Today on Summit Life with J.D. Greer. Sin does have consequences, painful consequences, and one of my burdens is to try and show you and to open some of your eyes because you are on the brink of making decisions that in some ways are irreversible. Welcome back to Summit Life with J.D.
Greer. As always, I'm your host, Molly Vidovitch. Isn't it a joy to know that because of the cross, our sins are forgiven? And when we surrender to Jesus, there's no condemnation left for us. Jesus took all of God's wrath so that we could be saved.
So the question many of us have then is why does sin still create consequences? That's our topic today as Pastor J.D. continues our study in the book of 2 Samuel. We are looking at the tragic results of David's sin with Bathsheba and the hope of the gospel that shines through it all.
Remember, you can always visit us at jdgreer.com or give us a call at 866-335-5220. Here's Pastor J.D. with a new message he titled Consequences. Now all of us realize that sins, even when they are forgiven, still have consequences.
Say, for example, tomorrow night you are at your small group and one guy in your small group requests prayer that you would see when on Wednesday night. Now that just annoys you for a couple of reasons. One, you're pretty sure that God is a Duke fan even though they chose his enemy as their mascot. Okay, just saying, you know, you're pretty sure that he's a Duke fan. And secondly, while you are pretty sure you agree that it will take an act of God in order for UNC to win on Wednesday night, you just don't think that it is appropriate to pray about things like that. So in a very humble, gracious way, because that's always the word that I use to describe Duke fans as humble and gracious, you correct this person and tell them that's not an appropriate prayer request.
Well, of course, Carolina fans are obnoxious so you guys get in a big argument together and they're shouting and the words tar hole and Dookie face get thrown around and next thing you know you lose it and you haul off and you punch this guy in the face. All right, now he gets a black eye and in the process you break your wrist. Later, later you calm down, he calms down, you guys ask forgiveness, you guys, you know, hug, kiss and make up, you hug it out. God forgives you for it. You realize that your unity in Christ is greater even than your rivalry in sports and you ask for forgiveness. Now, God forgives you for that sin and they forgive you for that sin but he's still got a black eye and you still got a broken wrist. I mean that's very obvious to see, we all get that, that even after sins are forgiven there are still consequences but for some reason people get a little foggy with that when they start thinking about how their lives are unfolding. And so what I want to show you, try to show you this morning, is what the consequences of sin often look like and then I want to try to show you what God's grace does and does not do in and through those consequences. What I am hoping to show you this morning from the life of David is that sin does have consequences, painful consequences, and one of my burdens for you this morning is to try and show you and to open some of your eyes because you are on the brink of making decisions that in some ways are irreversible. And then I want to try to on the other hand show those of you who have made those decisions how God's grace is greater even than your sin and that God has a way of taking even our most tragic decisions and reweaving them for his glory and for our good. That God can take even your own sin and stupidity and work it out according to his grace and according to his perfect plan. He turned the cross into the resurrection and he can take your pain and turn it into triumph. That's my dilemma though when I preach.
You understand that? I'm trying to show you both sides. I'm trying to make the pain of sin real enough that it'll pull some of you back from the brink of disaster and at the same time for those of you that have already gone over the cliff of disaster that you'll have a little bit of hope, not a little bit, but a lot of hope seeing how God's grace is working in and through that. That's the dilemma in what I'm trying to do today, okay?
I don't know how well I'll do, but that's what I'm trying to do. So if you have a Bible, I want you to open it to 2 Samuel 12. That's where we left David and Bathsheba last week. David had just been confronted by the prophet Nathan in his sin and God had told Nathan that to tell David that he was going to forgive David for his sin and that's where we're going to pick up is in verse 13.
