Fred R. Coulter—July 10, 2010

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Concerning the sermon by Herman L. Hoeh, Unfinished Business. We added this sermon online for the purpose of showing how unfortunate it was that this man with so much talent and ability apostatized from the Truth of the Bible to embrace the pagan philosophies of men in an explanation of the nature of God. The Scriptures are very clear concerning the nature of God, especially the Gospel of John. So this is put here for that sake, because many, many people were led astray because of this sermon. And rather than relying on the Truth of God, as we should, he said one of the great gifts that God has given is reason. And reason without being led by the Holy Spirit of God is the cause of man's problems today.

And his espousing and publicly accepting these doctrines and preaching it to the Church did untold damage to the Worldwide Church of God. So this is why this sermon is included online and that nothing of what he says are any of the doctrines from the Bible or are considered beliefs of the Christian Biblical Church of God and those members who affiliate with us.

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Today we're living in a society worldwide where Jesus said in Matt. 24 that many shall be led into sin. And also Isa. 3 says your leaders cause you to err. Now not only that, we have the problem that the Christian community today really does not teach what sin actually is and how it comes about and how to have the personal control to quit sinning.

Now before we get into this, since we all know many of these Scriptures, let's just review what God told Cain when he brought an offering that was contrary to the instructions of God. He told him 'sin lies at the door.' And it is sin's desire for you, but you must overcome it. So this may not be an exact quote, but it's a paraphrase and the meaning of it.

Also we know the nature of man is what? 'The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it.' The real truth is, we don't know the gravity of our sins unless we understand the Word of God. We are also told 'there is a way that seems right to a man and the ends thereof are the ways of death.' That's twice in Proverbs. We also know that Jesus said in Mark 7 'from within men, out of their hearts proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornication, wickedness, lasciviousness,' and all of that. We know the works of the flesh in Gal/ 5.

So, living in the world that we are living in today, we are confronted with temptations and problems of sin from many areas:

1. Our own sinful minds

2. The world around us, with all of the media that we have

And we're constantly either listening to something or watching something and things are entering into our minds all the time.

3. Satan the devil, who's the 'prince of the power of the air'

And you can really be rest assured that all of these media things, in whatever category they may be from music to computers to cell phones, to all of this, there's a good and a bad application of it and Satan has got all of the things in there for the evil that is out there to tempt people. So Satan in deceiving the whole world, as it says in Rev. 12:9, presents many problems and that's why the whole world as it says in 1-John 5 'lies in the hand of the wicked one.'

So let's talk about today, and let's examine from the Scriptures what sin is, which we know is what? 'Sin is the transgression of the law.' That's how it is in the King James. Sin is lawlessness. And what we're seeing in the world today is the multiplicity of lawlessness, as Jesus said there would be in the end-time. And lawlessness means that you figure a way around every law, so you can do what you want to do. That's one way. Another version of lawlessness is anarchy. Another version of lawlessness is men taking the license to either add or take away from the Word of God either by ignoring it, which the Protestants do with the Old Testament and the laws of God, or rejecting it all together as the Catholics who say, 'Well, we don't need the Bible.'

So people are confronted with a problem: How can I fight against sin? There are all these things out there tempting me. Let's come to James, the first chapter, and let's see the seven steps of sin. Let's see the process and how sin begins and what we can do about it. Then we will examine the life of King David, who did not do what God said and really fell into a tremendous pit of sin.

James 1:12—we'll start out with the blessing: "Blessed is the man who endures trials..." Now there will be trials that come to us from God, which will be in the form of choices—right or wrong, good or evil. What are we going to choose?

  • Our way or Satan's way?
  • Our way or the world's way?
  • Are we going to choose God's way through Christ?
  • What are we going to do?

So those are the trials that will come. "...after he has been proved..."

This is why we go through the things that we do. For example, if you buy a tremendous racing car, you want to know how it's going to run. If you're going to pay like some of them do in Europe, four hundred thousand dollars for a hand-crafted car, you're going to take it out and see if it goes two hundred miles an hour like they say. And on the German autobahn you can do that. Now that would be fun—wouldn't it? Yes.

I remember the first time when I had my 1956 Ford Fairlane hardtop and I brought it brand new, really classy car at that time for $3,600. Today it'd be about $38,000 for something equivalent. So I was making a trip from Seattle to California and I was going down a good stretch of freeway, which was between Portland and Salem. That was the first part of freeway that they had in Oregon at that time. This is many years ago, this is well over fifty years ago. I thought, 'I wonder how fast this thing will go.' So I stepped on the gas and at that time they had Richfield boron gas. That was supposed to be the best that there was and you look at the tailpipe and you see the white boron in the back and you think, boy, that's really good gas. So I stepped on it and I got it up to a hundred and five miles an hour. Boy, my heart was beating and racing. I figured I better slow down because sure enough I'll get a ticket, but I didn't.

