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If I worship Thee for Thyself alone …

July 19, 2006

” So Ish-Bosheth (Saul’s son) gave orders and had her (Michal) taken away from her husband Paltiel son of Laish. Her husband, however, went with her, weeping behind her all the way to Bahurim.” 2 Samuel 3:13

Perhaps Michal had reason to despise David after all (2 Samuel 6:16). Once Michal had been in love with David (1 Samuel 18:20) and Saul, Michal’s father sought to take advantage of it. Saul was deeply jealous of David but he told David he could become his son-in-law if he killed a hundred Philistines. Though Saul was rather hoping that David would be killed in the conflict. When he wasn’t Saul had no choice but to give Michal to David as his wife.

When Saul’s jealousy turned to murderous intent towards David, Michal helped David to escape from her father. Then in David’s absence Saul gave Michal in marriage to Paltiel, since Saul had never wanted David as a son-in-law.

Some time later, after Saul’s death, David demanded that Michal be given back to him. But it seems more of a political move to again have an alliance with Saul’s house, beside which David already had six other wives (2 Samuel 3:2-5). So Michal is forcibly taken from her husband.

Maybe Michal preferred being the wife of an ordinary person like Paltiel who obviously loved her with a great passion then to have the privilege of being one of King David’s many wives. Since it seems that David only wanted Michal for her name and her connections whereas Paltiel wanted Michal because of love.

Do we want God so we can be part of His family and share His inheritance or do we want God because of love?

“Oh my God,
If I worship thee in desire for heaven, exclude me from heaven;
If I worship thee for fear of hell, burn me in hell.
But if I worship thee for thyself alone, then withhold not from me thine eternal beauty.” Rabia c.800

by Susan Barnes
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Susan Barnes

~ writer of insightful posts about God and faith