Study Guide

2 Samuel Justice and Judgment

Justice and Judgment

Though there's a ton of justice in 2 Samuel, it's debatable how much of it is really just. For example, God kills David's baby son because David (not, obviously, the baby) had Uriah murdered in order to marry Bathsheba. And there's also the incident of the census, where David carries out a census and manages to get all of Israel infected with plague, in the process. So, basically, these are some pretty sticky situations to try to figure out. Justice or caprice? You decide.

Questions About Justice and Judgment

  1. Are there moments when justice seems like a better option than mercy? What about with the Amalekite David kills for helping Saul die?
  2. When the two highwaymen kill Ishbaal, David kills them in punishment. But given that God cursed Saul's house, is this act supposed to be unjust in God's eyes as well as David's?
  3. Was it just for God to kill David's son as punishment for killing Uriah and seducing his wife? Would it have been more just to just kill David?
  4. What about the pestilence God inflicts on Israel for David taking a census? How can all of Israel deserve to be punished for something David did (and which the text says God provoked him to do, though Chronicles says it was actually Satan)?

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