In case you're just joining us for the first time in a long time, basically the deal is this. David committed adultery with Bathsheba who was another man's wife. They had a kid out of wedlock and then David had her husband killed. So chapter 12 verse 13, the prophet tells Nathan on, excuse me, the prophet Nathan tells David on God's behalf, God has put away your sin, David, you shall not die. Yet then Nathan goes on to tell him three other things that are the consequences of that sin. You are forgiven, you will not die, but verse 10, the sword shall never depart from your house. Verse 11, your wives shall be unfaithful to you. Verse 14, the son born to you from this affair will die. And the next five chapters are going to show you how all that plays out. Before chapter 12 is over, David's newborn son is dead and David experiences a pain like nothing he has ever known.
I have watched some of you in this church, I've watched personally, you go through to deal with the loss of a newborn child and I know that that is some of the deepest pain on earth. David goes through that. Then the next five chapters you're going to see David's family turn into basically a Jerry Springer show. Let me describe in a few words what happens in David's family in these next five chapters.
You ready? Adultery, murder, incest, sexual harassment, sexual abuse, rape, substance abuse. One brother murders another one. Stepmoms leverage their kids against one another. David refuses to speak to one of his sons for two years and another one for five. One of David's sons steals his dad's house and sleeps with a few of his stepmoms. Vicious infighting over the family inheritance and more murder. Last night when I was going through this list somebody in the crowd shouted out, David needs a small group.
He does. I feel like David can probably compete with the best of you in here when it comes to dysfunctional families. Now these five chapters are way too much for me to read so I'm just going to walk you through and summarize most of it.
Second Samuel 13, David's firstborn son is named Amnon. He develops a rather perverse crush on his on his half-sister Tamar and he wants her so bad he can't even eat. Now if you recall I preached a whole sermon on that story and I'm not going to do that again but if you want to go deeper you can go back and download that message and listen to it. But basically let me just recap the highlights for you here.
I guess the low points. Amnon hatches a plot where he can get his half-sister Tamar alone and then he rapes her. And after the chapter says that he raped her, verse 15, he hated her so that the hate with which he hated her was more intense even than the love with which he loved her. And then after he rapes her, verse 17, he says, put this woman out of my presence and bolt the door after her. Now stop for a minute. You see that little phrase, this woman?
Where have you heard that before? That's exactly right, David and Bathsheba. You remember when David was coming up with his plan to sleep with Bathsheba he referred to her as this woman and one of his servants said, this woman? Wait a minute, is this not Bathsheba who is the wife of Uriah and the daughter of so-and-so? And what I showed you is that the writer is trying to say to David or this servant trying to say to David, David this is not just an object of physical pleasure, this is somebody's wife, this is somebody's daughter, this is somebody's mother, this is not a body you're enjoying, this is a life you're tampering with. Do you see what's happened? Amnon, David's son, is just repeating David's sin. The sin that is sown by the father is harvested in the life of the child.
That happens a lot. The other question that this story presents to you right off the bat is, where is David in all of this? He's totally disconnected. I mean, he's around. You can see that he actually helped set up the encounter between Amnon and Tamar. But he's totally disconnected and he's clueless as to what's happening in the life of his children. After she's raped, he finds out about it. And guess what he does?
Nothing. Verse 21 says he was angry about the situation, but he never confronted Amnon and he never dealt with it. She even, this is pretty sad and kind of pathetic, verse 13, she even puts confidence in her daddy's sense of justice. She says, my daddy's a just man, my daddy's a brave man, my dad is the one who faced Goliath. My dad will do the right thing. My dad will protect me. But the man of courage who had stood up to Goliath did nothing for his little girl. Why?
Why? Well Absalom, who is Tamar's full brother. Okay, now I realize when you have multiple wives, this gets kind of complex.
Okay, so which is one of the reasons that we try to encourage you not to have multiple wives. Tamar and Absalom, full brother and sister, because they have the same mom and dad. Then you've got Amnon, who David is also his daddy, so he's the half brother of Tamar, but he's got a different mom, so he's half not whole. But Absalom is the full brother of Tamar. He hears about all of this and he can't believe what has happened to his sister and he cannot believe that nobody, especially his daddy, didn't do anything about it. And by the way, we know that Absalom really loves Tamar.
