Women of the Bible - Michal

    A Woman Who Never Had a Mother's Day
    by Kathryn Capoccia

     Young Adults Sunday School Class
    
     All Scripture references are taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW
     INTERNATIONAL VERSION (C) 1978 by the New York Bible Society, used by
     permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

 Copyright Kathy Capoccia 2000.  This file may be freely copied, printed out,
and distributed as long as copyright and source statements remain intact,
and that it is not sold.
I. Introduction

     A. Prayer Requests

     B. Review of Last Week's Lesson/Verse

II. Character Profile: Michal, A Woman Who Never Had a Mother's Day

     A. Who Was She? (read 1SA 14:49; 18:20-28; 19:11-17; 25:44; 2SA
        3:13,14; 6:16-23; 21:8; 1CH 15:29).

        1. When Did She Live? In the beginning of the monarchy @1050 B.C.

        2. Where Did She Live? In Israel.

        3. What Was Her Name? Michal is related to "Michael" and "Michaiah"
           which mean, "who is like God?".

        4. Who Were Her People?

           a) her mother's name was Ahinoam, the daughter of Ahimaaz (1SA
              14:50).

           b) her father was Saul, son of Kish, a Benjamite; he was the 1st
              King of Israel (1SA 14:49).

           c) Her brothers and sister were (1SA 14:49):

              1) Jonathan, heir to the throne and covenant friend of David
                 (1SA 18:1-4); he was killed in a battle with the
                 Philistines at Mt. Gilboa (1SA 31:8).

                 1SA 18:1  "After David had finished talking with Saul,
                 Jonathan became one in spirit with David, and he loved him
                 as himself."

              2) Abinadab or Ishvi was killed at Mt. Gilboa (1SA 14:49;
                 31:1-8; 1CH 10:1,6).

              3) Malchi-shua- killed at Mt. Gilboa (1SA 31:1-8; 1CH 10:1,6).

              4) Ish-Bosheth or Esh-Baal survived the battle at Mt. Gilboa
                 and was elevated to the throne by Abner, Saul's cousin and
                 commander-in chief (1SA 14:50; 1CH 8:33; 9:39; 2SA 2:8,9).

              5) Merab, older daughter of Saul; she had been promised in
                 marriage to David (1SA 17:25; 18:17) but was given to
                 another (1SA 18:19).

        5. Was She Married? yes, to David- later she was given to Palti.

     B. What Did She Do?

        1. She Loved David (1SA 18:20, 28).

           1SA 18:20  "Now Saul's daughter Michal was in love with David,
           and when they told Saul about it, he was pleased."

           WHY DID SHE LOVE HIM?

           -He was handsome (1SA 16:12).

           1SA 16:12  "He was ruddy, with a fine appearance and handsome
           features."

           -He worked at court as a musician and armor bearer to Saul (1SA
           16:18,21,23).

           1SA 16:21  "David came to Saul and entered his service. Saul
           liked him very much, and David became one of his armor-bearers."

           -He was a hero (1SA 18:6,7).

           1SA 18:7  "As they [the women of Israel] danced, they sang: 'Saul
           has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands.'"

           -He was successful (1SA 18:14-16,30).

           1SA 18:30  "The Philistine commanders continued to go out to
           battle, and as often as they did, David met with more success
           than the rest of Saul's officers, and his name became well
           known."

           -He was famous (1SA 18:30).

           a) She became David's wife (1SA 18:27).

              1) Merab, Michal's older sister, was offered to David as wife
                 to in order to endanger him (1SA 18:17).

                 1SA 18:17  "Saul said to David, 'Here is my older daughter
                 Merab. I will give her to you in marriage; only serve me
                 bravely and fight the battles of the LORD.' For Saul said
                 to himself, 'I will not raise a hand against him. Let the
                 Philistines do that!'"

                 a] Saul offered Merab to David on the condition that he
                    fight "the LORD'S battles" (1SA 18:17).

                 b] David refused her on the grounds that he was not worthy
                    (1SA 18:18).

                 c] Merab was given to Adriel, the Meholathite (1SA 18:19).

              2) Michal was offered to David (1SA 18:21,22).

                 1SA 18:21,22  "'I will give her to him,' he thought, 'so
                 that she may be a snare ["bait"] to him and so that the
                 hand of the Philistines may be against him.' So Saul said
                 to David, 'Now you have a second opportunity to become my
                 son-in-law.' Then Saul ordered his attendants: 'Speak to
                 David privately and say, 'Look, the king is pleased with
                 you, and his attendants all like you; now become his
                 son-in-law.'"

                 a] Saul offered Michal in marriage to David as bait to lure
                    David to expose himself to the Philistines (1SA 18:21).

                 b] Saul set her dowry as the foreskins of 100 Philistines
                    so that David would try to pay the price and be killed
                    in the attempt (1SA 18:25).

