Bible reading for September 16.
2 Samuel 12.
"Then David arose from the earth and washed and anointed himself and changed his clothes. And he went into the house of the LORD and worshiped. He then went to his own house. And when he asked, they set food before him, and he ate." (2 Samuel 12:20)
DISCIPLINING THE KING. After David's grievous sin, the Lord brings judgment, but does not forsake David (2 Sam 7:12-16). David's confession is shown in more detail in Psalm 51. After the child dies, David goes first to the house of the Lord to worship God. Later in the chapter we see him return to his proper place in defending Israel. The consequences of his sin will reverberate throughout the rest of his years. In reading this story we cannot help but feel badly for Bathsheba, who lost both a husband and a child because of David's sin. His selfishness and violence forever changed her life. Comfort will come to her later as her next child, Jedidiah ("loved by the Lord", vv 24-25), better known to us as Solomon, will become the next king, and one of the greatest and wisest rulers of that age. She is therefore included in the genealogy of the Messiah (Matt 1:6). She is there named as "the wife of Uriah", not to avoid her name, but to emphasize her dignity in all of this, as well as to remind us of David's violation of her marriage vows.
REFLECT. Sin is serious and may have lasting consequences in your life. Others too are affected by our selfish choices. Though a believer may be safe from the loss of eternal salvation, yet even in this gospel age we may be chastised severely by the Lord for our sin (Acts 5:9; 1 Cor 11:30-32; Heb 12:5-11). What are some of the ways that our sinful attitudes and choices may affect those around us?
2 Corinthians 5.
"For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." (2 Corinthians 5:21)
RECONCILED. Continuing from the last chapter (actually, Paul didn't write in chapters!) he speaks of the good courage (or, confidence) that we have now because of our eternal destiny (vv 1-10). Rather than losing heart, we walk by faith, knowing that even if we should die, the Lord will take us home to himself. He writes of the reconciling power of the gospel of Jesus Christ, for which he is an ambassador (vv 11-21). There are so many good verses to think about here, and to memorize (e.g., vv 7, 14-15, 17) And verse 21, quoted above, states clearly that our righteousness before God comes from a "great exchange" with Christ. He took our sin, and we are clothed in his righteousness. Truly, these are truths to sing about! ...
"My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus' blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,* but wholly lean on Jesus' name.
When he shall come with trumpet sound, O may I then in him be found,
dressed in his righteousness alone, faultless to stand before the throne."
-- "Solid Rock" or "My Hope Is Built"
Lyrics by Edward Mote (1797-1874)
*sweetest frame means an emotional or spiritual state of mind,
that is, it's not my piety but Christ's name I stand upon.
"Jesus, thy blood and righteousness My beauty are, my glorious dress;
'Midst flaming worlds, in these arrayed, With joy shall I lift up my head.
Bold shall I stand in thy great day; For who aught to my charge shall lay?
Fully absolved through these I am From sin and fear, from guilt and shame."*
-- Lyrics by Nikolaus von Zinzendorf, 1739
*Read all 24 (!) verses of this hymn here:
Image credit: photo by Thanti Nguyen on Unsplash. Location: Hochhädrich, Austria. We are following the Robert Murray M'Cheyne (RMM) two-year reading schedule, as arranged by D. A. Carson. Scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from The ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The NET Bible is a free, online resource, and a ministry of bible.org.