Focal passages: 2 Samuel 13:15-20; 31-39
The consequences of David’s sin with Bathsheba continue raging through his family like a consuming fire spreading room by room. So far in 2 Samuel, two of his sons have lost their lives, showing us that while God established the family for loving relationships, sin destroys them.
In the land of Israel, incest was forbidden, but his oldest son and heir of the throne, Amnon, lusted after his half-sister Tamar.
Against this law, a “very shrewd man” (2 Samuel 13:3) plotted out a way he could get alone with her.
How similar this is to the serpent in the garden, suggesting a path around God’s clearly established commands to fulfill selfish desires?
In the end, he “hated her more than he had loved her” (2 Samuel 13:15), proving that sin fails to satisfy or to deliver on the promises made.
Two years had gone by before Tamar’s other brother Absolom exacted his revenge for the terrible act she suffered. Far from restoring peace to his shattered family, the murder plotted by Absalom only brought more devastation to the house of David.
As a result, he was exiled and plunged his family into mourning. In a single act, David lost one son to the grave, and another by separation.
In the context of a fireplace, a blazing fire can provide warmth throughout the home. Taken outside its confines, however, it can burn the house to the ground. It is just the same with sexual intimacy.
When it is reserved for its proper place in God’s design, it is a blessing.
When it is abused to satisfy sinful desires, it is capable of destroying, lives, families and emotional well-being.
As the book of 2 Samuel traces the broken promises of sin throughout David’s family, we can grieve over the brokenness we see in and around our lives in today’s challenging times.
Forgiveness is the most difficult thing to offer when faced with terrible wrongs, but God’s grace allows us to offer it others and ourselves to find healing.