We know it for two reasons. One, it says that after she was raped he took her into his house for the rest of her life. And number two, we also know that later he would name one of his children Tamar in honor of her memory. But because David does nothing, Absalom starts to plot vengeance on Amnon. Chapter 13 verse 28 says that eventually Absalom got Amnon away from the palace, got him drunk, and then murdered him. Now again, what does that sound like?
Getting somebody drunk and then murdering them? Is she what the writer is showing you? David's sin is being reproduced in the life of his children. The sin sown by the father is harvested in the life of the child. You're listening to Summit Life with JD Greer. We'll be right back with more teaching in just a moment, but first let me remind you about our latest resource for our Summit Life family. We have a 25-day devotional guide specifically for the Advent season called He is Here. Each day includes a short reading from scripture, an accompanying devotional for that day, and an application prayer, reflection or connection. We're praying that this guide would help you anticipate the king this Christmas so that you not only understand but also feel the thrill of hope that accompanies the name Emmanuel, God with us. Prepare your heart in a new way this holiday season by generously supporting this ministry with your best gift.
Give us a call right now at 866-335-5220, or you can give online at jdgreer.com. Now let's rejoin Pastor JD for the conclusion to today's teaching here on Summit Life. So after Absalom murders Amnon, he flees for his life. Three years he's gone. David knows exactly where he is, but never one time goes after him or even sends word to him. Eventually Joab, who is basically the captain of David's army, comes to David and says, David let me bring your son back. David finally consents and Joab brings Absalom back to Jerusalem. Chapter 14 verse 24, jump down there, Absalom comes back into Jerusalem.
He's been gone for three years. He comes all the way up to the palace where David lives and David makes what I believe is one of the biggest mistakes of his life. He refuses to see Absalom. He just sends a message to Absalom and says tell him to go to his own house because I don't want to see his face.
And for two years he refuses to speak to him. Throughout these two years, Absalom is sending messages to David through Joab, who is now basically like David's mancretary, and he keeps requesting through Joab an audience with his daddy. But Joab won't return his phone calls because he knows that David doesn't want to see Absalom. So chapter 14 verse 30, Absalom sets Joab's fields on fire, which kind of makes me laugh.
I like Absalom to be honest. Well what's happening? What's happening? Any child psychologist will tell you what's happening there. He's trying to get his daddy's attention. Child starts acting up, you know, your daughter starts dressing like a prostitute, your kid starts burying himself in his work.
A lot of times it's to try and get the daddy's attention. I mean for a lot of you that's what's happening now. Your kids are setting their fields on fire.
It's not because they're prone to arson, it's because they're trying to get your attention. You better wake up. David didn't. Eventually David allows Absalom back into his presence but they never have a conversation. Things still aren't right. David did what many dads, what many of your dads did, what some of you were doing with your children. They just gloss over, gloss over and ignore it and just moved on. So Absalom begins to plot against his father to take the kingdom from his daddy.
By the way that happens a lot in father-son relationships. Because of his deep disappointment in his daddy, his deep love and admiration for his daddy turned into hatred. Now a few things you should know about Absalom. First of all chapter 14 tells us that he was tall and he was good looking. Verse 29 says he had beautiful long hair. He used to cut it once a year and every year when he cut it what he cut off would weigh five pounds.
That's impressive. Absalom starts standing outside of his father's palace and when people would come to see King David to present a case where they needed justice Absalom will be like, yeah man you're probably never going to be able to see David. There's like 15 layers between you and him.
I mean David is not, he's untouchable, he's unavailable. He's probably hanging out in the balcony if you know what I mean, you know. You probably better go home and check on your wife.
Why don't you tell me what's wrong? And Absalom would listen and he would look in their eyes and he would do active listening and he would touch their hand while they talked and he would nod his head. He'd be like, man that you're right, you have been wronged.
