YOU HAVE SHOWN CONTEMPT FOR ME AND TAKEN THE WIFE OF URIAH TO BE YOUR WIFE.
At the turn of the year, the time when kings go campaigning, David sent Joab and with him his own guards and the whole of Israel. They massacred the Ammonites and laid siege to Rabbah. David however remained in Jerusalem.
It happened towards evening when David had risen from his couch and was strolling on the palace roof, that he saw from the roof a woman bathing; the woman was very beautiful. David made enquiries about this woman and was told, “Why, that is Bathsheba, Eliam’s daughter, the wife of Uriah the Hittite.” Then David sent messengers and had her brought. She came to him, and he slept with her; now she had just purified herself from her courses. She then went home again. The woman conceived and sent word to David, “I am with child.”
Then David sent Joab a message, “Send me Uriah the Hittite,” whereupon Joab sent Uriah to David. When Uriah came into his presence, David asked after Joab and the army and how the war was going. David then asked Uriah, “Go down to your house and enjoy yourself.” Uriah left the palace, and was followed by a present from the king’s table. Uriah however slept by the palace door with his master’s bodyguard and did not go down to his house.
This was reported to David; “Uriah,” they said, “did not go down to his house.” The next day David invited him to eat and drink in his presence and made him drunk. In the evening Uriah went out and lay on his couch with his master’s bodyguard, but he did not go down to his house.
Next morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by Uriah. In the letter he wrote, “Station Uriah in the thick of the fight and then fall back behind him so that he may be struck down and die.” Joab, then besieging the town, posted Uriah in a place where he knew there were fierce fighters. The men of the town sallied out and engaged Joab; the army suffered casualties, including some of David’s bodyguard; and Uriah the Hittite was killed too.
V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.