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2 Samuel Chapter 24:1-24

Cross the Bridge / David McGee
The Truth Network Radio
September 10, 2020 1:00 am

2 Samuel Chapter 24:1-24

Cross the Bridge / David McGee

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September 10, 2020 1:00 am

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A lot of times we, we talk to people about how not to mess up.

That's a part of what we should be teaching as a part of what we should be talking about. But another part is what do we do when we mess up? Because unfortunately, a lot of times people go, okay, don't do this. Don't do that. Don't do this.

Don't do that. And then when the person messes up, they go, what do I do? Nobody told me what to do when I mess up.

They just assumed I was never going to mess up. What do I do now? You run to God. You run to God.

When we do wrong, we should ask God to forgive us. Welcome to Cross the Bridge with David McGee, senior pastor of The Bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina. Today, David McGee is teaching through 2 Samuel chapter 24, verse by verse. One of David McGee's associate pastors is Pastor D.A.

Brown. Welcome to the program, D.A. Hey, Bob. We're excited about what God is doing through Cross the Bridge with Pastor David. We want to take a few minutes to pray for some cities in our listening audience.

In California, we have Chico, Clear Lake, Kalinga, Crescent City, Desert Hot Springs, Doris, and Eureka. Lord, we pray for people in these cities to tune in and listen. We pray that you would heal them if they're battling some physical ailments. We pray that today many people will put their hope and trust in you for their personal salvation.

God, we pray that people would be excited about following you in these cities. And God, we pray for the churches and pastors, that they would walk in unity, that they would stick to the vision that you've given them. Lord, that they would apply your word in every area of their life. In Jesus' name, amen. Amen.

Amen, brother. Thank you so much for praying for our audience. As we're turning to 2 Samuel 24, we're going to see a sin that David committed that most people don't think about, but it was obviously something that was very important to God.

D.A., what are some of the lessons that we want to take away from King David's experience here? Pastor David's going to show us in the Scriptures through King David, as soon as God illuminates to us that we've sinned, to ask for forgiveness quickly. Isn't it better just to sit there and try to hide it from God for a while? Because won't God just beat you up when you tell Him you've sinned?

Not at all, Bob. We're the ones who are affected by not asking for forgiveness. God wants to bless us, He wants to love us, and He wants to restore us to the position we were in. Well, let's listen as David McGee shares through 2 Samuel 24 on God's forgiveness. This is a difficult chapter to teach. It's a difficult chapter to read.

It's a difficult chapter to understand. Now, there's a couple of reasons for that, one of which is when you read the Bible, you can't, in your own carnal mind, understand what God is trying to communicate to you. So one of the things that's very good to do is pray before you read your Bible or get into a devotion or especially before Bible study, Lord, please reveal your Word to me. Send your Holy Spirit that I might see this clearly. We're trying to understand an infinite God with a finite mind, and so that's one of the challenges. And so, you know, we're looking at this chapter and getting ready to jump in here, and again, there's some difficult issues in here.

But because we go verse by verse, chapter by chapter, we're going to jump into this chapter. You guys ready? All right, two of you are ready. You guys ready?

All right. So 2 Samuel 24 verse 1 says, Again, the anger of the Lord was aroused against Israel, and He moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah. So the king said to Joab the commander of the army who was with him, Now go throughout all the tribes of Israel from Dan to Beersheba, and count the people that I may know the number of the people. And Joab said to the king, Now may the Lord your God add to the people a hundred times more than there are, and may the eyes of my Lord the king see it.

But why does my Lord the king desire this thing? Nevertheless, the king's word prevailed against Joab and against the captains of the army. Therefore Joab and the captains of the army went out from the presence of the king to count the people of Israel. Verse five, and they crossed over the Jordan and camped in Aurora on the right side of the town, which is in the midst of the ravine of Gad and towards Jezur. Then they came to Gilead and to the land of Tatim, Hodesh, Hochai. They came to Danhon and around to Sidon. And they came to the stronghold of Tyre and to all the cities of the Hivites and the Canaanites. Then they went out to south Judah as far as Beersheba. So when they had gone through all the land, they came to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and 20 days.

That's how long it took to count all these people. Then Joab gave the sum of the number of the people to the king. And there were in Israel 800,000 valiant men who drew the sword, and the men of Judah were 500,000 men. Verse 10, David's heart condemned him after he had numbered the people. So David said to the Lord, I have sinned greatly in what I have done, but now I pray, O Lord, take away the iniquity of your servant, for I have done very foolishly.

