Ahithophel, Bathsheba’s grandfather, could never forgive David and plotted personal revenge against him. He tells Absalom, “Let me pursue David…I will come upon him while he is weary and discouraged and throw him into a panic, and all the people who are with him will flee. I will strike down the king…” Ahithophel certainly reveals a personal agenda of vengeance.

¬†David had given vengeance into God’s hands. Not only when Saul was pursuing him, but also when his son Absalom betrayed him as well as when Shimei cursed him and throw rocks at him. This character trait of not pursuing personal vengeance when wronged marks David as a man after God’s heart.

He may have written Psalm 18 while he was fleeing from his enemies. David writes, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.”

All of us like Absalom have betrayed the one who loved us. We have rebelled and gone our own way wanting to be King of our own lives. We have made God our enemy. But God so loved us (the world) that he sent his only Son to take the burden of His vengeance.¬† Jesus is our refuge. Major John Andre wrote this poem about Jesus taking God’s vengeance on our behalf.

On Him Almighty vengeance fell
That would have sent a world to hell
He bore it for a sinful race
And thus became our hiding place.
Should sevenfold storms of thunder roll
And shake this globe from pole to pole
No thunderstorm can daunt my face
For Jesus is my hiding place.