1. Welcome to Baptist Board, a friendly forum to discuss the Baptist Faith in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to all the features that our community has to offer.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

Featured David and Bathsheba

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Pastor_Bob, Dec 27, 2018.

  1. Pastor_Bob

    Pastor_Bob Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Messages:
    3,846
    Likes Received:
    175
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I have heard preaching all my life about this unfortunate, ill-advised decision that David made. Upon closer examination, I see that there have been liberties taken with the text. Preachers sometimes preach something that simply is not supported by the text.

    II Samuel 11:1 And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem.
    2 And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon
    . (KJV)

    A couple of things immediately jump out:
    1. Nowhere does it say that Bathsheba was bathing on her roof, although that's how most preachers present it. I guess because David was on his roof, they assume that Bathsheba was on her roof. She very well may have been in her house and seen through a window.

    2. Nowhere does it say that Bathsheba was immodest. It says that she was "washing herself," but it does not say that she was taking a bath or in any specific state of undress. Now, I do believe that if David could see Bathsheba, then Bathsheba could also see David. Modesty is more than a clothing issue.

    How have you heard this account preached down through the years?
     
  2. Deacon

    Deacon Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    7,794
    Likes Received:
    402
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Compare translations... washing/bathing, same Hebrew word.
    The different translations of the passage connote a similar idea, exposure during cleansing and visiblity from above, where only the king could see.
    Don’t presume how we wash or bathe in the present time imitates what was done in the ancient past. There would not be a bathtub or shower on the roof or in the area where Bathsheba was.

    Rob
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. InTheLight

    InTheLight Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2010
    Messages:
    22,133
    Likes Received:
    1,552
    Faith:
    Baptist
    KJV is the only translation that uses the word "washing". Every other translation I checked says "bathing".

    Agree with OP that Bathsheba needn't be on the roof of an adjacent building. David could have seen her through a window from his rooftop.


    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
     
  4. Pastor_Bob

    Pastor_Bob Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Messages:
    3,846
    Likes Received:
    175
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Obviously, she had to have some part of herself exposed in order to wash, but neither the text or the word itself would imply that there was immodesty involved at all. I'm not saying there wasn't, but it cannot be determined solely from the text. This same word is used several times to mean washing the feet, the hands, one's armor, etc.

    Where would it imply that she could been seen only from the roof of David's house?

    I agree with this. We also cannot presume that they completely or partially disrobed in an immodest way. More than likely, they did not enjoy the privacy that we enjoy today when we bathe.
     
  5. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O. Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    May 22, 2002
    Messages:
    10,070
    Likes Received:
    220
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Yes, I was always taught that Bathsheba was on her roof purposely enticing David. That he was the "innocent" and she was the evil woman trying to bring down God's favorite man.

    I believed that until I actually read the Bible for myself decades ago. Then I saw the truth, but you wouldn't believe the amount of people who still believe David wasn't taking the initiative and that it was all Bathsheba's doing.

    Things like this convict me as a Bible study teacher and Sunday School teacher to know the scriptures as to not make a faulty teaching that lead people into confusion or untruths.

    Even the scriptures that I think I know like the back of my hand ….. more than likely, I don't. Teachers and preachers should study more than anyone. Over and over even if they are sure that they know it - study some more.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  6. Lodic

    Lodic Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2018
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    6
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Even if (Big "If") David was just an innocent man enticed by Bathsheba, he clearly wasn't innocent when he tried to get her husband Uriah to sleep with her to cover up his own sin. Since that didn't work, he complicated his sin even further by having Uriah sent to the front lines to be killed. The amazing thing is that, despite his terrible sins, David is still a man after God's own heart. I have always loved his confession and prayer in Psalm 51.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. The Archangel

    The Archangel Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2003
    Messages:
    2,805
    Likes Received:
    114
    Faith:
    Baptist
    The fault here is laid at David's feet. Whether Bathsheba was enticing David is a moot point. Verse 1 of the passage clearly tells us that it is the time of year when kings go to war, but David, the king, is not out at the battlefront; he's at home in Jerusalem. The implication is more so that David is staying home for some reason, and--perhaps--it is to pursue Bathsheba.

    Many do teach that Bathsheba enticed David, but the point of the text is missed completely in that teaching. Also, it is likely that this episode has been and continues to be a great embarrassment to the Jews. Matthew (who is writing the Jewish Gospel) doesn't even name her, choosing instead to call her the wife of Uriah. It is likely the Jews thought Bathsheba to be the temptress here, but, again, the text doesn't lend itself to that idea.

    The Archangel
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  8. Lodic

    Lodic Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2018
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    6
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Very insightful, Archangel. I'd often wondered why Bathsheba was only referred to as "the wife of Uriah" in Matthew's gospel. Also, I was just checking out your wordpress blog - good stuff, Brother.
     
