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The God of Second Chances | About God's Discipline

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
March 15, 2023 3:00 am

The God of Second Chances | About God's Discipline

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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March 15, 2023 3:00 am

Proverbs 13:24 says “Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.” It also points out that undisciplined children can bring disgrace to the family. And today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie points out the strong lesson we learn about discipline from the life of David. It’s encouragement from Pastor Greg’s series House of David. And today’s message: The God of Second Chances. If you missed any of the earlier parts of this message, get a replay at harvest.org.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. For more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk, enroll in Pastor Greg's free online courses.

Sign up at harvest.org. He doesn't discipline those that are not his children. God disciplines those he loves. Proverbs 13.24 says those who love their children care enough to discipline them.

It also points out undisciplined children can bring disgrace to the family. And today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie points out the strong lesson we learn about discipline from the life of David. It's encouragement for Pastor Greg's series, House of David, and today's message, The God of Second Chances.

If you missed any of the earlier parts of this message, get a replay at harvest.org. Here now is the very familiar story of David and Bathsheba. I'm reading from 2 Samuel chapter 11 verses one to five.

I'm reading from the New Living Translation. The following spring, the time of year when kings go to war, David sent Joab, that's his general, and the Israelite army to destroy the Ammonites. In the process, they laid siege to the city of Rabbah. But David stayed behind in Jerusalem. Late one afternoon, David got out of bed after taking a nap and went for a stroll on the roof of the palace.

I'll stop there. Now back in these days, they would have a rooftop terrace. So he's taking a walk up there on the patio, and he noticed a woman of unusual beauty taking a bath. He sent someone to find out who she was, and he was told she's Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliim and the wife of Uriah the Hittite. Then David sent for her, and when she came to the palace, he slept with her.

Then she returned home. When Bathsheba discovered she was pregnant, she sent a message to inform David. But now David comes up with a devious plan to have her husband killed.

But before that, he thought something else might work. So he goes to his general, Joab. Joab, there's some soldier named Uriah. He's married to Bathsheba.

That's beside the point. Bring him back from the battle. I want to talk to him. Imagine Uriah. Uriah is just a soldier. He doesn't know David. David's a legend. The man after God's own heart, the giant killer, this wonderful godly man, the writer of Psalms. David summons him to the palace.

How excited you would be. So he's brought from the battle lines, and he's brought to the palace of David, and he's escorted into the room where David himself is. Perhaps the king is sitting on his throne, and David says, Uriah, heard some good things about you, buddy. Tell me, how's the battle going?

Well, it's rough, but we're out there fighting it, and we're inspired by your courage, and we just love you so much. Yeah, whatever. Hey, listen, Uriah. I thought maybe you'd like to take a night off, go home, be with your beautiful wife, wink, wink, nod, nod.

And so go do that. Then the next day, David gets up. Hey, where is Uriah? He's sleeping outside of the palace. Well, he didn't go home.

No, he didn't go home. Uriah, what's up? Oh, king, I just couldn't do that. I thought of my fellow soldiers out there. You know, all they're going through, I can't go home and have this pleasure with my wife. Oh, great.

I've got a do-gooder. So he gets him drunk and says, now go home to your wife. Still he doesn't go home to his wife. What is David trying to do? He's thinking if Uriah sleeps with his wife, that then they can say, oh, it's your baby, right? But Uriah won't do it.

That was a roadblock. The Lord was saying, stop, David. This is evil.

David should have repented. What does he do? He says, Uriah, do me a favor, buddy. I've got a letter I want you to deliver to King Joab. Give it to him when you return back to service. Okay, king, thank you.

I will. So he gives this letter to Joab. This is all a loose paraphrase, but it's all in the Bible, people. Gives the letter to Joab. Dear Joab, I want you to have a charge against the enemy, and I want everyone to fall back against Uriah.

And so the charge is led, everybody falls back, and the courageous Uriah is killed. So David thought, done deal. Well, looks like Bathsheba's not married. Hey, would you like to be my wife? Yes, I would. Everything's great.

Everything's awesome. He just didn't bargain on one thing, because we read in Second Samuel 11 27, the thing David had done displeased the Lord. And so God disciplines those he loves. God disciplines those he loves. This discipline and conviction in David's life was a sign he was a child of God. He wrote about it in Psalm 23. He said, yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

That's exactly what he's talking about. Now, for a shepherd, they had two primary instruments in the tending of sheep. The rod and the staff. The staff was used for pulling wayward lambs in. The rod was used to fight off predators and occasionally give a wham a good whack. Did I say a wham? You crazy wabbit.

