  • Absalom hangs from a tree and Joab kills him (vs 18:14)

2 Samuel 18 - David Grieves Deeply
33 The king was overcome with emotion. He went up to the room over the gateway and burst into tears. And as he went, he cried, “O my son Absalom! My son, my son Absalom! If only I had died instead of you! O Absalom, my son, my son.”