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they cannot fully repair.

2 Samuel 5:1–9

Then all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and spoke, saying, “Indeed we are your bone and your flesh. Also, in time past, when Saul was king over us, you were the one who led Israel out and brought them in; and the LORD said to you, ‘You shall shepherd My people Israel, and be ruler over Israel.’ ” Therefore all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD. And they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. In Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months, and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years over all Israel and Judah.

And the king and his men went to Jerusalem against the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land, who spoke to David, saying, “You shall not come in here; but the blind and the lame will repel you,” thinking, “David cannot come in here.” Nevertheless David took the stronghold of Zion (that is, the City of David).

Now David said on that day, “Whoever climbs up by way of the water shaft and defeats the Jebusites (the lame and the blind, who are hated by David’s soul), he shall be chief and captain.” Therefore they say, “The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.”

Something’s wrong here. They’re trying just a bit too hard to make the case for David to be the king. That shouldn’t be necessary. Why even bring this up? Who are they trying to convince? Themselves?

The terrible truth is that a natural division has developed between the northern and southern tribes. This division will prove to be even more enduring than the slave state vs. free state division that led to the US Civil War.

Right now, the elders are desperately trying to unify a divided nation.

It won’t last.

Jerusalem is on the border between the two Israeli kingdoms. Thus, it’s the ideal place for David to set up the capital of a unified Israel. Just one problem—it’s a fortress with a defensive structure so strong that it has never been conquered by the Israelites.

So, the Jebusites that live there mock the Israelites saying, “You shall not come in here; but the blind and the lame will repel you.” They’re saying that repelling invaders is so trivial, even a disabled soldier can do it. They’ve put their faith in the city walls.

But ancient city walls always have one weakness—the water source. The opening that lets in enough water to supply a city is easily big enough for people to get through. David offers a reward to whoever gets in that way and defeats the Jebusites.

After Joab accomplishes this (see 1 Chronicles 11:6), the Israelites repay the Jebusites’ mocking.

They call them the blind and the lame, and say that they shall not come into the house.

These weekday DEEPs are written by Mike Slay. The Saturday ones are written by Matt Richardson. To subscribe click here:

The weekly study guides, which include questions for discussion or meditation, can be downloaded here:

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Mike Slay

As a mathematician, inventor, and ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America, Mike Slay brings an analytical, conversational, and even whimsical approach to the daily study of God's Word.

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