#16 Women of God: Bathsheba
Not much is written about Bathsheba but we do have some hints in the Biblical record. For one, she was very beautiful and had married the love of her life, Uriah. Uriah was a loyal and honest man of integrity who treated Bathsheba with such gentleness, tenderness and love, just as if she had been his special little pet lamb. Can you imagine how Bathsheba must have soaked up the affection from such a man?
That lovely scene was destroyed forever when she unwittingly captured the eye of King David and was summoned to the palace for his entertainment. As a commoner she had no say and so she fell pregnant, David had her beloved Uriah killed, the baby died and Bathsheba became yet another one of David’s wives. Bathsheba lost a beloved husband and her firstborn baby all within the space of a year.
God was merciful to her, however, and she produced a son, Solomon, who became the king, even though he wasn’t David’s firstborn, and who was amongst the forebears of Jesus.
Solomon was renowned as the wisest man who ever lived. It is when we read his Proverbs that we get an inkling of the powerful effect his mother had had on his upbringing.
Several times he warns his readers to heed their “mother’s instruction” (Prov. 1:8;6:20) and to “not despise your mother when she is old” (Prov. 23:22 NLT). Probably the most penetrating comment Solomon made about mothers was: “Some people … do not thank their mother.….The eye that … despises a mother’s instructions will be plucked out by ravens of the valley and eaten by vultures” (Prov. 30:11,17 NLT). The love and respect Solomon had for his mother went so far as having her sit at his right hand when he ascended the throne (I Kings 2:19).
Proverbs 31 is credited as being the advice from Solomon’s mother. Solomon writes about immoderate lust after women that destroys kings and kingdoms, something his father’s example had keenly taught him. Then Solomon describes a virtuous wife: a woman of kindness, loyalty, industry and who fears God.
Bathsheba teaches us that mothers have profound influence on their offspring and the example of Bathsheba has been one that has inspired generations.