New Warhorn Media post by Tim Bayly:
David had a general issue in saying “No” to any of his sons, as the earlier fate of Amnon and the later fate of Adonijah demonstrate (cf 1 Kings 1:6). Or, indeed, in disciplining Joab - his nephew - for Joab’s earlier murders of Abner and Amasa.
Adonijah would only have tried to become king, I think, if he thought he could push past David, and David had Solomon proclaimed king only after Adonijah had forced his hand. But, David had been fatally lax in not making it clear earlier that Solomon would be king. Lots of lessons in this material.
But note that only with Absalom do we get the sense that David really favored him. With Joab, you get the feeling that he didn’t have the faith or couldn’t figure out how to punish him, because he charges Solomon to do it. With his other sons you mention, it feels more like he doesn’t care about them enough to bother.
That makes Joab’s rebuke all the more tragic. It took a faith-less man to rebuke the faithful king for what everyone could see.