I all of a sudden became Elmer Fudd here. The rod was used to give the lamb a good whack. See, there's a little tongue twister. When he needed it, not all the time, a shepherd generally would not use a rod on his sheep.

He'd use the staff. But every now and then, this little lamb's really wayward. And the problem is, is he is leading other lambs astray.

So, for his own good, and for their own good, boom, he gives the lamb a whack. Have you been whacked ever by the Lord? Disciplined by the Lord? Hebrews 12, eight says, if God doesn't discipline you as he does all of his children, it means you're illegitimate and you're not really his children at all. You know, God only disciplines his own kids.

He doesn't discipline those that are not his children. Have you ever seen someone's children misbehaving? I meet disrespectful children. They have no manners.

They have no respect. And I look at them and I think, bad parenting. It's the fault of the parent.

The parent has not taught that child the right way to live, the right way to treat others, etc. And there's times I wish I could discipline someone else's child. But I can't and I shan't.

Use a little British phrase. Because that's not my right and I could get in trouble for it. But God will discipline his own children.

Why? Hebrews 12 again says, no discipline is enjoyable while it's happening. It's painful. But afterwards, there'll be a quiet harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way. So David tries to cover things up, but the evidence of his crime was everywhere. The Bible tells us in Proverbs 28, 13, he who covers his sin will not prosper. Whoever confesses and forsakes his sin will have mercy. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. Hey, I don't know if you know about this, but we have a weekend service called Harvest at Home, exclusively for people that are tuning in literally from around the world. Listen to this. We even have harvest groups where you can get into a small group with folks from all around this planet of ours and study the Word of God.

So join us this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, for Harvest at Home at Harvest.org. Well, we're at a turning point in the story of David and Bathsheba. Pastor Greg continues his study called The God of Second Chances. So now the best possible thing that could have happened happened. David got busted. Now, David was lying up to this point. You know, it was out there. Now people know. And David gathered the Israeli press together and he turned to them and said, I did not have sex with that woman, Bathsheba. How many of you got the reference?

Suddenly you came alive. Political reference. He didn't do that, but it's implied.

Now I love this. Then the Lord sent Nathan the prophet to David. 2 Samuel 12.1. When did the Lord send Nathan the prophet to David? Right after his act of adultery with Bathsheba? No. Right after Bathsheba revealed she was pregnant with David's child? No. Right after David sent Bathsheba's husband to die in the battlefield? Again, no.

12 months had passed. David really can't live with himself. And so the prophet Nathan comes in. Hello, your majesty. I'd like to present a case before you of some abuse happening in your kingdom.

Speak on, David says, sitting in his room. Okay, okay. There's these two guys. One's rich, one's poor. The rich guy has lots of sheep. The poor guy has one little lamb. Little baby lamb. It's his pet.

It's like a daughter. He holds it in his arms like a little baby girl. It even sits at the table and eats with him.

He feeds the lamb from his plate. You know people that do this with dogs, right? They're going to the restaurant with a dog. They're eating.

They feed the dog. Are you one of those people? Could I just say one word? Stop.

Just stop. I mean, do it at home, I guess, if you're that weird. But hey, in a restaurant?

Anyway, it happens, right? So this guy loves a little baby lamb. Anyway, so someone came from out of town to visit the rich guy saying, hey, I'd love to have a little lamb for dinner tonight.

The guy says, no problem. Instead of killing one of his own sheep, he goes over to the home with a poor man with one baby lamb that he treated like a pet, takes his baby lamb and kills it. And then Nathan says to David, so tell me, what should be done with a person like that? David's blood begins to boil. His face turns red.

His hands grip the throne. And he says, that man should return four times what he took, and then he should be killed. Hello? Okay, it's bad, but the guy did. Restoring fourfold seems legitimate, but kill him? Yeah, that's exactly what David said. What happened next? Let's read it. Second Samuel chapter 12. The prophet looks at David, and this is what happens.

Then Nathan said to David, you are the man. The Lord God of Israel says, I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul. I gave you your master's house and his wives and the kingdoms of Israel and Judah.

And if that had not been enough, I would have given you much, much more. Why then have you despised the word of the Lord and done this horrible deed? For you have murdered Uriah the Hittite with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife.

From this time on your family will live by the sword because you've despised me by taking Uriah's wife to be your own. Wow. Busted. Nathan turns to David and says, you the man. You're the man.

Get it? This guy took the other man's little baby lamb. You took this man's only wife. And if that wasn't bad enough, you had him killed on the battlefield.

