Ahithophel's foolishness...

Vaclav's picture

The sad story of Ahithophel in 2 Samuel 16.15-17.23 is given to us by God in the Holy Scriptures, so we may learn to humble ourselves before our holy and all knowing God, and not take pride in our knowledge, learning, wisdom and spirituality. May we realize that without a sincere and pure devotion to Jesus Christ, we are useless and foolish, and all our knowledge will come to nothing, in the end!

When Caleb conquered the Anakites, the decendants of Nephilim, the giants of Genesis 6, he ascribed the whole region to the tribe of Judah, including the highlands where the city of Giloh was located, where the home of Ahithophel was. Great men have come from that city...

At one time "Ahithophel the Gilonite,...(was) David's counsellor (adviser)", but now his fickle heart has betrayed his master king David, so he may come and stay in the city of Jerusalem with Absalom, the new self pronounced king. This is where Ahithophel's status as a wise adviser in the eyes of all could be maintained. It is most possible that Ahithophel was in David's presence when Nathan the prophet exposed David's sin with Bathsheba. The Lord said to David by the prophet Nathan, "Thus says the LORD, ‘Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house. And I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun. For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel and before the sun.’” (2 Samuel 12.11-12) And this was the first counsel that Ahithophel gave to Absalom, David's new enemy and usurper. Absalom was pleased with the advice and followed up on it, and slept with his father's wives in the sight of all, so that Absalom's followers would be motivated to follow him!

But Ahithophel's second advice was rejected by all, for Hushai's advice, who was David's friend and confidant. After Ahithophel sided with the conspirators who were with Absalom, in 2 Samuel 15.31b, king David prayed, “Make the advice of Ahithophel foolish, O LORD!” And in 17.14 we read, “Now the Lord had decided to frustrate the sound advice of Ahithophel, so that the Lord could bring disaster on Absalom.” The LORD almighty is in charge here, to protect his servant David, bring disaster on Absalom and to reveal the foolishness of Ahithophel's heart. 2 Samuel 16.23 says, “In those days Ahithophel’s advice was considered as valuable as a prophetic revelation. Both David and Absalom highly regarded the advice of Ahithophel.” The rejection of Ahithophel's advice was too much for him to bear. The pride of his prophetic and what is seemed to be an anointed advising to the kings, was crushed. In this heart breaking experience he did not humble himself before a Holy God of Israel, but in his foolishness “After setting his household in order, he hanged himself.”

It is amazing to me that we can have a man among God's people who is wise, knowledgeable, smart, learned and a reliable adviser, and still he doesn't know the Lord, but lives for the praise of men, and his own pride. We all must take warning and an example of how not to follow Christ. We so live in the head but not in our hearts, many of us are so disconnected. This is what the Holy Spirit says about the blessed, in Psalm 1.verse 2, “...his delight is in the law of the LORD (ESV),” or as in the NET Bible, “he finds pleasure in obeying the Lord’s commands”. The NET Bible note on verse 2 is, “Study of the law is metonymic here for the correct attitudes and behavior that should result from an awareness of and commitment to God’s moral will; thus “obeying” has been used in the translation rather than “studying.” Even as Dr.Lloyd-Jones says in "Revival", ch.6 - Dead orthodoxy, "When did you last weep because of your distance from God?...When did you last weep for joy, out of sheer joy and the sense of the glory of God? Many of us are afraid of emotions...What is it all due to? I believe it is due to pseudo-intellectualism...(this is a person who pretends an interest in intellectual matters for reasons of status)."

“But I am afraid that just as the serpent deceived Eve by his treachery, your minds may be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11.3) May our aim be to seek and maintain, with all our minds and hearts, “a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.”