In-person worship services will be held as scheduled this Sunday. Please use discretion when determining whether roads are safe for your personal travel.
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1 Samuel 23:10-14
10 Then David said, “LORD God of Israel, I, your servant, have heard that Saul plans on coming to Keilah and will destroy the town because of me. 11 LORD God of Israel, will Saul come down as your servant has heard? Please tell your servant.”
“Yes, he will come down,” the LORD answered.
12 Next David asked, “Will the citizens of Keilah hand me and my soldiers over to Saul?”
“Yes, they will hand you over,” the LORD replied.
13 So David and his troops—approximately six hundred men—got up and left Keilah. They kept moving, going from one place to the next. When Saul was told that David had escaped from Keilah, he didn’t go there.
14 David lived in the fortresses in the wilderness and in the hills of the Ziph wilderness. Saul searched for him constantly, but God did not hand David over to Saul.
2 Samuel 11
1 In the spring, when kings go off to war, David sent Joab, along with his servants and all the Israelites, and they destroyed the Ammonites, attacking the city of Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem.
2 One evening, David got up from his couch and was pacing back and forth on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing; the woman was very beautiful. 3 David sent someone and inquired about the woman. The report came back: “Isn’t this Eliam’s daughter Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” 4 So David sent messengers to take her. When she came to him, he had sex with her. (Now she had been purifying herself after her monthly period.) Then she returned home. 5 The woman conceived and sent word to David. “I’m pregnant,” she said.
14 The next morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. 15 He wrote in the letter, “Place Uriah at the front of the fiercest battle, and then pull back from him so that he will be struck down and die.”
(If you have time, learn or review the whole terrible story as honestly told in 2 Samuel 11:1 – 12:13.)
“David frequently prays to God in his early career. We will see, however, that prayer disappears from his story when he begins to act in self-serving and sinful ways, starting with the Bathsheba story in 2 Samuel 11.” * A smug King David sent his army off to fight without him. Which spelled trouble. From his palace roof he saw a woman bathing. Dazzled, he ignored her marriage to one of his trusted officers and had sex with her. Then she became pregnant even though her husband was away with the army.
Lord God, it must have seemed so simple to David at the start. Please root your principles deeply in my heart, so that I can sense when my life is going off-course before it all spirals to disaster. Amen.
* Bruce C. Birch, sidebar article “David and Prayer” in The CEB Study Bible. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2013, p. 158 OT.