27 May 2017 Bible Reading
I can really identify with today’s reading — David’s strong denunciation of his own crime convicts him. It’s a black stain upon his personal honor that would have been difficult, if not impossible, to overcome. The consequences of his deeds will shadow his descendants for generations to come.
2 Samuel 12:1-31
12 Yahweh 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. 2 The rich man had very many flocks and herds, 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. 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.”
5 David’s anger burned hot against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As Yahweh lives, the man who has done this deserves to die! 6 He must restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity!”
7 Nathan said to David, “You are the man. This is what Yahweh, the God of Israel, says: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you out of the hand of Saul. 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. 9 Why have you despised Yahweh’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. 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.’
11 “This is what Yahweh 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. 12 For you did this secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.’”
13 David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against Yahweh.”
Nathan said to David, “Yahweh also has put away your sin. You will not die. 14 However, because by this deed you have given great occasion to Yahweh’s enemies to blaspheme, the child also who is born to you will surely die.” 15 Nathan departed to his house.
Yahweh struck the child that Uriah’s wife bore to David, and it was very sick. 16 David therefore begged God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night on the ground. 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. 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?”
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.”
20 Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed himself, and changed his clothing; and he came into Yahweh’s house, and worshiped. Then he came to his own house; and when he requested, they set bread before him, and he ate. 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.”
22 He said, “While the child was yet alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, ‘Who knows whether Yahweh will not be gracious to me, that the child may live?’ 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.”
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. Yahweh loved him; 25 and he sent by the hand of Nathan the prophet, and he named him Jedidiah, for Yahweh’s sake.
26 Now Joab fought against Rabbah of the children of Ammon, and took the royal city. 27 Joab sent messengers to David, and said, “I have fought against Rabbah. Yes, I have taken the city of waters. 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.”
29 David gathered all the people together, and went to Rabbah, and fought against it, and took it. 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. 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.
16 “These things have I spoken to you, so that you wouldn’t be caused to stumble. 2 They will put you out of the synagogues. Yes, the time comes that whoever kills you will think that he offers service to God. 3 They will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor me. 4 But I have told you these things, so that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you about them. I didn’t tell you these things from the beginning, because I was with you. 5 But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6 But because I have told you these things, sorrow has filled your heart. 7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth: It is to your advantage that I go away, for if I don’t go away, the Counselor won’t come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. 8 When he has come, he will convict the world about sin, about righteousness, and about judgment; 9 about sin, because they don’t believe in me; 10 about righteousness, because I am going to my Father, and you won’t see me any more; 11 about judgment, because the prince of this world has been judged.
12 “I have yet many things to tell you, but you can’t bear them now. 13 However when he, the Spirit of truth, has come, he will guide you into all truth, for he will not speak from himself; but whatever he hears, he will speak. He will declare to you things that are coming. 14 He will glorify me, for he will take from what is mine, and will declare it to you. 15 All things whatever the Father has are mine; therefore I said that he takes of mine, and will declare it to you. 16 A little while, and you will not see me. Again a little while, and you will see me.”
17 Some of his disciples therefore said to one another, “What is this that he says to us, ‘A little while, and you won’t see me, and again a little while, and you will see me;’ and, ‘Because I go to the Father’?” 18 They said therefore, “What is this that he says, ‘A little while’? We don’t know what he is saying.”
19 Therefore Jesus perceived that they wanted to ask him, and he said to them, “Do you inquire among yourselves concerning this, that I said, ‘A little while, and you won’t see me, and again a little while, and you will see me?’ 20 Most certainly I tell you, that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy. 21 A woman, when she gives birth, has sorrow, because her time has come. But when she has delivered the child, she doesn’t remember the anguish any more, for the joy that a human being is born into the world. 22 Therefore you now have sorrow, but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.
23 “In that day you will ask me no questions. Most certainly I tell you, whatever you may ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. 24 Until now, you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be made full. 25 I have spoken these things to you in figures of speech. But the time is coming when I will no more speak to you in figures of speech, but will tell you plainly about the Father. 26 In that day you will ask in my name; and I don’t say to you, that I will pray to the Father for you, 27 for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me, and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father, and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world, and go to the Father.”
29 His disciples said to him, “Behold, now you speak plainly, and speak no figures of speech. 30 Now we know that you know all things, and don’t need for anyone to question you. By this we believe that you came from God.”
31 Jesus answered them, “Do you now believe? 32 Behold, the time is coming, yes, and has now come, that you will be scattered, everyone to his own place, and you will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me. 33 I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world.”
65 Do good to your servant,
according to your word, Yahweh.
66 Teach me good judgment and knowledge,
for I believe in your commandments.
67 Before I was afflicted, I went astray;
but now I observe your word.
68 You are good, and do good.
Teach me your statutes.
69 The proud have smeared a lie upon me.
With my whole heart, I will keep your precepts.
70 Their heart is as callous as the fat,
but I delight in your law.
71 It is good for me that I have been afflicted,
that I may learn your statutes.
72 The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of pieces of gold and silver.
73 Your hands have made me and formed me.
Give me understanding, that I may learn your commandments.
74 Those who fear you will see me and be glad,
because I have put my hope in your word.
75 Yahweh, I know that your judgments are righteous,
that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.
76 Please let your loving kindness be for my comfort,
according to your word to your servant.
77 Let your tender mercies come to me, that I may live;
for your law is my delight.
78 Let the proud be disappointed, for they have overthrown me wrongfully.
I will meditate on your precepts.
79 Let those who fear you turn to me.
They will know your statutes.
80 Let my heart be blameless toward your decrees,
that I may not be disappointed.
4 Yahweh has made everything for its own end—
yes, even the wicked for the day of evil.
5 Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to Yahweh:
they shall certainly not be unpunished.