Let me point out a couple of things. David's heart condemned him after he had numbered the people. How long did it take for David to get convicted? Well, go back to verse 8.

So when they had gone through all the land, they came to Jerusalem at the end of nine months and 20 days. It at least took David that long to be convicted about this, but praise God, he was convicted. Sometimes it takes a while to get convicted about something.

You ever notice that? You can do something wrong. And then sometimes hours, sometimes minutes, sometimes days, sometimes weeks, sometimes years later, you look back at a situation and go, wow, I didn't handle that one very well. You know, you go to a family reunion or a family gathering, you're trying to figure out why somebody's angry at you. You can't figure it out until the Holy Spirit goes, come here, do you remember saying that?

Oh yeah, gee, now I know why they're mad at me. David's convicted, convinced. We use convicted. Convinced is a similar word. Convinced of wrongdoing.

What do you do with that? Well, you know, as long as David felt bad, right? That's the important part.

No, that's not the important part. Somehow we twisted Christianity, even thinking that you measure a service by how bad you feel during the service. Occasionally you're going to feel bad about some things you've done or you're doing or going to do, and that's the Holy Spirit. But you shouldn't measure church service by how bad you get beat up. A lot of services here, you'll get a little beat up.

A lot of services here, probably a majority of them, you'll be encouraged. Why? Because that's what we need. We need encouragement. And it's not enough to feel bad, friend. Do you understand feeling bad in and of itself does nothing? A lot of times we take comfort in feeling guilty about doing something wrong.

I wouldn't take any comfort there, friend, because in the middle of that, you've gained nothing. The human mind, you should feel guilt and shame every time you do something wrong. Well, what do you do with that?

That's the question. Do you go to God with that? Or do you just, well, I feel bad about it.

As long as I feel bad about it, I guess I'm okay. Feel convicted, but take that conviction to God and say, God, please forgive me. That's what David did. David messed up a lot, but what did he do every time?

He always went to God. God, please forgive me. God, please forgive me for this.

Now here's something interesting and it's very telling. When David committed adultery with Bathsheba and conspiracy to commit murder with Uriah, he admitted that he sinned. He said, I have sinned. He put in a Psalm against thee and thee alone have I sinned, O Lord. But in this case, look at verse 10. He adds, I have sinned greatly.

See again, another indicator that there's more to what we're seeing. And we won't know until we get to heaven for sure, but there was something more to what was going on, that it was a very bad thing that David had done. Now again, what do you do when you're convicted? You go to God. You go, there's a scriptural, spiritual bar of soap, if you will. First John chapter one, verse eight and nine says, if we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. That is so important. It's the first thing that we should learn as believers is to run the guy when we mess up. A lot of times we talk to people about how not to mess up. That's a part of what we should be teaching.

That's a part of what we should be talking about. But another part is what do we do when we mess up? Because unfortunately, a lot of times people go, okay, don't do this, don't do that, don't do this, don't do that. And then when the person messes up, they go, what do I do? Nobody told me what to do when I mess up.

They just assumed I was never going to mess up. What do I do now? You run the guy.

You run the guy. The life lesson here, when we do wrong, we should ask God to forgive us. Now that seems real simple and real straightforward, but the moment you begin to drift from that, you're headed towards trouble. And a lot of times Christians look and go, when we do wrong, we should, yeah, we should do that born again thing that one time in our life, we should go to God and ask him to forgive us.

Now I agree, the first time is incredible. That's when we begin our journey. That's when our slate is wiped clean, but that's the beginning of the journey. And what we should learn over time is going to God every day and saying, God, forgive me once again for what I've done. Now, here's an interesting thing, too, because we look at this and to be honest, I think even when we get to heaven, we ask David about this, ask God, or maybe we just automatically know when we get into heaven.

I think we're going to hear the antoine go, okay, I'm not sure we're going to understand it at that point. Because try to get your mind around this. David committed adultery with Bathsheba and conspiracy to commit murder with Uriah. And he said, I've sinned. Something happened with this and he said, I've sinned greatly. I'm not sure that we, we just don't see things like God sees them. Evidently there was something here that God saw that he really didn't like. And we look at these two instances and we go, well, the thing with Bathsheba and Uriah was far worse than this counting thing.

