Today’s readings are 2 Samuel 8-12
Let’s dive right in!
2 Samuel 8:2 2 And he defeated Moab and he measured them with a line, making them lie down on the ground. Two lines he measured to be put to death, and one full line to be spared. And the Moabites became servants to David and brought tribute.
Wow. That felt harsh. I realize, though, that I’m only seeing part of the story and looking at it through the lens of my own culture and experience. I dug into this a little and one commentary said that the whole cord thing was likely a figure of speech.
However, while there are some things in the Bible that end up fitting this bill, I think we have to be cautious about dismissing something as a figure of speech without proof.
Yet another commentary stated that tradition holds that the Moabites had recently killed David’s parents. You’ll recall that in 1 Samuel 22:3-4 David asked the king of Moab to look after them and we don’t see any further mention of them. However, this is conjecture as well. This is just one of those passages that we can look into, form opinions on, but at the end of the day we will still have questions – and that’s okay.
2 Samuel 8:11 King David dedicated these articles to YHWH, as he had done with the silver and gold from all the nations he had subdued: Edom and Moab, the Ammonites and the Philistines, and Amalek. He also dedicated the plunder taken from Hadadezer son of Rehob, king of Zobah.
I love this faithful obedience to the Father! As a Believer, David was riding high at this point and YHWH was making him victorious as a result. Don’t you just love these moments when you know you’re pleasing the Father, sticking as closely to Him as possible, and growing in your faith? In these times, when He takes the time to discipline us, even then, we rejoice at further confirmation of His love and attention!
The Psalm I’m sharing at the bottom of this post demonstrates David’s take on this beautifully.
However this did not exempt David from the need to seek YHWH daily, as his upcoming misstep is going to show us. We should never get so comfortable in our relationship with the Father that we forget to seek His face and guidance in all that we do.
Our relationship with YHWH is not to be treated as a common thing.
It is one of awe, amazement, and deep abiding blessing and we must keep that at the forefront of our minds.
Of course, we will slip, we will falter. But some people use this as an excuse not to try. That is a tragedy on so many levels: physical and spiritual, in this world, and in the kingdom.
Knowing we will falter is not a reason not to seek Him in earnest.
As a matter of fact, IF we are living according to His word there will be safeguards in our lives that will help us to get back on the path as soon as possible. Our knowledge of the Word, our obedience to His commandments, our open line of communication with Him, and friends who are also seeking to walk in His ways are just a few of those safeguards that the Father teaches us to put in place for times like this – and they will work together to bring us back in line with His will ASAP.
2 Samuel 9:11 Then Ziba said to the king, “Your servant will do whatever my lord the king commands his servant to do.”
If you ever wonder what to say whenever you see YHWH telling you to do something, in Scripture or in the World, THIS IS THE PERFECT RESPONSE!
When we read about the encounter with Bathsheba we are left with questions. Still, we are told what we are told and nothing more.
- Did Bathsheba know David was watching?
- Surely she knew her roof was within view of him. But wait, do we know this or do we just think this? Did she go there on purpose?
- Was she innocent?
- Did David force her or was it all part of a plan?
These are things we can’t know and we need to be careful about treating what can only be speculation as fact.Oftentimes, we end up reading our own cynicism or view of the world into the Bible, which can put a story in a completely different context than that in which it actually happened.
2 Samuel 12:1 begins by telling us that YHWH sent Nathan to David. The Father had not abandoned Him, a chance at redemption was at hand. What was David’s response? Upon having his sin exposed, David confessed and repented.
Herein lies the difference between Him and Saul. Both believed in YHWH BUT David trusted in Him. Relied on Him. Sought Him, and humbled himself with a sincere heart when he realized He had sinned against Him by breaking His laws.
Between the two of them we see a classic example of two different people who both believe, but only one who places their trust in Him.
James 2:18-19 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!
And now a Psalm about the blessing of YHWH’s correction that goes perfectly in line with today’s reading – written by David himself.
Psalm 32, written by David
Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven,
whose sin is covered.
Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity,
and in whose spirit there is no deceit.
For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
For day and night your hand was heavy upon me;
my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. Selah
I acknowledged my sin to you,
and I did not cover my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah
Therefore let everyone who is godly
offer prayer to you at a time when you may be found;
surely in the rush of great waters,
they shall not reach him.
You are a hiding place for me;
you preserve me from trouble;
you surround me with shouts of deliverance. Selah
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
Be not like a horse or a mule, without understanding,
which must be curbed with bit and bridle,
or it will not stay near you.
Many are the sorrows of the wicked,
but steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord.
Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous,
and shout for joy, all you upright in heart!
May we grow ever close to Him, following and obeying Him with a BOLDNESS that makes the rest of the world stand up and take notice and brings even more glory to our King!
Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21
We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!