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The Integrity of a Courageous Confrontation, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
January 21, 2022 7:05 am

The Integrity of a Courageous Confrontation, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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January 21, 2022 7:05 am

Walking with Integrity in Times of Adversity

Running to Win
Erwin Lutzer
Running to Win
Erwin Lutzer
A New Beginning
Greg Laurie
Insight for Living
Chuck Swindoll
Insight for Living
Chuck Swindoll

Few of us enjoy confrontation.

In fact, we avoid it, postpone it, and volunteer others to stand in our place. But there comes a time when nothing is more important than exposing the truth, no matter how awkward that might feel. Today on Insight for Living, Chuck Swindoll recounts a story recorded in 2 Samuel 12. This passage describes the aftermath of King David's affair with Bathsheba and David's attempt to keep his sin a secret.

David succeeded until Nathan came along. Chuck titled today's message, The Integrity of a Courageous Confrontation. If you have brought your Bible with you today, I invite you to turn to 2 Samuel chapter 12. We began a story last week, and as the late Paul Harvey would put it, today we hear the rest of the story. And it is a courageous account of a simple man who had a calling from God as a prophet to confront the king, King David. I'll be reading from the New Living Translation.

You follow along, I'll be reading the first 14 verses. The Lord sent Nathan, the prophet, to tell David this story. There were two men in a certain town. One was rich and one was poor. The rich man owned a great many sheep and cattle. The poor man owned nothing but one little lamb he had bought. He raised that little lamb and it grew up with his children. It ate from the man's own plate and drank from his cup.

He cuddled it in his arms like a baby daughter. One day, a guest arrived at the home of the rich man, but instead of killing an animal from his own flock or herd, he took the poor man's lamb and killed it and prepared it for his guest. David was furious. As surely as the Lord lives, he vowed, any man who would do such a thing deserves to die.

He must repay four lambs to the poor man for the one he stole and for having no pity. Then Nathan said to David, you are that man. The Lord, the 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. Then have you despised the word of the Lord and done this horrible deed, for you have murdered Uriah the Hittite with a sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife. From this time on, your family will live by the sword because you have despised me by taking Uriah's wife to be your own.

This is what the Lord says. Because of what you have done, I will cause your own household to rebel against you. I will give your wives to another man before your very eyes and he will go to bed with them in public view.

You did it secretly. But I will make this happen to you openly in the sight of all Israel. Then David confessed to Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord. Nathan replied, yes, but the Lord has forgiven you and you won't die for this sin.

Nevertheless, because you have shown utter contempt for the word of the Lord by doing this, your child will die. You're listening to Insight for Living. To search the scriptures with Chuck Swindoll, be sure to download his Searching the Scriptures Studies by going to slash studies. Chuck titled his message, The Integrity of a Courageous Confrontation. The prophet's responsibility is not easy to fulfill.

As one wag put it, really a prophet only has two tasks. The first is to comfort the afflicted and the second to afflict the comfortable. Now, comforting the afflicted is a pleasure. It calls for compassion, mercy. It is often requested and it's always appreciated. Afflicting the comfortable is a tough task. It's never requested. It is sometimes even resisted and resented. But when God leads us to do it, he's pleased that we carry that out.

Now, be careful here. Some I found in the Christian life are a little too anxious to confront others. They feel as though they have the gift of confrontation. There is no such gift.

There isn't. Without exception, we do it reluctantly and only out of obedience. Because in doing so, we are moving into someone's private life, I repeat, uninvited. And often after a lengthy period of ignoring the wrong that is going on. I find that the Bible has a number of confrontations that are recorded. Moses, for example, went to Pharaoh again and again and confronted Pharaoh. Just let God's people go. Let God's people go.

Let God's people go. Pharaoh didn't budge. He said it again.

He said it again. Plagues came. More plagues. Finally, Pharaoh relented and let God's people go. And there was an exodus out of Egypt. It must have been a tough assignment for Moses, but he did it out of obedience.

Because Pharaoh certainly didn't invite it. Samuel confronted Saul, the king, for rushing ahead and doing what only a priest should have done at an altar. He reproved Saul and then told him the kingdom has been taken from you and will be given to another. Must have been a painful moment for King Saul to hear that stated in public.

Elijah confronted Ahab for his wickedness and that of his wife Jezebel. You remember that scene? Even Jesus confronted Peter. When Peter said to him, you're not going to be arrested. You're not going to go to some cross.