You are guilty. David was caught. It seems like the worst thing that could have happened, but in reality it was the best thing that could have happened because now he's going to find resolution. Isn't it interesting how harsh David was with the sin of this wealthy man who took another man's lamb? I also find it interesting how harsh and judgmental some people can be toward others. And then one day we find out that that harsh judgmental person was actually guilty of a far greater sin. They're nitpicking.

They're fault finding. They always have a critical word to say about everybody else. They seem so holier than thou.

Right? And then one day it's like whoa you find out something about them. See it all makes sense though because this is exactly what Jesus was talking about when he said how can you pull the speck out of your brother's eye when you have a telephone pole in your own eye. In other words, how can you be so judgmental of someone else when you're guilty of far worse? That's exactly what was happening with the life of David. And so there's only one correct response to being caught in sin. You say I have sinned.

The only correct response is admit it and confess it. To David's credit 2 Samuel 12 13. I have sinned against the Lord. He admitted it.

Now this is where we want to defend David a little bit. What he did was horrible. What he did was wrong.

He would face the repercussions of this for years to come quite frankly. But he did admit it. When King Saul was confronted with this sin he just dug in deeper and sinned more. When David was confronted with this sin he came clean and admitted it and repented before God. And despite his sin David was given a second chance in life. Despite his sin David was given a second chance in life. As devastating as the story sounds David did make a comeback. Again he faced repercussions but his life ultimately ended well. And believe it or not there's a tie-in between this sordid tale and the Christmas story.

You say how so? Well where did the prophet come to anoint David? Bethlehem. Where was Jesus born? Bethlehem.

Why? Because Jesus was of the root and offspring of David. Both of the bloodline of Mary and the lineage of Joseph. That's why Joseph and Mary went to Bethlehem to be taxed. But here's the shocker. My final point Bathsheba made it into the messianic line of Jesus Christ.

I love this part. Bathsheba the woman. Now I don't want to put the primary blame on Bathsheba but she was culpable.

It takes two to tangle right. But David was the perpetrator. David was the one that initiated this. David was the one that God held responsible. But Bathsheba sinned too didn't she? And she had to repent as well. But yet despite that she makes it into the most exclusive genealogy in all of human history.

When you look at the family line of David you find not only Bathsheba is in there but also two other women Tamar and Rahab both prostitutes who turn to God. So what does this mean? It means God gives second chances.

That's the takeaway truth. God gives second chances. Maybe you're in need of a second chance. Maybe I'm talking to somebody that has done something very similar to this. I don't think you've probably murdered anybody though it's possible. Maybe you've committed adultery. Maybe you've broken up a home. Maybe you've been unfaithful. Maybe you've been living sexually impure life and you're not married. There's a lot of things that maybe you've done. Or maybe it's some other sin altogether and you've messed up. Here's what you need to do.

You need to admit it to God and repent of it right now. This message is for you. You the man. You the woman.

You're the one. And I don't know who you are and I don't know who this is speaking to. But you know who you are. And so if the Lord has directed this message to you and said this is for you. You need to repent of this sin. And right now in your mind it's there.

You know what it is. If he's saying this to you just deal with it right here right now. Because he loves you.

He's doing this. He loves you. Maybe you haven't faced the full repercussions of your sin yet. Maybe you haven't faced any outward repercussions of your sin yet. You're just dealing with the guilt and the misery of it.

God has been gracious to you. Turn to him and say Lord I call that sin what it is. I'm tired of excusing it.

I'm tired of rationalizing it. I confess it as a sin and I turn from you. But maybe I'm talking to somebody who isn't even a Christian yet.

This is all new to you. But you are a sinner as we all are. The Bible says all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. You can turn to Jesus Christ right now and be forgiven of all of your sins because Jesus of the root and offspring of David born in Bethlehem in a manger went to a cross and died for the sin of the world and he died for your sin. And if you'll turn from that sin he'll forgive you right here right now. Let's pray. Now Father I pray that your Holy Spirit will convict and convince any person here any person listening watching wherever they are of their sin.

Help them to see they need Jesus. But thankfully Lord you don't just make us aware of our sin to make us feel miserable. You make us aware of our sin so we'll repent of it and find great joy and happiness. Because your word says happy is the man of the woman whose sin is forgiven. Now while our heads are bowed maybe God has spoken to somebody here very directly about an area of your life that is not right before God. It might be your thought life. It might be things you're doing or saying.

It might be some moral issue. Whatever it is if you need to repent right now you just say Lord I repent of this sin forgive me. You say that to the Lord right now. The Bible says if you will confess your sin he's faithful and just to forgive you of your sin and cleanse you from all unrighteousness.

