Remember how some tried to be popular in school, doing ‘cool’ things to be in the ‘in-group’. Being popular has a price when we compromise.
“Doing what was just and right” was the hallmark of a strong king in the ancient Near East and included such reforms as the elimination of oppression and exploitation (cf. esp. Ps 72).
David’s rule is characterized by justice and righteousness (2 Samuel 8:15), and this is part of the reason for his success.
His care extended itself to all the parts of his dominion: He reigned over all Israel (v. 15) they were all safe under his protection, and shared in the fruits of his good government.
He did justice with an unbiased unshaken hand: He executed judgment unto all his people, neither did wrong nor denied or delayed right to any. His industry and close application to business, his easiness of access and readiness to admit all addresses and appeals made to him. His impartiality and the equity of his proceedings, in administering justice. He never perverted justice through favour or affection, nor had respect of persons in judgment.
He kept good order and good officers in his court.
When we see David’s demeanor, we are reminded of Christ, who was faithful and true. Psalm 72:1,2 ”Endow the king with your justice, O God, the royal son with your righteousness. He will judge your people in righteousness, your afflicted ones with justice.”
When Jesus will come again, he will prove and carry out this in fullness:
“I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war.” (Revelation 19:11)
Frequently those who want to be accepted and be popular make compromises and deviate from their values and Biblical norms. Those who try the hardest to become popular never make it. Praise of people is not important. Don’t keep spending time devising ways to become accepted in the public eye. Instead strive to do what is good and right in God’s eyes. People will respect you for your convictions and so will God.
A striking summary statement appears twice in 2 Samuel 8 as if to emphasize that David must never forget the identity of the real Conqueror: “The LORD gave David victory wherever he went” (2 Samuel 8:6, 14). Whenever we have success, it is the Lord’s.