Read 101.) II Samuel 11:1 thru 12:17, I Chron.20:1 and Psalm 51. Up to this point, we’ve not read of any wrong in David. He had always only been a man after God’s own heart. But now, a tidal change takes place, and the consequences, for David, will be very serious. David saw, and he coveted, breaking the 10th Commandment. He took what was not his own, breaking the 8th Commandment. He committed adultery, breaking the 7th Commandment. And, he murdered, breaking the 6th Commandment. By the end of chapter 11, David had broken the 9th Commandment with his deceptive cover-up of all his previous sins. It was all looking pretty good. Nobody knew. “But the thing David had done displeased the Lord.” With the chapter’s conclusion, Bathsheba became David’s 8th wife.
Now, in chapter 12, the hammer falls. Nathan the prophet is sent to David with a word from the Lord. Nathan plays David like a Stradivarius! David ‘judges’ himself… correctly, too. In verse 5, he says, “the man who did this deserves to die!” The breaking of the 6th and 7th Commandments called for death, but God relented in David’s case. Nathan then pronounces the Lord’s sentence in just the 2 verses, 11 and 12, and from here on out, we are going to read a lot in fulfillment of what is to be David’s judgment here. Watch for it! Sin will take you farther than you ever wanted to go, and it will cost you more than you ever wanted to pay. It is thought that David is 50 by this time, halfway through his reign, and that it is about 990 BC.
The 51st Psalm came out of this event, and is like almost no other! (Psalm 32 certainly comes very close.) Consider all that David did, experienced, and felt, if you can. And, then, here, consider the brokenness, humility, and deep contrition of repentance he expresses. Not only does he express deep sorrow over what he did, but he asks that God make him right with verses 10 and 12. He promises to change his ways, and amend his actions with his words of verses 13 thru 16. David had been the man after God’s own heart. After some years of good success and having known peace within his realm, he got careless, perhaps proud, and he momentarily forget his God. He fell hard, and it would be very costly, but, and this is so important, verse 11 is NOT as so many mistakenly believe. David is not, from a New Testament perspective, expressing a fear and concern of losing his salvation. The only Holy Spirit mention we know of concerning David goes back to I Samuel 16:13, and is the kingly anointing that had been previously upon Saul; but removed from him, when he was rejected of the Lord. David’s apprehension is over also being rejected by God as king of Israel. But, and you must get this, where Saul never, in the some 15 years after his anointing as king was removed by the Lord, ever repented before God for his grievous sins. Here, David did that which Saul would not do, and humbled himself, pleaded with God, fasted, lay on the ground, and wept! And, upon relief, he genuinely worshiped! God is gracious and merciful unto all such… have you ever? It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell