… they told all the people, saying, “There is the king, sitting in the gate.” So all the people came before the king. 2 Samuel 19:8
David Returns to Jerusalem
David mourns deeply for Absalom, his son. Finally, Joab, his commander, confronts the king and insists that he go and express appreciation to his loyal supporters, before his tears over his dead son make the victory seem a defeat (19:1-8).
The loyal men of Judah are furious with the Israelite tribes. And the northerners are ashamed, desperately eager to demonstrate their loyalty. On the way back to Jerusalem they quarrel over the honor of escorting David to his throne.
–> Just like the disciples of Jesus who quarreled over what their positions would be when the Christ is enthroned.
David returns to Jerusalem as the king of Israel and Judah. It was an uneasy union. On his way back, while he was sitting at the gate of Jerusalem, different types of people came before him, those who genuinely welcomed and accepted him as their king and those who flattered him with insincere hearst (e.g. Shimei, Mephibosheth etc.). Some of them were openly hostile to him.
David, being a mere human, couldn’t figure out their true intent. Therefore, he was merciful to everyone even to Shimei ,who had insulted him, giving them all a second chance.
While united outwardly, Israelites would follow different paths according to their own hearts. Likewise, we will continue to be divided until the end.