Our lesson today is found in 2 Sam. 11-12. Please let me briefly tell the story. David failed to lead his troops in their present war campaign. He was at home. Accidentally he saw a woman bathing while he was on his housetop. Deliberately he watched until he wanted her. He abused his power as king, sent for the woman, Bathsheba, and committed adultery with her and fathered a child. But it is so difficult to stop with sin, for often the sin must be covered. David sought to cover his adultery by inviting Bathsheba’s faithful husband home from the battlefront to sleep with his wife. Uriah’s faithfulness to his comrades kept him from enjoying his wife while his friends were in battle. Because David’s plan failed, he decided on another way to cover his sin. He would have Uriah killed at the battlefront. This he accomplished.
Think with me for a moment. If you did not know anything about the life of David but this event, what kind of man would you think David to be? His acts of adultery and murder were impetuous, self-indulgent, conniving, vicious and thoroughly evil. I might even say that such a man had no hope of being moved to repentance. How could such a man, who had committed such heinous crimes, ever be forgiven. He could not bring Uriah back. He could not bring his child back. He could not give Bathsheba back her support and comfort of her husband. But, David did repent. Most importantly, God did forgive him readily (12:13).
If you and I are to be forgiving as Christ was when he too was being murdered on the cross, we must be willing to accept and forgive the consequences of sin committed against us or those we love. This is the real burden of forgiveness. Regardless of the repentance of the sinner, the forgiver bears the consequence of sin committed against us. While you are contemplating these thoughts in your study today, examine yourself about your willingness to forgive with no grudge or animosity as God has forgiven us.
I preached a lesson this month on Making It Easy To Forgive. We know there is nothing easy about accepting the consequences of someone’s sin against us when we forgive. But it is made so much more possible when there is true repentance on the part of the sinner. David, when the accusation finally came to him, made no excuses. He did not get angry. He did not blame someone else. He repented. He humbled himself. This spirit makes it far easier for us to forgive. Let’s be this way when we commit a sin.
Brothers and sisters, thank God for forgiveness, for I have sinned against many. Forgive to be forgiven.