“Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.”
Did Solomon Remember?
I can’t help but wonder if Solomon was thinking of his own house when he wrote this. How well did he know the words that Nathan spoke unto his father, King David?
“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, because you have despised me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.” – 2 Samuel 12:9-10 ESV
Uriah had been nothing but a loyal, devoted soldier. Even when David tried to get him to go home to be with his wife, Uriah couldn’t bear the thought of being comfortable while his fellow soldiers were sleeping on the battlefield (2 Samuel 11:11). And what did Uriah receive in return for his loyalty? A death sentence.
Was Solomon thinking of his brother, Absalom, the one who tried to kill his father? Did he think of his sister, Tamar, who was raped by her brother, Amnon (2 Samuel 13:10-20)? I wonder what he thought when he looked around at his family. Did he ever think to himself, “Why, dad? Why?”
Do I Hear Nathan?
It is one thing to reward evil with evil. Most people understand the concept of “an eye for an eye.” However, it is a vile, ruthless, selfish man who accepts good from another, only to give evil in return. He deserves whatever bad may come.
That should make all of us think. Has God been good to us? What have we given Him in return?
The prophet Nathan told David, “Thou art the man” (2 Samuel 12:7). What would he tell us?
By the Way
On a different note, some say the Bible cannot be the Word of God because it defames the character of the prophets. They (Muslims) say stories like the one told in 2 Samuel 11 and 12 are proof the Bible is a fabrication. The Koran, they say, would never, never allow the moral character of a prophet to be questioned, but would hold such role models in high esteem, blotting out any record of sin.
Fortunately for us, the Bible IS true. It doesn’t candy coat the bad, but shows how God can work through flawed, fallen men. The Bible, because it is true, highlights the goodness and grace of God, not the righteousness of man.
David was “the man,” but David was human. Unlike the “perfect prophets” in other religions, David prayed, “Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin [emphasis added]” (Psalm 51:2).
I can relate. What about you?