“In the spring, when kings go forth to battle, David sent Joab with his
servants and all Israel, and they ravaged the Ammonites [country] and
besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem.
One evening David arose from his couch and was walking on the roof of
the king’s house, when from there he saw a woman bathing; and she was
very lovely to behold.
David sent and inquired about the woman. One said, Is not this
Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite?
And David sent messengers and took her. And she came in to him, and he
lay with her–for she was purified from her uncleanness. Then she
returned to her house.
And the woman became pregnant and sent and told David, I am with child.
David sent to Joab, saying, ‘Send me Uriah the Hittite. So Joab sent [him] Uriah.’
When Uriah had come to him, David asked him how Joab was, how the people fared, and how the war progressed.
David said to Uriah, ‘Go down to your house and wash your feet. Uriah
went out of the king’s house, and there followed him a mess of food [a
gift] from the king.’
But Uriah slept at the door of the king’s house with all the servants of his lord and did not go down to his house.
When they told David, Uriah did not go down to his house, David said to
Uriah, ‘Have you not come from a journey? Why did you not go down to
Uriah said to David, ‘The ark and Israel and Judah live in tents, and
my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping in the open field.
Shall I then go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As
you live and as my soul lives, I will not do this thing. ‘
And David said to Uriah, ‘Remain here today also, and tomorrow I will
let you depart.’ So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next.
David invited him, and he ate with him and drank, so that he made him
drunk; but that night he went out to lie on his bed with the servants
of his lord and did not go down to his house.
In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah.
And he wrote in the letter, ‘Put Uriah in the front line of the
heaviest fighting and withdraw from him, that he may be struck down and
So when Joab was besieging the city, he assigned Uriah opposite where he knew the enemy’s most valiant men were.
And the men of the city came out and fought with Joab, and some of the servants of David fell. Uriah the Hittite died also.
Then Joab sent and told David all the things concerning the war.
And he charged the messenger, ‘When you have finished reporting matters of the war to the king,’
Then if the king’s anger rises and he says to you, ‘Why did you go so
near to the city to fight? Did you not know they would shoot from the
Who killed Abimelech son of Jerubbesheth (Gideon)? Did not a woman cast
an upper millstone upon him from the wall, so that he died in Thebez?
Why did you go near the wall? Then say, ‘Your servant Uriah the Hittite
is dead also.’
So the messenger went and told David all for which Joab had sent him.
The messenger said to David, ‘Surely the men prevailed against us and
came out to us in to the field, but we were upon them even to the
entrance of the gate.
Then the archers shot at your servants from the wall. Some of the
king’s servants are dead, and your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead
Then David said to the messenger, Say to Joab, Let not this thing
disturb you, for the sword devours one as well as another. Strengthen
your attack upon the city and overthrow it. And encourage Joab.
When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband was dead, she mourned for Uriah.
And when the mourning was past, David sent and brought her to his
house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing that
David had done was evil in the sight of the Lord.”—2 Samuel 11:1-27
Awh sookie, sookie now. You knew this was coming, right?
The thing is, I thought I was going to address David and his first
wife, Michal (Saul’s second daughter—I Samuel 18:17-30) before I got
to this part. There is just something about meddling potential in-laws
that irks me. But, I guess we will get to that when it’s time to deal
with various marriages in the Bible. And so, for now, we will address
one of the most infamous stories of lust and passion in history: David
As I was reading this story, immediately there were two things that
stood out to me most. Now, once again, I am going to take some creative
license in breaking this all down, but I know I have God’s permission
to do so and so remain open, OK?
In 2 Samuel 11:2, the Bible says that one evening David was walking
around the roof of his palace. That was where he noticed Bathsheba
bathing. As I looked in a Bible Concordance for the purpose of roofs in
those days, it said that they were used for drying things like flax and
fruit; a cool place to sleep in the summertime and they were used as a
place for worship.
A place for worship. Oh, the irony.
