B is for Bath
I intended to continue on a trend of types of Christ. Everything within me said, “Write about Boaz, the kinsman redeemer.” Until it actually came time to write.
B is for Bath Time
Then I couldn’t seem to stop thinking about Bathsheba. The woman who got spotted by King David while she was bathing on her roof.
Ironic that the woman named Bathsheba makes her entrance to the Bible while bathing?
Except while Bathsheba might contain the word bath, it doesn’t have anything to do with the word bath. Bathsheba actually means daughter of the oath.
Bathsheba was performing the ritual bathing purification after her menstrual cycle ended when King David noticed her. He inquired as to who she was, and was told that she was the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah.
Both men were respected warriors in King David’s army.
King David lusted after what he saw, however, and sent his men to get her. Once she came to the palace, he slept with her.
Nowhere in this part of the story do we get Bathsheba’s side of the story. All we know is that she went to the King’s palace.
From a Bath to a Baby
During this encounter, Bathsheba conceives.
David, a man after God’s heart, has had an affair that resulted in impregnating another man’s wife.
So, David and Bathsheba admit to their affair, repent, and deal with the consequences of the sin, right?
No. Of course not.
David calls Bathsheba’s husband home from the war, hoping he will sleep with his wife and believe the child is his. However, Uriah is true to his calling and refuses to find comfort in home while the troops are still in the field. So, instead of going home to his wife, he sleeps at the palace entrance with the king’s palace guard.
The next day David tries to trick Uriah into going home by getting him drunk first. Again, Uriah sleeps with the king’s palace guard.
David can’t let Bathsheba bear his child with Uriah in the picture. Since he can’t trick Uriah into sleeping with his own wife, he comes up with a plan to lose Uriah’s life in battle.
And after the next battle, Bathsheba finds herself mourning the loss of her husband, Uriah.
When the period of mourning is over, however, Bathsheba finds herself whisked to the palace as one of David’s wives. She gave birth to a son, but he didn’t survive.
She became pregnant again by David and gave birth to Solomon. God was very happy with the birth of this child.
Out of the Bubbles
At the end of David’s life, it appeared that an older son, Adonijah, was going to secede him on the throne.
Bathsheba actually appears assertive and confident at this point in time. She goes straight to David and presents him with her case.
She replied, “My lord, you made a vow before the LORD your God when you said to me, ‘Your son Solomon will surely be the next king and will sit on my throne.’ But instead, Adonijah has made himself king, and my lord the king does not even know about it. … If you do not act, my son Solomon and I will be treated as criminals as soon as my lord the king has died. 1 Kings 1:17-18, 21
King David granted her request and Solomon was made king that very day.
Bathsheba’s story seems to be one soaked in sin. The fall of the man after God’s own heart. However, from the brief encounters with her in scripture, we see a woman that is strong and faithful. We don’t see her heart, other than when scripture says she mourns the death of her first husband, at all in her appearance here.
How many of us have found ourselves trapped in situations like Bathsheba? We had our lives planned out one way, but someone else’s sin (David), someone else’s honor (Uriah), or someone else’s ambition (Adonijah) places insurmountable challenges in our paths that we must deal with.
Baths Can Be Deadly
Life happens. Sometimes it’s by no fault, at least no obviously visible fault, of our own.
We do have a choice on how we deal with it.
Bathsheba could have chosen not to tell David of her pregnancy. She could have chosen to tell her family and community that King David had raped her. Bathsheba could have simply ran away.
She didn’t do any of those things. She stood firm and fought for what she thought was right.
Bathsheba, based on what we know, didn’t kill her husband. Did she know that David had him killed? I don’t know.
However, David’s sin cost her not only the life of her husband, but also the life of her firstborn.
Our sin has consequences. Sometimes those consequences affect others more than they affect us.