Summary: Deal with sin WITH God and not apart from Him. Take responsibility for your sin. This sermon is part 1 of 2 parts. The sermon following this is The Recovery.

We are going to talk about a common experience today, and how to deal with it.

• Since Adam and Eve, man has been reliving this problem countless times. And many still do not know how to deal with it.

• What to do when we sin against God?

Let’s read 2 Samuel 12:1-13.

David sinned big time. He committed adultery with Bathsheba, someone’s wife.

• She became pregnant, and David tried to COVER it up.

• He urged Bathsheba’s husband URIAH (his loyal soldier), to go home and spend time with his wife. So that no one could find out this child was actually his.

And when that didn’t succeed, David plotted to have Uriah killed in battle by sending him to the fiercest front line.

• Uriah died. It looked more like a heroic death and no one suspected anything.

• And David married the grieving widow in a sympathetic move. It was the “perfect” plan.

• But we know better. 11:27 ends with this verdict: “But the thing David had done displeased the Lord.”

So far we have been hearing good things about David, generally speaking. This comes as a shocker to us, but also a grave reminder, that no one is immune from this.

• It is not all the good works that we have done that will immune us from sin - 10 good works versus one wrong move. It is not the balance of good works versus sinful deeds.

• It is all about a relationship with God. Only God can resolve the problem of sin, and only God can remove the plague of sin in our lives.

David started with man’s way of dealing with sin – a crime is committed, we find a way to cover it up. And then we make attempts to camouflage it, as if it’s not there.

• These are all wrong ways of dealing with sin, which we are so familiar with.

• We pretend that it’s not there but the only person we are really deceiving is ourselves - because we know it’s there, and so does God.

The only resolution to sin is to bring it to God. You cannot surprise Him with it.

• God has the ultimate solution to the problem of sin. He has the ability to free us from its bondage and power over us.

• Prov 28:13 “Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.”

James 5:19-20 “19My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, 20consider this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and cover over a multitude of sins.”

• There is a COVERING made available and it is not the COVER UP we are talking about.

• This COVERING is a covering of MERCY. It happens when we confess and renounce our sin. It’s the FORGIVENESS of our sin we receive when we TURN BACK to God.

Only God can truly COVER sin for good and He did that through Jesus Christ.

• When Adam and Eve sinned and admitted it, God made “garments of skin” (Gen 3:21) as coverings for them. This is the first shedding of blood.

• Heb 9:22 “…without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.”

If only God can effectively deal with sin, then David must come back to God.

• So God steps in. 12:1 “The Lord sent Nathan to David.” God initiated the move and stepped in.

• Adam and Eve hid, and God came. David kept silent, and God came. This is the grace of God. This is the Christmas message. God initiated the move.

And His purpose? To save David from his sin; from the guilt and shame of sin!

• God wants to restore him because He is not finished with David yet.

• God did not come to shame him, to condemn him, or lay a guilt on him.

• Jesus says it right in John 3:17, “God did not send ME into the world to CONDEMN the world but to SAVE the world…”

See how Prophet Nathan brings up the matter – through a story. How gentle can you be?

• About a poor man with a ewe lamb, a pet lamb in his house. It’s like a daughter to him. (12:3). He has a rich neighbour who has “a very large number of sheep and cattle” (12:2) but when a visitor came, he took the poor man’s lamb to prepare a meal. Imagine this!

• We are all angry at this, just like David. He said, “… the man who did this deserves to die!” (12:5)

• It’s so easy to see “the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye”, the Lord says in Matt 7:3.

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