To some people, the story of David and Bathsheba is one of judgment and condemnation. Others see it as a story of grace, restoration, and hope. For those willing to admit their sin and accept God’s judgment, grace, and restoration, it is both. The realization that God’s agenda is one of healing and restoration will change our perspective on everything. This morning, we shall learn how we can experience divine restoration after a moral failure. First, we look at how David got into the mess in which he found himself (2 Samuel 11:1-5)
To some people, the story of David and Bathsheba is one of judgment and condemnation. Others see it as a story of grace, restoration, and hope. For those willing to admit their sin and acceptGod’s judgment, grace, and restoration, it is both. The realization that God’s agenda is one of healing and restoration will change our perspective on everything.This morning, we shall learn how we can experience divine restoration after a moral failure. First, we look at how David got into the mess in which he found himself (2 Samuel 11:1-5). At the very root of David’s problems, we find a king who wasn’t where he belonged. If David had been out in the battlefield, where the king was supposed to be, instead of hanging around the palace looking at naked women, this whole incident would have never happened. Not being where we ought to be is often the first step towards a downhill slide. Second, his attempts to cover-up his sin (vv. 6-13). David, demonstrating that he was just like the rest of mankind, went with his first instinct; he tried to cover up his sin and shift the responsibility to someone else (vv.6-17).
He attempted to shift the responsibility for Bathsheba’s pregnancy on her husband but he failed. Having failed, he ordered Uriah’s death. Third, the condemnation and repentance (2 Sam. 12:1-6). David, in his effort to cover up his sin, overlooked one small detail: no one can hide his heart fromGod. Nathan’s parable was a close parallel to what David had done, and had covered up so skillfully. This should remind us that, no matter how hard we try, we can’t hide from God. David was reminded, as we often need to be, that God is bigger and smarter than we are. Nathan, who hadn’t been a party to any of this incident, recited back to David exactly what he had done, in painful detail, and pronounced God’s judgement on the king (v. 7). This was a moment of decision in David’s life. David, face-to-face with himself, made the most noble statement of his life: “I have sinned against the LORD.” (2 Samuel 12:13a.) There were no excuses, no spin, no double-talk or legalese waffling. David saw his situation clearly, and dealt with it boldly. David confessed his sin, and expected to die for it.But it is when we are truly honest with God that we find His mercy and grace: And Nathan said to David, “The LORD also has taken away your sin; you shall not die.” (2 Samuel 12:13b). Psalm 51 is David’s prayer of repentance. David committed himself to serving God with his restored life, and leading other needy people to Him. There are many who would want the story to end with 2 Samuel 12:13, but God’s not finished yet! Finally, thehealing and restoration. There are consequences to our actions, and whether we like it or not, we must live with those consequences, just as David did (vv.14-23).
The death of David’s newborn son was one of the consequences for his sin. The child’s death underscores an important truth, namely, that our sin affects not only ourselves, but also those around us. But the best news of all is that the story does not end with the consequences of sin. Where there is sin, there are consequences, but where there is grace, there is restoration and healing (vv. 24-25). God never brings us condemnation without offering us grace and healing. This is a recurring theme throughout the Bible — God wants to have an intimate relationship with each of us, and goes out of His way to invite us into that relationship. The whole point of Nathan’s charge against David was not to punish him, but to restore him.