II Samuel 11:6-27

Sunday, July 19th, 2015

THE BIG COVER-UP

INTRODUCTION:

Among things God hates are -

Proverbs 6:17 - A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood.

Among things described as sin are -

Proverbs 21:4 - An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked [speaks of the wicked's tillage, i.e. what he brings forth as the fruit of his life or work], is sin.

Among things which God will not endure are -

Psalms 101:5 - Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer [i.e. endure].

The things of the world do not have their source in God. Pride is one of these things.

I John 2:15-17 - (15) Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (17) And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

These verses show God's attitude toward pride. By pride we are not referring to conscientiousness in doing a good job; instead we mean an exaltation of self. "I. I. I. Me. Me. Me."

It is reminiscent of Satan's fall -

Isaiah 14:12-14 - 12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. 15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell [i.e. to Sheol], to the sides of the pit.

For the believer pride means that he is controlled by his old sin nature, the flesh, or self rather than by the Holy Spirit. It means that he is carnal.

Let's take a look at David and the result of his not being controlled by the Holy Spirit but by self.

The Holy Spirit says, Confess sin.

Proverbs 28:13 - He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.

Self says, Cover up sin. It will all blow over - no one will ever find out and know. I can get away with it because I am so clever. I am smarter than everybody else.

People will do anything to maintain a reputation before men. They will lie, cheat, steal, and murder, - anything to keep from being found out. However, God looks on the heart and God knows the truth. People might be able to pull the wool over the preacher's eyes, - even then I don't think they fool him as often as they think they do - but they never pull the wool over God's eyes. God is omniscient. He sees all and knows all.

Last week we see that David committed adultery with Bathsheba. In this message we want to show that we should confess and forsake sin rather than attempting to cover it up. David, however, attempted to cover it up and in the process made matters much worse than they were. We always make things worse when we try to cover up sin.

Again David demonstrates the truth of Jeremiah 17:9 .

Jeremiah 17:9 - The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

As we look at II Samuel 11:6-27 we see that David, rather than confessing his sin with Bathsheba, took steps to make it appear that the child was Uriah's rather than his. After all, how could it be explained that Uriah's wife was expecting a baby when he was off to war? Uriah would know that the child wasn't his. When this plan didn't work, David took steps to have Uriah murdered. He apparently thought he had gotten away with his sin, but God saw it all and did not forget about it. Things were bad enough already, but David made them even worse. David should never have committed adultery in the first place; but after he had, he should not have attempted to cover it up by committing murder.

What David did was commit sin, something we all do repeatedly. David's sin was indeed against God (Psalms 51:4 ); yet our sins are also against God.

Psalms 51:4 - Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest (emphasis added).

Realize, however, that in spite of this sin, David was still declared to be a man after God's own heart (Acts 13:22 ).

Acts 13:22 - And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.

David fought and won many battles, expanded the Israelite's territory, and turned the peoples' hearts back to God. He was a godly individual, in spite of his terrible failure. In putting this into a proper perspective, we must also avoid the tendency to think that we would never be guilty of what David did. Such an attitude fails to understand the nature of the flesh and the deceptiveness of sin. We must remember the words of I Corinthians 10:12 .

I Corinthians 10:12 - Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.

Rather than approach this passage with arrogance and condemnation, we must approach it with humility and openness, asking the Lord to speak to our hearts. We must learn from David's mistake and strive not to repeat it.

Romans 15:4 - For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

We must also remember that this godly man sinned, repented of it, and bore the consequences of his choice. David is no different from what we are, though his particular sin may be different. Regardless, it is still sin.

We see that -

I. DAVID TRIED TO SMOOTH THINGS OVER - 11:6-9

He falsely pretended to want to know the state of the war from Uriah.

II Samuel 11:6-9 - (6) And David sent to Joab, saying, Send me Uriah the Hittite. And Joab sent Uriah to David. (7) And when Uriah was come unto him, David demanded of him how Joab did, and how the people did, and how the war prospered. (8) And 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 [i.e. a gift (of food)] from the king. [David thought that he could get Uriah to go home and enjoy his wife for a few days. He thought that Uriah would then think that the baby was his, but it didn't work out this way.] (9) But Uriah slept at the door of the king's house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house.

So -

II. DAVID TEMPTED URIAH TO BREAK HIS VOW - 11:10-11

II Samuel 11:10-11 - (10) And 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? (11) And 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. [David assumed that he could get Uriah to break his vow and go home and visit his wife, but it didn't work out this way. David's efforts proved to be in vain because Uriah was more loyal to David than David was to Uriah.]

