Sadly, we never get too old to be tempted and blow it. David was probably in his 50s when he commited adultery and murder. What a mess sin causes. In so many areas David did so well, but he never dealt with lust in his life. He had 8 wives and concubines (2 Sam 3:2-5; 5:13; 15:16). Although polygamy was culturally acceptable, the Law specifically forbade it especially for kings (Deut 17:17-20). That shows us that we are not to be guided by culture for our morality, but by the Scriptures, because God loves us, cares for us and wants the best for us.
David’s multiple wives and concubines has left himself even more vulnerable to temptation in this area. Lust is not like hunger that can be fed and we are satisfied, it is like fire – feed it and rages more.
James :14-15 gives us the process of temptation to sin and death
But each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
1) Enticed v2
David was not where he should be. He had got complacent and was not at battle, but wandering on his roof top, being a peeping tom after a nap. Temptation is easily able to entice him when he sees Bathsheba naked bathing. Men are aroused by what we see far more than most women. Seeing a naked woman would cause most men to be tempted. Looking away and deliberately thinking of something else means that it would just have been a temptation resisted and not sin. A second look or a lingered look and we are heading into sin. The solution at this stage is to run away – 2 Tim 2:2.
2) Sin conceived v3
David sadly takes temptations bait and begins to allow lust to grow. He asks after her. The answer the servant brings is that it is Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittite. The servant is letting David know this is the wife of one of his mighty men. 1 Cor 10:13 tells us No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
This is the way out – “it’s one of your mighty men’s wives.” Stop and think with your head not your underpants.
3) Lust gives birth to sin v4
David sends for her and has sex with her. David has already sinned in his heart, but now he involves Bathseheba and sins with his body too. The affair probably felt great to start with – the excitement, the passion, the new feeling of love (or at least lust). But a month later the reality hits with a note “I’m pregnant.”
4) Sin brings forth death v6-25
At first David’s idea is that he brings Uriah home for some R&R and then the baby “would” be his – a cover up. But Uriah is too honourable. He sleeps outside. So David arranges for him to get drunk hoping that would lead to him sleeping with his wife. Finally David arranges for him to be killed in action – murder.
Sexual sin always drags deeper than intended and it always hurts others. God can see into every bedroom and at the end of the night – . “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap” (Gal. 6:7).
I remember years ago seeing a list of consequences to think through concerning adultery. Here’s one that is worth meditating upon.
Tomorrow we will see how God shines the light on these secret sins and how David eventually repents, gains forgiveness while still suffering the consequence of his stupidity.