Nathan s Rebuke
Many people are familiar with David s sins involving Bethsheba that resulted in adultery and murder. Though these were dark pages in David s record, they were preserved so that lessons might be learned by those who followed after. These lessons to be learned not only came from David s mistakes, but from the rebuke that Nathan gave to David because of his sins. Found in 2 Samuel 12:1-15, Nathan s rebuke will serve as the basis for my bible study, as well as Gods commitment to keeping his side of the covenant with Israel despite their unfaithfulness.
In the case of David, he could easily see the sin in the man of Nathan s story (2 Samuel 12:5-6), but not in himself. It took a direct accusation by Nathan (2 Samuel 12:7) for David to finally realize that he had sinned. This alone shows that David was a man who didn t like to come to terms with his own faults. He knew he was doing wrong, but he never looked at it as sinning until it was pointed out to him by others.
Nathan was very clear in telling David what he did wrong (2 Samuel 12:9) and in turn, David confessed that he had sinned. He made his confession personal by saying, I have sinned. (2 Samuel 12:13) and he didn t try to place the blame on Bethsheba or on any other circumstances. He didn t even try to spread the guilt to others like Joab. Instead, he accepted the full responsibility of his own sins. To me, this showed that David did have a conscience and that the sins had been slowly eating away at him. He saw the true nature of his guilt that he had been feeling and finally came to terms with it.
After David had confessed his sins, he was immediately forgiven because the proper conditions had been met. Once the forgiveness was complete, Nathan said, Now the Lord has put away your sins. This meant that he would forget the sins David had committed. Though David was forgiven of his sins, there would still be consequences for his actions. Nathan listed these consequences in 2 Samuel 12:10-12, 14.
Even though David and the rest of Israel had become unfaithful, God still kept his side of the covenant. When David killed Uriah and committed adultery with Bethsheba, David should have been put to death. God realized that human beings were created in his image, but they weren t perfect beings. They all make mistakes, so God kept his part of the covenant. God himself is a perfect being and wouldn t allow himself to become an impure being that humans had allowed themselves to become. So because of this, he decided not to betray his people by breaking the covenant. Once David finally had taken responsibility for his sins, God forgave him and never looked back on them again.
Nathan s rebuke and God s commitment to the covenant are two major lessons pointed out in this bible study. It is sad to say, but too often today people find themselves blind to their own faults just as David did. Thankfully, God is still a forgiving being and has kept his side of the covenant even though he has been betrayed many more times since David.