Study from God’s Word… 2nd Samuel 12: 18 – 32; 2nd Sam. 12: 26-31 [1st Chron. 20: 1-3]; 2nd Sam. 8: 2 [1st Chron. 18: 2]; 2nd Sam. 8: 3,4,7,8 [2nd Chron. 18: 3,4,7,8]; 2nd Sam. 8: 5-6 [1st Chron. 18: 5-6]; 2nd Sam. 8: 13-14 [1st Chron. 18: 12-13]; 2nd Sam. 8: 9-10 [1st Chron. 18: 9-10]; 2nd Sam. 8: 11-12 [1st Chron. 18: 11]; 1st Chron. 18: 10; 2nd Sam. 23: 8 [1st Chron. 11: 11]; 2nd Sam. 23: 9-10 [1st Chron. 11: 12-14]; 2nd Sam. 23: 11-12; 2nd Sam. 23: 13-17 [1st Chron. 11: 15-19]; 2nd Sam. 23: 18-19 [1st Chron. 11: 20-21]; 2nd Sam. 23: 20-23 [1st Chron. 11: 22-25]; 2nd Sam. 23: 24-39 [1st Chron. 11: 26-47] … Passage for Reflection: 2nd Samuel 12: 22-23 … NIV 22 He [David] answered, "While the child [the child David conceived with Bathsheba ] was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought, 'Who knows? The LORD may be gracious to me and let the child live.' 23 But now that 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."
My Journal for Today: God knows best! … Do we really believe that? … David did; and it was tested severely when the child, born by Bathsheba was taken from them by God. And when the child became ill, after Nathan’s prophesy of the babe’s death, David fasted, prayed for God to spare the child; and he wept – deeply wept – as the child passed from this earth into heaven. [BTW, this passage is one of the few proof texts in Scripture applying to the truth that children, before the age of accountability, are taken into heaven.]
But after the child does die, in today’s highlight passage, David seems almost blasé, doesn’t he? Were all those crocodile tears before the child’s death merely show for his people and God? … NO, with David, what you see in his actions is who the “man after God’s own heart” is in life. When David is joyful, he dances with delight. When he’s sad, he weeps deeply. And when he recognizes God’s will, our David is resigned in faith and, like a child, he surrenders his own will to that of God. And that, my friends, is what true faith – a heart which totally trusts God – is all about.
The child died. David knew, from his deep and intimate relationship with God, that God knew what was best for David, for Bathsheba, for the world, and for that child. David knew, in his heart that, though he would not be able to have this child in his life on this earth, he [David] would be with the child in heaven. We see that in 2nd Sam. 12: 23b, which reads, ” … I [David] will go to him [his son], but he will not return to me.”
Dr. Smith, in his devotional for today, points out that we rarely have our faith really tested unless some deep, personal tragedy or challenge transpires in our life. In instances, like the one illustrated by the passage today, can we – and do we – resign ourselves to God’s will and move on with life, clinging to our relationship with God and trusting that the LORD has nothing but our best when He allows or engineers those life challenges? David knew that he couldn’t go back and have a “do over” with regard to his sin with Bathsheba. He knew that the boy was not going to be with him in life; and He knew – and trusted – that God had what was best for the boy in heaven. So, David sucked it up; and moved on, trusting in his LORD.
How about it? Are we able to trust in God that way? As Smith writes for our perusal this morning, ”Is there some bitter disappointment in my life that I need to turn completely over to God this very day?” You, like me, will need to answer that question and let it test our faith in God.
My Prayer for Today: LORD, in my head I trust You; but help it become my heart if/when I’m tested. Amen