A Meditation: On 2 Samuel 18:9 // His Head Caught Fast In The Oak //

by Matheus Yuhlung

“And Absalom happened to meet the servants of David. Absalom was riding on his mule, and the mule went under the thick branches of a great oak, and his head caught fast in the oak, and he was suspended between heaven and earth, while the mule that was under him went on” – 2 Samuel 18:9

The difference between Absalom and David was that even when fate gave Saul’s life at the hands of David he refused to even touch him saying he is a God anointed person and he had no right to strike such man; while Absalom not only openly pursued David but schemed his way towards snatching his throne (without considering the fact that his father was also a God anointed person) and even humiliated him by sleeping with his concubines on the roof for the entire nation to see.

Consider the end that Absalom met – he couldn’t even swing his sword once, rather ended up getting his head entangled on a tree. Hanging there, he met the curse of God as it is written for the one who is left exposed on a tree is cursed by God.[1] He left with the ambition of acquiring a nation by taking a life rather he ended up losing his own.

And if that was not worse enough, later when David’s men had killed him and the news reached David; David could not even weep and mourn for him for that would insult the men who took their lives in their hands for his sake.[2]

Can’t you see, his very own father could not mourn for him though his heart ached so much that he cried O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son![3]

Truly, we should never let pride raise our ambitions so high that the only way to meet its reality be through getting stuck head first in its own persuasion. Indeed, when pride starts creeping in, let the voice of Christ also ring in our ears when He says What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?[4] 


[1] Deuteronomy 21:23

[2] 2 Samuel 19:1-8

[3] 2 Samuel 18:33

[4] Matthew 16:26

Picture Credit: martinamcgowan.com