I feel your pain, I do. And then he'd say, man if I were judging Israel it wouldn't be like this. You'd be able to talk right to me because I care about you and I want to be a part of your life. Chapter 15 verse 5 says that when whenever people would see Absalom because he was the king's son protocol was they needed to bow down so they would bow down in front of Absalom. Absalom would be like, no, no, no, what are you doing? Brother stand up.
He'd hug him and he says he'd kiss him on the cheek and he'd look at him and say, brother you just like me, we're the same me and you. And so verse 6 chapter 15 says so Absalom stole the hearts of all Israel and then when the time was right he staged his coup and he drove David out of the palace and then it says as a show of power he set up a pavilion on the roof and slept with some of David's wives that David had left behind the palace which is not so much like an x-rated movie as it is just public humiliation of David to let everybody know that he had stolen his daddy's kingdom. Now don't miss what's happening. Absalom steals everything a man has and sleeps with his wives on the roof. Do you see what is happening? Absalom is just repeating his daddy's sin. The sin sown by the father is harvested in the life of the child. In fact in a little irony he's doing it in the very place from which David had hatched his plan with Bathsheba. Well chapter 15 verse 30 says that David begins to flee for his life from Absalom up the Mount of Olives weeping as he went. Here's a man who has lost his kingdom. He's lost his family and now he's running away weeping.
Again listen to me. Where is the guy who stood up to Goliath with such confidence in God? He's running away weeping. There's another interesting scene that takes place next. Chapter 16 flip over there says that as David is running away, as he's fleeing Jerusalem there's a guy named Shimei who was one of the grandsons of Saul. Chapter 16 verse 5 he walked on the road beside David as David was fleeing and this guy cursed at David continually and he pelted David with stones and he says see the Lord has given the kingdom into the hand of your son Absalom see your evil is on you you man of blood. One of David's guards said verse 9 David let me shut this dead dog up and go over and take off his head.
That was the Jack Bauer of the group all right like that guy. David says back to him verse 10 no no no leave him alone maybe he is cursing because the Lord has said to him curse David. So David and his men went on the road while Shimei went along on the hillside opposite I'm sorry this is not funny but it sort of is went along on the hillside opposite him and cursed as he went and pelted him with stones and flung dust at him.
It's like a scene out of Monty Python right? I mean David's walking on the side of the roof weeping and there's a guy walking beside him flinging dust at him and cursing at him the whole time. I used to think that what David did here and not responding to Shimei I used to think it was noble and yes there is a certain nobility in the fact that he recognized God's sovereignty in all things and so even in that situation he wasn't responding to Shimei he was responding to God. Yes there is nobility and yes that was correct but there is at least one thing that is desperately wrong in what David said and it was verse 10.
Did you see it? Maybe the Lord is cursing me through Shimei excuse me. What about Psalm 51?
Remember that? Had God changed his mind about that? Remember Psalm 51?
God said that my intentions for you are blessing not cursing I've taken your sin I've washed you with hyssop I've made it whiter than snow I've completely forgotten about it. Second Samuel chapter 7 I've given you a kingdom which will never be taken away but in this chapter David doesn't quite believe that anymore does he? At least he's not living in the full awareness of that that truth has no longer captivated his soul he is living with a guilt complex and he's living under a sense of condemnation in other words he's lost touch with the gospel. In fact I want to make a case to you that at the end of this story I'm going to try to show you that David's problem throughout all these chapters is that he is not living in the new reality and hope of the gospel. The gospel has not completely transformed either how he sees himself or how he relates to his sons and because he has lost touch with the gospel that's one of the reasons that these consequences keep unfolding in front of him and he seems powerless to stop them.
We'll come back to that all right but first let's finish this story. Eventually the tide turns and David is able to muster enough of his army to go and take back his kingdom Absalom and his followers are driven out into the wilderness the army chases after them but David as the army is chasing Absalom's fleeing soldiers he gives them explicit instructions chapter 18 verse 5, deal gently for my sake with the young man Absalom. Well as Absalom is fleeing through the forest his horse goes up under a heavy brush called a teremeth tree and his five pound hairdo gets tangled up and he's literally left suspended in the air which is again a little funny if it weren't so tragic.
