Do you want to know the secret to overcoming temptation and living a holy, healthy life? This Sunday’s sermon on King David will teach you how to identify temptations and threats, and how to overcome them.
Heroes of Faith: David Part 2
How Temptation Takes Us Down
Mosaic Rockford – Dave Spooner – March 26th 2017
- Last week we focused on how to be an overcomer from the battle between David and Goliath. A challenge in front of you, a critic beside you, and confidence within you.
- This morning we are going to talk about how temptation takes us down and what you can do to avoid it.
- Let’s set the stage here. Here is a summation of David’s time line: he defeated Goliath, became best friends with Jonathan the son of king Saul, David “had success in all his undertakings, for the Lord was with him” (I Sam. 18:14), David marries the king’s daughter Michal, King Saul becomes afraid and Jealous of David and hunts him trying to kill him while David spares Saul’s life repeatedly. About 400 fighting men join with David, David marries a second wife, flees to life among the Philistines to get away from Saul, battles the Amalekites (another enemy of Israel), King Saul and Jonathan our slain, David becomes king of Judah and then king of all Israel. He deals with some conflicts within the army, defeats the Philistines, brings back the Ark, makes Jerusalem his capital and rebuilds it. He then defeats all the rest of the people of the land – Syrians, Edomites, Moabites, Ammonites, Amalekites and the termites and he also wrote scripture.
- David had two decades of great success as king. At this point in his life he was around 50 years old. And this is where we pick up the story of David and Bathsheba in 2 Samuel chapter 11 where we are now going to examine how temptation takes us down.
We are not doing what we should be doing
2 Sam 11:1 ESV
In the spring of the year, the time when kings go out to battle, David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel. And they ravaged the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem.
- So, there you have it. David should have been taking care business. Being faithful in his work, true to his calling, and responsible to his people. David sent everyone, but he stayed home.
- Why did this happen? Perhaps he was tired, or became lazy, or became comfortable . . .
- If David was doing what he should have been doing, this whole incident with Bathsheba would not have happened.
- The same is true to us. Every time we get in trouble with temptation, we in some way, shape or form are in a place we should not be, doing a thing we should not be because we are not doing what we should be doing . . .
- If you want to avoid not being taken in and taken down by temptation, do what you know you should be doing.
We ignore the warning signs
2 Sam 11:2-4 ESV
It happened, late one afternoon, when David arose from his couch and was walking on the roof of the king’s house, that he saw from the roof a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful. 3 And David sent and inquired about the woman. And one said, “Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?”
- David was lounging around not doing what he should be doing and he stared looking into places he should not be looking. (what was he hoping to find anyway?)
- He calls in one of his servants and asks him to go find out who she is. I am sure he knew what David was up to.
- David at this point had many wives and concubines at the palace. He could have “spent time” with any one of them if he had wanted. But we are always tempted, by something “else” something “new” something “more” . . .
- He comes back and tells him who she is, but he does so be including some other information “Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?”
- This servant was warning David – this is someone’s daughter, this is someone’s wife (she was a daughter of a priest, the wife of a mighty warrior . . .)
- If you don’t want temptation to take you down, head the warning signs and turn around.
We take the bait
2 Sam 11:4-5 ESV
So David sent messengers and took her, and she came to him, and he lay with her. (Now she had been purifying herself from her uncleanness.) Then she returned to her house. 5 And the woman conceived, and she sent and told David, “I am pregnant.”
- He took what was out of bounds, he took what was not his, he took advantage of his position and his power . . . and sometimes the bait goes willingly (she did not cry out). David took the bait “hook, line, and sinker”.
- This incident may have been in the mind of James when he wrote these words:
James 1:14-15 ESV
But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
- Fishing Illustration
- If you don’t want to be taken down by temptation, always “look for the hook”
We try to cover it up
2 Sam 11:6-18 ESV
So David sent word to Joab, “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” And Joab sent Uriah to David. 7 When Uriah came to him, David asked how Joab was doing and how the people were doing and how the war was going.
- False pretenses, trying to make it look different than his real plan.
8 Then David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and wash your feet.” And Uriah went out of the king’s house, and there followed him a present from the king. 9 But Uriah slept at the door of the king’s house with all the servants of his lord, and did not go down to his house. 10 When they told David, “Uriah did not go down to his house,” David said to Uriah, “Have you not come from a journey? Why did you not go down to your house?” 11 Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah dwell in booths, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping in the open field. Shall I then go to my house, to eat and to drink and to lie with my wife? As you live, and as your soul lives, I will not do this thing.”
- Uriah was a really, really good man . . . (he was a man of faith, honor, loyalty, unselfishness), – and yes, sometimes really bad things happen to really good people . . . (and sometimes by other people of faith – faith and political leaders)
12 Then David said to Uriah, “Remain here today also, and tomorrow I will send you back.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next. 13 And David invited him, and he ate in his presence and drank, so that he made him drunk. And in the evening he went out to lie on his couch with the servants of his lord, but he did not go down to his house.
- So, now David purposely gets him drunk (take’s advantage, and uses people for his own advantage by causing them to sin). And even when Uriah is drunk, he still does what was noble.
14 In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by the hand of Uriah. 15 In the letter he wrote, “Set Uriah in the forefront of the hardest fighting, and then draw back from him, that he may be struck down, and die.” 16 And as Joab was besieging the city, he assigned Uriah to the place where he knew there were valiant men. 17 And the men of the city came out and fought with Joab, and some of the servants of David among the people fell. Uriah the Hittite also died.
- Uriah completely trusted David (he could have opened or not delivered the letter)
- Now, David caused someone else to sin – Joab (by breaking a sacred trust and committing murder by the hands of others) And other men died as well. David loses very good men, hurts his own cause and causes great harm and hurt to others (family, etc.) The evil keeps getting bigger and bigger and we continue to spin the web and self-destruct – others come down with us as well – collateral damage
- A messenger comes back to David and tells him what had happened, David brushes it off and acts like it is not big deal . . . and then he goes and marries Bathsheba, she has a son, and David thinks he got away with it. However, the next verse reads:
2 Sam 11:27 ESV
But the thing that David had done displeased the Lord.
- You may get away with it for a while, but you will not get away with it forever. You can fool people, but no one ever fools the Lord.
- If you are hooked by temptation and are getting dragged away, get free now, by owning up to it and getting help.
We pay the price
- For little things, a little price (however, they do add up) – for big things, a big price – the price will always be paid, and with interest. (It will cost, time, opportunity, development, diminished reward, energy, relationships, money, reputation, health) There are consequences for our actions, and we will all give an account. (this is what fearing the Lord and wisdom is all about)
- Because of God’s love and justice, David is called out by Nathan the Prophet (and it is the role of people to God to do so . . . with tact and truth).
- The sword will never leave his house . . . what he did privately to others, is done publicly to him, (Bathsheba – his wives). Evil against him will come up from his own house (Amnon and Tamar, Absalom and others) and the child will die. After these events, David and his Kingdom was never the same. His reputation and legacy are tarnished.
- If you don’t want temptation to take you down.
- Make sure you are always doing what you should be doing
- Make sure you heed the warning signs and turn around
- Make sure you look for the hook before you bite down on anything
- Make sure you free yourself by telling the truth before things get worse
- Know that you will always pay the price in the end.
1 Cor 10:13 ESV
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
- Always look for and take the way of escape, God will always provide a way out for you.
Questions for the ride home:
- What spoke to you the most from the message today?
- What can you be doing to make sure temptation does not take you down?
- If you are cause in the trap of temptation, how are you going to get free?