2 Samuel 11:1-13
Joshua 15:20-63 – Inheritance for Judah. Yesterday I said that the only two men that were given specific plots of ground were Caleb and Joshua because of their courage and faithfulness. The rest of the tribe of Judah are given a plot of land by lot. When you read the names of the cities, some of them should stand out in your mind specifically, Ekron, Ziklag, Adullam, Makkedah, Gibeah, Timnah, Arab, Dumah, Gaza, and the coastline of the great sea. Ziklag was David’s temporary homeland after being expelled from Jerusalem. Ekron and Gath belonged to the Philistines. Arab or Arabah is the homeland of Arabia. Gaza is a disputed portion of Israel’s homeland. The Jebusites who held the future city of David would hold onto their property by defeating the Jews. Joshua and the elders made an unwise decision to accept the Gibeonites into the fold which would cause future problems for the nation as we’ll find out in the book of Judges. There are times in our lives when we are specifically told to get rid of ____ or “do not make friends with ___ but we do not listen thinking we are doing ourselves a favor only to find out at an inopportune time why we were given the order. For Israel, the reasoning behind the directions would be found out in David, Solomon, and many other kings’ lives when it would be too late to do anything about it.
Psalms 74 – Arise, O G-d, Defend Your Cause. There is a concept we must come to grips with, “Sin does not care who it hurts, how much it hurts, or whose goods it steals; it is the only true “equal employer” (Mike Krier). The writer of Psalms 74 is referring to Israel’s departure into exile. Many of you, including me, can testify to how sin had destroyed your home, stole your job, reduced your finances to rubble, and/or broke the home up. Jerusalem was reduced to rubble, the temple built by Solomon was destroyed, and the beautiful homes were leveled. When the minions of Hell take over a home and/or life, there is nothing sacred that will remain standing because they will trample on everything and everyone that matters to us. When we destroy our home and the security we once held so firmly to is removed, we think the Lord will come rushing in like a White Knight ready to do battle in our lives but then it doesn’t happen no matter how many times we go to church, how long we pray, or which we Prophet we go to see. Does G-d forget about us? By no means! He does give us time to sort through things in our minds and determine which G-d or god we will serve. Will He ever restore us again? Absolutely!
Proverbs 30:15-33 – Proverbs for Life. Sin is like the human stomach. When the person eats very little, he/she gains very little and a little bit of food is more than enough. When we ignore stomach pains from over-eating, the stomach grows to accommodate the increase in food. In the same way, when we do not sin, our appetite for it is diminished to non-existence. As we cave into sin, though, our appetite for it grows. Sin is like the “two leeches” which say “give me more” but give nothing in return. Sin is also like fire in that once it starts the only way it finishes is when no heat, no fuel exists like wood, or is deprived of oxygen. The reason the Lord doesn’t give “sin” a fancy name or coin a new syndrome is that He knows all too well what sin has done in His children’s lives. He had a ring-side seat for all of the events of this world, He saw them coming from a distance and saw how they destroyed people without compunction. He saw how David’s daughter was ravaged by her brother Amnon. The Lord created wise animals and insects so that mankind would learn from them. Instead, we learn from the rooster how to strut and crow, how to be a bully from the goat.
Isaiah 12 – The Lord is My Strength and My Song. When the Lord is done dealing with our sins and transgressions and the pathway has been cleared, the course that we are presently on is ended and a new pathway comes into view. The Lord does not hold a grudge against us and does not continue to hound us or our failures, that is the work of the Devil. Don’t get me wrong, sin has consequences and the Lord will wait as long as it takes for us to come to our senses. When you read the story of the Prodigal Son, you will notice that the father does not go looking in every slime pit until he finds his son and then begs him to come home, he lets that child think things through and make a decision about the pathway he would like to be on. When the child left home, his pockets were full of money and his head was full of foolish ideas. Initially, the young man had a good time until the money ran out, and along with it all of his friends. Because he was broke and hungry, he had to work wherever the money was. When he came back home again with filthy clothes and an empty stomach, he apologized for his actions and the father accepted him. While this is a parable, it is also Israel’s history. After being in exile for over 70 years, the nation returned to Jerusalem broke, covered by the stain of sin, and spiritually hungry for G-d’s righteousness in their lives. Many of you, just like me, have prayed the prayer of Daniel 9 – and go on for days as empty and as broken as the 1st day of prayer but then things slowly change.
2 Samuel 11:1-13 – David and Bathsheba. This is the point in David’s life where the wheels came off the proverbial axel and his life was irrevocably altered with the destiny of his lineage and that of the nation. He was supposed to be in the field with his army at this juncture in time. So imagine, if you will, David just happened to see Bathsheba taking a bath. Remember this, the Devil knows our temptations and just how long to dangle them before we act on them. Upon finding out that Bathsheba was pregnant, he had three choices confess, his sin or cover it up, and lastly commit murder to legalize the marriage. The reason he called for Uriah was to cover up his actions with the hope that Uriah would sleep with his wife. Uriah was a righteous man and would not accept the invitation to have pleasure when he knew the armies of the Lord and Joab his master were in the fields fighting David’s battles. Unfortunately for David, Uriah refused pleasure even in an inebriated state. The Devil does things like this to his patsies knowing that the Lord will not let that person off of the hook thereby effectively ending a time of blessings and growth in the Lord.