He's up swinging like a pinata by you know being held by his Patrick Swayze hairdo. Well David's men quickly surround Absalom and one of the guys says no no wait a minute uh uh David said not to touch this guy. Joab says nonsense I mean Joab still ticked off about you know Absalom setting his fields on fire and Joab knows probably that if Absalom goes free that he's probably just going to do all this again so he gets three javelins verse 14 and he thrusts them through Absalom's heart. Meanwhile the whole time people are keep bringing word back to David about the battle these runners lead the battle and they carry a little one sentence description about what's going on in the battle back to David it was their version of Twitter okay and so everybody that comes back and tells David about the battle he says yeah yeah but tell me about Absalom. Well finally there's this guy named Ahimaaz and he runs and he's got news that the battle's been won and Absalom the traitor is dead but when he stands in front of David he just didn't have the courage to tell David his son is dead so he says the battle's won I don't know about Absalom and right behind him is another guy and then David looks at him says tell me about Absalom and this guy says you'll see it there may all the enemies of my lord the king be like that young man in other words he's dead the next verse is one of the saddest most pitiful scenes in all the old testament to me verse 13 and the king was shaken the king was shaken shaken like that crushing realization that you have when somebody dies of all the things that you'll never be able to do again shaken because you realize that now something's happened you can never go back you know that David's thinking about Absalom playing on the floor in front of him and when Absalom was three years old saying daddy daddy tell me about the time you beat Goliath again shaken thinking about the time that he showed Absalom how to use a slingshot shaken thinking about all the bad decisions and all the missed opportunities and all the things he'll never be able to tell Absalom and then he calls Absalom something that he had never before called him in this story verse 33 see it and as he went weeping he said oh my son Absalom my son my son that is the first time in this whole story that David has used the word son for Absalom up until now he's always just been the young man and what the writer is trying to show you is that for the first time David is feeling the emotions of a daddy and it's too late and then he says this would that I had died instead of you oh Absalom my son my son it's almost impossible for me to represent to you the intensity of emotion that is in that verse I told you last week that in Hebrew whenever they're trying to show you intense emotion they just repeat the title so when David's praying to God he says oh God oh God that shows you that this is a soul cry you see how many times he repeats the phrase my son the writer's trying to show you that this is something coming from the bottom of his soul this is a pain like nothing David has ever experienced five times my son my son I can't do anything to help you my son and so ends this tragic story of David and his son Absalom.
There's more to come in this study of King David his story is not over and thankfully neither is yours you're listening to Summit Life the bible teaching ministry of pastor and author J.D. Greer. J.D.
we're excited to offer a 25-day devotional for Advent this year that our listeners can pick up year after year you know Christmas really can be the the busiest commercialized times where you just kind of endure it or it can be a time of real reflection and we want to give you something that would help you prepare your heart for Christmas so that it is not just a frenzied time but but an enriching time where you commune with Jesus and go and go deeper in your relationship with him this little book is called He is Here and it's 25 different devotions that are more than just the typical birth stories around Christmas these devotionals and these stories are going to show you how every page of Old Testament scripture was pointing you forward to Jesus in a way that would help you not only understand your bible better but also your own heart and show you how you're Israel longing for a king a messiah just like they were and Jesus is the king and the messiah that that we are searching for just like he's the one that they were searching for we'd love to get this helpful book to you just go to jdgreer.com and reach out to us and and you can get it and I think it'll really bless you this Christmas ask for the book titled He is Here When You Give call right now at 866-335-5220 that's 866-335-5220 or give online at jdgreer.com I'm Molly Bidevich inviting you to listen in on Thursday as we learn more about the consequences of sin and the redemption found in Jesus Christ. Join us Thursday for Summit Life with J.D. Greer. Today's program was produced and sponsored by J.D. Greer Ministries.
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