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Seeds of the Kingdom

His Kingdom Cannot Fail

by John Sainsbury

17 January 2022

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For the LORD had determined to frustrate the good advice of Ahithophel in order to bring disaster on Absalom.
2 Samuel 17:14, NIV

January is often a dark time for people in the Northern hemisphere. It’s dark and cold and winter, and the delights and distractions of Christmas are behind us. But, regardless of where in the world we are, and whether or not the sun is shining, there are times in life when all seems lost, when there doesn’t seem a way out. There are times when we might be tempted to despair.

King David may well have felt that way when his own son Absalom rebelled against him, and he had to flee for his life. What sorrow! As David made his hasty retreat, he put in place a plan to try and frustrate the schemes of his son. This included leaving Hushai the Arkite in Absalom’s court to seek to frustrate the advice Absalom was receiving from the very wise Ahithophel (2 Samuel 16:23).

The story is told in 2 Samuel 17 of how Ahithophel advised Absalom to push home his advantage and take David out whilst he was weak and exposed. But, for some unexplained reason, Absalom also sought the advice of Hushai who countered Ahithophel’s advice and suggested a different strategy.  This alternative plan actually bought time for David and, ultimately, led to his eventual victory. The account doesn’t explain why Absalom made this decision, although the skill of Hushai in undermining Ahithophel was incredibly persuasive. But what the story does tell us is this: The Lord was still in control (2 Samuel 17:14).

We too can take hope in the details of our own lives today. Despite how things may appear when we are bombarded by bad news on our screens, even though all may seem lost in our societies and personal lives, it is the same God who is behind history. And He is perfectly capable of frustrating the plans of those who seek to do evil. We may not be aware of the people that God has put in place to do His work, but even you and I might feature in that hidden plan.

Whatever God’s plan in our circumstances, our role, like Hushai in Absalom’s court, is to remain faithful to the true King and use the gifts and skills we have been blessed with to frustrate evil and to bring about good.

John Sainsbury and his wife Sue are part of the leadership team at Ellel Grange. John has served as a church leader for many years, most recently as Lead Pastor of the Garstang Free Methodist Church. He has a passion for seeing many brought into the fulness of life that following Christ brings.


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