Luke ii. 40. And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.
Exordium. Among other iniquities which Absalom committed in his rebellion, perhaps the chief was that he, by flatteries and fair promises, stole away the hearts of the men of Israel from their allegiance to David.
Foolish youth! exclaims the preacher; see the veterans of the king drawn up before thee in battle array! See the army of mighty warriors assembled to overthrow thee! Thy destruction impends; it is but a matter of a few hours more or less. Yet, lo! on the contrary, I see David fleeing; David, the mighty man of war; David, who shrank not before Goliath; David, who quailed not before Saul; he, even he, without striking a blow, turns his back to flee before an undisciplined rabble! How can we account for this? Chrysostom replies, “David fled, not because he feared, but because he did not choose to see his son slain before his eyes.” It was love, not fear, which put him to flight. So great was the guilt of Absalom in weaning the children of Israel from their duty, that it could only be washed out in the blood of the offender. And all those who by enticing words, or by evil example, allure others from their duty to God, their true King, act as did Absalom, and like Absalom will be slain, all the sort of them.
Propositio. The subject of this sermon is the severe judgment which will fall on all those who put stum-