You're not going to die. Get behind me, Satan. Have you thought of that confrontation? Set in front of the other disciples? Paul later confronted Peter for being a hypocrite. Eating one kind of food when he was with the Gentiles and another when he was with the Jews. Paul didn't mince words.

Peter needed the confrontation. Even John, the one who often says love one another, wrote in his little one chapter letter of 3 John, when I come, I will, in so many words, confront diatrophies who loves to have the preeminence. Putting these people out of the church and judging those people, diatrophies needs to stop.

And I'll take care of it. There is a statement in Proverbs that most have never heard. It's chapter 27 verse 6. Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.

The Hebrew puts it in broader terms. Faithful are the bruises caused by the wounding of one who loves you. The confrontation has a way of bruising. But those bruises linger and they are faithful if we learn from them. And remember, they're coming from one who loves us.

We don't confront people we don't know. We confront those we love. And in the New Testament we read Galatians 6, 1, if someone is overtaken in a fault, hear this, you who are spiritual, restore the other in a spirit of meekness, considering your own self lest you also be tempted.

I love the way that reads and the way it's stated because there's tenderness in it. And the goal is not simply to reprove, it's to restore. It's not simply to point out what's wrong, it's to bring the person to repentance so there can be a restoration and a continuation of a healthy Christian life. All this brings us to the rest of the story in 2 Samuel 12.

You remember the story from last time. How could you ever forget? David stacked one sin against another because he failed to confess the first one. His adultery with Bathsheba. He brought in Uriah, deceitfully attempted to connect Uriah back with his wife Bathsheba. Uriah was far more faithful than David. He wouldn't even go to his own house.

David got him drunk in hopes of getting him there so that it would look as though her pregnancy was caused by her husband. Uriah never went. And because he wouldn't, David turned on one of the warriors of Israel and had him killed in battle. Put him at the front of the battle so that he may be killed. Not only was Uriah killed, but other warriors as well.

So there's murder in his record. And then months and months of hypocrisy. The royal palace must have had whispers, but none of that moved David. He was miserable, to be sure. And by the way, during this time, not one psalm flows from David's pen. It's impossible to sing the Lord's song in a foreign land. David's heart wasn't right, and David, in his miserable condition, just stayed silent as the baby grew in Bathsheba's womb until God spoke to a prophet named Nathan. It begins rather innocuously in this 12th chapter, but it is worth noting Nathan didn't go on his own. No man would confront a king on his own.

It's a great way to lose your life. Even though Nathan was a friend of the family, it took the Lord to send him. It's a good place to pause and say, make sure if you feel you are to confront another, that it is the Lord sending you. Always do it reluctantly.

I would even add it wouldn't hurt to do it with tears. The Lord sent Nathan, and you will notice he sent Nathan to tell David this story. What an interesting statement this 12th chapter begins with, because there is something in every story or someone in every story that we can identify with which makes every story interesting.

And this is no exception. A story is a beautiful way to disarm another. David is a classic example. In spite of the sins and the callous that follows in his months of hypocrisy, David listens to the story as Nathan sits beside him. There were two men in a city. One was rich and one was poor. One had plenty and the other only had his little family and one new lamb. When the rich man had a guest come along and it was time for dinner, that rich man, rather than taking one of his own flock from the flock, he took the poor man's one lamb, his only little lamb, and he slaughtered it and served that as the feast for dinner that evening.

I am convinced that Nathan isn't through telling the whole story before David. He's furious. He is furious. How dare there be a man like that in my kingdom?

Find him. He deserves to die. But before we take his life, he needs to give that man four lambs from his flock, paying him back four to one. How dare he take that man's single lamb?

At that moment, it was time for Nathan to speak and to borrow from their language. You, the man, this one. Literally, the Hebrew says.

You're the man. You're the one who took the lamb. In fact, he goes on to describe what will happen as a result. Broken, who knows but what David dropped to his knees. I have sinned against the Lord. It's an epical moment in the narrative. If you read this and don't pause there, you miss a golden opportunity to identify.

At that moment, all hypocrisy screeched to a halt. The story does the job like nothing else. I've always loved the late Warren Wiersbe's description of a story.

Listen. Stories start off like pictures and then they become mirrors. And then they become windows. First there is sight as we see a slice of life in the picture. And then there is insight as we see ourselves in the mirror. And then there's vision as we look through the window of revelation and see the Lord.