Anyway we're all tempted to do things. We all have trials. We all have foolishness. We all have difficulties. All of these things we need to overcome with the Word of God and with the Spirit of God. And it can be done! We don't have to let it build up and become a great disaster. We don't have to let it come up, as so many people do, that it affects their lives, their family, husbands, wives, children, businesses, corporations, other people that they know. Doesn't have to happen.

  • if we overcome
  • if we change
  • if we grow
  • if we conquer sin

—which we can, otherwise God wouldn't say break off your iniquity to Nebuchadnezzar, nor would He say to Cain 'if you do well you'll be accepted.'

"...he shall receive a crown of life... [That's what we are headed for, you see, first resurrection. So keep that in mind.] ...which the Lord has promised to those who love Him" (v 12). Now what is the love of God? 'This is the love of God that we keep His commandments, and His commandments are not burdensome.' We are to love God with all our heart and mind and soul and being. Yes, all sinners want the love of God so they can receive forgiveness. True. And you would want that, but you also need to understand this; it's very important to realize. There's got to be repentance and you then have to love God in return. The love of God is not a one-way street, because the plan of God is so great He wants your complete involvement in it.

As Jesus said there in Matt. 5:48, 'You shall be perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect.' So that is the spiritual goal of the resurrection.

Step 1—Temptation

James 5:13—here we'll see the seven steps of sin. "Do not let anyone who is tempted say, 'I am being tempted by God'... [God does not tempt. He sets before you choices. So the first thing is temptation. Temptation is not a sin.] (here is something else): ...because God is not tempted by evil, and He Himself tempts no one with evil." So the temptation comes along—from other people, from your own inner lusts. Temptation comes along when you see something suggestive on the media or, you can watch some of these ads.

I really get a kick out of this Coors Light ad where this young fellow is escorting his young date or maybe fiancée along the street and there are some stores, and then there's a wedding store. She sees a wedding gown. And then there's a jewelry store and she sees rings for a wedding. Then there's some other things referring to a wedding and so she's all excited, 'I'm going to get a proposal, this is wonderful.' Then he comes to the liquor store and goes in and he buys a big box pack of Coors Light. So that's kind of funny play on how temptation will work. You think one thing, but what is going to happen is another thing.

Step 2—Drawn away

"But each one is tempted when he is drawn away..." (v 14). So the temptation comes and you think, 'Oh, that's a good idea.' And you think about it, and you mull it over and your brain repeats it. Satan is right there to tell you, 'I will give you a benefit.' Satan cannot bless, but he can give things that are an apparent benefit, which is called 'there is pleasure in sin for a season.' That's why Adam and Eve believed Satan. They thought they would get a benefit from him. Never happened.

Step 3—Enticed

"...and is enticed by his own lust" (v 14). Now this means the lust within you deceives you. Now what happened when Eve saw the fruit on the tree? Was pleasant to look at. 'Desire to make one wise.'

And that's why you need to know right from wrong, Truth from error, because people will come along and say, 'Hey, let's do this,' or 'Hey, let's do the other thing.' And you can read through the whole book of Proverbs and see the whole book of Proverbs is to be studied for the purpose of knowing right and wrong, good and evil, how you can resist sin, how you can stop going along with the crowd or going along with those believe different things, or get involved in things that you ought not do. You can stop it! God gave you a mind to control your thoughts, if you exercise it with the Word of God.

Step 4—Lust

Notice what happens with lust. Lust is there to make it look pleasurable. Lust is there to entrap to. Lust carried out means you arereacting in a sinful and emotional way and you are not controlling your behavior, be it sin, be it angry, be whatever the temptation is. Now notice what happens.

Step 5—Conceived

"And after lust has conceived..." (v 15) It takes time to come into your mind and work itself around. This is the point where the last thing to stop it is you need to say no, and you need to resist it. Remember what we're told about the devil. We are to resist him in the faith. This is where we resist it. This is the last point when sin is conceived you can still stop it. You can still turn back, but this is right at the edge.

This is like driving a speeding car and all of a sudden you realize the bridge ahead is out, and you're going eighty miles an hour. You put on the brakes and screech and stop and you come right up to the edge where if you went any further you'd go over. So that's what conceived is. You can still stop it. That's your last defense.

