Create in me a clean heart, O God.
Renew a loyal spirit within me.
Do not banish me from your presence,
and don’t take your Holy Spirit rom me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and make me willing to obey you.
When David saw Bathsheba from the roof of his palace, he was presented with a choice. He could knowingly pursue a married woman, or he could continue on with his life and duties as king. How many times have each of us been in a similar situation?
Perhaps it looked a bit different for you. Perhaps it was the first taste of alcohol, the first time you came across pornography or walked into a casino. Maybe is was an experience with drugs, or the first time you punched someone. Whatever it was, it probably seemed insignificant at the time. Maybe you got away with a lie, successfully cheated on a test, or were able to deceive and manipulate someone.
Sins tend to start small. One would think that a naked woman bathing in full view of others is a pretty blatant attempt by the enemy to tempt David, but perhaps that was a normal site in that day and time. It was her exceptional beauty that caught David's eye, after all, not the fact that she was bathing.
When I look back on the temptations and sins of my life, I see them as snowballs rolling down a hill. At first, it's no big deal. It's small and no one really notices, not even me. But then sin begins to gather mass and momentum. It roles faster and faster down that hill until at some point it gets so big and so powerful that it seems that it can't be stopped.
For David, it snowballed rather quickly. Bathsheba got pregnant after they slept together. Her husband was away at war, and despite David's best efforts to cover up his wrong doing, the damage was done. So he did something he probably thought he would never do. He had Bathsheba's husband killed.
Isn't that how it is with sin? Because of our guilt and shame; because we know we have done the opposite of loving God and loving others, we try to hide our sin and end up doing things we never thought we do. We lie. We cheat. We steal. The snowball gets bigger. We manipulate and deceive. We descend deeper into the darkness and further away from God.
Before we know it, our sin consumes our lives to the point that we use it to define who we are. And this is exactly what the enemy wants.
Satan knows who we are. He knows that we are the children of the creator of the universe. He knows that we are going to inherit God's glory. He knows that through Jesus, we are made right by God. He knows that we each carry with in us the same power that brought Jesus back from the dead. He knows that we are promised eternal life.
So he attacks us. He separates us from each other. He tempts and deceives, and we sin by choice. Because of our guilt and shame, we hide behind lies and walls. Before we know it, we are living in darkness, ashamed and afraid to let anyone get close to us for fear they might find out who we really are and reject us.
Our sin sabotages our success. Any wins. Any triumphs. Anything that we ever thought was good about our lives is covered by the shadow of our shame. No longer can we participate in the life God had planned for us. No longer can we feel the joy of the Lord. No longer can we stand boldly in our beliefs and declare Jesus as our savior.
But all is not lost. There is still hope.
Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.
Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
God is there. He is right there...waiting...hoping that you will cry out to him. Only he can release us from the chains of your sin. Only he can bring light into those dark places. But just as choice takes us into sin, it has to be our choice that brings us out of sin. We have to choose to call out to God. We have to choose to confess our sins. We have to let that snowball hit the mighty oak and break into snowflakes again.
You are not your sin. You are the child of a king. You are loved more than you can possibly imagine.
2 Samuel 12:13
Then David confessed to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord."
Despite David's sin, history still remembers him as a great king because he didn't let his sin consume him, he confessed, and he turned back towards God. How will history remember you?
Gather with us this Sunday as we continue in our series on David. Invite a friend, it could change their life.