David

Discussion in 'Sacred Scripture' started by Botolph, Aug 20, 2018.

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  1. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    Recently in the lectionary we use we have been travelling through some of the David material. This is the passage that concludes Davids unjust dealing with Uriah the Hittite and his wife Bathsheba.

    2 Samuel 22:7-13a
    Nathan said to David, ‘You are the man! Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: I anointed you king over Israel, and I rescued you from the hand of Saul; I gave you your master’s house, and your master’s wives into your bosom, and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would have added as much more. Why have you despised the word of the Lord, to do what is evil in his sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house, for you have despised me, and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.Thus says the Lord: I will raise up trouble against you from within your own house; and I will take your wives before your eyes, and give them to your neighbour, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this very sun. For you did it secretly; but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.’ David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord.’ ​

    and this week the readings included.

    1 Kings 3:6
    And Solomon said, ‘You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant my father David, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart towards you; and you have kept for him this great and steadfast love, and have given him a son to sit on his throne today. ​

    The reading possibly stood in stark highlight, given that we had sermons about the abuse of authority and the corruption involved, and David's complicity in the effective murder of Uriah the Hittite.

    I guess the ongoing complexity I find in the passages include that Uriah was not a Jew, but a Hittite, and Bathsheba was Solomon's Mother by a later pregnancy. The picture of David cast in Kings on the lips of Solomon simply does not sound like David as discussed in the 2 Samuel passages. I guess one of the things is that I think it gives the text credibility, given the amazing shadow and depth in the characters.

    I am not altogether certain that David is a particularly good role model, nonetheless.
     
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  2. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I have found it difficult to take most main characters of the Old Testament as good role models. Of all the national 'sacred narratives' of ancient times, the Old Testament is probably the most self-demeaning, self-effacing, and repenting.

    Our first reaction may be to recoil against that, and take things that are more heroic, positive, and man-affirming, as every other people's 'sacred narratives' are (Gilgamesh, Beowulf, Odyssey, Aenedid, etc).

    But then you ask, why did the people write something that was so self-effacing. And then you see that they couldn't have written it on their own, that the finger of God is on this work, and the Old Testament is how God sees Man; corrupt, broken, and in constant need of repentance; not the way Man sees Man- clean, perfectible, and ready to do all good works.
     
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  3. BibleHoarder

    BibleHoarder Active Member

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    This is entirely true and proof of its inspiration. I have pondered it many times. Pre-Christian pagan literature (such as the Greek ones mentioned) are usually repugnant. I would even go as far as saying that I quite like the post-Christian revisions of the King Arthur stories. It made him a much more honorable character.
     
  4. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    There are lots of examples in the Old Testament where it doesn't seem to go according to the script. Hagar's child, Esau and Jacob, David as the youngest is chosen, and then David and Bathsheba are all stories which do not sit that well with an ordered and perfectly resolved community. For those who want a pursue and undefiled religion, where everything is neat and perfect and in order, there is a problem in this kind of background. There is a lot that is grubby, ill-defined and imperfect. A lot of this, I suspect, is a lot more pragmatic than we would imagine.

    I am just finishing a three week review of the Henry VIII story, and I regularly have RCC members tell me what a bad apple Henry was. It is true that there is a lot of the story that is grubby, and certainly would not stand the scrutiny of an intrusive media.

    All I can say is that if you were going to make up the story, I don't believe that this is the story you would make up. I guess it tells us that God is a God of surprises. God is a God of forgiveness. When it comes to the David story, as with the Henry VIII story, these are not simple narratives of goodies and baddies, as we seem to aspire to, but rather more complex real world characters.

    I met a man the other day who was asserting that the story of David is a pure fabrication and there never was such a man. I can not help but feel it is the inelegance of the text that attests to its veracity.
     
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  5. Tiffy

    Tiffy Active Member

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    Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. ESV. Jn.16:7-11. KJV

    Dictionary Definition g1651. ἐλέγχω elegchō; of uncertain affinity; to confute, admonish: — convict, convince, tell a fault, rebuke, reprove.
    AV (17) - reprove 6, rebuke 5, convince 4, tell (one's) fault 1, convict 1;
    to convict, refute, confute generally with a suggestion of shame of the person convicted by conviction to bring to the light, to expose to find fault with, correct by word to reprehend severely, chide, admonish, reprove to call to account, show one his fault, demand an explanation by deed to chasten, to punish.

    ἐλέγχω elegchō, means all and any of the above nuances. The most important, in my opinion, is the implication that human beings have no idea what sin really IS. We think we know, we are fairly certain we know when we apply the label of 'sinner' to others, but in fact no one in the old testament understood what SIN actually was, because Christ had not yet 'Returned to His Father' and sent upon us The Holy Spirit, who it is that convicts, us of sin, and also refutes our distorted human presumptions and prejudices concerning the extent and nature our own sin, and that of others. The Holy Spirit in effect tells us "WE are wrong about sin". Not just that we have all sinned and continue to do so, that we don't even properly understand what sin actually IS. Rom.7:14-25. It is the Holy Spirit who 'educates us' in the subject, if we are but willing to listen to the lectures, and not just assume we already know.

    Until confronted by Nathan, who was directed and informed by The Holy Spirit in his office of Prophet, David had no notion that he had sinned in the face of God. He was the king, he could do anything he took a mind to do, surely? Thus David is a very good example of unregenerate man. Anointed with authority but unfit to wield it through ignorance of God's ways. This was why God would not allow David to build 'The House of God'. It was to David's son Solomon, a man of peace, that God allowed that privilege.

    Even Solomon though was not as wise as all that. He was only human after all and The Spirit had not yet been given to all who may ask. Jn.7:39. Lk.11:11-13.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2018
  6. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Nice parallel
     
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  7. JoeLaughon

    JoeLaughon Active Member Anglican

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    The chutzpah of those who hold up Henry VIII as some invalidating character (though much of the English Reformation occurs after Henry) when the bishopric of Rome has long been held by truly evil men in the past, is genuinely astounding.
     
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  8. BibleHoarder

    BibleHoarder Active Member

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    The adultery scandal is what made me wonder how Anglicanism could be taken seriously, because I had read Orthodox vs. Roman debates, but when I went to investigate what Anglicanism truly was and how it came to be, I was pleasantly surprised. If I ever chose to convert to some form of Catholicism (as I am still on the fence), I would choose Anglicanism over Orthodoxy or Romanism any day.
     

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