  9. The Archangel

    The Archangel Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2003
    Messages:
    2,805
    Likes Received:
    114
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Thank you for the kind words, friend. My teachers deserve the credit, really.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O. Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    May 22, 2002
    Messages:
    10,070
    Likes Received:
    220
    Faith:
    Baptist
    You are right about him not being where he was supposed to. Ergo, he wasn't in a mental, spiritual place where God wanted him to be - and he became bored. Bored to the point that he was restless and could not sleep. The Bible says, "in the evening David got up from his bed and walked around on his roof".

    He should have been sleeping. Sleep that comes from a righteous day's work.

    In addition to that, the battle he had been fighting with prior to this, with the Ammonites, in ongoing again. After David's baby dies, Joab sends word to David that he needs to come to the battle or else he [Joab] will take credit for the defeat.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2001
    Messages:
    7,574
    Likes Received:
    523
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Washing is found in a few other translations available on Bible Gateway, but you are right that bathing is the predominant translation in modern times (and a few have "taking a bath"). IMO, nowadays "bathing" probably has the connotation for most people today of immersing oneself naked in a tub of water (though it doesn't have to mean that). Washing tends to be thought of more generically.

    I don't think there is anything in the context that would require Bathsheba to be naked while washing herself. And it is not necessary to our understanding of what happened. Many a man has found a clothed woman alluring ("very beautiful" as the text says) and desired to have her, as does David in this case.

    Interestingly, the same word is used in verse 8 when David told Uriah to go his house and wash his feet. At Bible Gateway only the New American Bible (Revised Edition) uses "bathe" while all the others there use "wash".
     
    #11 rlvaughn, Dec 28, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
  12. Pastor_Bob

    Pastor_Bob Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Messages:
    3,846
    Likes Received:
    175
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I agree with everyone that said that David was to blame here. He should have been at the battle. He should have walked away or at the least, looked away when he saw Bathsheba and it created in him unclean thoughts. The simple truth is, you cannot always control what you see, but you can always control what you look at (bad grammar - great truth).

    I also think that David, when he "enquired after the woman," was not as concerned with her marital status as he was trying to determine if her husband was at home or at the battle. Upon hearing that she was Uriah's wife (vs. 3), he immediately sent for her knowing that Uriah was far away at the battle.

    On another note, however, I still maintain that if David could see Bathsheba, then Bathsheba could see David, and must have known that she was "washing herself" in plain view of David's roof. So, while David is definitely to blame, Bathsheba is not without fault, IMHO.
     
  13. Dave Gilbert

    Dave Gilbert Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2018
    Messages:
    708
    Likes Received:
    151
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I agree with all of this.
    Well said, sir.

    Pretty much as it appears...that Bathsheba and David were both on their roofs, and that she was in a state of undress.

    I agree ( 2 Samuel 11:3 ).
     
  14. MartyF

    MartyF Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2018
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    22
    Faith:
    Baptist
    In every wrong way imaginable.

    First, I've heard the consistent and constant misogynist takes on the story which is found nowhere in the original text.

    Second, preachers make the story all about sexual sin which is clearly not the point the story nor what God was truly upset with.

    I blame the KJV for the misunderstandings for being so difficult to understand. :)
     
  15. Dave Gilbert

    Dave Gilbert Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2018
    Messages:
    708
    Likes Received:
    151
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Strange, I don't find the KJV all that hard to understand...and the story is about sexual sin.
    David took Bathsheba in the heat of the moment, and then to cover up his adulterous affair, had Uriah killed in battle when he couldn't get him to sleep with his own wife in order to cover up the pregnancy.

    The Lord sent Nathan the prophet to confront David about his adultery ( 2 Samuel 12:1 ), and to remind him that He had given him wives...and that taking another's only wife displeased Him ( beginning in 2 Samuel 11:27 ).

    He pronounced the sword upon his house, and lost sons because of his sin with Bathsheba.

    I got all of that out of the KJV from when I was a young believer.
    I'm very sorry that you have trouble understanding it...:(
    Admittedly, there's a learning curve associated with it, but I found it both rewarding and it caused me to broaden my knowledge of English considerably.;)


    May God bless you sir.:)
     
  16. MartyF

    MartyF Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2018
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    22
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Any sex in these verses?

    2 Samuel 12:1-4 NLT
    So the LORD sent Nathan the prophet to tell David this story: “There were two men in a certain town. One was rich, and one was poor. [2] The rich man owned a great many sheep and cattle. [3] The poor man owned nothing but one little lamb he had bought. He raised that little lamb, and it grew up with his children. It ate from the man’s own plate and drank from his cup. He cuddled it in his arms like a baby daughter. [4] One day a guest arrived at the home of the rich man. But instead of killing an animal from his own flock or herd, he took the poor man’s lamb and killed it and prepared it for his guest.”

    Nathan is describing an injustice - not a sexual sin. Plain as day and night.

    2 Samuel 12:7-10 NLT
    Then Nathan said to David, “You are that man! The LORD, the God of Israel, says: I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul. [8] I gave you your master’s house and his wives and the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. And if that had not been enough, I would have given you much, much more. [9] Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed? For you have murdered Uriah the Hittite with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife. [10] From this time on, your family will live by the sword because you have despised me by taking Uriah’s wife to be your own.

