If ever there was an understatement, this line from 2 Samuel is it, “The thing that David had done displeased the LORD.” That “thing” that David had done was to a) spy on Bathsheba as she bathed on her rooftop, b) fall in lust with her beauty, c) send her husband Uriah off to war, d) order his general to put Uriah up front in battle and then have the rest of his troops fall back, e) take Bathsheba as his wife. To say that this was outside the bounds of God’s plan for humanity is to state the rather obvious.
In a recent radio interview, Rob Bell defined sin as anything that destroys and tears down the goodness given humanity in creation. This series of actions by David not only tore down his own humanity through lust, envy and murder, but it turned Bathsheba into nothing more than a sexual conquest, oh, and by the way, it also cost Uriah his life.
In the military, I think this is called collateral damage. David’s poor choices cost two people their lives: one literally, one figuratively. It is no doubt, then, that the opening verses of the Track 2 OT Lesson for Sunday sounds so cold and calculated, “When the wife of Uriah heard that her husband was dead, she made lamentation for him. When the mourning was over, David sent and brought her to his house, and she became his wife, and bore him a son.” There is no real joy in this story, only brokenness and sadness. So, to say, “this displeased the LORD,” is very much an understatement.