You’re More Like King David Than You Think!

Posted on June 9, 2022

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By David Ettinger

Don’t Do It, David!
The one chapter in the Bible I wish I could change is 2 Samuel 11.

This is the chapter in which King David wanders onto to his porch one night, looks down upon the city and catches sight of Bathsheba bathing. The king wastes little time in turning his lust into action by summoning the married woman and spending the night with her.

Richard Gere as King David and Alice Krige as Bathsheba in the 1985 film “King David.”

The night of sin results in Bathsheba’s impregnation. In his attempt to hide his sin, David summons Bathsheba’s husband Uriah from the battlefield and encourages him to go home and sleep with his wife.

Uriah, however, will not partake in such pleasure while his fellow soldiers are at war. David, in panic mode, sends Uriah back to battle with a note to Israel’s general Joab instructing him to arrange for Uriah’s death.

This done, David is free to marry Bathsheba.

Previous Goodness
Before the horrible events of this chapter, everything we read about David is good. We love the way God chooses this unknown shepherd to become ruler of Israel.[1] We love his heroic victory over the Philistine giant Goliath.[2]

We love his humility in refusing to marry Saul’s daughter because he considers himself unworthy.[3] We love the way he holds onto his faith while being hunted by Saul.[4] We love how he refuses to kill Saul when the opportunity arises.[5]

We love how he deeply laments the deaths of Saul and Jonathan.[6 We love his zeal for the Lord in bringing the ark of God to Jerusalem[7] and his desire to build a temple for God.[8] We love the mercy and kindness he shows to Jonathan’s son Mephibosheth.[9]

And then comes chapter 11 of 2 Samuel. And we don’t love it.

In fact, we hate it.

Want to Shout!
When we read of David gazing upon Bathsheba, we want to shout, “David, turn around this instant and get back into the palace!”

When he inquires as to the bather’s identify, we want to ask, “Why would you ask such a question? You already have all the wives you need.”

When he is told she is the wife of Uriah, we want to advise the king, “Okay, David, she is married to another man. End of story.”

And when he sends messengers to fetch her, we want to scream, “Why in the world would you do that, David? Absolutely nothing good can come from this?”

Absolutely nothing good did come from that night. The death of Uriah and the child born to the couple were two tragic consequences of that night.

But that was just the beginning. The remainder of David’s life would be filled with tragedy. God told David, “the sword will never depart from your house, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your own” (2 Samuel 12:10).

David would endure the rape of a daughter, the death of two more sons, and the attempted overthrow of his monarchy by one of those sons.

And yet …
God is gracious and merciful. According to the laws of Israel, David should have been put to death for sleeping with another man’s wife[10] and for ordering the murder of Uriah.[11]

And yet, because David was a man whose heart was fully devoted to God, God spared his life, though he would suffer the consequences of his actions. Even more mindboggling is that God would select the second child born to David and Bathsheba, Solomon, as David’s heir to the throne of Israel.[12]

What about you?
What are your sins? What heinous acts have you committed?

If you are a child of the King, He bids you to come before Him, get down on your face, and seek His forgiveness. Yes, He will expect you to do better; Jesus told the woman caught in adultery, “Go, and sin no more” (John 8:11).

But He will forgive you if you are truly contrite: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

King David was far from perfect, and so are you. But God is perfect. King David sinned greatly, and so did, or do, you. But God is sinless (1 John 3:5).

King David repented (Psalm 50) and God restored him. When you repent, God will restore you.

You serve a God who is holy – He must punish sin. But you also serve a God who is gracious; He will forgive confessed sin.

He will forgive your confessed sin and “purify [you] from all unrighteousness.”

[1] 1 Samuel 16:13

[2] 1 Samuel 17:50

[3] 1 Samuel 18:18

[4] 1 Samuel chapters 19-30

[5] 1 Samuel 24, 26

[6] 2 Samuel 1

[7] 2 Samuel 6:1-17

[8] 2 Samuel 7:1-2

[9] 2 Samuel 9

[10] Leviticus 20:10

[11] Numbers 35:16-17

[12] 1 Kings 1:13