Step 6—Give birth to sin

" gives birth to sin..." (v 15). And I like the way that James wrote this, because we will see the problems with King David here in a little bit. You can see the whole process. What happens when you sin? What do you need to do? You need to repent!You need to turn to God! Hopefully it's a recoverable sin. All sins, except the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit can be forgiven. You have to go to God. Confess your sins to God the Father. Ask for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ to be applied to your life to forgive that sin, because Christ is the propitiation for our sins. It doesn't need to carry to the next step, but it can.

Step 7—Brings forth death

"...when it is completely finished... [Isn't that interesting—completely finished!] ...brings forth death" (v 15). 'The wages of sin is death.'

But notice, at point #1, temptation—you can stop. Point #2, when being drawn away—you can still stop. Point #3, when it's so enticing that you're really mulling it over to do it, you can still stop. When lust kicks in, #4, and begins to add to the enticement, and it looks better and better and better and better, you can still stop. When lust conceives, #5, you can still stop, though it's harder. When it conceives and gives birth to sin, # 6, then you have sinned. You have five steps leading up to sin. Now what you need to do, those sins in your mind, you need to repent and ask God to cleanse it with the washing of the water of the Word.

Now then, you've got to change everything. So if we could follow this along. Here's a young man, or young woman, let's just say a young man who has some friends. They say, 'Hey, there's a lot of money down here at this business and they don't have any security. We could get together and we could go down there and we could get that money very easily. In order to protect ourselves we need to take some weapons.' So here he is. Now what am I going to do? So they say, 'Here take the weapon.' It's in your hand—temptation. What should he do? He should say, 'Here, take it back. I don't want anything to do with this. I'm out of here.'

But if he doesn't do that and they get in the car and they're going down there, and now the enticement is now developing into lust. And their talking about, 'Well, when we get there we know they have a million dollars all the time and so we can get at least $500,000. Think of what you could do with that $500,000. Think where you could go.' You're sitting there with the group of guys in the car and they're saying, 'Yeah, yeah, yeah.'

So then they pull up to where they're going to perpetrate the crime. They get out of the car. That's his last chance to say no. He could still stop and say, 'Here's a gun, I'm out of here. You guys go do whatever you want to.' Now when they get through the window or get through the door or come through the skylight, or whatever it is, turn off the alarm and get in there and start bagging up all the money, now the sin is right there.You didn't stop when sin was conceived. That's the last chance. " birth to sin, when it is completely finished, brings forth death." So those are the steps.

What we want to do is look at how this is exemplified in one of David's greatest sins that God said that David was before Me in a right way'—I'm just paraphrasing it—'with the exception of Bathsheba.' Let's come back to 2-Samuel 7 and let's get a little background on this, because this is important. This is important for us to understand and we will see by analyzing this whole affair with the seven steps to sin. But let's start out before it happened. Let's see the thoughts of David. Now remember at this particular point he had been king for a good number of years. Remember, God called him while he was still tending the sheep out in the pasture. So when he was a young man, probably no more than sixteen, he was trusting in God. That's when he went out and slew Goliath, and Saul said, 'Oh, bring him in to me. I want him.' And then Saul got all jealous over him, and you know the rest of the story of Saul there, went out after hunting David.

So finally David came in to be king. God blessed him, conquered all of the enemies, and he became king. He did very well. He was close to God. One of the important things that he did was that he brought the Ark back to Jerusalem and the tabernacle, however, was still up in Gibeon. So he built in his house a special tabernacle to put the Ark of the Covenant. When he would pray to God, he would go before the Ark and that tent. So he had a close relationship with God.

So here he is one night, 2-Samuel 7:1: "And it came to pass when the king dwelt in his house, and when the LORD had given him rest round about from all his enemies, The king said to Nathan the prophet, 'See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells within curtains'.... [He probably pointing to it.] ...Then Nathan said to the king. 'Go, do all that is in your heart, for the LORD is with you'" (vs 1-3)—because he had good thoughts. You read some of those Psalms and how he praised God, and loved God, and thanked God.

Verse 4: "And it came to pass that night the Word of the LORD came to Nathan saying, 'Go and tell My servant David, "Thus says the LORD, 'Shall you build Me a house for My dwelling? For I have not dwelt in a house since the day that I brought up the children out of Egypt until this day, but have walked in a tent, and in a tabernacle. In all places in which I have walked with all the children of Israel, did I speak a word with any of the tribes of Israel, those whom I commanded to feed My people Israel, saying, "Why do you not build Me a house of cedars?"' Now therefore, thus shall you say to My servant David, "Thus says the LORD of hosts: 'I took you from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be prince over My people, over Israel. And I was with you wherever you went and have cut off all your enemies out of your sight, and have made you a great name like the name of the great ones in the earth'"'" (vs 4-9).

