2 Samuel 15:1 In the course of time, Absalom provided himself with a chariot and horses and with fifty men to run ahead of him. 2 He would get up early and stand by the side of the road leading to the city gate. Whenever anyone came with a complaint to be placed before the king for a decision, Absalom would call out to him, “What town are you from?” He would answer, “Your servant is from one of the tribes of Israel.” 3 Then Absalom would say to him, “Look, your claims are valid and proper, but there is no representative of the king to hear you.” 4 And Absalom would add, “If only I were appointed judge in the land! Then everyone who has a complaint or case could come to me and I would see that they receive justice.”

5 Also, whenever anyone approached him to bow down before him, Absalom would reach out his hand, take hold of him and kiss him. 6 Absalom behaved in this way toward all the Israelites who came to the king asking for justice, and so he stole the hearts of the people of Israel.

7 At the end of four[a] years, Absalom said to the king, “Let me go to Hebron and fulfill a vow I made to the Lord. 8 While your servant was living at Geshur in Aram, I made this vow: ‘If the Lord takes me back to Jerusalem, I will worship the Lord in Hebron.(b)’”

9 The king said to him, “Go in peace.” So he went to Hebron.

10 Then Absalom sent secret messengers throughout the tribes of Israel to say, “As soon as you hear the sound of the trumpets, then say, ‘Absalom is king in Hebron.’” 11 Two hundred men from Jerusalem had accompanied Absalom. They had been invited as guests and went quite innocently, knowing nothing about the matter. 12 While Absalom was offering sacrifices, he also sent for Ahithophel the Gilonite, David’s counselor, to come from Giloh, his hometown. And so the conspiracy gained strength, and Absalom’s following kept on increasing.


a. 2 Samuel 15:7 Some Septuagint manuscripts, Syriac and Josephus; Hebrew forty
b. 2 Samuel 15:8 Some Septuagint manuscripts; Hebrew does not have in Hebron

This is from Bible.org.

Absalom has a great deal going for him. He is a good looking man, without a single flaw. His hair is his crowning glory, and everybody knows it. He has three sons and a beautiful daughter, who also adds to his standing. He is, so to speak, the Princess Diana of that day. David is becoming the Prince Charles, and all due to Absalom's very careful and deliberate scheme.

Nevertheless, Joab takes this mandate to king David, who relents and allows Absalom to come into his presence. He kisses Absalom, and no doubt thinks that this should be the end of it all. Now Absalom has access to the king and freedom to go about wherever he may choose. And when he goes about, it is certainly in style. He acquires a chariot and horses and 50 men who serve as runners. (No avenger is going to try to do Absalom in with so many bodyguards around!)

Absalom would have been a great politician. Come to think of it, that is exactly what he was! Every day Absalom would station himself on the road to Jerusalem (just out of sight of the city and his father, no doubt). What an impressive sight he must have been. A strikingly handsome man with a head of hair that women would die for. I would imagine his chariot was parked in sight of all who passed by, along with his 50 runners. Every visual impression smacked of royalty and class.

Absalom would call out to those passing by, asking from where they came and why they had come. He greeted all in a way they would remember. Can you imagine, for example, if you were driving down LBJ freeway and someone waved your car over to a parked limousine? The door opens, and the Vice President of the United States steps out, engaging you in conversation. When you seek to show your respect, he grasps you firmly by the hand and gives you a great big “Okie” (Oklahoma) “hug your neck,” refusing to allow you to honor him. Wow! That would be quite a meeting -- one you would never forget.

After four years of running David down and building himself up in the eyes of the people, Absalom was ready to make his move. His plan was to make his debut as king where David did, and where he was born, Hebron (2 Samuel 3:2-3). First, he had to find a way to get there without arousing David's curiosity or suspicion. He went to his father and told him that he had made a vow while he was living in Geshur. He vowed that if God ever granted him the privilege of returning to Israel he would pay his vow to the Lord in Hebron. Now, he indicated, was the time to do so. David granted him permission to leave. He sent him away “in peace.” It was most certainly not going to result in “peace.”

Absalom took 200 men from Jerusalem with him to Hebron. These men had no idea what he had in mind. But Absalom had sent word throughout the tribes of Israel that when the trumpet was blown, this was a signal for them to proclaim their allegiance to him, rather than to David. In addition to this, Absalom had managed to recruit Ahithophel the Gilonite, David's counselor. Ahithophel was a most gifted man; his counsel was exceedingly wise:

So.... Isn't it interesting to see the first real working politician for Israel. No doubt, there have been plenty of politicians before, but this seem to be the clearest picture so far. Absolom was a planner. After his sister was raped by his stepbrother Amnon.... Absolom planned and waited for years before killing him. I guess that gave him plenty of time to work up this major animosity toward his father. I guess when Tamar was raped, and David didn't put Amnon to death immediately, it might have gotten under Absolom's skin. So now Absolom is working out a plan to get David's throne.

Here's something Absolom hasn't mentioned so far. Here's something the story hasn't mentioned so far.

  • Saul was anointed first king by GOD.
  • David was anointed to take Saul's place by GOD.



Absolom is putting on great appearances and he's got a plan. He doesn't like David's Justice System and he's going to use that to take David's throne.... or so he thinks.... I wonder what God has to say about it.