Truth Matters: Genuine confession
By Ken Askew
“Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight…” ESV Psalm 51:4
Every now and then a man sees a woman (sometimes it’s the other way around) and it’s love at first sight.
Well, infatuation at first sight might be a more accurate statement. And when infatuation and opportunity meet, well, the results are not always pretty.
Such is the sordid story of David and Bathsheba.
This time of year, as was the custom, David should have been on the battlefield directing his troops, but he had elected to stay behind in Jerusalem and lounge around the house. But leisure time would prove to be most unfortunate for David.
Late one afternoon as he walked out on his roof; maybe just to stretch and take a look around—admire his home place perhaps—she caught his eye. Scriptures tell us (2 Samuel 11) that from his rooftop, David could see Bathsheba bathing. I imagine that he could see very clearly, because we are also told that she “was very beautiful.”
Curiosity got the best of him, and after asking around a bit David figured out that Bathsheba was married. But he also learned that her husband Uriah was on the battlefield with Joab and that Bathsheba was home; all alone I suppose.
So David sent for her and had her brought to his house. Unfortunately, infatuation and opportunity met, Bathsheba became pregnant, and David scrambled to arrange a failed cover up; going so far as sending Bathsheba’s husband Uriah to the front lines where he was certain to die.
By now you’ve got to believe that David was wishing he’d kept his eyes to himself; wishing that opportunity and infatuation had not crossed paths, but as bad as the situation was, it was about to get worse. David thought the whole thing was a private affair until the Lord sent Nathan to rebuke him. And when David’s sins became known, the full weight and shame of his transgressions began to bear down on him.
As the saying goes, ‘his secret had gone public.’
To his credit, David recognizes and confesses immediately that he has sinned against God. But think for a moment of all the lives affected by David’s actions; Uriah, an unborn child, Bathsheba, David’s own household, the office of King, the other soldiers who fought alongside Uriah, the nation, the list goes on and on.
Yet David confesses that he has sinned against God and God only.
Why do you suppose he does this?
David realized that ultimately it was God’s law that he had broken, that it was God who could justly condemn him and consume him with his wrath and that it was God alone who could graciously forgive him. If you’ll read Psalm 51 in its entirety, you’ll see a picture of genuine confession and remorse before God.
Perhaps not in the same way, but has infatuation with someone or something crossed paths with opportunity in your life?
If so, don’t wait on a prophet to come calling. Confess your sins before God today and ask for his gracious forgiveness.
Ken worships at Tharptown Baptist Church in Russellville where he leads an adult Bible study. Comments are welcome and may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.