This is probably a good time to explain what I am trying to accomplish with this Follow Me! series. The answer is: I really don’t know. As I read here and there, I read about some character(whether major or minor,) and something comes to mind. There you have it: the random workings of my mind, and hopefully the leading of the Holy Spirit.
“But Uriah slept at the door of the king’s house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house. And when they had told David, saying, Uriah went not down unto his house, David said unto Uriah, Camest thou not from thy journey? why then didst thou not go down unto thine house? And Uriah said unto David, The ark, and Israel, and Judah, abide in tents; and my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house, to eat and to drink, and to lie with my wife? as thou livest, and as thy soul liveth, I will not do this thing.” 2 Samuel 11:9-11
We all know this story I suppose. King David was hanging around the house while his armies were off fighting the enemy; he wasn’t really being where he was supposed to be. He observed Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah, bathing and was tempted. He acted on that temptation, committed adultery with her, and she became pregnant. Uh oh, right? Wait, there’s more. We know the more. David attempted to cover up his own indiscretion by bringing Uriah home to be with his own wife; that failed and David had to go to Plan B. Sadly Plan B involved the murder of Uriah. This is all very sad.
Why did David’s plan to hide his adultery with Bathsheba fail? It was a great plan, really. All that had to happen was for Uriah to sleep with his own wife, and the entire world would think her baby was his!
Uriah was a pretty special guy, apparently. We know he was special enough that getting a personal invitation from King David was seemingly not an unusual event. We know he was included in the list of David’s Thirty Mighty Men in 2 Samuel 23; these were 30 particularly heroic and trusted warriors in the King’s army. In our text story, I think we see the most heroic thing of all.
Uriah was just a man doing his duty. In his mind, this was no more or no less than that. I would even say it was so ingrained in him that he could do no less; after the initial failure of his plan, David tried again by getting Uriah drunk and hoping that would make the man slip up. Even drunk, Uriah had the presence of mind to know and do what was right according to his own conscience.
Now, there’s a lesson right there. David was NOT where he should have been when he should have been there. We all know the horrible and generational chain of events THAT set in motion.
On the other hand, we have Uriah the Hittite. He was just doing his duty when and where he should have been doing it. That’s all it took to keep him out of trouble. Well, I suppose getting murdered was a spot of trouble; then again, sometimes doing the right thing doesn’t necessarily provide temporal rewards. That would be another lesson.