QR code Bible Pathways

go to previous book

2 Samuel study guide

go to next book

Preparation Prior to the study session, participants should read:
2 Samuel 6: 1-8: Uzzah killed after trying to keep the ark from falling
2 Samuel 7: 9-17: God's promise to David
2 Samuel 11: David's affair with Bathsheba
Orientation 2 Samuel is book #10 of 39 in the Old Testament. It is considered a book of History. For more information see the Bible Overview page.

Some events from 2 Samuel also appear in 1 Chronicles. For a comparison, see Harmony of 1 and 2 Chronicles.

Synopsis The overall theme of the book is how the spiritual and moral conditions of a nation closely follow that of their king. David becomes Israel's second king after a wild series of power struggles between his and his predecessor's (Saul) families (1 - 4). David is obedient to God and successful. Israel prospers financially, militarily, and spiritually (7-10). Then David has an affair with Bathsheba (11), gets her pregnant, and arranges the death of her husband Uriah. This begins a long series of troubles in his family and then his nation.
Major Characters David, Israel's second king
Bathsheba, the girl next door
Uriah the Hittite, her husband
Absalom, one of David's sons by Maacah (3:3)
Solomon / Jedidiah, David and Bathsheba's second son (12:24).
Major Events Tribes gather to confirm David as king (5: 1-5)
David brings the ark to Jerusalem, Uzzah killed by God following an accident (6: 1-23)
God promises David his descendants will always rule Israel (7: 15-16)
David's affair with Bathsheba, and setting up her husband (11: 1-26)
David's son, Absalom, killed in a rebellion (18: 1-33)
Activities 1. List out the wives of David, and their children (3:2, 5:13; also 1 Chronicles 3:1). * Through which of these family lines will Jesus be born (see Matthew 1)? **
2. Discuss God's response to Uzzah's well-intentioned attempt to protect the ark (6: 6-8, also 1 Chronicles 13:7). Why did God kill him? See Numbers 4: 4-20 for ideas.
3. Discuss the sequence of events in the incident of Bathsheba and Uriah (11). Are sins "compounded"?
Relevance What scriptures in this book have application for my life? Try looking at Psalms 11-18, written by David, as he reflects on the events recorded in 2 Samuel.
Connections David survives (briefly) into 1 Kings where he names his surprise successor.
Read Mark 11:10. How does this tie in to 2 Samuel?
David wrote many of the Psalms. In Psalm 51 could he discussing his sin with Bathsheba?

For source citations see the home page. Revised April 9 2014

Home > Bible Pathways home page This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. click for license

* Wife Michal (daughter of Saul), no children (6:23).
Wife Ahinoam: son Amnon
Wife Abigail: sons Kileab and Daniel
Wife Maacah: son Absalom, daughter Tamar
Wife Haggith: son Adonijah
Wife Abital: son Shephatiah
Wife Eglah: son Ithream
Wife Bathsheba (widow of Urriah): one child unnamed (died in 2 Samuel 12:18), son Solomon, son Shammua, son Shobab, son Nathan
also (wife/concubine not named or unknown): Ibhar, Elishua, Eliphelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada, (another) Eliphalet

** Solomon