In Me You May Have Peace

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2 SAMUEL 12:1-31 | JOHN 16:1-33 | PSALM 119:65-80 | PROVERBS 16:4-5

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‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. 8 I gave your master’s house to you, and your master’s wives into your arms. I gave you all Israel and Judah. And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more. 9 Why did you despise the word of the LORD by doing what is evil in his eyes? You struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own. You killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. 10 Now, therefore, the sword will never depart from your house, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your own.’ 

These are the words of the Lord through the prophet Nathan to David for what he has done.  David has indeed done a grievous thing in the sight of the Lord, and now there will be consequences.

But David is repentant and seeks the Lord’s forgiveness.  And yet, that is not sufficient to spare the child that is to be soon born to David and Bathsheba.  The child dies within seven days of birth, and David realizes the price that has been exacted of him.  However, the next child that is born of this union is none other than Solomon, the great and wise future king of Israel.

Turning now to our reading in the gospel according to John, we are fast approaching the horrific end that Jesus is to soon face.  Jesus has been telling his disciples so many things:  words of encouragement and exhortation, all of these not completely comprehensible by the disciples.  But Jesus knows that it won’t be long that they will understand. 

Today, Jesus says:  But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away.  Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment:  about sin, because people do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

But Jesus does take a moment to speak plainly to his disciples.  He says now:  25“Though I have been speaking figuratively, a time is coming when I will no longer use this kind of language but will tell you plainly about my Father. 26 In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. 27 No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”

Finally, Jesus speaks one of the most comforting words to his bewildered disciples, and by extension to all of us.  He says:  33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Turning now to our reading of the psalms, we still continue with the long Psalm 119.  Some verses worthy of meditation:

71 It was good for me to be afflicted
so that I might learn your decrees.
72 The law from your mouth is more precious to me
than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.

One can only sense where such emotions must stem from—deep within the heart of king David—as he pens these lines:

75 I know, LORD, that your laws are righteous,
and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.
76 May your unfailing love be my comfort,
according to your promise to your servant.
77 Let your compassion come to me that I may live,
for your law is my delight.

And finally, two verses from the book of Proverbs that make no bones about the fact that God will not be mocked; rather, God will take care of business, as and when the time is right.  Solomon, wise king of Israel, says this:

4 The LORD works out everything to its proper end—
even the wicked for a day of disaster.

5 The LORD detests all the proud of heart.
Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.

May God bless the reading and reflection of His Word.

2 thoughts on “In Me You May Have Peace

  1. Every movement of this story of David and his sin is very powerful, even the way Nathan brings to the king’s attention the depth of the wrong that he has done; David’s deep remorse and his grief; but then his getting up and getting on with his life as well – amazing! And from all this emerges Ps 51, one of the most moving passages in all of scripture.

    1. Thank you for your thoughtful observations; you are right in that Psalm 51 must have been written by David after all this. I just looked it up again, and found these verses to be very powerful:

      16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
      you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
      17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
      a broken and contrite heart
      you, God, will not despise.

      But on a slightly tangential note, to what extent did Bathsheba play a role in all this? I mean, sure, David already had many wives, and in the times of the day, a man could have multiple wives, and even more so the king, right? But did Bathsheba resist the king’s advances; was she even aware of the king’s designs upon her; did she know she had caught the king’s eye; did she reciprocate the king’s affections? Especially after she learned of her husband’s death, did she wonder and ask the king if he had had a hand in that? Might Bathsheba herself be held accountable to some degree for the downfall of the king of Israel? I don’t know… just wondering…

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