Why should women read 2 Samuel?
The life of David is both an inspiration and a warning for women who need to pattern their lives after God’s own heart and to avoid the pitfalls of sin. As with David, the ancient king, your life’s course can be dramatically altered by following your fleshly desires rather than submitting to the control of God’s Spirit (Gl 5:16-17). While God does not allow your sin to go unpunished (Heb 12:5-11), He graciously weaves even your failures into the accomplishment of His will and the display of His glory. Psalm 51, one of the Bible’s most poignant prayers of repentance and restoration, was written in response to an experience recorded in this book (see 2Sm 11).
Hard Question – Why Didn’t David Confront Amnon for raping Tamar?
We ought to be outraged by the injustice done to Tamar, not only by her half-brother Amnon’s violence but also by what appears to be her father’s moral failure (13:1-22). While David responded with the appropriate emotions (he was furious, v. 21), he did not take the appropriate action. With no rebuke or confrontation mentioned, the king seemed to have valued harmony rather than justice. In failing to confront and punish Amnon, he not only permitted unrepentant sin to remain in his household, but he also set into motion the undermining of his entire family and kingdom. David’s passivity may have communicated that Amnon would not be held accountable for violating his half-sister Tamar, a false representation of the justice that God would execute (Pss 103:6; 140:12). Perhaps David valued quiet more than he valued justice? Perhaps David felt that, because of his own sexual sin, he was disqualified to rebuke his son (2Sm 11). However, while you must confess and repent of your own sin before addressing another’s (Mt 7:3-5), no past personal failing ought to keep you from confronting an individual with God’s Word and ultimately with the Lord Himself. Absalom took his righteous desire for justice and misdirected it into an unrighteous response of revenge. Perhaps Amnon’s murder, Absalom’s rebellion, and the near-civil war within David’s kingdom could have been avoided if David had chosen to confront sin rather than to dismiss it.