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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: "Splash" 4-11-13 Deadline (04/04/13)

TITLE: A Large Splattering of Consequences
By Linda Berg


It was spring, the time of year when kings go to war. But King David didn’t. He sent Joab out with his men and the whole Israel army to battle the Ammonites. David stayed home in Jerusalem.

We aren’t told why he stayed home. But as the story is written we see that one single choice of choosing to stay home, instead of honoring his kingly duty, takes on a life all it’s own.

As the story unfolds, David one evening gets up from his bed and walks around on the roof of his palace. He sees a woman bathing. She is beautiful. His pulse quickens and heat rises in his face as he succumbs to her physical beauty with the lust of his eyes and ultimately his heart.

He sends someone to find out about her. The messenger returns with information for King David. She is of high social standing and her husband is Uriah the Hittite, a soldier in David’s army now at war.

Those things should have been a warning. But the man with a history of unrestrained sexual pursuits to satisfy his passions misses it....or refuses it.

He sends messengers to get her. She comes to him and he sleeps with her.

Later, after returning home, she sends word of her pregnancy to King David.

Now David is panicked. His sin will be known. Quickly his mind turns over numerous scenarios as he devises a plan to hide his sin.

He sends for Joab and requests that Joab tell Uriah to return home. Uriah does as he is commanded. David plays concern as he asks questions of Uriah about Joab, the soldiers and status of the war. Then King David makes an offer to Uriah to go to his own home to wash his feet.

David’s scheming plan backfires. Uriah has so much personal integrity that he is unwilling to go home and risk the desire of being with his wife; the Jewish custom forbids sexual intercourse when a soldier is engaged in war.

When David discovers this action of Uriah, he goes into manipulation mode. Before that evening is over, David offers Uriah drink, drinking with him and making him drunk. Again, Uriah does not return home to sleep.

The words aren’t there in the text, but you can see and feel the intensity of desperation David is feeling as he attempts to keep this sin of adultery with Bathsheba hidden.

Another plan is put into action. David blatantly bold writes a letter to be given to Joab concerning the new battle plan of attack. He sends it via Uriah’s own hand to Joab. The message, “Put Uriah at the front line where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.”

Uriah is killed in battle. His wife mourns for him. David takes her as his wife. She bears David a son.

But the thing David did displeased the Lord.

About a year later the Lord sends Nathan to David. Nathan tells David a story. “There were two men, one rich and one poor. The rich man had abundant cattle and sheep but the poor man had only one little ewe. A traveler came to visit the rich man. The rich man, not wanting to use one of his own sheep, took the little ewe to feed to his guest.”

Red color creeping into his face and raising his fists in anger, David says, “Who did this, he deserves to die.” Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man!”

I can see David begin to physically withdraw and crumble as Nathan firmly states all that God had done for David. Nathan finished his verbal pummeling with these words, “Why did you despise the word of the Lord by doing what is evil in his sight?’

David got it!

Nathan tells David the consequences that he will suffer as the result of his sin, regardless of God’s forgiveness.

And so it is that the life of King David, once director of his and others lives, continues the rest of his life at the mercy of events: consequence of his sin.

His baby son gets sick and dies. His son rapes his daughter. His son murders a son. An insurrection and civil war breaks out lead by his son. The same son who imitates David’s lack of control leads Israel away from God.

A small splash of sin…a large splattering of consequences.

NIV 2 Samuel 11:15, 2 Samuel 12:7, 2 Samuel 12:9

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This article has been read 295 times
Member Comments
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C D Swanson 04/13/13
Brilliant job of Biblical references in this powerful entry.

God bless~
Christina Banks 04/15/13
I recently told this story to my junior church class. Isn't it amazing how we humans like to cover up one wrong with another and another until we are completely bogged down in our sin? I also think it is wonderful that David repented and God was able to still call him a man after God's own heart. We can learn so much from David, as you showed us in your piece. Thank you!
lynn gipson 04/15/13
Oh my, this is powerful and compelling to read. You did a fantastic job with this story and the message comes through so loud and clear.

Excellent writing!
Alicia Renkema04/15/13
First of all you did a simply superb job of summarizing this most intimate of Biblical accounts in the space allotted. Not only that, but you brought home the point beautifully of the ripple effect of one action or in acton resulting in a life time of consequences. I loved devotional, and the ending was perfect.That one splash made such an impression, that it was all that was needed. A very memorable re-telling of one my favorite Bible stories -- because there is such a lesson to be learned. Your writing was extremely descriptive, and you carried the plot along nicely, it had the feel of almost reading it for the first time.
Dana Anders04/15/13
You tell this story so well, and I like the way you finish so powerfully. The message really hits home. Well done.
Bea Edwards 04/15/13
Well thought out and written. Beginning with your title, throughout the supurb recounting, to the lessons that should be learned from this important story, you did a great job!
Judith Gayle Smith04/15/13
Wow. Truth and consequences. A vivid, very human retelling of how King David's breaking God's 10th Commandment to not covet lead him to adultery and murder.
Myrna Noyes04/16/13
Great message in this excellent retelling of the story of David, Bathseba, and Uriah! That last line holds so much truth: "A small splash of sin…a large splattering of consequences."
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 04/18/13
Congratulations on ranking 6th in your level and 24 overall!