2 Samuel 16* Ziba's falsehood. (1-4) David cursed by Shimei. (5-14)Ahithophel's counsel. (15-23)1-4 Ziba belied Mephibosheth. Great men ought always to bejealous of flatterers, and to be careful that they hear bothsides. 5-14 David bore Shimei's curses much better than Ziba'sflatteries; by these he was brought to pass a wrong judgment onanother, by those to pass a right judgment on himself: theworld's smiles are more dangerous than its frowns. Once andagain David spared Saul's life, while Saul sought his. Butinnocence is no defence against malice and falsehood; nor are weto think it strange, if we are charged with that which we havebeen most careful to keep ourselves from. It is well for us,that men are not to be our judges, but He whose judgment isaccording to truth. See how patient David was under this abuse.Let this remind us of Christ, who prayed for those who reviledand crucified him. A humble spirit will turn reproaches intoreproofs, and get good from them, instead of being provoked bythem. David the hand of God in it, and comforts himself that Godwould bring good out of his affliction. We may depend upon Godto repay, not only our services, but our sufferings. 15-23 The wisest counsellors of that age were Ahithophel andHushai: Absalom thinks himself sure of success, when he hasboth; on them he relies, and consults not the ark, though he hadthat with him. But miserable counsellors were they both. Hushaiwould never counsel him to do wisely. Ahithophel counselled himto do wickedly; and so did as effectually betray him, as he did,who was designedly false to him: for they that advise men tosin, certainly advise them to their hurt. After all, honesty isthe best policy, and will be found so in the long run.Ahithophel gave wicked counsel to Absalom; to render himself sohateful to his father, that he would never be reconciled to him;this cursed policy was of the devil. How desperately wicked isthe human heart!
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