Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 15

Hushai the Arkite

2 Samuel 15:32-34

Hushai, David’s friend, belonged to a family called the Arkites. It seems from Joshua 16:2 that they lived about 10 miles or 15 kilometres north of Jerusalem. He did not leave Jerusalem with David - so perhaps he came from his home when he heard the news about Absalom (15:10). Perhaps he considered it wiser not to enter Jerusalem - he waited on the hill called the Mount of Olives until David met him there.

David could see at once that Hushai understood the full facts of the situation. Hushai had torn his clothes and he had ashes on his head. Those were the usual customs for someone who was deeply sad.

It was usual for the king’s advisers to be old men. If David took Hushai with him, that would slow down David’s escape. David compares it to someone who must carry a heavy weight. So, it would not benefit David to have Hushai with him on this occasion. Absalom would try to find David in order to kill him. Therefore, David might have to move very quickly from a place of danger. He could not safely wait for Hushai.

However, David also saw that Hushai could still help him. It would be a difficult task - and dangerous too - but Hushai was a very wise man.

David’s plan was that Hushai could offer to advise Absalom. David did not ask Hushai to lie to Absalom, or to give him bad advice: it would be wrong to do such things. However Ahithophel, Absalom’s present adviser, could make some very wicked plans (16:20-22). If Hushai, with his truly wise advice, could defeat those plans, then David would be in a much better situation.

Next part: David arranges for Ahimaaz and Jonathan to bring Hushai's message (2 Samuel 15:35-37)


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