Posted: 09 Nov 2009 03:23 AM PST
(Author: John Piper)
In Psalm 51, as he laments and repents of his adultery with Bathsheba and his murder of Uriah, David confesses at least five ways that his sin is extremely serious.
1. He says that he can’t get the sin out of his mind.
It is blazoned on his conscience. Verse 3:
For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.
Ever before him. The tape keeps playing. And he can’t stop it.
2. He says that his exceeding sinfulness is only against God.
Nathan had said David despised God and scorned his word. So David says in verse 4,
Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.
This doesn’t mean Bathsheba and Uriah and the baby weren’t hurt. It means that what makes sin sin is that it is against God. Hurting man is bad. It is horribly bad. But that’s not the horror of sin. Sin is an attack on God—a belittling of God. David admits this in striking terms: “Against you, you only, have I sinned.”
3. He doesn’t justify himself.
David vindicates God, not himself. There is no self-justification. No defense. No escape. Verse 4:
…so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment.
God is justified. God is blameless. If God casts David into hell, God will be innocent.
This is radical God-centered repentance. This is the way saved people think and feel. God would be just to damn me. And that I am still breathing is sheer mercy. And that I am forgiven is sheer blood-bought mercy. David vindicates the righteousness of God, not himself.
4. He intensifies his guilt by drawing attention to his inborn corruption.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Some people use their inborn corruption to diminish their personal guilt. David does the opposite. For him the fact that he committed adultery and murdered and lied are expressions of something worse: He is by nature that way.
If God does not rescue him, he will do more and more evil.
5. He admits that he sinned not just against external law but against God’s merciful light in his heart.
Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.
God had been his teacher. God had made him wise. David had done so many wise things. And then sin got the upper hand. For David, this made it all the worse. “I have been blessed with so much knowledge and so much wisdom. O how deep must be my depravity that it could sin against so much light.”
So in those five ways at least David joins the prophet Nathan and God in condemning his sin and confessing the depths of his corruption.
Posted: 19 Oct 2009 04:21 AM PDT
(Author: Jon Bloom)
In staff devotions recently we were in Proverbs 6. Solomon warns his son against the devastation of adultery. In verses 32-33 he writes,
For Solomon, every warning against adultery must have been haunted by the memory of his father and mother, David and Bathsheba. Imagine what he must have felt. He was the product of a marriage that never should have been.
He watched the royal family, in the middle of Israel’s golden age, implode because this union that brought him into existence had come into existence. God “put away” David’s sin (2 Samuel 12:13), determining to bear its condemnation himself (Romans 3:25-26). But he did not remove from David its wounds and disgrace.
Yet, out of the wreckage that was David’s family, emerges Solomon. By choosing him, of all the sons, to assume the throne and to write holy Scripture, God is saying something stunning: he really can work all things, including devastating sin, for good for those who love him and are called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28).
The destruction of adultery is very real. Its disgrace is lasting. It is to be avoided at all costs. But it still is not more powerful than the grace of God.
To those who, like David, have fallen, take heart. If you have repented and trust Christ, he has borne all your condemnation. And though you view with painful and appropriate regret the damage your adultery caused, keep your eyes open. It is like God to bring something unexpectedly and amazingly good from it. Because the grace of God is stronger than the sin of man.
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