by Aleta Kay
Many people claim to be Christians. I often wonder what they mean by that. The word Christian means follower of Christ. Jesus said, “If you love me keep my commandments.” He also said, “Be ye holy for I am holy.” No, we cannot be perfect in this life but as we grow in our knowledge of God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, we should actively do fewer wrong things that we know are against God’s laws, rules, and statutes. Our sins should become more a lack of doing His will and less of overt sins: drunkenness, idolatry, witchcraft, fornication, adultery, etc.
Consider 2 Samuel 12:7-10. In this passage the prophet Nathan is confronting David (a man after God’s own heart) after his sin with Bathsheba. The nation of Israel was at war. David was the king, the commander in chief. He could come and go as he pleased, though his rightful place was in the offices of the palace overseeing the running of his country. Instead he went up on the rooftop of the palace and looked out with pride over his realm. As he turned to the side he saw a beautiful woman (Bathsheba) bathing on the rooftop. They didn’t have planes in those days so the chances of anyone seeing her were very slim. She probably thought she had complete privacy. Her husband, Uriah, was out on the battlefield.
David lusted after her and sent a servant to have her brought to him. She became pregnant. When she told David he told the captain of the Uriah’s unit to have him put on the front lines where he subsequently died. It was murder by order of the king in order that he might have another man’s wife. He already had several other wives.
When Nathan confronted David he said, “…Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; and I gave thee thy master’s house, and thy master’s wives into thy bosom, and I gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would have given thee such and such things. Wherefore (why) hast thou despised the word of the LORD, to do evil in his sight? Thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife.”
Notice that God did not hold Bathsheba guilty. She had obeyed her king. She had no idea anyone would be watching her as she bathed. Notice also that God said David had hated God’s commandment (thou shalt not commit adultery and thou shalt not kill), and in so doing hated God himself.
Dire consequences followed David’s sin. First of all the child conceived in that adulterous relationship died at birth. Secondly, one of his sons (Absalom) later raped his half-sister, Tamar, then turned on her with hatred. Finally, his sons conspired against him to overthrow the throne. His own sons tried to kill him. There was never again peace in David’s household. It is a serious thing to despise God and his commandments, laws, rules, whatever you choose to call them.
Every action we take has a direct consequent. Good actions or choices result in rewards or peace. Bad choices, decisions or actions result in chaos, torment, tragedy, dissension, heartbreak, misery and depression, sometimes even death. Every one of us must face the consequences or rewards for our actions. The choices were ours; the consequences belong to each individual.
Yet, God’s love prevails. David repented of his sin. He still bore the dire consequences but later God said of David again that he was righteous in God’s sight.