Biblical wisdom laid out in plain English by Elect Lady Owens
One of the definitions of wisdom is learning from others mistakes and avoiding the same pattern. As we study this principle in the story of Ahithophel, we find gifted people must be very careful not to fall into this scenario. Who is Ahithophel? Ahithophel was one of King David’s most trusted advisors and renown among the court for his great wisdom. But, you have to be careful of gifted pride; especially when it crosses the line of loyalty to betrayal. Gifted people can be a great asset as well as a great deficit!
Ahithophel had been David’s counselor for many years. When he was loyal to King David, he was a great strength but his betrayal to King David was devastating. Ahithophel took sides with King David’s son Absalom; who revolted against his own father. Any time division appears in the camp or any situation against God’s ordained leadership, you should learn from the story of Ahithophel to stay on the Lord’s side with whom God has approved. It doesn’t matter if it’s family or foe. God will always be favorable and protect His chosen vessels.
Absalom, King David’s son decided to usurp authority and take the dominion and authority from his father as king and place it upon himself. He deceived all the people of Israel with flattering words. When the people would come to King David for council, Absalom would stop them, listen to their concerns, kiss them, and then express how he longed to help them if only he were king. So, Absalom stole the hearts of the people with his flattery and his good looks. (2 Samuel 15:1-6)
Once Absalom had the favor of the people, he sent for Ahithophel, David’s counselor to be his advisor against his father, King David. Ahithophel agrees and begins to give strategies to plot a rebellion against King David. Ahithophel is able to give Absalom sound council because he has been with King David for many years and he knows how he thinks and operates. However, King David has been with the King of Kings for many years; and has seen Him work mightily in his life and bestow upon him great favor. So, David prays in 2 Samuel 15:31b: “…O Lord, I pray thee, turn the council of Ahithophel into foolishness.” No wonder Ahithophel’s name means; “brother of foolishness.” God honored King David’s request!
Another lesson we learn from Ahithophel is to: “guard your heart against pride.” Before you become destroyed by pride take this advice: “Let go of your pride and admit you are wrong!” 2 Samuel Chapter 17 tells the story of Ahithophel’s demise. After King David’s prayer, God uses a man by the name of Hushai to pretend he is with Absalom to give him advice how to defeat David. But, Hushai secretly plots against Absalom and tells David all their plans against him.
Absalom replies in 2 Samuel 17:14: “And Absalom and all the men of Israel said, The council of Hushai the Archite is better than the council of Ahithophel. For the Lord had appointed to defeat the good counsel of Ahithophel, to the intent that the Lord might bring evil upon Absalom. It’s one thing to have an unfavorable appointment with man, but you don’t want that appointment with God! Now, when you know you’re wrong, don’t keep operating in pride, just surrender! Let’s look at Ahithophel’s response to this situation.
2 Samuel 17:23: “And when Ahithophel saw that his counsel was not followed, he saddled his ass, and arose, and gat him home to his house, to his city, and put his household in order, and hanged himself, and died …” What a shame! Why not repent to God and run back to David and beg for mercy! Pride cannot only shame you but destroy you. Humble yourself, before God does! It has been said humility is strength under control not out of control. So, let’s learn from the life of Ahithophel and become wiser by avoiding the same pitfalls.”
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