Wrongfully pursuing our desires, pt 1

It happened, late one afternoon, when David arose from his couch and was walking on the roof of the king’s house, that he saw from the roof a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful.” (2 Sam. 11:2).  2nd Samuel 11 and 12 should serve as a warning to us.  When we desire something, we often overlook important facts and chase it without considering the consequences.  I think it’s entirely plausible to assume the king did not initially know the woman he was looking at was married.  Either he did not ask or simply did not care to know as he used his considerable power to obtain his heart’s desire.  We can act similarly.  We may not have a king’s power, but we do have many tools at our disposal to achieve our goal.  To conquer our victim, we use whatever influence we have, like a position of authority, age, smooth-talking, lying, manipulation, looks, or even blackmail.  And make no mistake about it, Bathsheba was a victim.  But it does not even have to be a person.

Any desire we have that we know or come to know is an outright sin, becomes our Bathsheba.  Yes, we may not initially realize it is wrong, but what happens when we do?  Very often, the fact that it is wrong does not deter us from achieving our goal.  We justify it with some lie like “if she were not bathing in plain sight or did not so readily give into my advances, I would have stopped,” but would we have?  If it is about material possessions, we justify it by saying, “it will not hurt anyone.”  If it is an addiction, we say, “I can keep it under control,” or “I can stop whenever I want.”, but that is seldom the case.   Sometimes we simply don’t care as long as we get what we want.  The fact is that desire can be a powerful drug.  We sweep any guilt under the rug and dive headlong into our “drug of choice,”reveling in the fleeting satisfaction it brings, but that won’t last long.

David got what he wanted, but then things “went south,” so to speak.   Sometimes we get what we want, but reality catches up with us, and we have to make alternate plans to extricate ourselves from the situation.  As you will no doubt remember from the story of David and Bathsheba in 2 Sam. 11 and 12, the king immediately hashes a diabolical plan to save himself by inviting her husband home from the battlefield to spend the night with her.  You see, she is pregnant, and David wants to flee the situation instead of taking responsibility for his actions.  We do the same when we try to blame someone else for our mistakes in life.  Almost anything seems better than the truth, so we concoct some devious plan, but as with David, they never work out quite as well as planned.  Since Uriah does not want to desert his soldiers, the plan does not work, and David decides to entertain him and make him drunk.  The king is sure that under the influence of alcohol, the man will desire the company of his wife, but even that does not work.

David becomes desperate and decides to do the ultimate wrong – kill Uriah. Of course, he did not want to dirty his kingly hands, so he used his commanders to do the deed for him.  Unfortunately, they are successful, and the innocent husband is brutally slain for the misdeeds of others.  I suppose (and hope) none of us have ever gone to such extremes to get away with our sins, but we all know we are not innocent of trying to wiggle our way out of sin at times.  Sometimes, though, the situation is not resolved, so we have to do something even more extreme to get away with it.  The problem is that the more we fight the truth, the more it tends to turn and bite us…and that bite can hurt a lot.  TBC.

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