I’m writing over at The Glorious Table today. Here’s a Preview:
Two men offered judgments in 2 Samuel 12:1–7 (NIV). One was a king, and the other was a prophet.
The Lord sent Nathan to David. When he came to him, he said, “There were two men in a certain town, one rich and the other poor. The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle, but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.
“Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it for the one who had come to him.”
David burned with anger against the man and said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the man who did this must die! He must pay for that lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.’”
Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man!”
Can you imagine the sucker punch David must have felt? Here he was upset about the theft of a lamb, and it turns out Nathan was confronting him about his theft of Bathsheba and the murder of Uriah.
We don’t know how quickly David realized Nathan’s story was designed to help him examine his own heart, but David does humbly confess his sin. Verse 13 is a beautiful summary of God’s grace:
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.”