After David has unwittingly pronounced judgment on himself ( 2 Samuel 12.5-6), Nathan confronts him with the enormity of his sin. David’s heart is broken, and he confesses his sin. Immediately Nathan assures him that “The LORD also has put away your sin” (2 Samuel 12:13) and that he is forgiven. There is no waiting period on God’s forgiveness. David doesn’t have to prove that he is really sincere before forgiveness is extended.
However, Nathan, who has already predicted the consequences of David’s sin in 2 Samuel 12:10-12, goes on to state that the child to be born will die.
What does it mean that God had taken away David’s sin? Did He just wipe the slate clean? Does everyone just simply forget about it? Read 2 Samuel 12:10-23 as you contemplate these questions.
David must also have wondered about these questions as he saw his world crumbling — the baby dead, his family in disarray (the stories of Amnon and Absalom are two good examples of real-life family troubles), his future uncertain. And yet, despite the consequences of his sin, which has affected innocent people such as Uriah and the new-born baby, David also begins to understand that God’s grace will cover this and that someday all the consequences of sin will be done away with. In the meantime, he can find rest for his troubled conscience in God’s grace.
What does David feel he really needs? What does he yearn for? Read Psalm 51:1-6.
With Psalm 51, David goes public as he opens his heart and confesses his sins. David’s cry for mercy appeals to God’s unfailing love and His great compassion. He yearns for renewal.
When we consider the cost of rest in Jesus, we need first to recognize that we need outside help; we are sinners and need a Savior; we recognize our sins and cry out to the only One who can wash us, cleanse us, and renew us. When we do this, we can take courage: here is an adulterer, a manipulator, a murderer, and someone who violated at least five of the Ten Commandments who calls for help — and claims the promise of God’s forgiveness.
|If God forgave David for what he did, what hope is there, then, for you?|