But now he is dead. Why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me.”
2 Samuel 12:23
David had sinned against the Lord. He had committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband Uriah murdered. He was confronted by Nathan the prophet about this and repented. But as judgement, he and Bathsheba lost their first child.
David’s response to the child’s illness and death was unusual, and confused his servants. While the child was ill he was depressed and cried out to the Lord. But once the child died, instead of getting worse, David recovered immediately.
This verse is part of his explanation to his servants about his behaviour. While the child was ill and there was hope of recovery he beseeched the Lord to have mercy. But once the child died David knew there was no point mourning.
David had assurance that he would go to the child, although the child could not go to him. He had assurance that they would be united together in death. This doesn’t mean to say every parent of infants that die can, because even in the womb God chose Jacob and rejected Esau.
“Loving heavenly Father, please give me assurance that those I love will go to be with You. Help me to be a witness where I can so that if possible they can respond to the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ. If not, please be gracious to them regardless. For Your glory, amen”