A Great King and A Great Fall: Part ThreeRev. Michael Calvert, Ph.D., November 3, 2019
Part of the Great Events in the History of Redemption series.
One thing that all people everywhere have in common is the predisposition to cover up one’s mistakes and sins. There’s just something in all of us that seems to drive us to hide them, to explain them away, to deflect attention from them, to assign blame elsewhere, and to do all within our power to make them go away.
We’ve all done this, multiple times. And we have done it from our earliest days as little children who did something mommy or daddy had forbidden. Perhaps you have even covered up something recently, maybe not on the scale that we will examine this Sunday morning from the life of David. But you have hidden something from your parents, your spouse, your boss, or your neighbor. In a moment when you were most keenly aware of your guilt, you have done your best to sweep away the evidence of your sin, and attempted to effect some repair of the damage you’ve done.
These cover-ups involve sins and transgressions of all types and sizes. Such sins range from those that appear to be the most trivial and inconsequential, to those that are abysmal, catastrophic, and involve consequences that are ultimate.
This is the story of 2 Samuel 11:6-27, king David’s story. And it is our text for this coming Lord’s Day message. David will attempt a cover-up. But, as we will see, things don’t go as planned. And chapter 11 ends with those dreadful words of verse 27, “ But the thing that David had done displeased the Lord.”
2 Samuel 11:6-27
6And David sent to Joab, saying, Send me Uriah the Hittite. And Joab sent Uriah to David. 7And when Uriah was come unto him, David demanded of him how Joab did, and how the people did, and how the war prospered. 8And David said to Uriah, Go down to thy house, and wash thy feet. And Uriah departed out of the king's house, and there followed him a mess of meat from the king. 9But Uriah slept at the door of the king's house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house. 10And when they had told David, saying, Uriah went not down unto his house, David said unto Uriah, Camest thou not from thy journey? why then didst thou not go down unto thine house? 11And Uriah said unto David, The ark, and Israel, and Judah, abide in tents; and my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house, to eat and to drink, and to lie with my wife? as thou livest, and as thy soul liveth, I will not do this thing. 12And David said to Uriah, Tarry here to day also, and to morrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem that day, and the morrow. 13And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk: and at even he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house. 14And it came to pass in the morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah. 15And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die. 16And it came to pass, when Joab observed the city, that he assigned Uriah unto a place where he knew that valiant men were. 17And the men of the city went out, and fought with Joab: and there fell some of the people of the servants of David; and Uriah the Hittite died also. 18Then Joab sent and told David all the things concerning the war; 19And charged the messenger, saying, When thou hast made an end of telling the matters of the war unto the king, 20And if so be that the king's wrath arise, and he say unto thee, Wherefore approached ye so nigh unto the city when ye did fight? knew ye not that they would shoot from the wall? 21Who smote Abimelech the son of Jerubbesheth? did not a woman cast a piece of a millstone upon him from the wall, that he died in Thebez? why went ye nigh the wall? then say thou, Thy servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also. 22So the messenger went, and came and shewed David all that Joab had sent him for. 23And the messenger said unto David, Surely the men prevailed against us, and came out unto us into the field, and we were upon them even unto the entering of the gate. 24And the shooters shot from off the wall upon thy servants; and some of the king's servants be dead, and thy servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also. 25Then David said unto the messenger, Thus shalt thou say unto Joab, Let not this thing displease thee, for the sword devoureth one as well as another: make thy battle more strong against the city, and overthrow it: and encourage thou him. 26And when the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband. 27And when the mourning was past, David sent and fetched her to his house, and she became his wife, and bare him a son. But the thing that David had done displeased the LORD. (KJV)