Why did Michal despise her husband King David?

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The Bible record says, “Now as the ark of the LORD came into the City of David, Michal, Saul’s daughter, looked through a window and saw King David leaping and whirling before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart… Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, “How glorious was the king of Israel today, uncovering himself today in the eyes of the maids of his servants, as one of the base fellows shamelessly uncovers himself” (2 Samuel 6:16, 20).

Michal could not appreciate or understand the zeal that led David to join the people in offering their gratitude and joy before the Lord. When David sang and danced before God his act of worship was accepted by the Lord, but it was despised by his wife. Michal, didn’t share the same joy. But she used this occasion to express her ill will. She had once fallen in love with David as a young national hero, but her marriage to him had soon ended when he fled from her father, King Saul, who was bent on killing him. Saul then wronged David by taking Michal and giving her as a bride to Palti, son of Laish (1 Samuel 25:44).

Now some 20 years had passed, during which she had been married to another man, from whom she had been taken by force and handed over to her former husband as a political prize after a long war against her father’s house (2 Samuel 3:13–16). Apparently the proud daughter of Saul was full of resentment and ready to find fault with David, even with his zeal for honoring the Lord in what was then an acceptable mode of praise.

David corrected Michal saying, “It was before the LORD, who chose me instead of your father and all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel. Therefore I will play music before the LORD.  And I will be even more undignified than this, and will be humble in my own sight. But as for the maidservants of whom you have spoken, by them I will be held in honor” (2 Samuel 3: 21,22).

David let Michal know that she had no just reason for her words of reproach and that her criticism would not change his actions. He would continue to rejoice and praise the Lord for all that God had done for him and the nation of Israel. Instead of realizing her mistake, Michal didn’t honor the Lord nor her husband. And the Bible record ends that story with the sentence, “Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no children to the day of her death” (v. 23).

In His service,
BibleAsk Team



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