Now, it was David’s house and so he had the right to do anything that
he wanted with it, but this definitely takes me back to I Corinthians
“Just because something is technically legal doesn’t mean that it’s
spiritually appropriate. If I went around doing whatever I thought I
could get by with, I’d be a slave to my whims.”
Ask anyone who (really) knows me and they will tell you that they are
somewhat floored by my saying that there are definitely some things in
my home that are “legal” or “lawful” for me to have, but when I don’t
exercise spiritually maturity and discernment, it can cause me to
become a slave to them. In my world, this would be the television and
(gasp) my computer.
I am coming to discover more and more that spiritually I am a (gasp)
conservative liberal; however, by no means am I saying that there is
something wrong with having a television; nor do I think it needs to be
set on TBN all night (as a matter of fact, some of you need to discern
how much of that you are watching!).
But, what I am saying is that you should take some time to discover the
purpose of the things in your home. Sometimes, if you are “wandering
around the stations” with your remote, while the television can be
beneficial for watching CNN, On Demand, A&E or even HBO (don’t get
me started on Spike Lee’s documentary on Hurricane Katrina and the
government’s trifflin’ attitude even now), there are also ridiculous
reality shows like “Girl Next Door”, unnecessary channels like Logo and
late night “soft porn” that, in the height of my porn addiction days,
could put some of the videos I’ve seen to shame (yes, that means in all
my years of having cable, I have seen a porn movie).
When it comes to the things that we are put in charge of, including our
possessions, we must be careful that we take dominion of them before
they take control over us. If you’re just “wandering around” on the
Internet, it will only be a matter of time before something catches
your eye and then holds your attention in a way that was never supposed
to be filed into your mental rolodex. Before long, you will find
yourself returning to it. If you got the computer for the purpose of
work or sending emails, then do that and get off of it. If you don’t,
you may end up getting more than you bargained for.
This is what happened to David. He wasn’t using his roof for what it
was created for: drying flax or fruit, sleeping on a hot summer’s night
or worshiping his creator. He was using it to “wander around”. And what
he saw changed his entire life and brought judgment upon him in a way
for which he was not prepared.
The second thing that stood out to me was the fact that when this story
has been relayed to me in the past, there was often an implication that
Bathsheba (initially) did something wrong. She didn’t. Bathsheba was
bathing at her house and she went to the king because (hello) the king
sent for her. There was no mutual, passionate love affair going on.
Plain and simple, as a man, David took advantage of her and his
position, so let me stop right there:
I know God wants me to say this to someone. If you have been a survivor
of date rape, release the guilt that may be upon you (Romans 8:1). It
wasn’t about what you were wearing, and although going to some guy’s
house or riding in his car late at night may not have been exercising
the best judgment, men are not supposed to take advantage of you or
those situations. And, if he is someone in the Church or leadership,
first of all know that some of the most dysfunctional people are in
church and so don’t hold that against God. So many women are wounded
and broken and they’re relationship with God is suffering because
societal ignorance always points the finger in their direction when it
comes to sexual misuse. If you have the testimony of Bathsheba, please
know that I am praying for you and God loves you.
The tripped out thing about David was that initially he was in the
wrong on two distinctive counts. Not only did he violate Bathsheba with
his eyes (ladies, no man has the right to see your nakedness but your
husband and so when they do, that’s a violation and when you let them,
that is a form of self-abuse), but he also used his power to take
further advantage of the situation. He knew she was Uriah’s wife and he
didn’t care. He sent for her anyway.
You know for years, I used to think that Matthew 18:8-9 was a bit extreme:
“If your hand or your foot gets in the way of God, chop it off and
throw it away. You’re better off maimed or lame and alive than the
proud owners of two hands and two feet, godless in a furnace of eternal
fire. And if your eye distracts you from God, pull it out and throw it
away. You’re better off one-eyed and alive than exercising your
twenty-twenty vision from inside the fire of hell.”
