2 Samuel 12:11
Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun.
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2 Samuel 12:11-12. I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house — Which was notoriously fulfilled in Absalom’s conspiracy against him. I will take thy wives before thine eyes — Openly, so that thou shalt know it as certainly as if thou didst see it, and yet shalt not be able to prevent it. For Absalom had a tent spread upon the house-top, and there went in unto them. And give them unto thy neighbour — I shall, by my providence, give power over them to one who is very near unto thee. But God expresseth this darkly, that the accomplishment of it might not be hindered. I will do this thing before all Israel — It was made notorious to all, that David fled in haste from his son, and left his wives and concubines behind him. “Whoever,” says Dr. Delaney, “considers the predictions of divine vengeance now denounced against David, must surely find them to be very extraordinary. His family to continue beyond any other regal race in the known world, and yet the sword to continue as long — never to depart from it! A king, the greatest of his time! his dominion thoroughly established, and his enemies under his feet: highly honoured and beloved at home, and as highly awful to all the neighbouring nations! — Such a king threatened to have his wives publicly prostituted before the face of all his people! And, what is yet stranger, more shocking, and more incredible, by one of his own race! and, as a sure proof of this, the darling offspring of his guilt to perish quickly, before his eyes! He alone who fills futurity could foresee this. He alone who sways the world, and knows what evil appetites and dispositions, unrestrained, will attempt and perpetrate, could pronounce it.”

12:1-14 God will not suffer his people to lie still in sin. By this parable Nathan drew from David a sentence against himself. Great need there is of prudence in giving reproofs. In his application, he was faithful. He says in plain terms, Thou art the man. God shows how much he hates sin, even in his own people; and wherever he finds it, he will not let it go unpunished. David says not a word to excuse himself or make light of his sin, but freely owns it. When David said, I have sinned, and Nathan perceived that he was a true penitent, he assured him his sin was forgiven. Thou shalt not die: that is, not die eternally, nor be for ever put away from God, as thou wouldest have been, if thou hadst not put away the sin. Though thou shalt all thy days be chastened of the Lord, yet thou shalt not be condemned with the world. There is this great evil in the sins of those who profess religion and relation to God, that they furnish the enemies of God and religion with matter for reproach and blasphemy. And it appears from David's case, that even where pardon is obtained, the Lord will visit the transgression of his people with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. For one momentary gratification of a vile lust, David had to endure many days and years of extreme distress.See the marginal references. In both the points of David's crime the retribution was according to his sin. His adultery was punished by Absalom's outrage, his murder by the bloodshed of domestic fights, which cost the lives of at least three of his favorite sons, Amnon, Absalom, and Adonijah. 11. I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, &c.—The prophet speaks of God threatening to do what He only permitted to be done. The fact is, that David's loss of character by the discovery of his crimes, tended, in the natural course of things, to diminish the respect of his family, to weaken the authority of his government, and to encourage the prevalence of many disorders throughout his kingdom. I will raise up evil, to wit, the evil of punishment.

Out of thine own house; from thy own children and family.

Before thine eyes, i. e. openly, so as thou shalt know it as certainly as if thou didst see it, and yet not be able to hinder it.

Give them, i.e. I shall by my providence give him power over them, which I know he will abuse; and I shall not restrain him from so doing, either by my grace or providence.

Unto thy neighbour; to one who is very near to thee, even thy beloved son Absalom. But God expresseth this here darkly and doubtfully, that the accomplishment of it might not be hindered.

In the sight of the sun; in the open day, and in a public place. The accomplishment hereof, see 2 Samuel 16:22.

Thus saith the Lord,.... For what he said was not of himself, but under a spirit of prophecy:

behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house: that is, evil persons, who should be guilty of evil things, and that as a chastisement of him for the sins he had committed, and those out of his own family, as Amnon and Absalom:

and I will take thy wives before thine eyes; which is so expressed, because it was done in his lifetime, and he knowing it, but not able to hinder it, though he did not, strictly speaking, see it with his eyes:

and give them unto thy neighbour; or friend, meaning his son Absalom, as they were:

and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun; pointing to the sun in the firmament, and which might be then shining in the room where they were: and which is represented by Homer (u) as seeing all things, "and eyes" are ascribed to it here in the original; the meaning is, that this fact should be done in the daytime, openly and publicly, and was fulfilled, when by the advice of Ahithophel a tent was spread on the top of the house, and Absalom went in to his father's concubines in the sight of all Israel, 2 Samuel 16:22.

(u) Odyss. 11. ver. 119. & 12. ver. 380.

Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this {f} sun.

(f) Meaning openly, at noon.

11. I will take thy wives] See ch. 2 Samuel 16:21-22. “Having become the man of blood, of blood he was to drink deep; and having become the man of lust, by that same baneful passion in others was he himself to be scourged for ever.” Blunt’s Undesigned Coincidences, p. 134.

Verse 11. - He shall lie with thy wives. Fulfilled for political purposes by Absalom, under the advice of Bathsheba's grandfather (2 Samuel 16:22). The punishment was thus complete. For the murdered Uriah there was fourfold restitution, according to David's own sentence. First there was Bathsheba's child lately born, then Amnon, thirdly Absalom, and lastly Adonijah. For the adultery there was open disgrace wrought upon his royal dignity "before the sun," in open daylight. As he had brought shame and dishonour upon the family relations of his neighbour, so were his own family rights violated by his rebellious son. And, as is often the case, the sins which followed were worse than those which prepared the way. Vice begins as a small stream trickling through the opposing dam. but it quickly breaks down all moral restraints, and rushes along like a destroying flood. 2 Samuel 12:11But David had also sinned in committing adultery. It was therefore announced to him by Jehovah, "Behold, I raise up mischief over thee out of thine own house, and will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them to thy neighbour, that he may lie with thy wives before the eyes of this sun (for the fulfilment of this by Absalom, see 2 Samuel 16:21-22). "For thou hast done it in secret; but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before (in the face of) the sun." David's twofold sin was to be followed by a twofold punishment. For his murder he would have to witness the commission of murder in his own family, and for his adultery the violation of his wives, and both of them in an intensified form. As his sin began with adultery, and was consummated in murder, so the law of just retribution was also carried out in the punishment, in the fact that the judgments which fell upon his house commenced with Amnon's incest, whilst Absalom's rebellion culminated in the open violation of his father's concubines, and even Adonijah lost his life, simply because he asked for Abishag the Shunammite, who had lain in David's bosom to warm and cherish him in his old age (1 Kings 2:23-24).
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