Summary: When God calls us to repentance it is a manifestation of His grace in our lives.
UNEXPECTED GOOD NEWS. Have you ever had something happen in your life that seemed really, really bad and unwanted at the moment but in hindsight that very thing you thought was really, really bad was exactly what you needed even though you did not want it at the time? More than that, because of the “seemingly bad” thing that happened to you, it lead to a series of events that put you in a better place than you were before it all began? Like unexpectedly losing a job due to downsizing, cuts, etc… and yet in the end you are blessed with a job you actually love and provision that exceeds that which was before?
Our passage this morning has the same “feeling” to it. David, King of Israel, experiences something troubling and uncomfortable in an encounter with a prophet named Nathan but it was from this encounter that David experienced something good.
DAVID’S WONDERING EYES… 2 SAMUEL 11:1-5
PUTTING OFF RESPONSIBILITY. The Bible records that it was the time of the year when kings should have been out in battle. David was not only king of Israel but the Commander in Chief of Israel’s army and should have been in the field with his men. David decided take this season “off” and it was during this time of unnecessary laziness and slumber that David’s commitment to the Lord was compromised.
A WALK ON THE ROOFTOP. David was restless and while walking around on his rooftop terrace he saw, out of the corner of his eye, a beautiful woman bathing in one of the buildings below him. Her beauty is such that he simply cannot take his eyes off of her. Her beauty lures him and he cannot get her out of his mind. His mind begins to race and think about what “could be.” He heart and mind is so consumed by her that he just cannot shake what is stirring in his heart.
AN INQUIRY MADE and AN INVITATION MADE. David has to send one of his servants to find out more about her. This is when it is revealed to him that this is one of his very own serviceman’s wives. At this point it really did not matter whose wife, sister, daughter or mother she was. The sin that had been brewing in David’s heart all this time begins to boil over. He had allowed his lustful temptation to take him too far down the rabbit whole and he was determined to be with her. He invites her to the king’s palace. She is probably flattered and accepts the invitation. A visit to the king’s palace resulted in a night in the king’s bedroom.
DAVID’S ATTEMPT AT COVERING UP… 2 SAMUEL 11:6-14
“BAD” NEWS COMES DAVID’S WAY. As it so happened, David’s worst nightmare became reality whenever word was sent to him that Bathsheeba was pregnant. David could not get out of this one. The servants knew whom she had been with and the servants knew where her husband was. It would appear that David is busted.
PLAN A. Rather than revealing his sinful relationship with Bathsheba David decides to cover it up his sin and sets forth this sly plan to have Uriah to come home for a few days hoping that his reprieve from fighting will make it appear that Bathsheba’s pregnancy was with her husband not David. When Uriah refuses to stay in his house with his wife when he should be in battle David tries harder. He tells Uriah to stay in Jerusalem a few days longer. He even gets him drunk hoping that in a drunken stupor he might go to his house and stay the night with his wife. All David’s plans to cover up his sin fail.
PLAN B. David sets forth another elaborate plan and this time he would manipulate the situation so that Bathsheeba’s husband, Uriah, would certainly be killed in the field of battle. If Uriah were dead then David was free to take Bathsheeba for himself and he could then play the child off as the product of a lawful relationship. David maneuvers his army like a chess master and makes sure that Uriah finds his way to the front line of battle. Just as David had planned, Uriah is killed there on the front line of the battle in his very army. ALL OUTWARD APPEARANCES SHOW THAT DAVID HAS BEEN SUCCESSFUL IN COVERING UP HIS SIN.
SURPRISED BY GRACE—GOD SENDS NATHAN… 2 SAMUEL 12:1-10
A MESSENGER. Nathan, a prophet of God, was told by God to go to David for the express purpose of pointing out that David could not hide his sin from God. While few, if any, men may have known of David’s sin, God did. David may have worked hard to cover up his sin before men but there was not enough he could do to cover up his sin before God. God sees where nobody else can see. He knows us like nobody else. Nathan is sent to David with a message in parable form. As Nathan tells the story David’s anger grows, as he cannot believe that a man with so much would take from another with so little. At the peak of David’s anger, Nathan reveals that the story is not about just any old man but that it is about him. He is the rich man. The analogy of “many flocks and herds” is a reference to David’s abundance of all things including women as he inherited a harem from King Saul. Uriah is the poor man. The analogy of the “one little ewe lamb” is a reference to Bathsheba, Uriah’s one and only. IRONICALLY ENOUGH DAVID PRONOUNCES A SENTENCE THAT WAS DUE TO HIM! It is here that Nathan finally reveals that David is the rich man who stole the poor man’s only lamb. I wonder if it is at this point that David’s countenance fell and his knees hit the floor as he sobbed. The turmoil in his soul has now come to light. What he thought he had hidden so well is now out in the open.