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May 27, 2019

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year
Christian Standard Bible for 2019

Text: Nehemiah 8-9
Audio: Nehemiah 8-9

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

2 Samuel 13 (ESV)

Now Absalom, David’s son, had a beautiful sister, whose name was Tamar. And after a time Amnon, David’s son, loved her. And Amnon was so tormented that he made himself ill because of his sister Tamar, for she was a virgin, and it seemed impossible to Amnon to do anything to her. But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shimeah, David’s brother. And Jonadab was a very crafty man. And he said to him, “O son of the king, why are you so haggard morning after morning? Will you not tell me?” Amnon said to him, “I love Tamar, my brother Absalom’s sister.” Jonadab said to him, “Lie down on your bed and pretend to be ill. And when your father comes to see you, say to him, ‘Let my sister Tamar come and give me bread to eat, and prepare the food in my sight, that I may see it and eat it from her hand.’” So Amnon lay down and pretended to be ill. And when the king came to see him, Amnon said to the king, “Please let my sister Tamar come and make a couple of cakes in my sight, that I may eat from her hand.”

Then David sent home to Tamar, saying, “Go to your brother Amnon’s house and prepare food for him.” So Tamar went to her brother Amnon’s house, where he was lying down. And she took dough and kneaded it and made cakes in his sight and baked the cakes. And she took the pan and emptied it out before him, but he refused to eat. And Amnon said, “Send out everyone from me.” So everyone went out from him. 10 Then Amnon said to Tamar, “Bring the food into the chamber, that I may eat from your hand.” And Tamar took the cakes she had made and brought them into the chamber to Amnon her brother. 11 But when she brought them near him to eat, he took hold of her and said to her, “Come, lie with me, my sister.” 12 She answered him, “No, my brother, do not violate me, for such a thing is not done in Israel; do not do this outrageous thing. 13 As for me, where could I carry my shame? And as for you, you would be as one of the outrageous fools in Israel. Now therefore, please speak to the king, for he will not withhold me from you.” 14 But he would not listen to her, and being stronger than she, he violated her and lay with her.

15 Then Amnon hated her with very great hatred, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. And Amnon said to her, “Get up! Go!” 16 But she said to him, “No, my brother, for this wrong in sending me away is greater than the other that you did to me.” But he would not listen to her. 17 He called the young man who served him and said, “Put this woman out of my presence and bolt the door after her.” 18 Now she was wearing a long robe with sleeves, for thus were the virgin daughters of the king dressed. So his servant put her out and bolted the door after her. 19 And Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the long robe that she wore. And she laid her hand on her head and went away, crying aloud as she went.

20 And her brother Absalom said to her, “Has Amnon your brother been with you? Now hold your peace, my sister. He is your brother; do not take this to heart.” So Tamar lived, a desolate woman, in her brother Absalom’s house. 21 When King David heard of all these things, he was very angry. 22 But Absalom spoke to Amnon neither good nor bad, for Absalom hated Amnon, because he had violated his sister Tamar.

23 After two full years Absalom had sheepshearers at Baal-hazor, which is near Ephraim, and Absalom invited all the king’s sons. 24 And Absalom came to the king and said, “Behold, your servant has sheepshearers. Please let the king and his servants go with your servant.” 25 But the king said to Absalom, “No, my son, let us not all go, lest we be burdensome to you.” He pressed him, but he would not go but gave him his blessing. 26 Then Absalom said, “If not, please let my brother Amnon go with us.” And the king said to him, “Why should he go with you?” 27 But Absalom pressed him until he let Amnon and all the king’s sons go with him. 28 Then Absalom commanded his servants, “Mark when Amnon’s heart is merry with wine, and when I say to you, ‘Strike Amnon,’ then kill him. Do not fear; have I not commanded you? Be courageous and be valiant.” 29 So the servants of Absalom did to Amnon as Absalom had commanded. Then all the king’s sons arose, and each mounted his mule and fled.

30 While they were on the way, news came to David, “Absalom has struck down all the king’s sons, and not one of them is left.” 31 Then the king arose and tore his garments and lay on the earth. And all his servants who were standing by tore their garments. 32 But Jonadab the son of Shimeah, David’s brother, said, “Let not my lord suppose that they have killed all the young men, the king’s sons, for Amnon alone is dead. For by the command of Absalom this has been determined from the day he violated his sister Tamar. 33 Now therefore let not my lord the king so take it to heart as to suppose that all the king’s sons are dead, for Amnon alone is dead.”

34 But Absalom fled. And the young man who kept the watch lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, many people were coming from the road behind him by the side of the mountain. 35 And Jonadab said to the king, “Behold, the king’s sons have come; as your servant said, so it has come about.” 36 And as soon as he had finished speaking, behold, the king’s sons came and lifted up their voice and wept. And the king also and all his servants wept very bitterly.