    God gave David who was already married, Saul's wives. And if that weren't enough, God would have provided him with more wives. Is this a God who is seriously concerned with sexual sin? Any sensible reading of this can see that God's anger is not about sexual sin but rather injustice.

    The story is about someone who is rich and powerful unjustly murdering someone and taking what is not his.

    You've given me more reason to blame the KJV. :)
     
  17. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Messages:
    4,478
    Likes Received:
    22
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Good discussion. I think my major objection to much that used to be preached is that both of them were to blame. David was responsible because as a King, people were to obey him no matter what. Women in that day really weren't able to object. To me, this was comparable to a boss forcing himself on a subordinate in the company.
     
  18. Dave Gilbert

    Dave Gilbert Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2018
    Messages:
    708
    Likes Received:
    151
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Not in that passage, no.

    I agree in reference to the above story told by Nathan.
    It's an analogy, and speaks directly to David's taking of Uriah's wife for himself.

    Right there, in the underlined.;)
    Sexual sin, under the Law of Moses.:(
     
    #18 Dave Gilbert, Jan 6, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019
  19. Dave Gilbert

    Dave Gilbert Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2018
    Messages:
    708
    Likes Received:
    151
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Yes, He is.
    In fact, in David's time, Israel was under the Law, which stated:

    "Thou shalt not commit adultery." ( Exodus 20:14 ).
    The penalty for adultery, having sexual relations with another man's wife, was death:

    " And the man that committeth adultery with [another] man’s wife, [even he] that committeth adultery with his neighbour’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.
    11 And the man that lieth with his father’s wife hath uncovered his father’s nakedness: both of them shall surely be put to death; their blood [shall be] upon them."
    ( Leviticus 20:10-11 )


    Did David lie with Bathsheba and commit adultery with another man's wife?

    " And David sent and enquired after the woman. And [one] said, [Is] not this Bath-sheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?
    4 And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house.
    5 And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I [am] with child."
    ( 2 Samuel 11:3-5 )

    Sexual sin, right there.
    David got her pregnant, and had Uriah killed.

    Two violations of God's Law...

    Thou shalt not kill.
    Thou shalt not commit adultery.


    David was liable for both, and under the Law, should have been put to death.
    In fact, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is still concerned with sexual sins...so much so, that adulterers and fornicators have their place in the Lake of Fire:

    " But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death." ( Revelation 21:8 )

    " Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are [these]; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
    20 idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
    21 envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told [you] in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."
    ( Galatians 5:19-21 )

    The Lord is serious about sin, Marty...all sin.
    That's why He sent His Son as a sacrifice for it.

    Otherwise, we'd all be in Hell.:(

    I agree, that was part of it.

    Offhand I'd say that your hatred of the KJV is probably rooted in all the hype surrounding it.
    Again, I understand it just fine.;)
     
    #19 Dave Gilbert, Jan 6, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019
  20. MartyF

    MartyF Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2018
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    22
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Now this is the first part of the 11th chapter you had quoted.

    2 Samuel 11:2-5 NLT
    Late one afternoon, after his midday rest, David got out of bed and was walking on the roof of the palace. As he looked out over the city, he noticed a woman of unusual beauty taking a bath. [3] He sent someone to find out who she was, and he was told, “She is Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite.” [4] Then David sent messengers to get her; and when she came to the palace, he slept with her. She had just completed the purification rites after having her menstrual period. Then she returned home. [5] Later, when Bathsheba discovered that she was pregnant, she sent David a message, saying, “I’m pregnant.”

    Now which part of the above is specifically mentioned in the second part of Nathan's speech?

    2 Samuel 12:7-10 NLT
    Then Nathan said to David, “You are that man! The LORD, the God of Israel, says: I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul. [8] I gave you your master’s house and his wives and the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. And if that had not been enough, I would have given you much, much more. [9] Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed? For you have murdered Uriah the Hittite with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife. [10] From this time on, your family will live by the sword because you have despised me by taking Uriah’s wife to be your own.

    It's not there.

    Nathan doesn't mention what happened before Uriah was murdered as the cause of God's Judgement. The first part of the Nathan's speech makes clear the second part that this is about theft and injustice. This is common in Jewish literature.

    While the verses about killing those who commit adultery does show an interest by God of preventing adultery, the fact that people who picked up sticks were stoned to death doesn't really put too much weight on the adultery having the death penalty. In addition, Jesus said God made an accommodation for adultery within the Old Testament law. Once again, showing other things were more important to God.

    Did you pick up any sticks today?

    Now, am I saying that God liked and blessed what David did with Bathsheba before Uriah's death? No. David's actions clearly missed the mark. But what caused God to pass judgement on David was what he did after that.

    Yes, I think that KJV can no longer be blamed any more. I was mentioning KJV more "tongue in cheek" than out of hate. Still, people have wrongly placed the emphasis on sexual sin when the passage clearly emphasizes the injustice of a powerful and rich man committing murder and theft.
     
Loading...