2 Samuel 12:15–23—How could a loving God take the life of David’s child because of the sin of David?
Problem: As a result of David’s sin with Bathsheba, the life of the child that Bathsheba bore to David was taken. However, 2 Samuel 12:15 states that it was the Lord who struck the child with illness so that it died. How could a loving God commit such an act?
Solution: The taking of the life of the child was not a judgment upon the child, but upon David. The Word of God assures us that death is not the end. This passage in particular indicates that David’s child was taken to heaven upon its death (see comments on 2 Sam. 12:23). Consequently, the child was probably spared a life of sorrow and trouble as the illegitimate offspring of the illicit relationship of David and Bathsheba. David’s faith in the all-loving God is clearly illustrated in verses 22–23. While the child was alive, David fasted and wept in hopes that God would graciously allow the child to live. However, when the child died, David trusted in the goodness of God to take the child to be with Him in heaven, and that one day David would be reunited with the child.
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This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click here to purchase this book.