About the Story
Bathsheba is the beloved wife of her warrior husband, Uriah. Considered unable to bear children, her culture brands her cursed by God and a disgrace to her husband. Called to King David, Bathsheba is forced to submit to the king’s adulterous lust. To refuse would risk not only her life, but her family’s as well. In fear, she expects to be stoned for adultery; instead she’s expecting David’s child.
In Bathsheba’s Lament, author Lorita Boyle’s eloquent writing gives the reader an intimate glimpse into Bathsheba’s journey from a victim of King David’s lust, to beloved queen, and mother of David’s son and future heir, Solomon. Bathsheba’s story poignantly demonstrates how pain and struggle can be transformed into increased faith and love.
Writing Bathsheba’s Lament
It has been over ten years that I’ve worked on Bathsheba’s Lament. In that time, the manuscript has gone through many changes of title, and been rewritten multiple times. Yet, the heart of the story has never changed: Bathsheba’s journey to forgiveness.
After studying 2 Samuel 11-12 and especially, God’s judgment of David given by the prophet, Nathan, I could not believe that Bathsheba was the seductress she was often portrayed, or a woman who participated in her own seduction. Both of these views and others have been given by scholars and other authors. What I saw was a beloved and barren wife, who became the victim of King David’s adulterous lust, and the tragic and redemptive consequences that followed.
In my years of talking and praying with women, as friend, prayer counselor and spiritual director, I’ve heard many stories of abuse. Often they’ve involved abuse by trusted men in their lives. I’ve also experienced emotional and spiritual abuse. In the book, like so many women before and after her, Bathsheba faces her pain and anger and the truth of her sexual violation without minimizing or denying it. She also has the choice, as does every abused woman, to free herself from the bondage of unforgiveness. For even as God offered her hope, so he offers hope to us today; the hope of leaving the identity of victim to join the courageous community of those who forgive.
My prayer is and has been that Bathsheba’s Lament would inspire all who’ve been abused, and/or wounded in some way, to embrace hope and choose forgiveness instead of bitterness and anger. And in this way, allow God’s redemptive power and love to transform their lives.