David Sinned & Was Restored– II Samuel 11-12

This is a tough story, but it so beautifully illustrates the grace of our God! The story starts by illustrating the problem when we’ve been at anything for any length of time. We have a tendency to coast, to lose our sharpness, to become complacent … or fearful … or maybe both. This passage begins by telling us that David wasn’t where he belonged. He should have been in the field with his army but instead he was at home. Some people believe that II Sam. 21:15-17 sheds some light on why David might have been at home. Apparently, David had experienced a close call in battle where he was almost killed. The response from his men was that he should never again go to battle with them, but they forgot Who ultimately protected David, and maybe, David had forgotten, too.

At any rate, because he was where he shouldn’t have been, David was tempted to do something he never should have done. He reached out to a married woman, but not just any married woman. This was the wife of Uriah, one of David’s 37 mighty men listed in II Sam. 23, one of his best friends, one of his most trusted men. David betrayed a dear friend when he reached out to Bathsheba.

David tried to cover up his sin by inviting Uriah to come home from the battle to spend time with his wife, but Uriah was too noble. He said he couldn’t possibly spend the night In the comfort of his own home with his wife, knowing that all the other soldiers were sleeping on the ground on the battlefield. At this point in the story, we should be struck with the difference between David and Uriah. One, the king, who should have been the epitome of nobility, acted with deceit and treachery. The other (a nobody, a common soldier, an outsider, a Hittite, not a Jew through his genealogy) acted with the best of intentions. David’s rottenness should strike a chord with all of us because the Bible says we all have hearts that are desperately wicked. We might occasionally make a Uriah-like decision where we put others first, but at our core, we’re like David, desperately wicked, willing to betray those we love to get our own selfish ways.

When David realized he couldn’t cover his sin by enticing Uriah to go home, he plotted Uriah’s death. He sent Uriah back to the front lines with orders that would lead to Uriah’s death! This is a picture of the betrayal Jesus endured for our sakes, but in this case, David wasn’t playing the part of our Savior; he was playing the part of the betrayer! Once Uriah died, David married the grieving widow and all was well. No one would ever know the truth, right??  NO!!!! God knew the truth, and David knew the truth! Could David have been thinking of these months of cover up when he wrote Psalms 32:3-4, “When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy on me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer.” Hiding unconfessed sin is MISERABLE! And, God loved David too much to let him persist in his charade. 

When Nathan confronted David and the secret came out, as you might expect, there were tough consequences because sin always comes with a steep price tag. Sin cost Jesus His life!! But, David was met with such sweet grace and forgiveness. Our kids need to know that Jesus waits for them with open arms; He wants them to confess their sins so they can experience forgiveness, grace, mercy, and new beginnings! God saw beyond David’s sin to his heart, and in spite of his heinous sins, God still called David “a man after my own heart.” David’s joy overflowed into Psalm 51. “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” No matter how long we’ve been walking with Jesus, may the rhythm of our lives be to repent and believe and to do it again and again and again. We are each desperate for a Savior every minute of our lives!

Activity – Mending Broken Hearts Kintsugi is a form of Japanese pottery where broken pieces of pottery are glued back together with gold material, making the restored, broken pottery much more valuable and beautiful than the original, unbroken piece. It’s a good reminder of what God does for us. He can take our broken, sinful hearts and restore them to make them more beautiful and valuable than they were at first. Give each child a heart to tear into 5-6 pieces. Put it back together by gluing it onto a paper. Then, decorate the cracks with markers or glitter.

As kids work, discuss:

  • Have you ever tried to cover up a sin – like David did? What happened?
  • Have you ever confessed a sin that you first tried to hide? How did it feel to confess?
  • What do you expect will happen when you confess a sin?
  • The Bible tells us how God responds when we confess. 

Psalm 32:5 – “Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.’ And you forgave the guilt of my sin.”

Psalm 51:7 – “Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.”

  • Jesus died to be able to forgive you your sins. Would anyone here today like to accept Jesus’ gift of forgiveness?

Additional questions:

What did you like about this story? What didn’t you like?

What did you learn about God/Jesus?

  • God knows everything we do.
  • God wants us to confess – tell Him about the sins we have committed.
  • God is ready to forgive us for our sins.

What did you learn about people?

  • People like to hide and cover up their sins.
  • For awhile, people can pretend they haven’t sinned.
  • Eventually people must admit the truth about their sins.

What did you learn about yourself?

  • I want to be honest with God about my sins.
  • I want to experience God’s grace and forgiveness.