That is exactly what happens here. Soon as David says, I have sinned against the Lord, Nathan says, and you are forgiven by the Lord. David's anguish is from true guilt.

He's ignored it. God was at work in the king's heart. What an excellent place for us to pause and look within. I invite you to do that with me in a simple illustration that came to me while preparing this awakening sermon. I want you to imagine yourself sitting behind the steering wheel in your car. And I'm sitting beside you as the rider in the car, you're the driver, I'm the rider.

We're driving along, you're looking through the windshield, of course, and occasionally glancing at the dashboard to see your speed and to glance over the gauges that are there. And then all of a sudden, without any sound, a red light appears on the dashboard. There's no siren. There's no loud beep. There's no voice that says stop, pull over, trouble under the hood. Just a red light. Just a red light.

Now, you have a choice. You can either on your own pull over, stop, realize there's some kind of trouble under the hood. You lift the hood and if you're like me, you look at it rather blankly and get your phone and call for help.

You don't mess with it because you need help from someone who understands engines like this. Now, that's what you do if you are a smart driver. However, if you're a dingbat, while you're driving along, the red light goes on, you keep driving and you reach over into glove compartment and you pull out a little hammer. You keep it there for this reason because when that red light goes off, there, it goes out.

You just knock it out. And you keep on driving. After a while, you smell something that you ask me, you smell something?

And I go, yeah, I do. And there's a little smoke that comes out around the little gap between your hood and the fender and it starts more and more. And you notice the gauge is called heat and it shows boiling and you keep driving and the car kind of sputters. And before long, the paint on your hood is beginning to crinkle and you see little shoots of flame coming out. And you have ruined the engine, if not other parts of the car. All you needed to do was pull over, stop and check it.

But you've decided the best way to handle this is to put out the light. David's been driving for months. Did he confess when he got out of bed with Bathsheba? Not a word. Did he confess when he brought Uriah into the king's chamber? Not a moment of confession. Did he confess when he said to Joab, put him on the front of the line and have him killed? Did he tell Joab why? Did he ever confess to his family saying, I need to tell all of you what I have done and how sorry I am for it? And before the Lord, I give you my word, I'll do whatever's necessary to make this right. Never.

He just kept right on driving. In case you came our way late in the program, this is Insight for Living. And we're right in the middle of a brand new message from Chuck Swindoll called The Integrity of a Courageous Confrontation. And to learn more about today's topic, please visit us online at As we conclude another Daily Bible message, I'll make it a point to remind you that this teaching series has never been heard on the daily broadcast. Although this program has been carried on radio stations for more than 42 years, we're blessed to offer our listening audience fresh new studies in God's Word. This longevity, this heritage, is due in part to the faithful friends who financially sustain Insight for Living. And if you're among those who give, we're deeply grateful for your generosity. In fact, we represent thousands around the world who call and write to thank us, knowing that their gratitude is really directed toward you.

We couldn't provide Insight for Living without your faithful giving. As God prompts you to join the family of supporters today, we invite you to give your donation by calling us. If you're listening in the United States, dial 1-800-772-8888 or go to slash donate. And then finally, as a compliment to your worship experience in your local church this coming Sunday morning, remember you can also celebrate with Chuck Swendoll by viewing the worship service of Stonebriar Community Church online. This not only includes Chuck's full-length sermon, but the sacred music and congregational singing as well.

You'll find all the instructions for video streaming the weekly worship service at slash Sundays. Those who support Insight for Living with a monthly gift truly have a ministry all their own. God's amazing grace is our overarching theme every day on Insight for Living. In fact, it's quite possible that God has used our daily program to extend His grace to you. And I know as your Bible teacher, I have been a grace recipient as well. Our monthly companions are first recipients of God's grace. But when you begin to give monthly, God is deploying you as a courier of His grace. Today, we're inviting you to join the team. Please jot down our contact information and follow the Lord's prompting. When you do that, you'll become an elegant bouquet, a sweet fragrance of God's grace here at home and all around the world. Do for some unsuspecting person what someone once did for you.

Become a monthly companion. If you're listening in the United States, call 1-800-772-8888 or go online to slash monthly companion. Join us when Chuck Swindoll continues his message about the integrity of a courageous confrontation.

Monday on Insight for Living. The preceding message, The Integrity of a Courageous Confrontation, was copyrighted in 2021 and 2022. And the sound recording was copyrighted in 2022 by Charles R Swindoll, Inc. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-21 09:58:21 / 2023-06-21 10:06:15 / 8

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