JULY 8: ACCOUNTABLE
By Sam Greer
Senior Pastor, Red Bank Baptist Church, Chattanooga
Focal Passage: 2 Samuel 12:1-14
On March 10, 2004, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a measure known as the “Cheeseburger Bill.” The bill is designed to protect the fast food industry from potential lawsuits filed by overweight customers. Caesar Barber, 56, pointed the finger at McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Burger King for his two heart attacks, diabetes and weight problem.
Gregory Rhymes, a 15-year-old high school student, joined his mother in blaming fast food restaurants for his obesity. Rhyme’s mother stood before a judge and stated she “always believed McDonald’s was healthy for my son.” Gregory weighs nearly 400 pounds (John Beukema).
The purpose of the “Cheeseburger Bill” is to stop these kinds of frivolous lawsuits. As Representative F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. says, “Don’t run off and file a lawsuit if you are fat. Look in the mirror because you’re the one to blame.” In 2 Samuel 12:7, Nathan told David, “You are the man!” Nathan’s confronting of David offers some hard truths concerning sin.
First, Sin Will Be Confronted! (2 Samuel 12:1-9). God takes sin seriously. For God is the one who sent Nathan to David (v. 1). Nathan, a prophet of God, spoke to people on behalf of God. God still sends people. God still sends people to call out other people. God is still serious about confronting sin.
Nathan used a story to confront David (vv. 1-4). The story used by Nathan spoke David’s language. David was a shepherd before he became king. Thus, he related to the juxtaposition of the rich man with many herds and the poor man with a pet lamb. David was enraged at the selfish act of the rich man who took the poor man’s only lamb (v. 5).
The king’s statement to “restore the lamb fourfold” is a precursor to Zacchaeus’ encounter with Jesus whereby the tax collector repented after being confronted with his sin (2 Samuel 12:6 and Luke 19:8). God is still serious about confronting sin.
God reminded David of all the ways He had blessed the king and how He would have blessed him even more (2 Samuel 12:8). Then, God confronts David’s specific sin of killing Uriah and taking his wife (v. 9). God is still serious about confronting sin.
Second, Sin Does Have Consequences! (vv. 10-12). We are not sinners because we choose to sin. We choose to sin because we are sinners by nature and by choice. We can always choose our sins, but we can never choose the consequences of our sins. The consequences of David’s sin affected his entire family, not just David (vv. 10-11). Sin is often done in private, but the consequences are often made public (v. 12). Your sin is never without consequences!
Third, Sin Must Be Confessed! (2 Samuel 12:13). David confessed his sin immediately. He didn’t defend his sin, ignore his sin, re-define his sin as not really sin nor excuse his sin. He confessed his sin. First and foremost, David recognized that he sinned against the LORD (2 Samuel 12:13, Psalm 51:4). Confess your sin against God to God!
Fourth, Sin Can Be Commuted! (2 Samuel 12:13-14). David and Bathsheba’s third child was named “Nathan.” It is commonly held that the name “Nathan” was chosen in honor of Nathan the prophet who confronted David. Ultimately, Nathan shared the good news with David that God put away his sin (v. 13). David’s sin was commuted by the mercy and grace of God. Confess your sin and Jesus will commute it!