I have been spending a lot of time in the Old Testament. My professor has assigned two books and their corresponding commentaries per week. This week, I am reading and studying first and second Samuel.
This morning, as I was reading, I came upon the scandalous story which could easily fit into the headlines of today. “King David guilty of sexual misconduct.” While most of us have heard the story of the adulterous affair between David and Bathsheba, my commentary asks “Was the sex forced or consensual?” (Victor P. Hamilton, Handbook on the Historical Books, Grand Rapids:Baker Academic, 2001, 328). It’s a fair question to ask. David, a man in power, sent for Bathsheba with the intent of, at the very least, committing adultery with her. We aren’t told her response so we can only speculate, but it does put David in a more despicable light as a man in much need of redemption.
The men of today who are being accused of despicable acts are also in much need of redemption. Once David realized how horrible his actions had been (adultery, possibly rape, murder), he repented. He didn’t get up and say he was sorry to the nation and to his victims. He didn’t go before a commission to determine if his acts broke civil laws. He didn’t resign from his job. While those may be commendable actions, they don’t offer the redemption that David’s heart needed. Rather, David confessed that he had sinned against the Lord and asked for a new heart.
David, despite his horrendous actions, was known as a man after God’s own heart. If David could realize his sins and go before the Lord, how much simpler is it for us to do the same? God renewed David’s heart. All he had to do was confess and ask. That’s all we need to do: confess we are sinners and ask for Jesus to be our savior. Yes, we still have to face the consequences of our sins. David did. But with the Holy Spirit dwelling within us, we can face those consequences with peace and joy.