Thursday, March 17, 2011

Temptation on the roof top

In reading the story of Bathsheba and David, I realized something. Since first hearing of this account in David's life for some reason I have always though Bathsheba suduced David in some way. That simply isn't true. I had the aha moment while reading, "Bathsheba", by Jill Eileen Smith. After reading this wonderful book, it brought my eyes to God's Word once again to read the account of David and Bathsheba. We can begin reading the story of Bathsheba and David in 2 Samuel 11. David was a man after God's own heart. But this? It displeased God. I found myself asking, "How many times have I displeased my God?"

Here we have Bathsheba. She is married to, Uriah the Hittite. They are happily married, but Uriah is away at battle. It doesn't state, but could she have been missing him? I am sure her love was strong for her husband, but in one night it all changed. One night she dressed for the wrong man and forgot her husband's love and took another as her own.

After David saw Bathsheba on the roof top that day, I imagine he couldn't get her out of his mind. Her beauty caught his attention. He already has more wives than he needs, but now he is searching for more? I find David being selfish here. But then again, how many times do I find myself in that same selfish way wanting what I want when I want it?  Bathsheba is married. But yet, his eye still wanders. He becomes fixated on, Bathsheba.

Did she too see her King differently? What made her answer his call? While, Uriah, is out at battle, why does she go to the palace? Maybe the King did have news about, Uriah. David dishonored, Bathsheba, that night, along with Uriah also.

Now, Bathsheba, finds herself with child. A child she never had with Uriah. What is she to do? She tells the King, but then again, David, makes a choice that will change life forever. He has, Uriah, killed in battle. He doesn't even tell, Bathsheba, he does this. Does she ever know?

God brought judgement against David and his house. After the death of, Uriah, David marries Bathsheba and they begin a life together. Uriah, was the innocent victim in all this. All he wanted to do was honor God, his king and his family. He was caught in the actions of others and paid with his life. Why? So the life of David could be easier. Or so he thought. The thing is, although David may have fooled the people under him, God was watching the whole time. David didn't escape the judgement of God. Oh, how many times do we make a choice thinking no one is watching? I am not hurting anyone? Our choices not only effect us, but those around us. Either in good ways or bad, our choices lead to the next.

The thing that catches my eye? Although God's wrath touched David and his house, so did His grace. He graced David with a marriage to a beautiful woman and together they had a son, Soloman. God brought them from the ashes of disgrace to the ashes of redemption through forgiveness.

The bible is filled with story after story of those who fell and were brought back into union with God. David was a man after God's own heart. Just as we are children of God, we too can fall just as easy. All it takes is one look, one thought, one action. The trouble began with the action in David's heart. The root of sin began there with his lust for Bathsheba. Although at times I think she fell victim to David's desires, she too fell from temptation into sin. If she had only said no. If one of them could have only stood in truth. But, we know, because we too have been there. We know how easy it is to fall into sin, whatever sin that might be.

What if she would have just told, Uriah? Would the story have been different? How many people have been on the other side of our sinful actions and paid the price? How many times have our eyes wandered? Our thoughts? All it takes is one time. One wrong choice.

We must guard our hearts and minds. We must surround ourselves with all that is good and right and stay far from those things that tempt us. Those very things we think we can handle will have us caught up in sin in the blink of an eye.

David was sorry for his actions, but he couldn't go back. He couldn't change what he had done. Have you been there too? I know I have. Wishing I could go back and change a decision. Wishing it would have never happened. What can we do? We can move forward with righteousness. We can move from our discretion of sin and go straight to God with a humble heart. Forgiveness is for those who love Him. His grace reaches us all. For if not by grace, there go I. We can fall just as David and just as our neighbor. Before we judge, may we pray.

I love the story of, David. His life is one with such lessons for us. Through his life there is something for us all. He was a man of God. He wanted to serve and honor his God through his life. Although he slipped, God picked him up and brought him through. We are a work in progress my friends. We don't have to live in our pasts. We don't have to live with regret. We can live our life filled with the grace of God. Our sins are forgiven as we simply go to God, the One who loves us more than anything. We cannot fathom the greatness of His mighty love. Whatever is holding you back from celebrating life today, let it go. Let God have your past and trust Him with your present as your future holds a great hope.
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