DCLM Daily Manna 14 November 2021 Devotional by Pastor W. F. Kumuyi — Justice Delayed
TEXT: 2 Samuel 3:31-39
31 And David said to Joab, and to all the people that were with him, Rend your clothes, and gird you with sackcloth, and mourn before Abner. And king David himself followed the bier.
32 And they buried Abner in Hebron: and the king lifted up his voice, and wept at the grave of Abner; and all the people wept.
33 And the king lamented over Abner, and said, Died Abner as a fool dieth?
34 Thy hands were not bound, nor thy feet put into fetters: as a man falleth before wicked men, so fellest thou. And all the people wept again over him.
35 And when all the people came to cause David to eat meat while it was yet day, David sware, saying, So do God to me, and more also, if I taste bread, or ought else, till the sun be down.
36 And all the people took notice of it, and it pleased them: as whatsoever the king did pleased all the people.
37 For all the people and all Israel understood that day that it was not of the king to slay Abner the son of Ner.
38 And the king said unto his servants, Know ye not that there is a prince and a great man fallen this day in Israel?
39 And I am this day weak, though anointed king; and these men the sons of Zeruiah be too hard for me: the Lord shall reward the doer of evil according to his wickedness.
“And I am this day weak, though anointed king; and these men the sons of Zeruiah be too hard for me: the LORD shall reward the doer of evil according to his wickedness.” – (2 Samuel 3:39)
Horace Gray, former associate justice of the US supreme court once told a man who had appeared before him in a lower court and had escaped conviction on a technicality: “I know that you are guilty and you know it. And I wish you to remember that one day you will stand before a better and wiser judge, and that there you will be dealt with according to justice and not according to law.”
The passage under consideration reveals King David’s reaction to the revengeful killing of Abner, the son of Ner, captain of the host of Israel, by Joab and his brother, Abishai. Abner was murdered for killing Asahel their brother. Abner had visited David in Hebron with the intention of unifying all Israel under his kingship. When on his way back, Joab sent messengers to bring him back under pretence and had him stabbed to death. David wanted all Israel to know that the order to kill Abner did not come from him; he therefore ordered all present to accompany Abner’s remains to the grave, with himself joining the funeral procession and making lamentations over him with fasting.
Joab, according to the law, should have been put to death for this fragrant violation. But he escaped because of his power and influence as commander of the army at this time. David could not enforce the law because Joab and his brothers were too strong for him. Any attempt to bring Joab to justice could spark a division in the army and destabilise the nascent regime of David. But justice delayed is not justice denied. The long arm of the law eventually caught up with Joab who was executed by the hand of Benaiah through the order of Solomon (1 Kings 2:29-34).
No matter how long it takes, those who do evil cannot escape divine justice. The only way out is genuine repentance and restitution.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: No matter how long, justice will be served.
THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Ezekiel 9-13
DCLM Daily Manna was written by Pastor W. F. Kumuyi; is the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church situated at KM 42 on the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Nigeria.