Pt 2 Bathsheba’s Pain

**The Sermon will contain some sensitive content. Please use discretion for younger audiences or those with trauma history.**


Message Title: Pt 2 Bathsheba’s Pain
Theme: Reruns & Glory Days
Season: Ordinary Time
Main Text: 2 Samuel 11:26 – 12:13a
Scripture Reading: Ephesians 4:1-16
RCL Scripture: 2 Samuel 11:26 – 12:13a or Exodus 16:2-4, 9-15 Psalm 51:1-12 or Psalm 78:23-29 Ephesians 4:1-16 John 6:24-35
Focus: David is rebuked for his actions, receives consequences, but Bathsheba is required to stay in his household.
Function: To acknowledge how our actions impact others and to hold ourselves accountable.
Other Notes senior Sunday—communion Sunday

SCRIPTURE READING: Ephesians 4:1-16 Therefore, as a prisoner for the Lord, I encourage you to live as people worthy of the call you received from God. Conduct yourselves with all humility, gentleness, and patience. Accept each other with love, and make an effort to preserve the unity of the Spirit with the peace that ties you together. You are one body and one spirit, just as God also called you in one hope. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of all, who is over all, through all, and in all. God has given his grace to each one of us measured out by the gift that is given by Christ. That’s why scripture says, When he climbed up to the heights, he captured prisoners, and he gave gifts to people.[a] What does the phrase “he climbed up” mean if it doesn’t mean that he had first gone down into the lower regions, the earth? 10 The one who went down is the same one who climbed up above all the heavens so that he might fill everything. 11 He gave some apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers. 12 His purpose was to equip God’s people for the work of serving and building up the body of Christ 13 until we all reach the unity of faith and knowledge of God’s Son. God’s goal is for us to become mature adults—to be fully grown, measured by the standard of the fullness of Christ. 14 As a result, we aren’t supposed to be infants any longer who can be tossed and blown around by every wind that comes from teaching with deceitful scheming and the tricks people play to deliberately mislead others. 15 Instead, by speaking the truth with love, let’s grow in every way into Christ, 16 who is the head. The whole body grows from him, as it is joined and held together by all the supporting ligaments. The body makes itself grow in that it builds itself up with love as each one does its part.


  1. AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT: How many of you were raised with a “traditional” family structure where the mother stays home and cares for the children while the father works?
    1. I grew up with the opposite. My dad cared for us and my mother worked. Trust me, this was the best arrangement as my dad is SIGNIFICANTLY the better cook. However, growing up in the 80’s and 90’s, this arrangement wasn’t popular. Sometimes my dad got flack from other Christian men. They asked him when he was going to “man up” and be the bread winner of our household.
  2. Not every family looks exactly the same. Some of us were raised in divorced or single parent households. Perhaps someone online was raised in the foster care or adopted. I love the phrase “chosen family.”
  3. A great example of a tv show with a “chosen family” structure is Full house. This show was an American sitcom that ran from 1987 to 1995.
    1. Premise: After the death of his wife Danny Tanner recruits his brother-in-law Jesse, and his best friend since childhood, Joey, to help raise his three young daughters—DJ, Stephanie and Michelle. (wiki)
    2. The show is full of humorous moments but also provides amazing life lessons and growth opportunities all with a background laugh track. I think a classic picture of this show is Danny Tanner on one knee talking to his daughters about tough topics.

TRANSITION: Full House showed a softer side to men as parents and opened doors for families to have similar hard conversations. In our text for today, we are continuing the story of David and Bathsheba. Some of the tough themes brought up last week will be present again today. Once again, if the topic of rape is a difficult one for you, take some time and come back to this sermon at another date.

MAIN TEXT: 2 Samuel 11:26 – 12:13

26When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband Uriah was dead, she mourned for her husband. 27After the time of mourning was over, David sent for her and brought her back to his house. She became his wife and bore him a son. But what David had done was evil in the Lord’s eyes. 12 So the Lord sent Nathan to David.

Parable & Response: When Nathan arrived he said, “There were two men in the same city, one rich, one poor. 2The rich man had a lot of sheep and cattle, 3but the poor man had nothing—just one small ewe lamb that he had bought. He raised that lamb, and it grew up with him and his children. It would eat from his food and drink from his cup—even sleep in his arms! It was like a daughter to him. 4“Now a traveler came to visit the rich man, but he wasn’t willing to take anything from his own flock or herd to prepare for the guest who had arrived. Instead, he took the poor man’s ewe lamb and prepared it for the visitor.” 5David got very angry at the man, and he said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the one who did this is demonic! 6He must restore the ewe lamb seven times overbecause he did this and because he had no compassion.” 7“You are that man!” Nathan told David.

Consequences: “This is what the Lord God of Israel says: I anointed you king over Israel and delivered you from Saul’s power. 8I gave your master’s houseto you, and gave his wives into your embrace. I gave you the houseof Israel and Judah. If that was too little, I would have given even more. 9Why have you despised the Lord’s word by doing what is evil in his eyes? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and taken his wife as your own. You used the Ammonites to kill him. 10Because of that, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite as your own, the sword will never leave your own house. 11“This is what the Lord says: I am making trouble come against you from inside your own family. Before your very eyes I will take your wives away and give them to your friend, and he will have sex with your wives in broad daylight. 12You did what you did secretly, but I will do what I am doing before all Israel in the light of day.” 13“I’ve sinned against the Lord!” David said to Nathan. “The Lord has removed your sin,” Nathan replied to David. “You won’t die. 14However, because you have utterly disrespected the Lordby doing this, the son born to you will definitely die.” 15Then Nathan went home.

EXPLAINATION: David receives consequences for his actions and he repents.

  1. If you’re reading along, David rapes Bathsheba and then kills her husband. THEN Bathsheba is expected to marry David.
    1. Bathsheba marries her rapist and then gives birth to his son.
  2. But what David had done was evil in the Lord’s eyes
    1. Nathan uses a parable to show David that he was wrong
      1. David sees how his actions were evil
        1. David killed Uriah
        2. David ‘took’ Bathsheba
        3. David used the Ammonites to kill Uriah
      2. David receives permanent consequences for his actions (which will continue to unfold in following weeks)
        1. “The sword will never leave your house”—trouble will be within David’s family
        2. “Your wives will be taken by friends” and the scandal will be public
      3. David repents of his actions.- Psalm 51 is a psalm of repentance about this exact situation.
        1. 10Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. 11Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. 12Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. (Psalm 51:10-12)

INTERPRETATION: David receives consequences for his actions and he repents.

  1. Scripture update
  • 1 Samuel 8
    • 1 Samuel 15-16
    • 1 Samuel 17-18
    • 2 Samuel 1
    • 2 Samuel 5
    • 2 Samuel 6
    • 2 Samuel 7
    • 2 Samuel 11
    • 2 Samuel 12
    • 2 Samuel 18
    • 1 Kings 2-3
    • 1 Kings 8
  1. Bathsheba loses her husband, is forced married to her rapist, and then loses her son.
    1. The Jewish law required rapists to pay the bride price and marry their victims. (Deuteronomy 22: 28-29) Ironically, this was considered a mercy on the woman. A woman who was no longer a virgin was undesirable as a wife. If a victim didn’t marry their rapist, they would be forced to beg or prostitution to survive. A woman couldn’t own property or earn their own income, they depended on men. Bathsheba was given no choice.
      1. Source:
    2. We know from the story of Esther—women are not given a choice in life especially with matters of the king. The story of Vashti in Esther is a tragic example.
  2. David’s actions and consequences impact Bathsheba. Bathsheba is stuck in the consequences of David’s actions.
    1. However, Bathsheba’s presence is also a consequence of David’s actions. She is a daily reminder to David of his gigantic failure. Because of Jewish law, David has to care for Bathsheba for the rest of his life. He doesn’t get to abandon her like an unwanted object.
    2. On top of this, David’s shame stays in the lineage of Jesus. David is listed as having a son w/ the wife of Uriah. David is listed as an adulterer in the lineage of Jesus. (Matthew 1:6)

APPLICATION: To acknowledge how our actions impact others and to hold ourselves accountable.

  1. Why does Bathsheba carry the consequences of David’s actions?
  2. Sometimes it is easier to ignore the truth: Our actions impact other people.
    1. David’s consequences spilled over onto Bathsheba.
    2. A drunk driver’s consequences could impact another family.
    3. Unresolved: David acknowledged that his actions were evil—they weren’t what God intended for David. And David confessed. There are still a lot of unresolved tensions in this passage, that we could discuss in Bible Study or over coffee.
  3. COMMUNION: God’s graces renew every morning. God didn’t give up on David. God forgave David when David confessed. BUT God did not remove David’s consequences. When David became king, God promised David this would happen. He wouldn’t treat David like Saul—God would correct David like a parent. We confess our wrong doings and God’s graces renew. Yet consequences can still remain.
    1. We are going to share communion together.  As we prepare for communion we are also going to practice confession together. May these words we share stir our hearts to change our lives and claim responsibility for our actions.
    2. Confession: For the moment, we’re setting David aside and considering our own stories.
      1. Almighty and most merciful Father; 
      2. We have erred and strayed from your ways like lost sheep. 
      3. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. 
      4. We have offended against your holy laws. 
      5. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; 
      6. And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; 
      7. And there is no health in us. 
      8. We confess, O God, that these are great evils.
      9. Have mercy on us, O Lord, for we are miserable offenders. Amen.
    3. **This time we will come forward**


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