Evidently not, evidently not. And I don't just base that on loose stuff. I base that on scripture because we're getting ready to see what the payout wasn't. And here's one thing.

I'll just toss this out here. The sin with Bathsheba and the consequential sin with her husband, Uriah, was a sin of the flesh. David shouldn't have done it.

He did it. It was a sin of the flesh. What's going on here seems to be more a sin of the Spirit in the sense that it's, it's rebellion and it's not trusting God.

And it's much deeper than a uh-oh, I shouldn't have done that. It's that I think something foundationally had gotten out of kilter in David leading to disobedience and I think pride. And we know that God doesn't like pride. God hates pride. It's a stench in his nostril is what the Bible says. Verse 11, now when David arose in the morning, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Gad, David's seer or his priest saying, go and tell David, thus says the Lord, I offer you three things.

Choose one of them for yourself that I may do it to you. How would you have liked to heard that? How would you have liked to heard that? You know, it's rare that we get to choose our punishment in it. When I was in school, you know, they had this deal you could get like three spankings or three days or whatever, you know, three suspended days.

That's what the other kids told me that he said. And so you got your choice then. And you know, to a certain degree, ultimately you understand we get a choice in our lives of the ultimate punishment. Whenever somebody says to you, well, I don't understand why a God of love would ever send anybody to hell. You ever heard that one?

I think most of us have. God doesn't. As a matter of fact, God loves people so much that he was willing to send his son to die for us so that nobody would have to go. And we're told in the Bible that it says, God is willing that none would perish. So then the next question, well, why did he even build the place if he didn't want anybody to go there?

It's another good question. The Bible answers it. Matthew chapter 24 verse 41 says, then the king will turn to those on the left and say away with you, you cursed ones, and to the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his demons. Hell was never constructed for people.

It was constructed for Satan and his demons. But what happens is as people reject Jesus Christ, they choose hell over heaven. It's their choice. Sometimes we do get to choose our punishment.

Of course, our hope, my hope is that nobody makes that decision. If you're not sure tonight, you'll have the opportunity to make the decision to go to heaven. Verse 13, so God came to David and told him and he said to him, shall seven years of famine come to you in your land or show you flee three months before your enemies while they pursue you or show there'll be three days plague in your land. Now consider and see what answer I should take back to him who sent me. And David said to him, I am in great distress. Please let us fall into the hand of the Lord for his mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.

Again, we see there's this depth to David because David doesn't hear that and go, well, you know what? Three months with the enemy. I think I, you know, I've got the army. I'm trusting in the army. I've got these people.

I can take them. It'll be okay. He's been convicted. He's been busted. He's asked forgiveness. And he says, you know what? I don't want to fall into the hands of man.

That's interesting. You know why? Because a lot of times our preference in life is that we fall into the hands of man rather than to the hands of God when we need help. Who do we want to help us? Oftentimes we look for man.

We look for man's help. A lot of times somebody will come and say, well, what does God say? Have you prayed about it? And a lot of times people go, yeah, I am praying about it, but sometimes they go, oh no, I hadn't. Well, we'll go ask God and see what he has to say.

That should be our first course of action. When you need counseling, go to God first. When you need to talk to somebody, talk to God. He's always available. He's always there. He's a person more than we desire the comfort of God.

Let me assure you, the comfort of God is far, far more lasting than the comfort of man. David says, I don't want to fall into the hands of men. So what he's making a decision, we see verse 15, so the Lord sent a plague upon Israel from the morning till the appointed time from Dan to Bathsheba, 70,000 men of the people died. Now that's a head scratcher.

Why? Because you go back again to Bathsheba and Uriah and you looked at four, maybe five people died. Three of his offspring, three of David's offspring, Uriah and the baby. Five people, that sin. And this sin, 70,000 people died. Now it's interesting, if you talk to a believer who knows a little bit about the Bible and say, what was David's great sin?

Everybody will say, Bathsheba. Evidently not in God's eyes. Evidently this was far worse. There was a far worse payout, if you will. And let's remember something too, because we're tempted to go, wow, 70,000 innocent people died.

No, no, no, no, no, no. Time out. There are no innocent people on this earth. And let's remember back at verse one, and the anger of the Lord was aroused against Israel.

