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  • Writer's pictureEast Martin CRC

The Meanwhile

2 Samuel 12:26-28

Verse 26 Meanwhile Joab fought against Rabbah of the Ammonites and captured the royal citadel.

Meanwhile. This word may not seem like a big deal but it enables us to miss the timeline we can easily overlook when reading a story in the Bible. The Bible seldom gives us the details of how much time has passed as we quickly read through the story. This particular usage of the word refers to a span of time of roughly up to 16 months. A space of time which allowed for David and Bathsheba to have two sons.

The time since Uriah’s death hadn’t provided Joab with a win of the war against the Ammonites and their city of Rammah. This had to be discouraging to this warrior commander. While the idea of a war lasting more than a year is normal to us, it wasn’t that normal in David’s time. Often a battle would be waged and when one side pulled back that marked the end of the battle and the warriors would go back to their homes until they were ready to battle the next time.

It is probable Joab was still questioning his choice to obey David’s command to have Uriah killed. Uriah had been such a good warrior under the commander for years and to have him killed for the king’s personal reasons would have gnawed at Joab’s conscience. With that continuing on his mind, the commander kept active trying to conquer the city and people he had used as the weapon to take out Uriah.

Joab wasn’t giving up on this fight and when he finally captured the walled city he had been battling against, he sends word to David that it is about time the king gets back to work and joins his men in battle. If David refused to come, Joab was ready to finish the battle he knew was theirs for the taking and not only take credit for the win but also to claim the city for his own name.

This could have been a wake-up call for the king who had been coming to the understanding how not leading his men to war himself had started the domino effect in his sin life. Had he been with his men from the beginning they could have finished the battle many months before and he wouldn’t have been tempted. David had reason to be thankful that God gives His amazing grace to His people.

Making It Personal

When has not doing what you should do led to sinning? Has your sin led to something taking longer than it should to finish? Who has that sin affected?

Making It Personal Kids

Does your disobeying ever make it so things take longer? Why is it important to Jesus that you obey the first time you are told to do something? What do you need to obey mom and dad about right now?

Closing Prayer

Father, thank You for giving us this reminder that when we don’t do things as You want us to it ends up taking longer for us to know the blessing of rewards for obedience. Give us hearts that desire to obey You quickly and wholeheartedly. In Jesus’ name, amen.


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