I’m perplexed by this last chapter of 2 Samuel. It leaves me with a million questions, and it also is making me think about what is happening in our world today. The chapter opens with the anger of the Lord burning against King David, but it doesn’t state why. It’s hard to fathom after the last chapters, which showed David praising the Lord with a song. I’m also confused as to why the census was a punishment for the Israelites. “He caused David to harm them by taking a census.” Yikes. I can’t wait to ask Jesus why this was harmful because my brain is just not giving me any clues whatsoever. The census took more than nine months to complete, so this chapter covers a long period of time in just a few short paragraphs, and it gives us zero facts about why any of it took place. Even after the census happens, David says he has sinned greatly by counting the Israelites, and he chooses a punishment that devastates his homeland with a plague that kills 70,000 of the people he had just counted. Mind blowing. I can’t help but compare this plague to our present-day situation. I have spent months asking God to heal our lands, to wipe out this coronavirus plague, to have mercy on us here on Earth, but the virus surges on despite my own pleas and the pleas of, I’m sure, thousands of others. Do we need to build an alter? Do we need to humble ourselves before God? The words and text of 2 Samuel have got me to thinking about a LOT in the last few weeks, and I feel like I have been wrestling with God throughout this time. As we wrap up 2 Samuel with what feels like confusion, let’s reflect on the messages this book has sent us, which will be different for each of us.
Writing prompt: reflection
This chapter has given me much to contemplate. While I struggle to understand the world today, I have been looking back on the attitude and disposition of King David throughout his hardships. Write about what this chapter has taught you and how you can apply it to your own situation in today’s world.