So -

III. DAVID ENDEAVORED TO MAKE URIAH DRUNK - 11:12-13

II Samuel 11:12-13 - (12) And David said to Uriah, Tarry here [i.e. stay here, wait here] to day also, and to morrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem that day, and the morrow. (13) And 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. [Although David succeeded in making Uriah drunk, Uriah did not go down to his house to spend time with Bathsheba. David should not have made Uriah drunk.]

Habakkuk 2:15 - Woe unto him that giveth his neighbour drink, that puttest thy bottle to him, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness!

So, as a final resort -

IV. DAVID PLOTTED URIAH'S DEATH - 11:14

II Samuel 11:14 - And it came to pass in the morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah.

Unknowingly, Uriah carried his own death warrant when he went back to fight in the war on behalf of David and Israel.

We see that -

V. DAVID INVOLVED ANOTHER PERSON IN HIS PLOT - 11:15

II Samuel 11:15 - And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle [i.e. where lots of casualties might occur], and retire [i.e. withdraw, retreat] ye from him, that he may be smitten [i.e. struck down], and die.

Sadly, we see that -

VI. DAVID CARRIED OUT HIS PLOT - 11:16-17

II Samuel 11:16-17 - (16) And it came to pass, when Joab observed the city, that he assigned Uriah unto a place where he knew that valiant men were [This was a place where the casualty rate would be expected to be very high]. (17) And 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.

Not only did this cost Uriah his life, but it also cost the lives of some other servants of David.

As a result -

VII. DAVID ATTEMPTED TO CONCEAL HIS SINS - 11:18-25

II Samuel 11:18-25 - (18) Then Joab sent and told David all the things concerning the war; (19) And charged the messenger, saying, When thou hast made an end of telling the matters of the war unto the king, (20) And if so be that the king's wrath arise, and he say unto thee, Wherefore approached ye so nigh [i.e. so near] unto the city when ye did fight? knew ye not that they would shoot from the wall? (21) Who smote Abimelech the son of Jerubbesheth [i.e. the son of Gideon]? did not a woman cast a piece of a millstone upon him from the wall, that he died in Thebez?

This is an allusion to -

Judges 9:50-55 - 50 Then went Abimelech to Thebez, and encamped against Thebez, and took it. 51 But there was a strong tower within the city, and thither fled all the men and women, and all they of the city, and shut it to them, and gat them up to the top of the tower. 52 And Abimelech came unto the tower, and fought against it, and went hard unto the door of the tower to burn it with fire. 53 And a certain woman cast a piece of a millstone upon Abimelech's head, and all to brake his skull [i.e. and crushed his skull]. 54 Then he called hastily unto the young man his armourbearer, and said unto him, Draw thy sword, and slay me, that men say not of me, A woman slew him. And his young man thrust him through, and he died. 55 And when the men of Israel saw that Abimelech was dead, they departed every man unto his place.

(21) . . . why went ye nigh [i.e. so near] the wall? then say thou, Thy servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also. (22) So the messenger went, and came and shewed David all that Joab had sent him for. (23) And the messenger said unto David, Surely the men prevailed against us, and came out unto us into the field, and we were upon them [i.e. we drove them back] even unto the entering of the gate. (24) And 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. (25) Then 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 [i.e. and so encourage him Joab].

David's cavalier attitude amounts to this: death happens in war.

But, the all seeing, all knowing God saw it all, and -

VIII. DAVID DISPLEASED THE LORD - 11:26-27

II Samuel 11:26-27 - (26) And when the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband. (27) And 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.

By the way, the thing Bathsheba had done also displeased the Lord. Sin always displeases the Lord.

CONCLUSION:

There are a number of lessons we might learn from David's experience in this chapter.

1. Beware of the beginnings of sin. David's not being where he should have been and doing as he should have done led to all of this.

2. Heed warnings sent by God.

3. A refusal to make one wrong right leads to other wrongs. Straighten things out before you get into more trouble.

4. Beware that you don't involve others in your sin.

5. Refuse to allow someone else to involve you in his sin.

6. Beware how far pride will go in order to maintain a reputation before men.

7. Notice how callous a heart can become before God.

8. Sin always displeases God.

Jeremiah 17:9 - The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

By contrast consider -

Matthew 6:33 - But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Romans 13:14 - But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.

Mark 12:30-31 - (30) And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. (31) And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.