Epistles of Thomas

June 29, 2009

2 Samuel 10-12

Filed under: Old Testament — Thomas @ 0:23
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Chapter 10 recounts how David and the Israelite army dealt with some very foolish Ammonites. They thought that David’s envoys were spying out the land rather than expressing sympathy at the death of their leader and humiliated them. This led to war in which the Israelite army defeated several of the surrounding peoples when they joined together. Chapter eleven recounts how a very foolish king David stayed home from the battlefield to dally with other men’s wives. In the (in)famous story of Bathsheba and his adultery he got her pregnant and recalled her husband Uriah in an attempt to cover the crime. When this failed due to Uriah’s faithfulness to his comrades in battle David ordered that he be sent to the frontlines where he was duly killed in action as David intended. I suppose David’s conscience would allow him to excuse the crime because Israel’s enemies did the actual killing. The contrast between the faithfulness of the Hittite Uriah and the Jewish king David is very stark in this passage. David compounded his guilt through demonstrating no remorse by marrying Bathsheba as soon as her period of mourning was over. Many of his servants would have been in the know by this time and word leaked out.

In chapter 12 Nathan approached David with the story of a rich man who stole his poor neighbour’s only sheep. David condemns the man to death and fourfold repayment before Nathan reveals that he is that thief, having stolen Uriah’s wife and had him killed to boot. Thankfully David has a soft heart and “Then David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord.’” (12:13). Nathan assures them that he will not die due to his repentance but the child created through this sin will. David greatly mourns his loss and the death of the baby. Bathsheba subsequently gave birth to another son, Solomon, who would go on to rule Israel and build the temple as God had promised.


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