But David shows us in live-and-living color that God did not want this
warning to be perceived as an exaggeration. Any time that we allow our
eyes to lust and our actions to become enslaved to that lust, sin is
sure to follow; and as we all know, the wages of sin is death (Romans
6:23). God in his infinite wisdom knows the power of his love, and the
evil behind its counterfeit, lust. Lust is not meant to be something
that can be controlled or contained because it is not a Fruit of the
Spirit; self-control is (Galatians 5:22).
Ephesians 4:22 states that a man becomes corrupt through his deceitful
lusts and it’s only by the renewal of our minds that we can be
righteous (morally upright) and holy. I Thessalonians 4:4-6 tells us
that we should know how to possess our own vessels with sanctification
and honor, avoiding the passion of lust that consumes people who don’t
So with that said, let me just say this to all of the unmarried couples
“making love” (again, just what is that?!?) out there: If you love that
person, you “make it” by waiting. How do I know? Because God is love (I
John 4:8) and love is patient (I Corinthians 13:4). Why have judgment
brought against you unnecessarily (I Corinthians 11:31) when, if you
exercise patience and discernment, you can have all of the sex you want
with God’s blessing on it?
David should’ve had some godly friends back then because he definitely
needed someone to tell him to slow up. But, as I said, lust is
consuming and it’s not meant to encourage you to think ahead—just in
the now…right now. So, he sent for Bathsheba, they had sex and in verse
5 it says that she became pregnant.
I know this is a little controversial, but I gave up worrying about
that a long time ago so let’s hit it. It’s always so interesting to me
how Christians will be so harsh on homosexuality (which is a sin, no
doubt about it—check out Romans 1), but they forget that if they
don’t get their fornicating/adulterous ways in check (Galatians 5:19),
they will be in hell kickin’ it with the (non-repentant) homosexuals.
The thing that I wish homosexuals understood is that the Enemy hates
mankind so much that he created a counterfeit version of God’s marital
union of man and woman by introducing same-sex relationships. Do you
realize if we all were gay, over time, humans would cease to exist?
What woman and woman can create life? What man and man can create life?
For those of you who are in this lifestyle and in the Church (because
if liars and gossipers can claim to be Christians, so can homosexuals,
people—so someone is wrong in the equation, right?), look beyond your
carnal reasoning into the spiritual logic of it all. God instructed man
to be fruitful and multiply (Genesis 1:22). Not only does sex between a
man and a woman make them one (Genesis 1:24-25) but its God’s beautiful
and purposeful way of replenishing the Earth. If you are gay, you are
limiting the loving experience that God desires for you when you chose
to have romantic relationships with the same sex. Sadly, so many
heterosexuals are obsessively focused on if you are hell bound and I
apologize because there is a greater message here. I would rather focus
on all of the love God desires for you to have here on earth if you
were only open to following his design for godly unions.
Now heterosexuals, you are not off of the hook. I was just telling
someone last week that in many ways, I think God finds fornication to
be even more abhorrent because out of our disobedience, an innocent
“victim” can be brought into the scenario. Now by no means is a child a
sin, but to bring someone into this world before you are emotionally,
financially, relationally or spiritually responsible—-don’t think God
is not going to judge that as well. Children are blessings from the
Lord, but when you are too selfish to exercise planned parenting
(getting married, being spiritually and financially mature by preparing
for them ahead of time), you are placing them into a cursed atmosphere
where they have to fight spiritual battles that could’ve been avoided.
If you don’t believe me, ask Solomon (if he made it) about all of the
lust he had to deal with because of the generational curse that flowed
between his mother, Bathsheba and his father, David (2 Samuel 12:24).
Back to the pregnancy.
