Teach forgiveness by living a life of forgiveness.


Psalm 51

Saw this on the wall at a school function last night. It is a wonderful way to teach children how to get along with each others. Adults too!!
When someone hurts you, or you are aware that someone has hurt someone else and you spread it around – you are creating a barrier – relationally- for that person they will never be able to befriend anyone in your circle of friends.  Children are learning at a younger age to be unforgiving because adults are perfecting the skill right before them and children are listening and watching.
I always go back to David.
What did Nathan the prophet do when God revealed David’s sin to him? There was a school of prophets back then.
The Bible does not record him sharing:
1). David’s adultery (“Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her. (Now she was purifying herself from her monthly uncleanness.) Then she went back home. The woman conceived and sent word to David, saying, “I am pregnant.” 2 Sam 11:4-5).
2). the multiple homicides he committed (not only did Uriah died but so did all of the men who were sent to the wall to fight with him–” In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah.  In it he wrote, “Put Uriah out in front where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.”So while Joab had the city under siege, he put Uriah at a place where he knew the strongest defenders were. When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David’s army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died ( 2 Sam 11:14-17).
Nope he went straight to David told him what God said. David’s Response, “Against thee only have I sinned!” (Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge. Ps 51:4).
1). Not that Bathsheba did not matter.
2). Not that his sin caused the entire nation to fall under covenant violation didn’t matter.
3). But his relationship of being God’s vassal was broken and could have had dire consequences for the nation.
What was God’s response?
1). Go to Joab and apologize to him for forcing him to commit multiple murders?
2). Go to Bathsheba and apologize for using your position to force her into a relationship with the king – she didn’t have a choice – he could have done something to her and her family?
3). Go to the priest and or the people and reveal your sin to them?
He acknowledged his sin – Nathan did ask him for proof of his brokenness.

 “Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” Nathan replied, “The Lord has taken away your sin. You are not going to die. But because by doing this you have shown utter contempt for the Lord, the son born to you will die” (2 Samuel 12:13-14).

When a child acknowledges his misbehavior – forget it. When he/she does not – doing the guilt trip thing is not going to change the behavior or transform the child.It takes time and loving care.
God did that with David. Of course, he suffered the consequences for his behavior. His own son turned against him. Not only that he openly did the same thing with David’s wives and concubines that David did in secret with Bathsheba, It happened many years later, but it did happen (“This is what the Lord says: ‘Out of your own household I am going to bring calamity on you. Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will sleep with your wives in broad daylight. You did it in secret, but I will do this thing in broad daylight before all Israel” (2 Samuel 12:11-12;).
Prophecy Fulfilled: “Ahithophel answered, “Sleep with your father’s concubines whom he left to take care of the palace. Then all Israel will hear that you have made yourself obnoxious to your father, and the hands of everyone with you will be more resolute.” So they pitched a tent for Absalom on the roof, and he slept with his father’s concubines in the sight of all Israel.
Sin has its consequences, but so does the sweet aroma of unconditional forgiveness(2 Sam 16:21-22).
Remember to model forgiveness or we will reap the reward of unforgiveness in our own lives.

Psalm 51 (NIV)

For the director of music. A psalm of David. When the prophet Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion
    blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.

For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge.
Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb; you taught me wisdom in that secret place.

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity.

10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.
14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God, you who are God my Savior,
    and my tongue will sing of your righteousness. 15 Open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.

18 May it please you to prosper Zion, to build up the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous,  in burnt offerings offered whole;
    then bulls will be offered on your altar.

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