Reflection on 2 Samuel 4:5-12

“And the sons of Remmon the Berothite, Rechab and Baana coming, went into the house of Isboseth in the heat of the day: and he was sleeping upon his bed at noon. And the doorkeeper of the house, who was cleansing wheat, was fallen asleep.  And they entered into the house secretly taking ears of corn, and Rechab and Baana his brother stabbed him in the groin, and fled away.  For when they came into the house, be was sleeping upon his bed in a parlour, and they struck him and killed him: and taking away his head they went off by the way of the wilderness, walking all night. And they brought the head of Isboseth to David to Hebron: and they said to the king: Behold the head of Isboseth the son of Saul thy enemy who sought thy life: and the Lord hath revenged my lord the king this day of Saul, and of his seed. But David answered Rechab, and Baana his brother, the sons of Remmon the Berothite, and said to them: As the Lord liveth, who hath delivered my soul out of all distress, The man that told me, and said: Saul is dead, who thought he brought good tidings, I apprehended, and slew him in Siceleg, who should have been rewarded for his news. How much more now when wicked men have slain an innocent man in his own house, upon his bed, shall I not require his blood at your hand, and take you away from the earth? And David commanded his servants and they slew them: and cutting off their hands and feet, hanged them up over the pool in Hebron: but the head of Isboseth they took and buried in the sepulchre of Abner in Hebron.” (2 Samuel 4:5-12)

Literal Sense: The sons of Remmon killed Isboseth, the son of Saul, and brought his head to David thinking he would reward them for what they had done.  Not only did David not reward them but he took offense at what they had done and commanded his servants to execute them since they dared to kill an innocent man in his own house.  David also had their hands and feet cut off and hung them over the pool in Hebron as a warning to anyone else who would dare to do such wickedness.

Allegorical Sense: David is a type of Jesus and the sons of Remmon are a type of Satan and Isboseth is a type of Adam.  Like the sons of Remmon who were responsible for the death of Isboseth, Satan tempted Adam and as a result Adam inherited death as a curse, making Satan guilty of murdering Adam, as Jesus said “He was a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44).  As David ordered the death of the sons of Remmon for the murder of Isboseth, Christ defeated Satan for the murder of Adam and all his descendants.  As David had the hands and feet of the sons of Remmon cut off, Christ will completely cut off Satan’s hands by cutting off his power and will cut off his feet by restricting him to the Lake of Fire (his feet).  As the hanging of the sons of Remmon became an example of David’s righteous judgment, so too Satan’s eternal punishment in the Lake of Fire will become an example of God’s righteous judgment.

Moral Sense: As Christians, if we choose to live unjustly, we too will die and our power to do God’s will and freedom in Christ will be cut off.  If we live in unrighteousness, we too will become a display of God’s righteous judgment.

Anagogical Sense: We may look forward to the day when Satan’s power will be completely cut off and will be restricted to the Lake of Fire.  On that day God’s righteous judgment against sin will be completely made manifest.

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