Nathan confronts David. David admits his guilt. His child dies. Solomon is born. The capture of Rabbah. UPDATED.
VERSE 1. The LORD sent Nathan to David. He came to him, and said to him, “There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor.
The LORD sent Nathan to David. This was an act of mercy by the LORD God. However, it was probably not a mission that Nathan would have enjoyed. Nor would David have enjoyed it.
VERSE 2. The rich man had very many flocks and herds,
VERSE 3. but the poor man had nothing, except one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and raised. It grew up together with him, and with his children. It ate of his own food, drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was like a daughter to him.
the poor man. This refers to Uriah the Hittite.
had nothing. Bathsheba and Uriah probably had no children.
except one little ewe lamb. This refers to Bathsheba.
VERSE 4. A traveler came to the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to prepare for the wayfaring man who had come to him, but took the poor man’s lamb, and prepared it for the man who had come to him.”
VERSE 5. David’s anger burned hot against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As the LORD lives, the man who has done this deserves to die!
VERSE 6. He must restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity!”
VERSE 7. Nathan said to David, “You are the man. This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you out of the hand of Saul.
You are the man. By those words, Nathan accused David of those terrible evils.
Nathan is a righteous prophet, and David has done a terrible deed.
Their situation is the reverse of Pilate pointing to the Lord Jesus. Pilate was not righteous, but Jesus is:
John 19:5. Jesus therefore came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple garment. Pilate said to them, “Behold, the man!”
VERSE 8. I gave you your master’s house, and your master’s wives into your bosom, and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that would have been too little, I would have added to you many more such things.
VERSE 9. Why have you despised the LORD’s word, to do that which is evil in his sight? You have struck Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and have taken his wife to be your wife, and have slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon.
Why have you. Nathan the prophet speaks quite directly. He does not hold back.
When national leaders abuse their power, they must be confronted.
VERSE 10. Now therefore the sword will never depart from your house, because you have despised me, and have taken Uriah the Hittite’s wife to be your wife.’
the sword will never depart from your house. This will be true. David’s kingdom will be an empire of violence.
VERSE 11. “This is what the LORD says: ‘Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house; and I will take your wives before your eyes, and give them to your neighbor, and he will lie with your wives in the sight of this sun.
VERSE 12. For you did this secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.’ ”
VERSE 13. David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” Nathan said to David, “The LORD also has put away your sin. You will not die.
I have sinned against the LORD. David admits his guilt. But only after a heavy confrontation by an authentic prophet of the Most High God.
David reminds us of today’s politicians. When the public discovers they did a heinous thing, they make a public apology. But it is almost certainly insincere. And only because they were caught.
VERSE 14. However, because by this deed you have given great occasion to the LORD’s enemies to blaspheme, the child also who is born to you will surely die.”
VERSE 15. Nathan departed to his house. The LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bore to David, and it was very sick.
VERSE 16. David therefore begged God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night on the ground.
VERSE 17. The elders of his house arose beside him, to raise him up from the earth: but he would not, and he didn’t eat bread with them.
VERSE 18. On the seventh day, the child died. David’s servants were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they said, “Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spoke to him, and he didn’t listen to our voice. How will he then harm himself, if we tell him that the child is dead?”
VERSE 19. But when David saw that his servants were whispering together, David perceived that the child was dead; and David said to his servants, “Is the child dead?” They said, “He is dead.”
VERSE 20. Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed himself, and changed his clothing; and he came into the LORD’s house, and worshiped. Then he came to his own house; and when he requested, they set bread before him, and he ate.
VERSE 21. Then his servants said to him, “What is this that you have done? You fasted and wept for the child while he was alive, but when the child was dead, you rose up and ate bread.”
VERSE 22. He said, “While the child was yet alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, ‘Who knows whether the LORD will not be gracious to me, that the child may live?’
whether the LORD will not be gracious to me. David’s motive for fasting was to persuade the LORD God to do his bidding.
VERSE 23. But now he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.”
VERSE 24. David comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went in to her, and lay with her. She bore a son, and he called his name Solomon. The LORD loved him;
David comforted Bathsheba. The word “comforted” is probably a euphemism.
She bore a son. After their session of “comforting,” Bathsheba became pregnant.
he called his name Solomon. Solomon was not David’s first child.
VERSE 25. and he sent by the hand of Nathan the prophet, and he named him Jedidiah, for the LORD’s sake.
Jedidiah. This word means “loved by YHWH.”
VERSE 27. Joab sent messengers to David, and said, “I have fought against Rabbah. Yes, I have taken the city of waters.
VERSE 28. Now therefore gather the rest of the people together, and encamp against the city, and take it; lest I take the city, and it be called by my name.”
VERSE 29. David gathered all the people together, and went to Rabbah, and fought against it, and took it.
VERSE 30. He took the crown of their king from off his head; and its weight was a talent of gold, and in it were precious stones; and it was set on David’s head. He brought a great quantity of plunder out of the city.
a talent of gold. A talent is about 66 pounds.
VERSE 31. He brought out the people who were in it, and put them under saws, under iron picks, under axes of iron, and made them pass through the brick kiln; and he did so to all the cities of the children of Ammon. Then David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.
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