Now, something that I find to be very interesting is that rarely do we
hear about the part that Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah played in all of
this mess. No, it wasn’t his fault that while he was away at work
(fighting in a war), his wife slept with a government official (King
David) and got pregnant. But, this story says that in verse 8, after
conversing with Uriah, David instructed him to go home. It was Uriah
who chose to stay at the office (the palace) with his co-workers (other
If you are a single man reading this, when you get married, your first
job, your first duty, your God-ordained ministry is to tend to your
wife and home, first. Even now, I have two friends who are married and
living apart and it hasn’t even been a year. Not because they don’t
love one another, but because their careers have pulled them physically
in two different directions. If you are a newlywed, or if you are
thinking about getting married soon, heed this:
“When a man takes a new wife, he is not to go out with the army or be
given any business or work duties. He gets one year off simply to be at
home making his wife happy.”—Deuteronomy 24:5
If you want to be married to your career, then you need to remain
single. Just as with a new baby, when you take on a wife, no longer is
it all about you. How interesting that this scripture says that a man
needs to spend one year making his wife happy. It didn’t say stay home
so that she can be at your beck-and-call. No, it says that you need to
be at the crib focusing on her and her needs. In other words, the first
year is about setting a solid foundation.
Remember, marriage is not just about sharing a home and having sex.
It’s about two people being united in a purpose. Again, if your
education or career are more important to you than anything else (other
than God…hopefully), that’s fine, but you need to handle that as a
single man. After marriage, extreme sacrifices, for which you may not
yet be prepared to make, will have to take place. If you choose a godly
woman, the investment will pay off big, but it’s still an investment
If you are not a newlywed, you still need to take in what happened to
Uriah. When David, the man who violated Uriah’s union, asked him why he
didn’t return home to his wife, this was Uriah’s response:
“The ark and Israel and Judah live in tents, and my lord Joab and the
servants of my lord are camping in the open field. Shall I then go to
my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As you live and as my
soul lives, I will not do this thing.”
Hmm. You have been away and you are back. Should you go home and have
sex with your wife? Uh…yeah! Now I know that the Book of Corinthians
had not been written yet, but God doesn’t withhold wisdom from any of
his children that ask (James 1:5) and so if Uriah was unsure about what
should have been a greater priority for him, he should’ve prayed first:
“Marriage is a decision to serve the other, whether in bed or out.
Abstaining from sex is permissible for a period of time if you both
agree to it, and if it’s for the purposes of prayer and fasting—but
only for such times. Then come back together again. Satan has an
ingenious way of tempting us when we least expect it.”—I Corinthians
Sadly, the tool that Satan used in this instance was David. One of the
things that Dr. Myles Monroe stated in his book, “Understanding the
Power and Purpose of Men” was that God is not looking for us to do what
is good; he is looking for us to do what is right. The right thing is
what he instructs us to do according to his will, purpose and timing.
Was Uriah’s loyalty to his job a “good” thing? Most definitely. But was it the right thing? I don’t think so.
Now, we’re only left to speculate what would’ve happened had he gone
home to a wife and “illegitimate” (all children are “legitimate”,
right?) baby, but we do know what happened because he didn’t. David put
him on the frontlines of battle and he lost his life.
Fellas, the Bible says that you should love your wives as Christ loved
the Church and gave his life for it (Ephesians 5:25). It doesn’t say to
love your job in that way. No, only for your wife should you be willing
to lay down your life. Again—-and I know I am speaking to someone
directly—-if you are not willing to sacrifice the life as you now
know it for the benefit of your marriage, keep the ring…propose later.
And ladies, if you see signs that your significant other is a
workaholic, if he asks, refuse the ring and encourage him to revisit
the possibility at another time. A wedding ceremony is an outward
symbol of the commitment already made in a man’s heart. A white dress
and wedding cake is not going to convince a man that he’s ready for
marriage. Watch how you are treated on his priority list while you are
courting because that is what will give you a red flag to step back or
the green light to move forward.
