2 Samuel 11:1
In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army. They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem. (NIV)
Thought for Today
The opening line of 2 Samuel 11 appears to many as the author setting the scene for David’s moral failure. It is much more than that. The ancient Israelite reading this history would immediately recognize that something is wrong. Samuel is telling us that David’s troubles did not begin when he spied a beautiful woman from his rooftop. David’s troubles started when David was not where he was supposed to be to begin with. The spring is the season for the king to leave his fortress and lead his army in battle. David, however, sends Joab to lead the army instead and stays behind. David’s troubles begin when he is lonely and bored because he is not where he is supposed to be. How often have you gotten yourself into trouble because you were not following through with your responsibilities, but rather staying behind? We often justify these moments by declaring that we have earned it. David had been wildly successful in leading his army and defeating Israel’s enemies. I’m sure he felt that he deserved to take this campaign off. The real problem was that he did fill this season away from war with something else worthy of his station. He was idle. And idleness leads to trouble. If you find yourself in a season of rest from your usual routine or responsibilities consider what you can fill the time with that will help you grow and glorify God. Like David, most of our moral failures begin with idle time.
Heavenly Father, help me to spend my time in pursuits worthy of You and keep me from the evil that hides in my idle time. Amen.
Belief fails when it works not well indeed but is idle as a sleeping man... Each virtuous deed is strong when it is grounded upon the solidity of belief. — John Wycliffe
Quote of the Day
People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.
― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh