(The M.I.C.) Manipulator In Charge

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Early in the morning of June 17, 1972, several burglars were arrested inside of the office of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), located in the Watergate building in Washington, D.C..  This was no ordinary robbery. The prowlers were connected to President Richard Nixon’s reelection campaign, and they had been caught while attempting to wiretap phones and steal secret documents.  While historians are not sure whether Nixon knew about Watergate espionage operation before it happened, rest assure, he took steps to cover it up after words, raising “hush money” for the burglars, trying to stop the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) from investigating the crime, destroying evidence and firing uncooperative staff members.  In August 1974, after his role in the Watergate conspiracy had finally come to light, the president resigned.

Throughout history, many attempts have been made to cover up incompetence, immorality and even crimes.  In the Bible, cover ups appear very early.  Adam and Eve sought to cover their nakedness and hide from God, not realizing their efforts betrayed their SIN and GUILT.

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In my study in 2 Samuel 11 this past week, one of the great cover-up attempts of all time takes place, and like so many,

IT TOO…falls disastrously!

Proverbs 24:8 (NIV):

“He who plots evil will be known as a schemer.”

DAVID’S ATTEMPT TO MANIPULATE OTHERS IN ORDER TO HIDE HIS SIN –

This SIN was due to David’s lust and arrogance.  PERIOD!

David had no desire for Bathsheba to become his wife, or even to carry on an adulterous affair with her.  His intent was but for a ‘one night stand’, and she went home.  That was that, or so it seemed.  I hope you have your bibles alongside you as we go through the events unveiled in Chapter 11.

When David heard from Bathsheba that this ‘fling’ resulted in pregnancy…the Scripture narrative reveals David’s desperate attempt to cover up his sin with Bathsheba.

As we all know, it didn’t work out and it actually made matters so much worse.  As Sir Walter Scott once said, “O, what a tangled web we weave when we practice to deceive.”

DAVID’S PROBLEM –

pancakes-stackemhighDavid didn’t know how to stop what he started and decides to stack one SIN upon another.

There are many lessons to be learned from this tragic episode of David’s life, which if heeded, will keep us all from duplicating them in our own lives.

So, the KING, DAVID, tries to “legitimize” the unfortunate circumstances; He instructs his Four Star General Joab, to bring Bathsheba’s military husband home from the Ammonite Campaign, making it possible for him to enjoy the intimacies of marriage.

2 Samuel 11:7:

“When Uriah had come to him, David asked him how Joab was, how the people fared, and how the war progressed.”

David orchestrated this homecoming, so to speak, to appear as though it served one purpose–while it actually served David’s purpose of concealing his own sin.

Webster’s definition for “A MANIPULATOR IN CHARGE” (Manipulation):  One who “manages or influences skillfully, especially in an unfair manner; to manipulate people’s feelings.”

So David PRETENDED that he was interested in the General, the Military, and the progress of the war.

BUT the real reason for getting Uriah back was to make it possible for him to enjoy the intimacies of marriage.  Thus it would be possible to attach the paternity question of the child to him.

MANIPULATORS PROFESS (to Honor) – verses 8-13.

After reading these verses, we see David scheming by suggesting Uriah get cleaned up from his return from the front lines of war.  Soldiers didn’t wear combat boots in the day, but sandals.

[8] David said to Uriah,  “Go down to your house and wash your feet…”

Yeah, Uriah.  Go home and enjoy your R&R and here, take this sack of groceries home, maybe a few candles too and have a romantic evening with your wife.

But Uriah wanted no part of the comforts offered by the king.  His argument was, how could he be allowed the comforts of home and a conjugal visit while his friends in combat were deprived of them?

[11] Uriah said to David,  “The ark and Israel and Judah live in tents, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping in the open field. Shall I then go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As you live and as my soul lives, I will not do this thing.”

Since this scheme wasn’t working, David decided he was going to need to convince (“manipulate”) Uriah another way.

How many times have we tried to manipulate others, in coming around to our way of thinking by presenting another plan?

David’s thinking was, I’m going to ‘buddy’ up to Uriah.

What do ‘buddies’ do?  Well, in this case, they get drunk together.  But this wasn’t friendship.  It was David resorting to another scheme to induce Uriah to go home to his wife (v. 12-13).

Uriah is presented as a faithful and pious soldier who had more respect for the law of God when he was drunk than his king did when he was sober.

So David’s deceptive plot of pretense of coming home and professing to be his buddy didn’t work.

COVER-UPS Began Early in Our History.

Adam and Eve tried to COVER-UP with leaves, but their efforts only betrayed their guilt.  This cover-up by David’s manipulation is like so many others, failing completely!

How David, the “Apple of God’s Eye” (Psalm 17:8), has fallen from the man he once was.  And if you’re thinking to yourself, how could this happen to a man who had God’s call, who was anointed by the King of kings…we are ALL vulnerable to SIN!  What we do with our actions…do we cover them up, or do we CONFESS OUR SIN?  (1 John 1:9-10).

MANIPULATORS PANIC (when it doesn’t go their way).

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Verses 14-17:

[14] In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah.  [15] And he wrote in the letter,  “Put Uriah in the front line of the heaviest fighting and withdraw from him, that he may be struck down and die.”  [16] So when Joab was besieging the city, he assigned Uriah opposite where he knew the enemy’s most valiant men were.  [17] And the men of the city came out and fought with Joab, and some of the servants of David fell, Uriah the Hittite died also.

When your plans do go as expected, do you ever PANIC?  

DAVID is getting desperate at this point of the story.  When Uriah refuses to sleep with his wife, David panics.  Once David began his efforts to cover up his SIN, each step taken from that point lead in deeper and deeper into sin!

FIRST, he LUSTED, then he committed ADULTERY, then DECEIT, and finally MURDER.

Our day has had its share of highly placed people who made matters worse as they looked to cover up their wrongdoing.

THE PLOT THICKENS

To show how calloused David had become and how noble Uriah was, David sent a letter that plotted the Hittites death by Uriah himself (verses 14 & 15).:

[14] In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah.

[15] And he wrote in the letter,  “Put Uriah in the front line of the heaviest fighting and withdraw from him, that he may be struck down and die.”

I find it amazing how we can get so caught up in our own deceptions, that we want to recruit others into our tangled web.  The DECEIT and DECEPTION woven in our plans must bring more people to join in the conspiracy.  We want to spread our guilt and shame around so that the weight of our SIN is more distributed.

David’s plan was to put Uriah in the front of an intense battle, then withdraw so he would be killed.  While General Joab had no qualms about accomplishing David’s goal, he amended his plan as having too great of risk both to himself and David.  The king’s plan would have been too obvious to everyone and would have made many of those who fought that day under Joab’s command to doubt his commitment to them.

So Joab led an attack against a part of the city where he knew the resistance was the greatest.  In the heat of the battle, Joab lost several men [wasn’t in the “plan’], including Uriah (vv. 16-17).

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MANIPULATORS PLANS (place others in danger) – (vv. 18-25)

Mission Accomplished.  Uriah is dead!

Joab knew that he had to let the king know that his objective had been accomplished– without revealing to anyone else that the TWO OF THEM murdered Uriah in such a way as just another casualty of war.

Another Cover-up, perhaps?

Joab didn’t exactly follow the instructions of the Commander-In-Chief’s letter.  The collateral damage to the troops wasn’t suppose to happen.

The king’s desires had come to fruition…to a point.  But now, how can one possibly report this fiasco in a way that doesn’t make Joab look like a fool (at best), or a murderer (at worst)?

So the messenger was told that after David raised his objections, he was to reveal to him that “your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also”  (vv.18-21). 

The news of Uriah’s death calmed the king and in the message that was sent back to Joab, David covered the treachery with insincerity in tone:

Oh well, “the sword devours one as well as another” (v. 27).

MANIPULATORS PUNISHED (in God’s timing) – (vv. 26-27):

[26] When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband was dead, she mourned for Uriah.  [27] And when the mourning was past, David sent and brought her to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son.  But the thing that David had done was evil in the sight of the LORD.

David, though he had broken at least three of the Ten Commandments God had given Israel for the purpose of relating to God and to fellow-man–he had COVETED another man’s wife, committed ADULTERY, and MURDERED.  And yet, who can judge the judge; who can question the actions of the king?

The answer comes in the final verse of the chapter in words that suggest that no one stands above the law of God.  What seemed to David a final ending to what would have been a very sticky situation was but the beginning of problems because (verse 27) set in motion events that would trouble David till his death [David was trying to legitimize his SIN, making Uriah a casualty of war, making Bathsheba a widow. He now can marry this woman and raise the child as his own, which of course it is].

Sin has a sneaky way of compounding itself!

Before you know it, you’re more deeply involved in it than you ever thought you’d be.

Temptations and Manipulation Are Cousins!

You cannot control the course of your destiny once you allow yourself to begin to flirt with SIN.  It will capture you.  It will ensnare you.  And ultimately, it will destroy you.

David once killed GIANTS.  Now the GIANT is killing him.

Uriah is a reminder to us today: God doesn’t always deliver the RIGHTEOUS from the hand of the wicked immediately, or even in this lifetime.

DANIEL’S THREE FRIENDS –

Daniel’s three friends told the king that THEIR GOD was able to deliver them.  They didn’t presume that He would or that He must.  And God did deliver them!  [See Daniel 3:17, 18; 19-28]

God Is Able
God Is Able

I think Christians look upon this DELIVERANCE as the rule, rather than the exception.  But when Uriah faithfully serves his king (DAVID), he loses his life.

God is not obliged to ‘bail us out of trouble’ or keep us from trials and tribulations just because we TRUST in Him.

In the Old Testament, as in the New, God sometimes delivers His people from the hands of wicked people, but often He doesn’t.

Their “deliverance” comes with the Messiah, the LORD JESUS CHRIST.  

Uriah, like ALL of the Old Testament saints, died without receiving his full reward, and that is because God wanted him to wait.  Uriah, like many saints, was not delivered from the hands of the WICKED–THE MANIPULATORS.  [READ Hebrews 11:13-16; 37-40] 

 


CREDITS:

Watergate Scandal Facts & Summary @ HISTORY.com

Photos:  Google Search Images.

Bible Translation:  Amplified Bible (AMP).

 

5 thoughts on “(The M.I.C.) Manipulator In Charge

  1. A good lesson here, “God is not obliged to ‘bail us out of trouble’ or keep us from trials and tribulations just because we TRUST in Him.” Yet we’re to keep trusting in Him no matter what! We’re to have the attitude of Job as he said in Job 13:15 “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him…”

    Liked by 1 person

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