Although there are lessons for days within this story, the final one
that I am led to share is found in verse 27. It says that after
Bathsheba mourned the loss of her husband, David sent for her, they
were married and they had a son. It goes on to say that God was not
If you want to right a wrong, repent. Getting married as the result of
an unplanned pregnancy or to hide your mutual sex addiction doesn’t
give you props with God. Justifying your lust by shacking up doesn’t
give you props with God. Having every kind of sex but intercourse
doesn’t give you props with God. Acting like an emotional whore (a
woman who’s always consumed with having a man or that man) while
judging those who are physically promiscuous doesn’t give you props
with God. Going to church in the morning and hanging off of bed posts
at night doesn’t give you props with God. Paying your tithe and then
stealing someone’s virtue doesn’t give you props with God.
You can try to play spiritual scruples all that you want, but when it
comes to living a righteous life, God’s Word and his consequences are
very clear. Luke 13:3 says that unless we repent, we will perish. In 2
Samuel 12, Nathan came to David and prophesied on his life:
“‘You’re the man!’ said Nathan. ‘And here’s what God, the God of
Israel, has to say to you: I made you king over Israel. I freed you
from the fist of Saul. I gave you your master’s daughter and other
wives to have and to hold. I gave you both Israel and Judah. And if
that hadn’t been enough, I’d have gladly thrown in much more. So why
have you treated the word of God with brazen contempt, doing this great
evil? You murdered Uriah the Hittite, then took his wife as your wife.
Worse, you killed him with an Ammonite sword! And now, because you
treated God with such contempt and took Uriah the Hittite’s wife as
your wife, killing and murder will continually plague your family. This
is God speaking, remember! I’ll make trouble for you out of your own
family. I’ll take your wives from right out in front of you. I’ll give
them to some neighbor, and he’ll go to bed with them openly. You did
your deed in secret; I’m doing mine with the whole country
watching!'”—-2 Samuel 2:7-12
Later in that chapter, Bathsheba got sick and their son died.
Marriage is a godly union but it is not the band-aid for dysfunction or
a fix-it to a sinful nature. If you are living a life of compromise,
godly sorrow (2 Corinthians 7:10) is the only thing that will make it
right. Now, that’s not to say that you will not have to deal with some
of the consequences of your choices, but it does mean that God’s mercy
and grace—the things that you can get only when you go to the throne
of God’s grace—-will then be available to you (Hebrews 4:16).
Homework for today: If you are a woman who has been sexually violated,
choose today to see yourself as a survivor and not a victim. As a woman
who has been violated, I know that the process of grieving and healing
is indeed a process but remember that although a man is strong in
power, greater is he that is in you than the Enemy of this world; the
being who influences men to violate us (I John 4:4).
If you are a man who has used your “dominion right” to take advantage
of any woman, you need to repent right here and now. You may just look
at it as a “hit it and quit it”, but the seeds of discourse that you
plant into your life as the result of sleeping with a woman who God did
not give to you are deep, destructive and possibly earth eternal. I
Corinthians 6:18 says that sexual sin is the only sin that you can
create against your own body. The Bible goes on to say that you are to
love your wife as you love yourself (Ephesians 5:28). If you want to
pull up the potential roots of problems and chaos for your future
family, love yourself by protecting it from sexual sin. Sex tonight
with a girlfriend could mean a miscarriage next year with your wife.
One of the worst things we can do is to try and predict how we will
reap when we sow to our flesh (Galatians 6:8). No one knows that but
God and so you best bet is to keep your temple clean while refusing to
desecrate the temples of others.
And finally, everyone, ask God to share with you the purpose behind all
that you have been given responsibility over. Just because you have a
car doesn’t mean you need to be up in Casinos or strip clubs spending
your pay check. Just because you are on vacation, doesn’t mean you need
to be drunk out of your mind the entire time. Just because you have
every electronic piece of equipment known to man doesn’t mean to you
need to download everything into it. Just because you have 1,000 women
on your MySpace page doesn’t mean you need to be sending them comments
back and forth.
Oh, I could go on and on (and you know this), but the bottom line is
that before you decide to make any move, please check your motive and
God’s purpose for you and the things that have been placed into your
possession. God doesn’t want to withhold any good thing from us, but he
will not condone doing something bad to get it.
©Shellie R. Warren/2006