The broken family circle

A message preached in the Lisbellaw Mission September 26th, 2017.
“And the king said unto Cushi, Is the young man Absalom safe?” 2 Samuel 18:32.
50th Anniversary Mission, Lisbellaw, 26th September 2017.
Preacher: Rev Ivan Foster Rtr.
My topic is a solemn one. It is that of a family divided by the gospel. It is a most distressing thing to know that a loved one or loved ones are outside of Christ and on the road to a lost eternity.
It is a grief that the Saviour must have known. “For neither did his brethren believe in him,” John 7:5. For a time, the Saviour’s family was divided.
Our text is one in which a father’s expresses concern for his son. Some may think that given what Absalom had done to his father he was not worthy of concern! The love of a parent for a child is often blind to the child’s failures and sins, especially when their eternal wellbeing is under consideration.
David had good reason to be concerned.
1. He was at war with God’s king. David was the Lord’s anointed, the rightful king of Israel. Absalom was in rebellion against him, seeking to remove him from the throne.
This is what every sinner is engaged in! “The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree,” Acts 5:30. The reaction of men universally!
2. He was being influenced by a deceitful man. “Ahithophel” 2 Sam 16:23. There is a greater deceiver than Ahithophel! “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked,” Jer 17:9. Worse again: the devil! “In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them,” 2 Cor 4:4.
3. He was being followed by a terrible avenger. Joab!
V 15. Ten Avengers. They speak of the 10 commandments of God.
4. His privileges could not spare him. Such was his crime, he could not be spared even though David wished it. “And the king commanded Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying, Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom,” 2 Sam 18:5.
1. It was that of a father watching his son heading for destruction. Absalom could not win. This David knew!
2. David knew the end was near for his son. He had watched Absalom travelling toward this dreadful end since his youth. He was vindictive, he was deceitful, he was proud, he was ambitious. Now he had put forth his hand against God’s king and that was fatal!
3. David could do nothing but plead for mercy. Verses 5, 29, 32.
4. David was aware of his own shameful failings. 12:9-12. How important parents, it is to live a holy life for the sake of our children! David had known of the consequences of poor parenting in the lives of Eli and Samuel but had learned nothing!
Absalom had died in active rebellion, pursuing the ambitions of his proud heart. There could only be one answer to his question. “Is the young man Absalom safe?” NO!
How we should labour to see our offspring saved.
Sinner, flee the battlefield you are now on for you cannot win. Rather, everlasting doom will be your portion.
Seek the mercy of the One you are rebelling against for He is merciful. “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool,” Isaiah 1:18.