Date of Graduation

Fall 2011


Master of Arts in Religious Studies


Religious Studies

Committee Chair

James Moyer


2 Samuel 12, 2 Sam 12, King David, Bathsheba, mourning, joy, biblical, mourning and joy, David and Bathsheba, mourning rituals, reversal

Subject Categories



This thesis focuses on mourning and reversal/joy as it relates to King David and the loss of his infant son in 2 Samuel 12:15-23. Mourning in the Hebrew Bible is examined and how the social constructs, community and family define the meaning of mourning within a society. The contrast between mourning and reversal/joy is compared by utilizing common mourning aspects of the time period, and contrasting them to what would be considered normal day-to-day life. The thesis ends with the application of mourning and reversal/joy to the specific passages in 2 Samuel 12:15-23. It was concluded that there are similarities of mourning and joy/reversal throughout the biblical text and that mourning is reserved not only for the dead but also for the living. King David's story in 2 Samuel 12:15-23 represents everyone - he has mourning and reversal/joy in his life and his story shows that no one is out of YHWH's reach, not even the most influential members of society.


© Christine Rene Tibbs

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