The king was shaken. He went up to the room over the gateway and wept. As he went, he said: “O my son Absalom! My son, my son Absalom! If only I had died instead of you—O Absalom, my son, my son!” 2 Samuel 18:33At first, I was like, “Dude, he tried to take over your kingdom and kill you. Serves him right.” But, then I realized that I was talking about King David’s son. He may have been king, but his son was just murdered. If I even try to imagine one of my son’s turning his back on me, it makes me just about want to die. Because betrayal or not, they’re still my boys. My own flesh and blood. Children I would give my life for. David felt the same. He would have rather died than go through the pain of burying a child.
Absalom wasn’t always bad. He appeared to be an honorable man, taking after his father, King David. However, once his sister, Tamar, was raped (2 Samuel 13) it went downhill from there. Absalom eventually avenged the wrong done to his sister by killing Amnon, who was actually his half-brother. Oh, what a tangled web we weave. Absalom fled, stayed gone for a while and eventually returned to where his father, the king, was. He didn’t see his dad for a couple of years but was eventually received by him. But, within a matter of time, Absalom began conspiring on how to take over his dad’s kingdom. He pursued his father’s life even though his father had been good to him, including forgiving him for killing the king’s son, Amnon. But, Absalom became mad. He wanted to become king. King David fled and was on the run from Absalom for a while until eventually he heard news that his son, the one vowing to kill him, had died. Upon hearing the news of Absalom’s death, this is how he responded: