Monday, August 24, 2009

King of Deceit

King of Deceit

I’ve been studying the life of King David, the slayer of the giant Goliath, the greatest King to ever live, the “man after God’s own heart”, and the human. David saw a woman that was not his own, but someone else’s wife. King David could have had any woman he wanted, yet He saw Bathsheba, gave into His own selfish desires, compromised His values, and slept with her. That may have been the end of the story, but then she became pregnant. Her husband Uriah was ironically, out fighting on behalf of King David.

David instead of accepting responsibility for His mistake tried to cover it up and hide it. He sent for Uriah hoping Uriah would go home and sleep with his wife and no one would ever know. Uriah was loyal to his fellow soldiers and refused to go home and sleep at his house or with his wife while others were sleeping in tents and camping in open fields fighting. David was getting desperate so he tried to get Uriah drunk so he’d go home and sleep with his wife, no go. He still didn’t. David made a choice. He sent Uriah back to fight with orders for him to go where the fighting was fiercest and Uriah was killed in battle. David, then took Bathsheba after her mourning period to be His wife and she bore a son. The end of the story. David got away with it. His deceit covered with more deceit. He had covered His tracks, hid His sin, and now He could move on like nothing happened…not so fast my friends.

What David had done, how he handled the situation, displeased the Lord. God sent Nathan the prophet to confront David. Nathan told David a story about a rich man who had many sheep and cattle and a poor man who had only a little ewe lamb. The poor man and his family loved the lamb and treated it and cared for it like family. The rich man had a guest and instead of taking one of his many sheep or cattle to prepare a meal, he came and took the one little lamb from the poor man and his family to eat. David “burned with anger” at this story and told Nathan this man deserves to die and he must pay for taking the lamb four times over. I love Nathan’s words to David: “You are the man!” Nathan reminded David of all the things God had given him, His kingship, the palace, wives, the kingdom of Israel and Judah and God said he would have given him even more if that wasn’t enough, but David despised the Word of God by having an affair with Bathsheba, trying to cover it up, having Uriah killed, and then taking Bathsheba to be your wife.

David is confronted with his sin. What does he do? He accepts responsibility. He confesses his sin. He accepted the consequences. He learned from His mistakes and moved forward.

Being a Christian, a minister, an elder, a SS teacher, a deacon, or follower of God doesn’t keep you from the temptations of sin. It is very easy to cross the line in our morals, values, hearts, and minds when we do not keep our focus on God and His truth. It’s easy to be led astray by the world if we do not maintain our integrity and character and keep them in check. What can we do? How can we avoid this pitfall that David fell in? It’s tough, but we can take steps to avoid mistakes or overcome them:

1. We must always realize we are all capable of committing sinful acts if we do not guard our hearts and minds and maintain our Godly and integrity boundaries. David was a man after God’s own heart, but He was still capable of adultery, lying, deceit, false motives, pride, and murder. Not only was he capable, he was guilty.

2. If we do mess up and sin or make a mistake. Stop there! Don’t lie, don’t try and hide it, minimize it, blame shift, or deny it. Accept responsibility. Let it stop there instead of continuing by trying to cover it up or hide it like David.

3. Seek Forgiveness from God and others if needed. Make amends to those you’ve wronged or hurt. Our sins never only affect us. David confessed His sins to Nathan and God.

4. Accept consequences. The sooner we do this the less the consequences. The more we cover up or don’t admit the bigger the consequences. David lost His son that Bathsheba was pregnant with.

5. Learn from your mistakes. Many people refuse to learn from their mistakes because they live in this cloud of denial, or it’s someone else fault, or they’ve got too much pride to admit they were wrong or messed up. David learned from His mistakes and went on to continue to do great things for God. (check out Psalm 51)

The right thing is always the right thing to do.

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