37 But Absalom fled and went to Talmai the son of Ammihud, king of Geshur. And David mourned for his son day after day. 38 So Absalom fled and went to Geshur, and was there three years. 39 And the spirit of the king longed to go out to Absalom, because he was comforted about Amnon, since he was dead.

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Next: 2 Samuel 14

Back: 2 Samuel 12

This Post Has 5 Comments
  1. The Consequences of Sin

    Through the prophet Nathan, God told David that because of his sin, evil would come to his family. In today's chapter we begin to see this unfold and the depth of the sinfulness of sin.

    First, Tamar, David's daughter by Maacah, is raped by her half-brother Amnon (David's first son by Ahinoam). When David found out what happened, he was angry but he chose to not punish Amnon. So Absalom (David's third son) kills Amnon for what he did.

    As a king (and as a father), David had a responsibility to hold Amnon accountable for what he did. Because he failed to do this, Absalom begins to feel anger and bitterness towards his father and as we will see in chapter fifteen, this will come back to haunt him. 

    Sin, even private, secret sin, is known by God and can have a very public impact on people for many years and for many generations. 

  2. Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.’ Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning. For some have no knowledge of God. I say this to your shame.”
    1 Corinthians 15:33-34

    I’m reminded in this tragic story of the many warnings in Scripture about relationships. Again, what kinds of people do we surround ourselves with? Who are our closest friends, the ones we spend the most time with? Do they live their lives for the glory of God or for themselves? Do they offer us godly wisdom or worldly wisdom? How do our closest friends influence us? Are we becoming more Christlike because of their influence on us? Do they encourage us to seek after God? Do they speak truth to us when they see ungodly patterns in our lives, or do they flatter us and perhaps even look the other way or encourage us to continue in those patterns? 

    Because I work outside the home, and also spend many hours with doctors, nurses and other cancer patients, most of my life is spent in the company of people who have the time to wield a great deal of influence on me. I have to constantly keep in mind that I am an ambassador for God, sent to represent Him wherever I am, and that includes in my home and with my family. Every person I encounter throughout the day (including at home, on the road, at the store, etc.) is going to either influence me or be influenced by me. And I take that seriously. 

    This is why I choose my closest friends — those I can be honest with about my sins and temptations to — very carefully. I need godly friends who will lead and encourage me in my walk with God, and not wink at or ignore my sin. 


    “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20-21

    “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16

    “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” Colossians 4:6

    “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:1-3

    “Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need. Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:25-32




  3. Oh WOW, Michelle! 

    During my workout this morning I was thinking about this very thing!!!!! I was thinking about how, here on Earth, I am a representative of God. 

    "And they'll know we are Christians by our love… " was playing on Pandora and it got me to thinking about how I want so much to shine Jesus' light for the world to see.

    The other day, when we all went out to eat, I found myself smiling at every single person I had eye contact with. It used to be that I was angry at the world, but not anymore, not since I actively started  pursuing a relationship with Jesus! 

    I want EVERYONE to be able to experience the peace, joy & love I feel because I am saved. 

    I thought about the people I call my friends, and how I want to plant the seed of salvation with them by showing them love, patience, kindness, gentleness & respect. 

    This can be so much easier said than done, as I watch them participate in the same sin I was a prisoner of. I'm asking God to forgive them, and praying that someday, they will want the peace I've found in Jesus. 


    1. I have goosebumps reading your comment here, Brynne!! Wow! 

      Two days ago on the way to a family cookout I stopped in Dave’s Market to grab a loaf of frozen bread. I was so cognizant of wanting to be kind, compassionate, patient, polite, etc. Honestly, it was because I loved every stranger I saw.

      Like, I really loved them. I could feel it!!

      I got back to the freezer, and saw in my reflection I was wearing a Christian T-shirt Wolf and Jo bought me for Mother’s Day. Suddenly I was so moved by how important it is to represent Christ wherever we are, all the time. What if I had been impatient with people “in my way,” or not smiled at others and spoken kindly to them, or not yielded when two of us were in the same space and one had to move? All while wearing this T-shirt! 

      It was an eye-opening moment. It occurred to me that I’m always “wearing a Christian T-shirt” just by professing faith in Christ. 

      Thank you for sharing this with me! I’d already forgotten what happened Sunday and needed the reminder. 

      God bless you, Brynne!! I love you so much! 

      1. I love you, too!!! 

        And I can totally relate when you say you loved every person you saw! That's exactly how I feel now – I view people so differently now, and I just want to show love to everyone. 

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