Sunday, May 17, 2009

The man who did this ought to be lynched!


Oh king, oh king! I have a story to tell you. Could you please help solve this situation? Nathan the prophet approaches the king.

"There were two men in the same city—one rich, the other poor. The rich man had huge flocks of sheep, herds of cattle. The poor man had nothing but one little female lamb, which he had bought and raised. It grew up with him and his children as a member of the family. It ate off his plate and drank from his cup and slept on his bed. It was like a daughter to him.

4 "One day a traveler dropped in on the rich man. He was too stingy to take an animal from his own herds or flocks to make a meal for his visitor, so he took the poor man's lamb and prepared a meal to set before his guest." (2 Samuel 12)

The trap is set. King David, the righteous judge, is about to give a verdict.

5 -6 "David exploded in anger. "As surely as God lives," he said to Nathan, "the man who did this ought to be lynched! He must repay for the lamb four times over for his crime and his stinginess!" (2 Samuel 12)

The most damning words David has ever heard come from the man of God next:

7 -12 "You're the man!" said Nathan." (2 Samuel 12)

(And, of course, it was no compliment. In case you thought Nathan was ahead of his time and was being hip)

David sat in stunned silence as Nathan's words began to sink in...

"And here's what God, the God of Israel, has to say to you: I made you king over Israel. I freed you from the fist of Saul. I gave you your master's daughter and other wives to have and to hold. I gave you both Israel and Judah. And if that hadn't been enough, I'd have gladly thrown in much more. So why have you treated the word of God with brazen contempt, doing this great evil? You murdered Uriah the Hittite, then took his wife as your wife. Worse, you killed him with an Ammonite sword! And now, because you treated God with such contempt and took Uriah the Hittite's wife as your wife, killing and murder will continually plague your family. This is God speaking, remember! I'll make trouble for you out of your own family. I'll take your wives from right out in front of you. I'll give them to some neighbor, and he'll go to bed with them openly. You did your deed in secret; I'm doing mine with the whole country watching!"

Ouch!

To his credit, David doesn't hire 175 lawyers to defend him, like Bill Clinton did. David's response was heartfelt and immediate.

13 -14 Then David confessed to Nathan, "I've sinned against God."

Nathan pronounced, "Yes, but that's not the last word. God forgives your sin. You won't die for it. But because of your blasphemous behavior, the son born to you will die."

How does the saying go? "Be sure your sins will find you out?"

But this saying is even more powerful. "God forgives your sin..."

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