Israel, the nation, the people had done something to anger the Lord where this was a justified thing, if you will. And again, it just paints the picture that something ominous is going on. And we read a passage like this and we go, wow, this is intense. Yeah, it is intense. And it reminds us that God is a holy God and he's a powerful God and we should give him reverence and understand his power and be awestruck by it.

Now that's one side. On the other, as we're told in the New Testament, that we can go boldly before the throne of his grace. But as we boldly go before the throne of his grace, we should also be reverential or awestruck by his power and his might. The fear of the Lord would be another definition of that.

It's not literally a fear as in I fear God, but in a reverential sense, there's a respect and a recognition that God is powerful and awesome. Verse 16, when the angel stretched out his hand over Jerusalem to destroy it, the Lord relented from the destruction of the people to the angel who was destroying the people. It is enough. Now restrain your hand and the angel of the Lord was by the threshing floor of Arunah the Jebusite. This is where things get kind of interesting. This guy's a Jebusite. If you remember, they were the people that kind of fooled the nation of Israel. Saul came back, killed a lot of them. A couple chapters ago, they were having a famine. David says, God, why are we having this famine? He says, because you broke your covenant with these people.

So this guy shows up. And then we have this phrase, angel of the Lord. Interesting phrase.

It's a very distinctive phrase. It doesn't appear a whole lot in the Old Testament, but where it does, it's especially important. Angel of the Lord. Whenever you see the phrase angel of the Lord, it's not an angel of the Lord. It's the angel of the Lord.

What is that? Well, in most places I can prove beyond a theological doubt that it's actually Jesus Christ. When it uses that phrase, the angel of the Lord, significant things happen.

What you have to do is look at what's going on in the setting and look what happens. For instance, one of the places when Abraham sends out his handmaid after he tried to rush his offspring and had a baby with his handmaid, and then they kicked her out of the camp, the angel of the Lord came to her. And the angel of the Lord made her a promise that she would be blessed and her offspring would be numerous.

Let me ask you a question. What angel could make a promise like that? No angel. Only God could make a promise like that. Seems to indicate that it was God incarnate in the flesh, Jesus making what we call a Christophany, is a theological term. A Christophany in the Hebrew Scriptures.

Now, there's another place that's kind of interesting. You remember Joshua is getting ready to go take down the walls of Jericho. It's an interesting thing because if you ask a Christian who tore down the walls of Jericho, most people say, well, Joshua did. No, he didn't. Okay, well, it was the trumpets. No, it wasn't. It was God.

Where do you get that? Are you for us or for the other side? And he said, I'm not for either. And then it says that Joshua worshiped that being and that being accepted the worship.

What does that mean? It wasn't an angel. If you remember in the book of Revelation, whenever John attempts to worship an angel, what does the angel say? Get up, don't worship me.

Don't do that. So angels will not accept worship. That's not an angel, it's a demon.

So in accepting the worship, guess what we know? That's God appearing in the flesh. That's Jesus appearing in the flesh to Joshua. And I believe appearing here. Now you're going, okay, kind of with you, kind of worried at this point, Pastor David.

Well, there's more here. We see this angel of the Lord by the threshing floor. Buckle your seatbelts.

It's going to get even more interesting. Verse 17, then David spoke to the Lord and he reckoned the people and said, surely I have sinned and I have done wickedly, but these sheep, what have they done? Let your hand I pray be against me and against my father's house.

Man, there's a leader. David says, you know what? Don't hurt the people anymore. Take it out on me.

Take it out on me. You see what a spiritually mature approach David was taking? God, don't mess with the people.

I'm not going to blame it on people. It's an intercessor's heart. We see the heart of God and what David is saying. And David understood this was the chastening of the Lord. This was the correction of the Lord and he was willing to take that. And we need to understand the chastening of God, the correction of the Lord. Hebrews chapter 12, verse five says, and have you entirely forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as children? He said, my child, don't ignore it when the Lord disciplines you and don't be discouraged when he corrects you and disciplines those he loves and he punishes those he accepts as his children. It's the discipline of the Lord. It's the chasing of the Lord is the word that we use.

But friend, this is the thing. If I go out and my kids are grown now, they don't, but when they were young, they would do things like play in the middle of the street. And when they were playing in the middle of the street and sometimes with the neighbor's kids or whatever, and I had told them not to play in the middle of the street, I would go out and I would chase in them. Okay, I would correct them. All right, I would take them inside to come in here. I'm going to, I probably wouldn't use chasing.

