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The Case of the Open Window Shade, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
July 11, 2022 7:05 am

The Case of the Open Window Shade, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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July 11, 2022 7:05 am

David: A Man of Passion and Destiny

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

Today, on Insight for Living, from Bible teacher Chuck Swindoll. Our most difficult times is not when things are going hard. Hard times create people that are dependent. You don't get proud when you're dependent on God. Pride happens when everything is swinging in your direction.

When you just received that promotion, when you're growing in prestige and fame and significance, that's a time to watch out. For several programs now on Insight for Living, we've been listening to Chuck Swindoll's classic biographical series on David called A Man of Passion and Destiny. Along the way, we've watched David's rise from virtual obscurity to the highest position in the land.

We've seen him slay a giant, conquer his adversaries, and win the affection of his people. Today, however, we watch this man after God's own heart violate his own convictions. David's secret sin became very public, and the consequences were devastating.

Chuck titled today's message The Case of the Open Window Shade. Reading the story of David and Bathsheba creates all different kinds of reactions. Some see that as the darkest day in David's life. Others lament how the mighty have fallen in Israel. Whatever your reaction may be, this section of Scripture prompts us to remember the strong, destructive power of sin, even when it begins with a seemingly harmless desire for forbidden fruit.

I want you to listen carefully today. I'm going to be reading this section from the message, and I'll begin our reading from 2 Samuel 1. When that time of year came around again, the anniversary of the Ammonite aggression, David dispatched Joab and his fighting men of Israel in full force to destroy the Ammonites for good. They laid siege to Rabbah, but David stayed in Jerusalem. One late afternoon, David got up from taking his nap and was strolling on the roof of the palace. From his vantage point on the roof, he saw a woman bathing. The woman was stunningly beautiful. David sent to ask about her and was told, isn't this Bathsheba, daughter of Eliam and wife of Uriah the Hittite? David sent his agents to get her. After she arrived, he went to bed with her. This occurred during the time of purification following her period. Then she returned home.

Before long, she realized she was pregnant. Later, she sent word to David, I am pregnant. David then got in touch with Joab. Send Uriah the Hittite to me. Joab sent him.

When he arrived, David asked him for news from the front, how things were going with Joab and the troops and with the fighting. Then he said to Uriah, go home, have a refreshing bath and a good night's rest. After Uriah left the palace, an informant of the king was sent after him. But Uriah didn't go home.

He slept that night at the palace entrance along with the king's servants. David was told that Uriah had not gone home. He asked Uriah, didn't you just come off a hard trip? So why didn't you go home? Uriah replied to David, the chest is out there with the fighting men of Israel and Judah, intense. My master Joab and his servants are roughing it out in the fields. So how can I go home and eat and drink and enjoy my wife on your life?

I'll not do it. All right, said David, have it your way. Stay for the day and I'll send you back tomorrow. So Uriah stayed in Jerusalem the rest of the day. The next day, David invited him to eat and drink with him and David got him drunk. But in the evening, Uriah again went out and slept with his master's servants.

He didn't go home. In the morning, David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. In the letter he wrote, put Uriah in the front lines where the fighting is the fiercest.

Then pull back and leave him exposed so that he's sure to be killed. So Joab, holding the city under siege, put Uriah in a place where he knew there were fierce enemy fighters. When the city's defenders came out to fight Joab, some of David's soldiers were killed, including Uriah the Hittite. Joab sent David a full report on the battle. He instructed the messenger, after you have given to the king a detailed report on the battle, if he flares in anger, say, and by the way, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.

Joab's messenger arrived in Jerusalem and gave the king a full report. He said, the enemy was too much for us. They advanced on us in the open field and we pushed them back to the city gate. But then arrows came hot and heavy on us from the city wall and 18 of the king's soldiers died. When the messenger completed his report of the battle, David got angry at Joab.

He vented it on the messenger. Why did you get so close to the city? Didn't you know you'd be attacked from the wall? Didn't you remember how Abimelech, son of Jerubeshoth, got killed? Wasn't it a woman who dropped a millstone on him from the wall and crushed him at Thebes? Why did you go close to the wall? By the way, said Joab's messenger, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.

