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Divine Discipline

  • Greg Laurie A New Beginning
  • 2007 4 Apr
  • COMMENTS
Divine Discipline
The time to put up your guard as a Christian is when things are going well. When we are facing times of crisis, we are usually looking to the Lord. When a hardship hits, when a difficulty comes, we say, “God, if you don’t come through for me, I am not going to make it.” Those are not the times to be extra careful.

The time to be extra careful is when things are going reasonably well, when the bills are paid, when the health is good, and when there is no crisis looming on the horizon—at least that you know of. Sometimes we can get a little lazy, and we can forget God. It is not that we turn against God. We just forget about Him.

That is exactly what happened with David when he committed adultery with Bathsheba. He had set the scene for his defeat with things he had already done in direct disobedience to God. David had multiple wives and took concubines after he became king (see 2 Samuel 5:13). Yet God specifically warned in Deuteronomy 17:17 that a king was never to do this. David’s heart was slowly but surely turning away from God, and he was allowing lust to consume his life.

Perhaps David thought he was above the law. Yet the Bible warns, “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18 NKJV). Sins we commit today may not have their full impact until much later. In other words, some people are sowing the seeds of sin today and may not see immediate repercussions. So they mistakenly conclude that they won’t have to pray a price for what they are doing. But Galatians 6:7 says, “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap” (NKJV). David’s sin with Bathsheba was the outcome of earlier sins that he had committed. David didn’t fall suddenly. It was a process, as it is with everyone.

David should have been leading his troops into war, which is what a king in his day would do. But David wasn’t in battle; he was in bed. There is nothing wrong with taking a vacation, but we need to remember there is no rest from the spiritual battle. The devil never takes a day off. The Bible describes him as “a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8 NKJV).

But David was kicking back, lowering his spiritual guard. So when he saw the beautiful Bathsheba, he took immediate action to have her brought into his chambers. As David was driven by his lust, all rational thinking went out the door, along with any regard for the repercussions or his reputation.

The sin was committed. The wrong had been done. Then a little time passed, and Bathsheba sent word to David that she was pregnant. At that point, David should have said, “I have sinned against God.” But David would not come clean. He thought he could cover up what he had done. Yet the Bible says, “He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13 NKJV). David had not considered one important thing: he had displeased the Lord (see 2 Samuel 11:27).

But despite his extreme wickedness, David was still a believer—a very disobedient one, granted, but a believer nonetheless. And in Psalms 32 and 51, he wrote about the tortured state he was in as a result of the unconfessed sin in his life. For 12 months, he fought the conviction of the Holy Spirit and was not experiencing the presence of God as he had before. He described it as having his strength evaporated.

David’s life serves as a reminder that God simply will not allow His children to get away with sin. And as His children, He will tell us what is right and what is wrong. If we are crossing the line as His sons or daughters, then He will tell us. Hebrews 12:11 says, “Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it” (NKJV).

So if you start to go the wrong way and roadblocks are placed in your path, if conviction kicks in along with guilt, then rejoice. It means that you are a child of God. And God is disciplining you because He loves you.