How Could David go and do this? I understand the whole get thing that before going into battle the men would give their wives a get in case they died, but nevertheless, we're talking about the great one and only King David breaking two of the most fundamental laws of the Torah, one being not to covet your brother's wife, and the other being not to lay with a married woman, thus committing adultery.

Couldn't he have just waited or offered Uriah a large sum of money to divorce his wife. I mean we're talking about a man that conquered his evil inclination, not to mention the fact that most probably all of his wives were very beautiful.

Am I missing something here? I'm really sorry if this is offending anyone, but I really just don't understand.

  • 2
    Everyone struggles. Even him. Even you. Even me.
    – Double AA
    Oct 21, 2015 at 4:34
  • If he offered money, I believe that would have been the full biblical violation of "Do not covet..."
    – Loewian
    Oct 21, 2015 at 4:39
  • If your Hebrew's decent, try: faith.co.il/…
    – Loewian
    Oct 21, 2015 at 4:42
  • also: he.wikipedia.org/wiki/…
    – Loewian
    Oct 21, 2015 at 4:49

3 Answers 3


The Talmud (Avoda Zara 4b-5a) indeed acknowledges that the sin did not match his character and he was ensnared as a way to teach future generations a lesson about the power of repentance. (Similarly, the Talmud indicates that the sin of the golden calf was also out of character for the nation/generation and was also an entrapment to teach of the power of repentance on the communal level.)

א"ר יוחנן משום ר"ש בן יוחאי לא דוד ראוי לאותו מעשה ולא ישראל ראוין לאותו מעשה לא דוד ראוי לאותו מעשה דכתיב (תהלים קט, כב) "ולבי חלל בקרבי"; ולא ישראל ראוין לאותו מעשה דכתיב "מי יתן והיה לבבם זה להם ליראה אותי כל הימים". אלא למה עשו? לומר לך שאם חטא יחיד אומרים לו כלך אצל יחיד ואם חטאו צבור אומרים לו כלך אצל צבור

Said Rabbi Yochanan in the name of Rabbi Simon Ben Yochai: David was not fitting for that act and Israel was not fitting for that act. David was not fitting for that act, as it is written (Psalms 109:22) "...and my heart is wounded within me." And Israel were not fitting for that act, as it is written (Deut. 25:5) "Oh that they had such a heart as this always, to fear Me." Rather, why did they act? To say to you that if an individual sins, he is told to go to (i.e. learn from) an individual (David), and if a congregation sins, they are told to go to a congregation.

See also: http://etzion.org.il/vbm/english/archive/aggada72/09aggada.htm

  • "sin did not match his character and he was ensnared as a way" this is a dangerous encroachment on bechira; belief in free will.
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 22, 2015 at 1:07
  • @mevaqesh How so?
    – Loewian
    Oct 22, 2015 at 13:15
  • 1
    It indicates that human beings may be "fated" to sin, or otherwise cosmically coerced. in reality, according to the Rambam and many others, it is axiomatic that humans have free will and sin or not based on their own volition.
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 22, 2015 at 13:36
  • It has just occurred to me that when King David sent the letter to Yoav requesting that he put Uriah on the front lines he sent that letter with Uriah, could it be a possibility that King David was hoping that Uriah would open that letter and see Davids Scheme against him which would let Uriah escape from battle, take his wife and leave from King David and battle. Almost as an excuse.. any thoughts? Oct 29, 2015 at 2:55

The gemara says that whoever says that Dovid sinned is mastaken. This means sinned in the way it seems in the context. He said Chatasi, but it isn't a sin the way we think that it looks like.


In the book Reb Mendel, Rabbi Mendel Kaplan is quoted as saying that David could see with his prophetic eye that Bat-sheva was aligned as his soul mate in all the mystical worlds. He erred in that she wasn't yet aligned in this world.

(We can see also that his successor Solomon came specifically from her.)

  • 2
    How is that an excuse? Even if he knew with 100% certainty that they would eventually marry, that doesn't excuse risking adultery.
    – Double AA
    Oct 21, 2015 at 4:50
  • That's basically just the gemara (Sanhedrin 107a).
    – Loewian
    Oct 21, 2015 at 4:51
  • It wasn't technically adultery. He didn't know that she will become available legitimately. But it's not really an excuse. He wasn't supposed to do it. His mistake was in not waiting and just leaving it up to Hashem to work things out.
    – HaLeiVi
    Oct 21, 2015 at 12:33
  • "we can see also that his successor Solomon came specifically from her and so on until the Messiah." What mekor do you have in Chazal that the Messiah will be a descendent of Solomon?
    – mevaqesh
    Oct 22, 2015 at 1:09
  • @HaLeiVi "He didn't know that she will become available legitimately" - dont think so. he knew she was destined from him.
    – ray
    Oct 22, 2015 at 4:38

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .