5 Dec 2013 by Lim Poh Ann-
“The king must not build up a large stable of horses for himself or send his people to Egypt to buy horses, for the Lord has told you, ‘You must never return to Egypt.’ The king must not take many wives for himself, because they will turn his heart away from the Lord. And he must not accumulate large amounts of wealth in silver and gold for himself” (Deuteronomy 17:16-17).
Did King David, a ‘man after God’s own heart’, fulfill these conditions? No. He failed in two out of three areas.
At a time when kings were supposed to lead armies into battle, King David was idling. A naked lady bathing at the rooftop caught his eye. And the ‘man after God’s own heart’ fell for the charms of another man’s wife. Like tumbling dominoes, events unfolded swiftly, moving David from temptation to lust to adultery and to murder (2 Samuel 11: 1-17).
Because he could not control his lust, David not only committed adultery with Bathsheba but was instrumental in the death of her husband, Uriah. The latter was sent to the frontline where he was most likely to be struck down in battle.
What accounted for David’s weakness for other women? He already had Abigail, Ahinoam and Michal as his wives before Bathsheba came into the scene (1 Samuel 25: 42-44). Clearly what was sitting on the torso’s upper pole could not control what was on its lower pole.
Clearly both David and Solomon have forgotten the injunction in Proverbs 31:3: “Do not give your strength to women, your ways to those who destroy kings.”
Is it a “natural weakness” to fall for other women when one becomes rich and powerful—when every wish almost immediately becomes a reality?
Was it the “philandering genes” Solomon inherited from his father David that caused the former to have seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines (1 Kings 11:3)?
Nobody says it’s going to be easy to stay faithful. It’s difficult—especially for those who seemingly have everything in life:“Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,
Let not the mighty man glory in his might,
Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;
But let him who glories glory in this,
That he understands and knows Me,
That I am the Lord, exercising loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.
For in these I delight,” says the Lord.(Jeremiah 9:23-24)
- Does personal glory (fame and power) captivate us?
- Are we enamoured with gold (wealth and possessions such as property and cars)?
- Do we get charmed easily by girls (or let’s say the ‘opposite sex’ as it works both ways)?
For the Word makes it plain:“The human heart is the most deceitful of all things,
and desperately wicked.
Who really knows how bad it is?”(Jeremiah 17:9)
Note: Dr Lim Poh Ann is a medical practitioner. He was the former editor of Asian Beacon magazine (December 2008 – October 2011).
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