Useful Bible Studies > 2 Samuel Commentary > chapter 12

Secret and public evil deeds

2 Samuel 12:12

David carried out his evil deeds in chapter 11 secretly. For him, that mattered more than anything else. He was desperate that other people should not know about his wrong behaviour. That was why his evil deeds became so severe, He only arranged Uriah’s death because he did not want anyone to know about his affair with Uriah’s wife.

David’s son, Absalom, chose to do the opposite. He had sex with ten of his father’s wives in public (16:20-22). For him, that mattered more than anything else. He wanted everyone to see it. It showed that he had taken all of his father’s power and authority from him. He did it on the roof of David’s palace - the same place where David first saw Uriah’s wife (11:2-3).

Christ said that everything secret, will one day be public (Mark 4:22). We hide our evil deeds in vain, because God sees and knows all things (Psalm 139:1-12). Nobody will escape God’s final judgment (Revelation 20:11-15), unless God himself has forgiven that person’s evil deeds (Hebrews 9:27-28).

In 1 Timothy 5:24, Paul wrote about this difference between people who want their evil deeds to be secret, or public. People like Absalom carry out their evil deeds so publicly that God’s judgment against them is already clear. Other people hide their evil acts so carefully that nobody else knows. However, God’s judgment will still be against them. So, God’s judgment follows their secret evil deeds, even as it seems to go ahead of those public evil deeds.

Next part: David confesses his evil deeds (2 Samuel 12:13)


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