Sometime later, David allowed Absalom to come back to the palace.
After two years, Absalom got himself a chariot with horses.
Absalom would ride his chariot to the entrance of the city gate where people who want to bring their cases to King David have to pass their way.
If the person is from the northern tribe, Absalom would say to him, “I hope you win the case. If you didn’t then it is too bad. I wish someone can be a judge here. I would be fair to everyone.”
Whenever someone saw Absalom, he would bow down to him but Absalom would hug him and kiss him. Soon everyone loves Absalom more than they love David.
Four years later, Absalom said to David, “Let me go to Hebron. While I was living at Geshur, I promised God that I would worship him at Hebron if he brings me back to Jerusalem.”
David let Absalom go. Absalom took 200 men with him and offered sacrifices at Hebron. After that, Absalom sent for the advisor Ahitophel to come to him.
More and more joined Absalom’s plot. Then Absalom sent messages to the northern tribe of Israel, saying, “When you heard the trumpet blast, shout, ‘Absalom is now king in Hebron!’”
A messenger told David, “The whole of Israel is now on Absalom’s side.” David and his men quickly left Jerusalem.
While David and his men was on near the town of Bahurim, a man named Shimei, one of Saul’s distant relatives, yelled at him, “Get out of here! God is taking his revenge on you. You took the kingdom away from Saul now he is giving the kingdom to your son Absalom now!”
Abishai said to David, “Let me go over and chop off Shimei’s head!”
David answered, “Don’t do that! If God is telling him to insult me, why should I stop him?”
David and his men went down the road. Shimei went along the hillside. Shimei cursed David and throw rocks and dirt at him.
By this time, Absalom and Ahitophel had arrived at Jerusalem.
Hushai, King David’s advisor, said to Absalom, “Long Live the King!”
Absalom said to Hushai, “Is this how you show your loyalty to King David?”
Hushai replied, “You are the chosen king of Israel now so I cannot leave but stay here to serve you.”
Then Ahitophel said to Absalom, “Some of King David’s wives are left here. Go in and sleep with them then everyone will know that you have dishonor your father.”
So Absalom set up a tent on the flat roof and went in to sleep with King David’s wives one by one.
Ahitophel said to Absalom, “Let me choose 12,000 men to go and fight David tonight while he is weary and disappointed. All his menwill run away. I will just kill David.”
But Absalom said, “Let’s call in Hushai and hear what he says.”
Hushai came in and Absalom told him Ahitophel’s idea. Absalom asked Hushai, “What is your plan?”
Hushai replied, “You should gather all the warrior men from Dan to Beersheba. Then we will go to fight David. You should lead the army troops yourself. We will be able to easily capture King David and his men. King David and all his men will surely die!”
Absalom thought Hushai’s idea is better than Ahitophel so he agreed to follow Hushai’s plan,
When Ahitophel learned that Absalom did not listen to his plan, he saddled a donkey back home and hung himself.
Hushai quickly go to Zadok and Abiathar and told them the advice Ahitophel had given as well as the advice he had given to Absalom.
Then Hushai said, “Send someone to tell David and his men to move away from this side of the river to the other side of the river so that they won’t be killed.”
Jonathan and Ahimaaz were waiting at Rogel Spring for Hushai’s message. A maidservant went up to them and told them the message.
A man from Absalom’s side saw them and reported them to Absalom.
So Jonathan and Ahimaaz went and hid in the well at the house of a man in Bahurim.
The soldiers went to look for them, but they didn’t find them so they left. Jonathan and Ahimaaz climbed out of the well and hurried to David to give him the message.
After David and his men heard the message, they got up and crossed to the other side of the Jordan River.
David divided his soldiers into groups of hundreds and thousands.Before David sent the army troops away to war, he shouted in a very loud voice, “Joab! Abishai, Don’t harm Absalom for my sake!”
Then David stood at the side of the gate, while watching the army marching passed him in troops of hundreds and thousands.
The war took place all over in Ephraim Forest. Twenty thousand soldiers died that day.
More of the soldiers died because of the danger in the forest rather than the sword.
Absalom was riding his mule when his hair got caught in the bough of a large tree.The mule ran away, leaving Absalom caught in mid air.
Some of David’s soldier happened to pass by and went to tell Joab about it.
Joab said, “Why didn’t you kill Absalom?”
The soldier replied, “We all heard King David shouted in a very loud voice not to harm Absalom and bring him back alive.”
Joab answered, “I will not waste my time anymore!” Then Joab took 3 spears and stuck them into Absalom’s chest. Ten of Joab’s bodyguards came and finished Absalom.
An Ethiopian ran back to brought David the good news. When the Ethiopian arrived, David asked him, “Is my son, Absalom alive?”
The Ethiopian replied, “Your Majesty, your son, Absalom is dead.”
David shook all over his body. David felt very sad and he went up the room above the city gate to weep. As he went, he kept repeating, “My son, Absalom! My son, Absalom!”