Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 15
Absalom had told David that he intended to offer sacrifices (gifts to God) in Hebron. Those sacrifices were of the kind called peace offerings or fellowship (friendship) offerings in Leviticus chapter 3. They were the gifts of animals to God. The priests kept part of the meat, and they burned another part completely to give it to God. They returned the rest of the meat to the person who gave it; he shared it with his family and friends (Leviticus 7:11-21).
The purpose of this was to express friendship or a right relationship, between God, the priests and the people. So people often brought such a sacrifice on a special family occasion. However, Absalom’s plan was to bring many animals for sacrifice. This would be a great ceremony, when he would become king. He invited several hundred guests who would all share the meal on this very important occasion.
Two hundred of those guests were from Jerusalem. Absalom hoped that these people would support his rule. Many of them would have been his friends. However, Absalom did not tell any of them what the real purpose of this great event was.
He was afraid that one of them might report this matter to David. If David knew, he could send his army to prevent the ceremony.
So, although people across Israel knew the true purpose of the ceremony, nobody from Jerusalem did. None of the guests from Jerusalem realised that Absalom would use his ceremony to start a revolution.
Next part: Ahithophel (2 Samuel 15:12)
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