Biblical People

Biblical People: Tamar (2)

The story of Tamar is a tragic one. The beautiful daughter of King David catches the eye of her half brother, Amnon, who lusts for her. At the advice of his cousin, Amnon feigns illness and manipulates Tamar into his bedroom, duping David into innocently arranging the whole thing.

Once alone, Amnon grabs and solicits Tamar. Three times she refuses. When her pleading isn’t enough to stop him, she talks about the implications: her disgrace and him appearing as foolish and wicked.

In desperation, she even suggests they ask Dad for permission to marry. But Amnon refuses to listen. Lust drives him. He loses control and rapes her.

After this, his supposed love for her turns to an even more intense hate. When he commands her to leave, Tamar refuses, saying that kicking her out would be an even greater insult. Amnon has her forcibly removed from his presence.

Tamar, a victim of rape, goes to live in desolation with her brother Absalom. 

Is there something we can do to help the victims in our world? Caring for even one person will make a difference.

[Discover more about Tamar in 2 Samuel 13:1–22.]

Learn about other biblical women in Women of the Bible, available in audiobook, e-book, paperback, and hardcover.

A lifelong student of the Bible, Peter DeHaan, PhD, wrote the 1,000-page website to encourage people to explore the Bible. His main blog and many books urge Christians to push past the status quo and reconsider how they practice their faith in every area of their lives.

By Peter DeHaan

Peter writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and make a faith that matters. Learn more at