Then David told the messenger, oh, I see. Tell Joab, don't trouble yourself over this. War kills, sometimes one, sometimes another.

You never know who's next. Redouble your assault on the city and destroy it. Encourage Joab. When Uriah's wife heard that her husband was dead, she grieved for her husband. When the time of mourning was over, David sent someone to bring her to his house.

She became his wife and bore him a son. You're listening to Insight for Living. To dig deeper into the Bible with Chuck Swindoll, be sure to download his Searching the Scriptures studies by going to slash studies.

And now Chuck describes the case of the open window shade. The Bible never flatters its heroes. All the men and women of scripture have feet of clay. And when the Holy Spirit paints a picture that's a portrait of their lives, he is a very realistic artist. He doesn't gloss over the dark side of their lives. Personally, when I come across a passage like 2 Samuel chapter 11, as we are going into with David, I am forever grateful that he no longer is writing the Bible.

I am glad that he has finished writing scripture because there's not a person under the sound of my voice right now who would want to have his failures and vices recorded for all generations to read and discuss and make movies about and write books on and preach sermons on down through the centuries. I breathe a sigh of relief, but David doesn't. As I take on this study, you and I know that there has been no sin save the sin of Adam and Eve that has received more press than the sin of David with Bathsheba. It is possible to exploit the passage rather than exposited, thereby giving the idea that this man was some sort of an uncontrollable animal. That's not true.

That's not true at all. David is a man of God. He remains a man of God after chapter 11, just like before it, and he has lapsed this night, we will see, into sin. But his sin is no greater than your sin or mine, and we are simply grateful ours have not been recorded. I'm not justifying it, and as you will hear, I'm certainly not defending it.

I'm just trying to put it in a proper perspective. If you sit and cluck your tongue or shake your head in shame against David, then you have missed the truth of 1 Corinthians 10, 12, let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. Just between the words stand and fall are the words take heed in the Scriptures, and you and I need to do that on a regular basis. We need to take heed, and that is the greatest counsel you can receive from this pulpit. If you do not take heed, our time together was of no avail. If you do not run as fast as you can run from this kind of temptation, you will fall, even if your life is the likes of David. I have to confess to you that if there was any evening in which I would have preferred to have an all-men audience, it would have been tonight. I was almost tempted to ask for that today, but then I thought, well, there are some things that are to be said that some of the women here need to take to heart as well, for there were two involved in this devastating act.

But I want you to get the wrong idea. David is now a man about 50 years old, perhaps older. He has been on the throne from 17 to 20 years.

No one knows exactly how long, probably more like two decades. He has distinguished himself as a man of God, as a composer of Psalms, as a person who is a valiant warrior in the battlefield, and as a person who certainly deserves the respect of the nation. There are few men in Scripture with greater charisma than David. He not only led the people in righteousness, he gave them the romance of the Psalms. He oozes with charisma. He is a man who wins your heart, and that is the reason his biography is the greatest of all in Scripture, save that of Jesus Christ himself. He is a man as well who has shown a marked degree of grace and compassion because he is the one who took in Mephibosheth and showed grace to that cripple and gave him whatever he needed in the kingdom, kept his promise to Jonathan and to Saul. So does you hear what we have to say about this man? Understand we are not examining the life of a rebel.

He is no pervert. He is no individual who has forever fallen, never to be revived, but he does sin, and his sin has a devastating consequence on his family, on his reign, and on his nation. This kind of sin always does.

Some sins are without the body and do not have the impact of those sins that come from within, and the sexual sins seem to have within them a greater wake, so that is why we are to take heed lest we fall. The warning fits people who are in their fifties and sixties just as much as those of you in your teens and twenties, thirties, and forties. No one ever gets too old to fall. No person suddenly becomes base. There is no such thing as sudden adultery.

It happens over a long haul. David's life is like a neglected seawall, standing constantly against the barrage of the tide and the waves and the rocks and the churning of the sea. Finally, in a weakened moment, it crumbles at his feet and he pays a terrible price. Let's go back before 2 Samuel 11-5 and look at verse 13 with me. I want to show you the black backdrop that led to this sin because I don't want you to have the idea that he suddenly fell. He didn't.