You just admit it to God. And Father I pray that you will extend your hand of cleansing to each of these folks who've taken this step and you know who they are. And now finally there might be somebody here that has never asked Jesus Christ to come into their life. You don't know that your sin is forgiven. You don't know that you'll go to heaven when you die.

You can know it now by asking Christ to come into your heart and life. And if you want to do that you can just pray this prayer out loud after me. In fact I'm going to ask everybody to pray this prayer out loud after me. Pray these words.

Lord Jesus I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you're the savior who died on the cross for my sin and rose again from the dead. I turn from that sin and I choose to follow you from this moment forward. Thank you for hearing this prayer and answering this prayer. In Jesus' name I pray.

Amen. Such an important prayer. Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie leading us in a prayer asking the Lord to forgive our sins. And if you've just prayed that prayer and maybe for the first time you've asked the Lord to be your savior, we want to welcome you into the family of God and we want to help you get started in living this new life of faith. Let us send you what we call our New Believers Growth Packet. It'll answer your questions and help you build a solid foundation for your faith. We'll send it free of charge when you call 1-800-821-3300.

That's a 24-7 phone number 1-800-821-3300. Or go online to harvest.org and click the words Know God. Now if you missed any part of today's study or the previous two parts presented here on A New Beginning, you can get a replay at harvest.org.

Just look for the message called The God of Second Chances. Well we're with Randy Alcorn today talking about his book called Heaven for Kids. Randy, in your opinion, you've written the big book on heaven and of course now this book on Heaven for Kids. In your opinion, what's the most challenging question to answer about heaven? Well, I think whenever someone's talking about something or asking about something that is not specifically revealed in scripture, it's kind of easy when it is specifically addressed and there's many things that are.

But when they're talking about something that isn't there directly in the Bible, then we have to sort of work our way into an answer and speculate, but base the speculation on things that are well grounded. So for instance, somebody says, and a lot of kids just love sports and physical activities and all that, and somebody says, will there be sports in heaven? I'll never forget a pastor, it was not Greg, who said this, but a pastor saying to me, well there can't be sports in heaven.

And I said, well what do you mean? I said, well maybe not in the present heaven, but after the resurrection and we'll live forever on the new earth and we'll have bodies, why would we not participate in sports? And his answer was, because sports brings out the worst in people.

Now I can tell you, having been a high school tennis coach, and I still am, and I have two grandsons on the team that I coach at a public school, I can tell you that sometimes sports do bring out the worst in people, but the problem is not the sports, the problem is the people, right? And so there's a lot to be learned from sports, even in this life, even when they do bring out the worst, you know, you need to bear the fruit of the spirit and all that, but the point is, as I said to this pastor, okay look, there will be no worst to bring out. I mean, we will be fully redeemed, not just redeemed, we're already redeemed, but we will be glorified. We will no more be prone to sin than Jesus himself is prone to sin. We'll be made the righteousness of God in him. So take away all your notions related to sin from everything you're thinking about the new earth. So don't start going, oh, well, this bothers me about rewards, because then people would be jealous of other people if they have more rewards. No, no, no, you're imposing jealousy, a sin problem from this world, into the world to come.

So don't think in those terms. So the sports question, definitely, but also the any question that relates to people projecting into the future, how we would react in the present, because we're sinners. We won't be sinners anymore. Great insights from Randy Alcorn, the author of many books, but we're offering you one of his books that's simply titled Heaven for Kids, this month for your gift of any size. Randy, I want to beat you in tennis in the new earth, but I won't gloat because I won't have a sinful nature, but I still want to do it.

And if you did gloat, which you won't, but if you did, it wouldn't hurt my feelings a bit, because I won't even have that problem. Well, we're chatting today with Randy Alcorn about his book called Heaven for Kids. It's full of great practical insight on what life will be like in eternity, and it's so understandable.

It's great for kids, and adults. And all the questions Randy answers are listed right up front in the table of contents, so you can find a certain topic easily. We'll be glad to send it your way to thank you for your investment in keeping these daily studies coming your way. Just give us a call at 1-800-821-3300. We can take your call anytime when you dial 1-800-821-3300 or go online to harvest.org. Well, next time, as David passes his mantle of authority to his son Solomon, he imparts practical principles on serving the purposes of God. There's a lot to learn. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher, Greg Laurie. The preceding podcast was made possible by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God. Learn how to become a Harvest Partner, sign up for daily devotions, and find resources to help you grow in your faith at harvest.org.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-15 06:58:46 / 2023-03-15 07:08:58 / 10

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