Saturday, August 10, 2013

Moms in the Bible - Bathsheba

Chapter 2 – Bathsheba, Raped (??) then Widowed then Mother of a King

One evening King David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of his palace. He was probably pacing because his men were at battle and this was the first time he wasn't leading them. Perhaps there was a bit of guilt that he wasn't where God wanted him to be. From his rooftop he could see the rooftops of his people and he spied a beautiful woman bathing. He should not have been looking down on his neighbors’ rooftops for this was the time of day that a woman would perform the ritual bath if it was the seventh day after the start of her period.
The Bible tells us that Bathsheba was indeed purifying herself from her “uncleanness”.

David sent for her knowing that she was the wife of Uriah and the daughter of Eliam, both of which were serving in an elite group of soldiers called David’s “Thirty Mighty Men”. Bathsheba obediently came and David slept with her. There is no indication in the scripture that Bathsheba knowingly enticed him or was a willing participant in this sin. Could it have been rape? A power rape by a lusty king who succumbed to his sinful flesh nature? Or perhaps it was a mutual affair and Bathsheba did not resist at all. Either way it was sin.
Bathsheba conceived and sent word to David that she was pregnant. Long story short: David brought the husband home hoping he’d sleep with his wife and think the child was his. Plan failed. David ensured the husband’s death by putting him in the front lines. Plan succeeded. Bathsheba grieved. David married her. Child was born. Child got sick. Child died.

So much grief for Bathsheba! Put yourself in her shoes for a moment. Who could comfort you?
The Bible tells us that her new husband, King David, comforted her. That’s a clue that if he had abused her before, he somehow made things right enough that she accepted him. She conceived again and bore him Solomon (and later three other sons). She became a devoted and faithful wife and dedicated mother. David promised her that Solomon would one day be king. As Solomon’s mom she was fiercely loyal and did all she could when another of David’s sons tried to take the throne.

Next Saturday – Elizabeth

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