Posted: January 22, 2016 in When the Wolf Howls
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Dagger for When the Wolf Howls 

© by Ross Cochrane

Chapter 37

Not long after Uriah returned to the ranks, he and a number of other valiant men found themselves in hand to hand combat with some Ammonite soldiers, but strangely, just as the battle reached its height the Ammonites had sounded a retreat. Uriah, not wanting to miss the opportunity, shouted for his men to pursue, pure adrenalin fueling their desire for victory.

It was as they approached the city gate that they realised they were trapped. Archers appeared on the walls. Someone sounded a retreat but for Uriah it was drowned in the turmoil that followed. A rain of shafts fell with deadly intent upon them. He was left exposed by the withdrawal and his men were being decimated.

“I can’t walk! Help me!” shouted a man close to Uriah. With an arrow in his back and one protruding from his thigh he was trying to drag himself out of danger. Another man lay dead beside him.

“Help me!” he said with eyes full of fear. Uriah took hold of him and began to drag him to the nearest tree but an iron-tipped shaft sliced its way through his arm. Recoiling in pain he turned, only to face another volley from the wall. With his arm flailing, he caught sight briefly of the arrow that pierced his heart.

A number of other men died with Uriah that day but a few escaped back to Joab. Looking at the crumpled message which lay nearby where he had thrown it, Joab knew that David’s request had been fulfilled. The message read,

“Put Uriah in the front line where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.”

David was not only responsible for Uriah’s death but in the days ahead, many widows would mourn. None of them would be taken into the palace except Bathsheba.

Dagger for When the Wolf Howls

“…and some of our men were killed when they came too close to the wall.” King David had looked at the messenger from Joab with fire in his eyes. Absalom was also listening intensely to the report of the war. As an advisor to the king he had to keep up to date with what was happening.

Then suddenly the messenger said to David.

“…and your servant Uriah the Hittite is also dead.”

Everyone else ignored the comment except David and Absalom. It’s significance seized Absalom and he walked from the room, feeling sick with realisation and disgust. As he did he heard his father say with measured words, “Say this to Joab: ‘Don’t let this upset you. The sword devours one as well as another. Press the attack against the city and destroy it.’ Say this to encourage Joab.” Finally rumours about David and Bathsheba would be vindicated by the death of Uriah. A twinge of remorse swept over David but then was gone.

Bathsheba mourned for her husband for the acceptable time, and then she became David’s wife, and bore him a son. No-one but Absalom and the guards and servants at the gate of the palace thought much about it.

David thought he had won the battle that had raged as guilt within his soul, but he had yet to face the One whom he had offended even more than Uriah.


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