I think I'd use bank. But you know, come on in here. I'm going to correct you because you know that you weren't supposed to be doing that.

But you know what? I didn't bring the neighbor's kids in. I brought my kids in.

Why? Because they're my kids. And when I'm correcting and chasing, guess who I'm going to bring in?

My kids, not the neighbor's kids. If you're being chastened or corrected, that means you've been adopted. That you're one of his. And you can get, oh, I can't believe God's chasing me or God's correcting me.

Friend, it'd be a lot better than if he wasn't because if he wasn't, that would mean you're not adopted yet. So thank God next time that you receive the correction from the hand of the Lord. And it's always merciful. Once you follow him, you ask him to forgive you of your sins. I don't think we ever fully reap what we sow, to be honest.

We reap a portion and Lord knows that's enough, isn't it? The life lesson here is the Lord corrects us to teach us and because he loves us. The Lord corrects us to teach us and because he loves us. And again, sometimes the worst thing that could happen is we get our own way and we don't get corrected.

You know, as a kid, when that happens, you think you got away with something and more often than not, pain follows that. So here's David, his interceding atonement, verse 18. And Gad came that day to David and said to him, go up, erect an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Arunah the Jebusite.

Let me remind you where the angel of the Lord was. So David, according to the word of Gad, went up as the Lord commanded. Now Arunah looked and saw the king and his servants coming towards him.

So Arunah went out and bowed before the king with his face to the ground. And David said, why has my Lord the king come to a servant? And David said to buy the threshing floor from you to build an altar to the Lord that the plague may be withdrawn from the people. So David goes up to this guy's place and there was at this time, Jerusalem, there was a part of Jerusalem was the city of David.

And then part of it was obviously these Jebusites who still stayed there. Verse 22, now Arunah said to David, let my Lord the king take and offer up whatever seems good to him. Look, here are oxen for burnt sacrifice and threshing implements and the yokes of the oxen for wood. All these, O king Arunah, has given to the king. And Arunah said to the king, may the Lord your God accept you. Then the king said to Arunah, no, but I will surely buy it from you for a price, nor will I offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God with that which cost me nothing.

So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for 50 shekels of silver. Now let's look at a couple of things. David once again has come through this, not unscathed, but he's come through it beautifully. David once again has had his trust in man blown away. The reality is you can always count on God. You can always trust in God. And people, we're people. We make mistakes. We let each other down occasionally. And if you don't understand that that occasionally is going to happen, friend, you're going to be really shattered when it does. You need to place your trust in God. Don't put your faith in people. Friend, do you know for sure that your sins have been forgiven?

You can know right now. I want to lead you in a short, simple prayer, simply telling God you're sorry and asking Him to help you to live for Him. Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now. Dear Jesus, I believe you died for me, that I could be forgiven. And I believe you were raised from the dead, that I could have a new life. And I've done wrong things. I have sinned.

And I'm sorry. Please forgive me of all those things. Please give me the power to live for you all of my days. In Jesus' name.

Amen. Friend, if you prayed that prayer, according to the Bible, you've been forgiven. You've been born again. So congratulations, friend.

You just made the greatest decision that you will ever make. God bless you. If you prayed that prayer with David for the first time, we'd love to hear from you. You can visit to receive our First Steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ.

Or you can write to Cross the Bridge at P.O. Box 12-515, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, 27117, and share how God is working in your life. Well, DA, before we go, what are some ways that we can bless our listeners? Each day you can wake up with encouragement from Pastor David through the Word of God with his email devotional, life lessons to consider, a daily reading plan, and a thought to meditate on throughout your day from the heart of David McGee. That sounds good, Pastor DA.

And again, it's been great to have you with us on the program today. What else can our listeners find on If you're not able to make it to your home church this Sunday, why not join us for our live stream at 10 a.m. Eastern Time, or on Thursday nights at 7 p.m. Eastern Time? Just visit and click on our live stream link. There, you'll experience a live service from David's home church, The Bridge, in North Carolina. Again, that website is

Those are terrific. So folks, sign up today at And thank you for listening. We hope you'll join us again next time as we continue studying verse by verse through Second Samuel.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-16 06:06:30 / 2024-03-16 06:19:39 / 13

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