Highlights In Today's Reading:
We're given a never-ending lesson here. Like David, whenever we experience victories in the Lord, we must not relax because Satan will present sinful temptations. Remain faithful to God and, like David, we will receive protection to fulfill His will (12:7-12).
Two major sins marred David's forty-year reign: his adultery with Bathsheba (11:3) and his numbering of the people (I Chr. 21). Although David fully repented and was forgiven (Ps. 51; I Chr. 21:8), fulfilling his lust for Bathsheba brought untold misery during the remaining 20 years of his reign. God declared through Nathan: The sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised Me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah. . . . Thus saith the Lord . . . I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house (II Sam. 12:10-11).
David's conduct was typical of an eastern monarch. For a king to take the wife of a poor man would seem insignificant to one with the power and privileges which David possessed. David married Bathsheba and no doubt, performed all his official tasks, even going to the Tabernacle with no one the wiser. Nothing interfered with his sin. But the thing . . . displeased the Lord (11:27). Until this sin, David rose in power with one God-guided victory after another. He is undoubtedly one of the most godly men of the pre-Christian era. But God, in His righteousness and holiness, is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34). No one is above the will and Word of God. Uriah's death and the sin of adultery could not go unpunished.
Although David was forgiven, the sin's consequences could not be avoided. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap (Gal. 6:7).
David's trouble soon began. His oldest son, Amnon, raped his half-sister, Tamar. Two years later, in revenge for disgracing his sister, Absalom murdered Amnon (II Sam. 13:28-29) and attempted to overthrow David's kingdom. Later, Sheba led a revolt (20:1-2). And finally Joab, who had carried out David's order to make sure Uriah was killed, lost faith in David and supported Adonijah's attempt to usurp the kingdom (I Kin. 1:7), which God had promised through David to Solomon (1:30).
Distrust and division within the kingdom, and desertion by David's closest friends plagued David until his death.
Although David was a man after Mine (God's) own heart (Acts 13:22), the results of David's sins illustrate the warning: Abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul (I Pet. 2:11).
Thought for Today:
The price of sin is never a bargain, for the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life (Rom. 6:23).
In the prophet Nathan giving Solomon the name Jedidiah, which means beloved of the Lord (II Sam. 12:24-25). Christ was greatly loved by His Heavenly Father. Jesus prayed: Father . . . Thou lovedst Me before the foundation of the world (John 17:24).
10:12 play the men =show our courage and strength; 11:1 after the year was expired =in the spring of the following year; 11:8 mess of meat =gift of food; 12:4 spared =refused; 12:11 in the sight of this sun =publicly for all Israel to know; 12:31 put them under saws =enslaved, made to work with saws.
Pray for International Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Charles & Jo Van Boskirk • Staff: Rita Guerra • Government Official: Rep. Laura Richardson (CA) • Country: Hong Kong (7 million) in eastern Asia • Major languages: Chinese and English • Limited religious freedom • 90% Chinese religions; 10% Protestant • Prayer Suggestion: Pray fervently with others (Rom. 15:30).
Optional Reading: Acts 15
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 6:11-12