Summary: God used Nathan to call David to repentance. God uses faithful pastors today to do the same for us.
What’s your reaction when you come flying over a hill on the QEII and find a patrol car sitting in the median? Does your foot immediately go for the brake pedal? Do the palms of your hands get sweaty and your stomach churn? If the patrol car turns on its lights and swings into your lane, those feelings only intensify don’t they? Why do police officers have to put us through such angst! Why don’t they busy themselves tracking down real criminals? You know the answer of course. If no one patrolled the highways, half of us would already be in heaven due to our crazy driving or someone else’s! Police officers patrol the highways to keep us safe.
In today’s Agents of Grace sermon we’re going to learn how David’s pastor, the prophet Nathan, was like a highway patrol officer. He pulled David over because the king was living recklessly in the fast lane. God used Nathan to keep David from throwing away his eternal future in heaven. That’s how God still uses pastors today. To tell you more, let me continue this sermon from the perspective of Nathan.
So you want to know what it was like to be King David’s pastor, do you? For the most part it was a delightful experience. David was not only an eager student of God’s Word, he was also eager to do God’s will. For example it bothered David that while he lived in a palace, the Ark of the Covenant was still in a tent. So he told me about his plans to build a temple, and I encouraged him to do it. But then God told me that David was not to be the one to build the temple, his son Solomon would do that. David didn’t pout about the matter, instead he just poured himself in getting everything ready for his son to build the temple. That’s the kind of believer David was: focused on doing God’s will...most of the time. There was of course that thing with Bathsheba. Let me tell you about it.
After David had solidified his position as king, he decided to take it easy. He sent his army out to fight while he himself stayed home. That down time got David into trouble. That’s usually the way it works, doesn’t it? When things are going well and life is easy, we sinners forget that we need the Lord just as much as when things aren’t going well!
One night when David went outside on his balcony to enjoy the fresh spring air, he noticed a young woman bathing. David should have turned away immediately, but he let his eyes linger, and then his mind filled with impure thoughts. When David asked a servant to find out who the woman was he replied: “That’s Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittite.” God was trying to hold David back from sinning even more, for the servant might as well have said: “Oh King, she is a married woman, and married to one of your most faithful soldiers!” You see, Uriah was one of David’s 30 most valiant men. But inflamed by passion, David could care less about that. And so he rushed further into sin heedless of the consequences, like a drunk man running barefoot through a bonfire. David called for Bathsheba and spent the night.