“Be gentle with the young man Absalom for my sake” (2 Samuel 18:5).

So says David to his three generals as they prepare to make war on the rebel army under the command of Absalom, his son. The words are spoken by a king and a father. Can he retain his kingdom and keep his son? How can he quell the revolt without crushing his own flesh and blood? This is sorrow mingled with unrelenting love. It faintly signals God’s ordeal at Calvary where judgment and mercy meet to produce an amazing result—salvation for all the world’s prodigal sons.

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