                    1SA 18:25  "Saul replied, 'Say to David, 'The king wants
                    no other price for the bride than a hundred Philistine
                    foreskins, to take revenge on his enemies.' Saul's plan
                    was to have David fall by the hands of the Philistines."


                    *WHY WOULD SAUL WANT TO HAVE DAVID KILLED?

                    HE WAS AFRAID THAT DAVID WOULD SUPPLANT HIM AND BECOME
                    KING IN HIS PLACE.

                    1SA 18:8  "'They have credited David with tens of
                    thousands,' he thought, 'but me [Saul] with only
                    thousands. What more can he get but the kingdom?'"

                 c] David paid the dowry for Michal's hand (1SA 18:27).

                    i] he killed the 100 Philistines and presented their
                       foreskins to Saul (1SA 18:26,27).

                   ii] Michal was given to him as wife (1SA 18:27).

                       *WHAT WAS THE RESULT OF THIS WEDDING?

                       1SA 18:28,29  "When Saul realized that the LORD was
                       with David and that his daughter Michal loved David,
                       Saul became still more afraid of him, and he remained
                       his enemy the rest of his days."

           b) She saved David's life (1SA 19:11-17).

              1) Saul wanted to kill David.

                 a] Saul commanded his servants to put David to death (1SA
                    19:1).

                    i] Jonathan warned David (1SA 19:2,3).

                   ii] Jonathan interceded for David and reconciled them
                       (1SA 19:4-7).

                 b] Saul tried to spear David (1SA 19:9,10).

                 c] Saul put a watch on David's house to put him to death
                    (1SA 19:11).

              2) Michal protected David.

                 a] she warned him of his danger (1SA 19:11).

                    1SA 19:11  "But Michal, David's wife, warned him, 'If
                    you don't run for your life tonight, tomorrow you'll be
                    killed.'"

                 b] she helped him escape (1SA 19:12-17).

                    i] she let David down from a window so he could escape
                       (1SA 19:12).

                   ii] she made his bed look like he was in it (1SA 19:13).

                        -- she took the teraphim (household idol) and put it
                          on David's bed.

                        -- she dressed it as a man:

                          I. she put a goat's hair quilt at its head to look
                             like David's hair (a goat's hair quilt was a
                             coarse, thick, black, woven fabric).

                         II. she covered it with clothes.

                             *WHAT WAS SHE DOING WITH AN IDOL IN HER HOUSE?

                             A TERAPHIM WAS AN IDOL WHICH COULD RANGE IN
                             SIZE FROM SMALL TO ALMOST LIFE-SIZED. THE
                             POSSESSION OF ONE CONSTITUTED HEADSHIP OF A
                             HOUSEHOLD WITH ALL ITS RIGHTS (GEN 31:19). THE
                             PRACTICE OF DIVINATION WITH TERAPHIM WAS
                             CONDEMNED (JUD 17,18; 1SA 15:23; ZEC 10:2).
                             *THIS INFORMATION CAME FROM "THE ZONDERVAN
                             PICTORIAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THE BIBLE, VOL.5,
                             PGS.677,678.

                  iii] she lied to protect David: she told Saul's messengers
                       that he could not go to Saul because he was sick (1SA
                       19:14).

                 c] she lied to protect herself (1SA 19:17).

                    i] Saul accused her of deceiving him to protect David.

                   ii] Michal slandered David by saying that he forced her
                       to help him upon pain of death.

                       *Michal may have paved the way for her being given in
                       marriage to Palti with that lie (plus Saul's hatred
                       of David and David's long-term absence).

        2. She Despised David.

           a) She was given to another man to be his wife after David fled
              from Saul's court (1SA 25:44).

              1) David, though on the run from Saul, still considered Michal
                 to be his wife (1SA 25:43; 2SA 3:14).

                 1SA 25:43  "David had also married Ahinoam of Jezreel, and
                 they both were his wives."

                 *another rendering reads, "And David had taken Ahinoam from
                 Jezreel; thus they also both became his wives", Kiel and
                 Delitzsch, "Commentary on the Old Testament", pg. 246.

                 2SA 3:14  "Then David sent messengers to Ish-Bosheth son of
                 Saul, demanding, 'Give me my wife Michal, whom I betrothed
                 to myself for the price of a hundred Philistine
                 foreskins.'"

              2) Saul gave Michal to Palti, son of Laish, of Gallim (which
                 is located between Gibeah of Saul and Jerusalem).

                 a] Palti ("Yahweh delivers") was a Benjamite, as was Saul
                    and Michal.

                 b] this was illegal since David was alive and had not
                    divorced Michal.

           b) She was returned to David (2SA 3:13-16).

              1) David demanded that she be returned to him (2SA 3:13,14).

                 a] she was lawfully his wife and belonged with him.

                 b] her return would strengthen David's claim to the throne
                    of Israel (as the legal son-in-law of Saul).

              2) Ish-Bosheth (king of Israel) officially ordered her return
                 (2SA 3:15).

              3) Palti did not willingly give her up (2SA 3:15,16).

                 a] Michal was taken away from Palti (2SA 3:15).

                 b] Palti accompanied her, weeping as they went, across the
                    territory of Benjamin until they reached Bahurim, the
                    last Benjamite city on the way to Hebron (2SA 3:16).
                    (Hebron was David's capital for the seven years and six
                    months he reigned as king over Judah.)

                 c] Palti would not leave her until he was ordered to return
                    home by Abner, Ish-Bosheth's commander-in-chief (2SA
                    3:16).

                    *Though it says that Palti grieved when Michal was taken
                    away Scripture says nothing about Michal's feelings- the
                    very absence of them seems to indicate a coldness in
                    her.

           c) She scorned David (2SA 6:15-20).

              1) she despised him in her heart (2SA 6:16).

                 2SA 6:14-16  "David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before
                 the LORD with all his might, while he and the entire house
                 of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouts and
                 the sound of trumpets. As the ark of the LORD was entering
                 the City of David, Michal daughter of Saul watched from a
                 window. And when she saw King David leaping and dancing
                 before the LORD, she despised him in her heart."

                 *She did not understand the significance of the occasion,
                 nor David's joy before the LORD. She is called the daughter
                 of Saul, not David's wife, because she was acting like her
                 father.

              2) she forestalled his blessing (2SA 6:20).

                 2SA 6:20  "When David returned home to bless his household,
                 Michal daughter of Saul came out to meet him and said..."

                 *David had just blessed the people in the name of the LORD,
                 offering everyone a cake of bread, a slice of date bread
                 and a slice of raisin bread. He was returning home to do
                 the same thing for his family when Michal met him at the
                 door.

              3) she criticized him for acting in a way unbecoming to a king
                 (2SA 6:20).

                 2SA 6:20  "Michal daughter of Saul... said, 'How the king
                 of Israel has distinguished himself today, disrobing in the
                 sight of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar
                 fellow would!'"

                 a] for his behavior- his public celebration was not
                    dignified as a king's comportment ought to be (according
                    to the standard set by Saul).

                 b] for his dress- he was not wearing his royal robes in
                    public, only a linen ephod (a close-fitting armless
                    outer vest that usually reached to the hips- it was a
                    garment used exclusively in the worship of God; in the
                    Old Testament it was a priest's official garment of
                    ministry). This information came from "the Zondervan
                    Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible", vol.2, pg. 332.

                    *Michal could not understand David's devotion to God,
                    his utter humility before Him, his being "a man after
                    God's own heart". She missed the essential character of
                    the man. She apparently had loved only what he
                    represented- his position and prestige- not who he was
                    as a man. When he frustrated her, when he failed to
                    "measure up", she rejected him.

        3. She Was Judged.

           a) She was rebuked by David (2SA 6:21,22).

              2SA 6:21,22  "David said to Michal, 'It was before the LORD,
              who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house
              when he appointed me ruler over the LORD'S people Israel--I
              will celebrate before the LORD. I will become even more
              undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own
              eyes. But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in
              honor.'"

              *David reminded her that it was for Saul's pride and profane
              attitude that the kingdom was wrest from him, and that David
              was conscious that it was only by God's grace that he was
              king.

           b) She was made barren (2SA 6:23).

              2SA 6:23  "And Michal daughter of Saul had no children to the
              day of her death."

              *A Hebrew woman desired to have children, and to be barren was
              considered to be cursed by God; children are a blessing to the
              family of believers.

     C. What Can We Learn From Her?

        1. Michal's attraction to David was not enough for a happy marriage:
           because she saw only the external trappings of his office and not
           the man himself, and because she did not share his love for God,
           her incompatibility doomed their marriage. So it will always be:
           the one who bases a relationship on externals will always be
           disappointed.

        2. Marriage that occurs between a believer and an unbeliever will
           experience deep conflict because the two natures of the
           individuals will be in opposition; the one will be eager to do
           the things that please God, and the other in slavery to sin will
           persecute the other and do all things to please Satan (JOH 8;
           GAL 4:23, 5:17).

        3. God has total sovereign power over the womb, opening it and
           closing it as He wills; sometimes He closes it as punishment for
           sin (see GEN 16:2; 20:17,18; 25:21; 29:31; 30:2,17,22; JUD 13:3;
           1SA 1:20; LUK 1:24,25,31).

        4. God judges sin.

 III. What Fruits of the Spirit Can We See In Her? None.

  IV. Memory Verse: GAL 6:7,8  "Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A
     man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature,
     from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the
     Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life."

Added to Bible Bulletin Board's "Kathy Capoccia's Sunday School Lessons for Young Adults" by:

Tony Capoccia
Bible Bulletin Board
Box 119
Columbus, New Jersey, USA, 08022
Websites: www.biblebb.com and www.gospelgems.com
Email: tony@biblebb.com
Online since 1986