Some chinks in his armor had already begun to form. Look at 2 Samuel 5-13. Let's take verse 12. David realized that the Lord had established him as king over Israel and that he had exalted his kingdom for the sake of his people Israel. You see, David realized that. He realized the hand of God was on him. He realized that the Lord's blessing was there. Meanwhile, David took more concubines and wives from Jerusalem after he came from Hebron and more sons and daughters were born to David. Now I read that rather glibly because that seems to be the way it is written.

The first word of the sentence suggests that it was sort of an afterthought. Oh, yeah, by the way, come to think of it, David added concubines and wives to his harem. Oh, meanwhile, as the blessing of God was on the people and upon the kingdom, oh, yeah, I recall as I write this record, he increased the number of his wives.

His harem grew larger. This was in direct contradiction with Scripture. If you hold your place here, we'll go back to Deuteronomy 17 and you will read with me the three things that were to mark the king of Israel's life. Deuteronomy 17, verse 14 and following. I want you to see in this passage, which is a very insightful passage, that there were three things that were not to be numbered among the kings of Israel. Deuteronomy 17, 14, when you enter the land which the Lord your God gives you and you possess it and you live in it and you say, I will set a king over me like all the nations who are around me, you shall surely set a king over you whom the Lord your God chooses. One from among your countrymen you shall set as king over yourselves. You may not put a foreigner over yourselves who is not your countryman. Moreover, number one, he shall not multiply horses for himself nor shall he cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses.

Since the Lord has said to you, you shall never again return that way. Number two, neither shall he multiply wives for himself, lest his heart turn away. Number three, nor shall he greatly increase silver and gold for himself. David was faithful in the first and the third, but he was a man of passion and he failed in the second. It is interesting to me to note that as the harem grew and as the number of wives and concubines increased, his passion was not abated. The man who took another man's wife named Bathsheba had a harem full of women, concubines and wives, at his disposal. The simple fact is that the passion of sex is not released by a full harem, it is increased. Many women or many men does not release the drive, it increases it. David, being a man of strong sexual drive, thought to satisfy it, I will have more women. And as he became the king, meanwhile he added to the harem and his drive increased. One of the lies of our secular society is that if you just satisfy this drive, then it will be abated.

It isn't abated, it is increased. Now David, back in 2 Samuel 5, verse 13, has broken with scripture. But, you know, who in the kingdom is going to blow a whistle on that kind of person? Who in the kingdom can say, David's at fault because look at his track record, two decades of unsullied character, no defeat in the battlefield, absolute sterling leadership, choice men in the right places, the promotion of a military force that now has reached 60,000 square miles, export, import, money at hand, a beautiful home, plans for the temple of the Lord, who can point a finger of accusation against David? So what if he takes a few more women and marries them and increases his number of concubines? So what? They turn their heart, they turn the heart of the king from the Lord. That's what Deuteronomy said. Somehow something happened to break down his integrity.

That's the first problem, polygamy. Second, vulnerability. Between chapters 5 and 11, you will read of nothing but a success story. He is at an all-time high. He is fresh off a series of great victories in the battlefield. He has reached the peak of public admiration. He has ample money, incredible power, remarkable fame. His lifestyle looks like this, an arrow going further and further up into the clouds, like the climbing of a jet as it increases in altitude.

Further and further and further up into the clouds is the life of David. I mean, you can't point a finger of accusation at him, and therefore he's vulnerable. You know, our most difficult times is not when things are going hard. Hard times create people that are dependent. You don't get proud when you're dependent on God. Pride happens when everything is swinging in your direction, when you've just received that promotion, when you look back and you can see an almost spotless record in the last number of months, when you're growing in prestige and fame and significance, that's a time to watch out. In the backwash of all this, David is vulnerable.

And I don't know about what he isn't beginning to believe, his own track record, because when you get to chapter 11, he is indulging himself. That's the third chink in the armor, indulgence. Now we looked at David earlier and we saw that he indulged his sons. He never brought the rod upon one of the sons named Hennohim, Adonijah I should say, and he certainly didn't discipline Absalom.

