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Tuesday, December 2, 2008
As we walk into Darrenkamp's, a locally owned grocery store here in Mount Joy, we are greeted by this bright yellow tree with John Deere-themed ornaments!
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"The Consequences Of Sin"
"Now when evening came David arose from his bed and walked around on the roof of the king's house, and from the roof he saw a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful in appearance" (2 Samuel 11:2).
Our pastor preached an outstanding sermon this last Sunday titled "An Affair to Remember" dealing with David's sin with Bathsheba. We need these hard hitting reminders of the consequences of sin and Pastor Bob tackled the matter with forthrightness and Biblical integrity. I consider the lustful temptations common to all and the many times I have dealt pastorally with those who have fallen into sin. As I prepare this message I consider several friends from Bible College and throughout my ministry that gave into lustful temptation and sinned in this regard. I also consider the devastating impact it had on their spiritual lives, their families and their ministry.
A great line from Pastor's message was the perspective of a country preacher. Perhaps you've heard it before. I know that Brooksyne has shared this viewpoint with Ester when instructing her about the choices one makes regarding disobedience toward God:
* Sin will take you farther than you want to go,
* Cost you more than you want to pay and
* Keep you longer than you want to stay.
One of the great cautions in life is an awareness of how the slide into decadence often takes place incrementally. Casting Crowns has a stirring song that deals with this called "Slow Fade." This is true on both the individual and societal levels. Surely as the Prodigal left his father he did not aspire to feeding pigs. People don't seek to be addicts. So often they will testify that they began with "just a little" tobacco or alcohol. Consider other areas where this is true. "Just a little won't hurt" the devil continues to whisper. After all, the slide began with just a little bite from the forbidden fruit.
The daily verse is innocent enough; a successful king taking a walk at night on the roof of his home; a woman bathing, a glance of beauty (perhaps unintentional). Thus far no major problem here. But many of you know what follows. We have here a profile of an individual's incremental slide into sin.
David's glance toward beauty turned into a lustful gaze. "David sent and inquired about the woman. And one said, "Is this not Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?" What's he inquiring for? He was a married man. That should have settled it. And when the messenger reported that she is "the wife of Uriah the Hittite", that should have absolutely settled it then and there.
But "David sent messengers and took her." It was all downhill from there on. The Life Application notes bring a stirring truth: "The deeper the mess, the less we want to admit having caused it. It's much easier to stop sliding down a hill when you are near the top than when you are halfway down. The best solution is to stop sin before it starts."
2 Samuel 11 ends with this timeless assessment of sin from God's perspective: "But the thing David had done displeased the LORD." The following chapter and remainder of the book chronicle these harsh consequences that affected his family and the entire nation. It also serves as a powerful reminder to all of us that sin always has consequences. A lesson for all of us to heed.
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily Prayer: Father God, help each of us to understand the wiles of the devil and to be steadfast in our determination to resist temptation at each step. We want to be self-controlled and alert, standing firm in the faith as we resist the devil who prowls around like a roaring lion seeking for someone to devour. Thank you for the power of the Holy Spirit to resist and to overcome. Amen.
Brooksyne's Note: I guess it comes from the years of editing Stephen's writings where I enhance his thought or add my own that makes me want to add one more line to the country preacher's message about the sobering effects of sin:
2 Samuel 11 and 12 is the account of David's sin with Bathsheba.
Psalm 51 is the record of his repentance.
"The Consequences Of A Moral Failure" Webpage This material is adapted from a 1998 "Leadership" magazine article by Randy Alcorn and Eternal Perspective Ministries and is personalized for my own use and personal impact. This article also available as a printable .pdf I encourage every man and woman to adapt this for their own use or better yet start from scratch and develop your own.
Today's text is so instructive in regard to the consequences of sin. In the midst of the narrative concerning his attempted cover-up David instructed Joab to intentionally place Uriah (Bathsheba's husband) in harms way that he might be slain. Joab surely had to violate his principles to do this but did so as commanded. "When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David's army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died" (2 Samuel 11:17). The underlined portion reveals some of the others who were impacted by this action besides Uriah. This is indicative of the large web weaved by personal sin.
Today's Suggested Music
and Supplemental Resources
(Click on the link to open and play. In some cases you may also need to click again to start the song.)
"Slow Fade" Video Due to a morning appointment I prepared most of this message last night while Brooksyne and Ester were out. When they came home they were listening to this song on one of our Christian radio stations (the first time we heard it). We immediately realized it's appropriateness for today's message!
Slow Fade Teaching Video Mark Hall is the youth pastor who wrote the song and leads Casting Crowns. He shares an interesting perspective from Psalm 1 that prompted this song.
"Holiness Is What I Long For" Video
"Take My Life" Video A beautful rendering of an old hymn. Here's an audio of the original version.
"Take Time To Be Holy" Video This is another old hymn you just don't hear much these days, but its message is very relevant and timeless.
Pure Life Ministries An outstanding resource for overcomers.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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