Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 19

David tries to please the leaders of Judah

2 Samuel 19:11-12

David wanted to return to his palace in Jerusalem. The people across Israel wanted him to return, and to rule as their king again. However, the leaders in Judah, David’s own region, had not invited him back. David considered their support essential for him to return as king.

David could have told Judah’s leaders the reasons why he should be king. God had appointed him to rule Israel. In addition, he had the support of the people and the army. He had great experience as king. Israel needed a strong king – and no other suitable person was available.

However, instead, David tried to impress Judah’s leaders and to please them. He seemed to think at this time that he should try to please everyone. That is how many politicians behave. It was how Absalom gained the support of Israel’s people (15:1-6).

So, David asked the chief priests to speak to Judah’s leaders on his behalf. The chief priests supported David for the right reason: they knew that God had chosen him to be Israel’s king. However, it would impress Judah’s leaders to see that the leaders of their religion supported David.

In the message, David strongly emphasised that he came from the families of Judah. Judah’s leaders were his relatives – so of course he would show them special kindness.

In this way, David gained support from Judah’s leaders. However, in the rest of Israel, people considered that David belonged to them as their king – and not especially to Judah. They did not want Judah to rule over the rest of Israel. That would soon cause great trouble in Israel (19:41-43).

Next part: David chooses Amasa to be the new commander of his army (2 Samuel 19:13)


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