Absalom was a young man that was so handsome, attractive, surely Absalom didn't need the rod. And before long we find David completely removed from the direction of his family and he leaves it to his multiple staff of wives to run the home. And David is out busily engaged in battle.

And you'll notice also when the bills come due, he's relaxed in his responsibilities. See verse 1 of chapter 11. We find David in this elegantly furnished bedroom, perhaps a velvet bedspread, lovely, heavy drapes hanging on the walls around the windows. It happened in the spring. You can almost feel the warm breezes blowing over Jerusalem.

The rainy season is over and the sun is beginning to shine again and the clouds are gone and the skies are clear. It's just a beautiful, warm, lovely Jerusalem evening in the springtime. The verse says when the kings normally were to go out to battle. But David sent Joab and his servants with him and they destroyed the sons of Ammon and besieged Rabbah. But David stayed at Jerusalem. David's in bed, not in battle. He doesn't delegate the job to Joab. He neglects his job. He belonged with the troops.

Had he been there, there would never have been a Bathsheba episode. Our greatest battle is not when we're working hard, it's when we have a lot of leisure. It's when we've got time on our hands and we're bored and the spring of the year when we're yawning and stretching and getting sleep out of our eyes and we can't sleep at night and we make those fateful decisions that haunt us. It is so very important today in our society when anything goes that if you want to be part of the answer rather than part of the problem, you work in cooperation with righteousness. That means you give thought to what you buy before you buy it and wear it, ladies. And that means, man, when you happen upon a very beautiful and alluring object, you do not linger.

Not even David in all his godliness could handle it was too big for him. These are the timeless lessons from this passage in 2 Samuel 11. And there's much more ahead when Chuck Swindoll continues his message called The Case of the Open Window Shade. I'll remind you that in addition to the daily Insight for Living broadcast, every sermon Chuck presents on this program is complemented by online study notes.

This allows you to jot down your own thoughts into your computer, or you can print out the document as a permanent reference tool. We call these free resources Searching the Scriptures Studies. And you can begin right now by going to slash studies. Chuck has also written a full length biography on David. It includes an entire chapter on the message you heard today.

In fact, there are 24 chapters in all. And many of Chuck's readers have told us he makes biblical characters like David come to life. To purchase a copy, go directly to slash offer, or give us a call.

If you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888. The title of Chuck's book is David, a Man of Passion and Destiny. We're grateful for all of those who financially support Insight for Living Ministries. Because of the generosity of those who give, we're able to bring Chuck's teaching to your station every day. Plus, Insight for Living is heard around the world in eight languages other than English. In fact, it's our long-term dream to make disciples of Jesus Christ in all 195 countries of the world.

We call this mission Vision 195. By giving a donation of any amount, you're joining us as we strive ahead on this global mission. If you prefer to give over the phone, call us.

If you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888. Or go online to slash donate. In March 2023, Insight for Living Ministries is hosting an unforgettable journey to Israel. Carefully plan to deepen your understanding of the Bible and draw you closer to God.

Here's Chuck Swindoll. For thousands of years, no place has been more meaningful to God's children than the land of Israel. The rugged landscape reminds us to find refuge in God alone. The fertile valleys invite us to follow our shepherd. Jerusalem's position at the very center of the world announces the good news of Christ to every nation. And now you can see Israel with Chuck Swindoll and Insight for Living Ministries, March 5th through the 16th, 2023. Every time I visited the Holy Land, I've returned home with a refreshed heart for God and a renewed vision for the world.

Really, I mean it every time. And so I want you to have the same life-changing experience. To learn more, go to slash events, or call this number 1-888-447-0444. Insight for Living Ministries Tour to Israel is paid for and made possible by only those who choose to attend.

I'm Bill Meyer. Join us again when Chuck Swindoll continues to describe the Case of the Open Window Shade, Tuesday on Insight for Living. The preceding message, The Case of the Open Window Shade, was copyrighted in 1978, 1988, 1997, and 2009, and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2009 by Charles R. Swindoll Inc. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-26 07:29:22 / 2023-03-26 07:38:30 / 9

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