Summary: How did a godly man like David wind up in sexual sin? Let’s analyze how it happened so we can be forewarned against it in our own lives.
1. Illus. of flu epidemic
• Few years back a particularly potent strain of flu made its way here.
• Seems like everybody in our church had it. Just when one family member would start getting over it, another would contract it.
• It really was of epidemic proportions.
• As bad as it was, want to talk today about an epidemic even more destructive that that one.
2. There is moral epidemic sweeping America today. This epidemic is attacking the home, with incredibly destructive results. Christians are not exempt, even those who truly love the Lord and have sound and conservative beliefs. This epidemic is called by many names, but perhaps the best name for it is the name the Bible gives it: adultery.
3. In our morally bankrupt society, rare indeed is the adult who will not be brought face to face with this temptation at some point. The difference between being a victor and a victim may very well lie in knowing what the Bible says about the subject.
4. We need to distinguish between two different types of adulterers.
One is the serial adulterer. This person is a sexual predator whose life is a string of illicit relationships. For this person it is not a question of if, but just a question of when. They are simply waiting for the next opportunity.
The other is the person like David. They didn’t go looking for an affair, it’s almost like it came looking for them. Once the relationship ends, it’s likely they will never repeat this sin again.
5. Look at David’s sin. I believe that most illicit relationships of this second type will pass through the same stages that David’s did.
1. Like most Christians, David didn’t set out to dishonor God by committing adultery. David was, “a man after God’s own heart…” Why would godly David fall into this trap? Because prior events in his life had made him vulnerable. When we read 2 Samuel 6-10, we find out that David:
had a troubled marriage (chapter 6)
found out he wouldn’t get to fulfill lifelong ambition of building the temple (chapter 7)
emotionally battered by the death of his best friend (chapter 9)
2. Over the last quarter century of ministry, I have seen dozens of devout Christians fall into adultery. All of them had experienced some common factors that had made them susceptible to adultery.
Unmet expectations (some realistic, some unrealistic)
drastic life-changes (age, upheaval, etc)
Feeding minds with wrong material (porn for the husband, low self esteem for the wife).
3. This all led to a general feeling of “lack” within their marriage. Not that it was bad, just that something is missing. And this is important: there is a diminishing respect for the other person.
4. What generally happens at this point is that a friendship or acquaintance develops with a member of the opposite sex. At this stage, the relationship with this other person is innocent and innocuous. However, we start to see some qualities in this person that we do not see in our spouse. At this point, we move to stage two!
3. See 11:1-3 David couldn’t sleep one night, so he took a walk on the roof of his mansion. While he was there, he glanced toward one of the neighboring houses. Imagine his surprise when he was able to see into the bathing room of the home of one of his soldiers. There he could see a beautiful 19-year-old woman taking a bath.
4. Instead of turning away, he just kept watching. And in his mind he began to play the, “what if” game. “What would it be like if she and I got together? Wait a minute! She is the wife of one of my most trusted and loyal soldiers! But, he wouldn’t have to know. Nobody would have to know. What if...”
5. Mark this: sexual sin happens in the mind long before it ever happens in the flesh. See Matthew 5:28. There is a definite article before woman, and the word looks is a progressive present tense verb, meaning an ongoing situation. The literal sense of the verse is this: “if any man continues to lust after a particular woman…" Let me tell you how this plays out in the real world. Remember that innocent relationship with a member of the opposite sex we talked about just a minute ago? We start focusing on this person in a less than innocent way. We start playing the “what if” game that David played. Next, we start giving little “innocent” signals to this person, to let them know we might think of them as more than just a friend. When we get to this point, we are teetering on the edge of adultery.