Read: 2 Samuel 24:1-25
David said to Gad, “I am in deep distress. Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, for his mercy is great; but do not let me fall into the hands of men.” 2 Samuel 24:14
We have a puppy. He lives in our home, but there are boundaries about where he can go and what he can claim as ‘his.’ For instance, our shoes are not his. However, Winston has been known to ‘forget’ this, venture into a restricted area and enjoy chewing a shoe or two. Of course now the shoe-owner can no longer use those shoes and our shoe budget has been hijacked (by one who doesn’t even wear shoes. Ugh.). The impact of Winston’s wrong affects our whole household.
Now if you’re beginning to make excuses for him, please stop. Please. He is completely aware of his wrong. I know this because when Winston’s caught, he puts his head down, tucks his tail, and sulks his way to his bed. Even if he “repents of his sin” there will still be consequences. There must be. Or he will render us all shoeless. However, depending on who discovers Winston’s wrong, the consequences may vary. If I’m the one who catches him in the act, he’s at high risk of having had his last day as part of our household. However, if my husband catches him he will be scolded, corrected, quickly shown mercy, and back to his happy life of puppy oblivion, romping through the house, tail wagging. See, my husband is much more like God than I am. Here’s how I know…
When we read this chapter, we see that the impact of our sin is never isolated to only the one who sins. It touches other people, other lives. And even when we ask God for forgiveness, and He forgives us, there are still consequences.
David became convicted of his sin (after 9 month and 20 days) and he repented… yet consequences still followed. God is a God of correction and justice. And, He is a God of mercy.
David was given an option: face the wrath of humans or face the wrath of God. David knew that one way or the other, wrath was going to take place. David also knew God’s wrath was tremendous; beyond any human wrath. What David didn’t know yet, was would he receive mercy?
When he considered this, David knew his only hope to receive mercy, was through God. Because, God’s mercy is even greater than His wrath. We know this by God’s all-surpassing grace and mercy displayed through Jesus on the Cross.
When we’ve done wrong (which we all do) there will be consequences. But when we humble ourselves before God, sincerely repent and honestly seek Him, we have the hope of His great mercy.
In Hebrews 4:13 we’re reminded, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.”
Like David, we’ll all face the judgment of God. Also like David, we can choose to focus on God’s grace and mercy. We’re offered the same hope David had. Because of Jesus having already paid our penalty, we can…
…approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)
Father, when we fall, please remind us that you are a God of mercy and that you offer us an approachable throne of grace. That even in the midst of living out the consequences of our sin, if we will come, you will offer us your forgiveness and love. Thank you for offering a grace that is greater than all our sin!