"'Moreover I will point a place for My people Israel, and will plant them so that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more. Neither shall the sons of wickedness afflict them any more, as before... [Now this is quite an extended prophecy. This has to do with the latter days of where the children of Israel eventually migrated after they were originally taken out of the northern area of Israel, carried off into captivity to Syria. It also extends into the millennium. So this is quite a long-range prophecy here when you understand it.] ...And even from the time that I commanded judges to be over My people of Israel, so will I cause you to rest from all your enemies. Also the LORD tells you that He will make  you a house'" (vs 10-11).

Now notice what God did because of his attitude. And we can project forward just a little bit concerning Solomon. Remember Solomon's attitude when he was first made king, what was it? He said, 'Oh, Lord, I'm so young that I don't know how to judge this people. Give me wisdom that I may judge them.' And God spoke to him in vision and said, 'Solomon, because you didn't ask for riches, you didn't ask for power, you didn't ask for might, but you asked for wisdom, I'm going to give you all of the above, plus wisdom.' Notice what happened to him. So we can take this same formula of the progression to sin and see what happened to Solomon.

But notice how David started out. So the key thing to remember is this: No one, anywhere, at any time, as long as we are in the flesh have a guarantee—because God has called us, because He's given us His Spirit, because we understand His Word—that we are immune from temptation and sin. Always remember that. What has the Proverb said, 'The wise child is better than a foolish king.' Yes, indeed!

Let's see what he said here, see what he talked about with a future son, and we will then see who that was. "'And when your days are fulfilled, and you shall sleep with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you who shall come forth from your loins. And I will make his kingdom sure. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever'" (vs 12-13). So the throne of David was promised to 'endure to all generations' (Psa. 89). Quite a thing!

Remember the promises of God are sure—correct? And once God says something, it is as good as so being. You need to understand that. This will help us how understand how we handle David when we come to the part of Bathsheba. Verse 14: "'I will be to him for a father, and he shall be to Me for a son. If... [circle 'if,' there's always the if, because in the relationship with God, God is never the question. You understand that. God cannot lie, will not lie. God is never the question. God never tempts with evil.] ...If he commits iniquity... [Because He must perpetuate the throne, because He said He would.] ...I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the sons of men. But My mercy shall not leave him, as I took it from Saul whom I put away before you'…. [God even in the sin of Bathsheba and David still kept His promise to David, because God's word is true.] …And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever'"'" (vs 14-16). What is the prophecy concerning Christ in Isa. 9? 'And He shall sit on the throne of David His father'—referring to Christ.

Verse 17: "According to all these words, and according to all this vision, so Nathan spoke to David.... [Notice David's attitude. This is what he should have retained all the time, rather than getting lifted up in vanity. Vanity, you might put in there, vanity/temptation or temptation/vanity. Let's add that to it.] ...'Who am I, O Lord GOD?... [Probably right there before the little tent in his house where the Ark of the Covenant was.] ...Who am I, O Lord GOD? And what is my house, that You have brought me here? And this was yet a small thing in Your sight, O Lord GOD. But You have spoken also of Your servant's house for a great while to come.... [He didn't know it, but clear down to the Messiah and forever.] ...And is this the manner of men, O Lord GOD? And what can David say more to You? For You, O Lord GOD, know Your servant. For Your word's sake, and according to Your own heart. You have done all these great things to make Your servant know'" (vs 17-21).

I want to focus on this attitude right here, because this is important to understand. You must constantly, through prayer and study and the Word of God yield to God so you have the right attitude, you have the right standing spiritually before God. Even when you get old and grey, you can't stand up and say, 'Well, sonny, I have done this for x number of years, and who are you?' No, no way, that won't work. Tremendous attitude!

"'Therefore You are great, O LORD God. For there is none like You, neither is there any God besides You, according to all that we have heard with our ears. And what one nation in the earth is like Your people, like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to Himself, and to make Him a name, and to do for You great things and awesome things... [I want you to think about that in relationship to where Israel is of the end times today. Did He not do this? So what we have here, even contained in 2-Samuel—what do we have? We have things that reach out to the end!Amazing!Yes!] ...awesome things...before Your people, whom You redeemed to You from Egypt, from the nations and their gods? For You have established for Yourself Your people Israel to be a people to You forever'" (vs 22-24).

And yet, the worldly Christianity denies this with the small exception of the Jews. "'And You, LORD, have become their God. And now, O LORD God, the word that You have spoken concerning Your servant, and concerning his house: establish it forever, and do as You have said. And let Your name be magnified forever, saying, "The LORD of hosts is the God over Israel." And let the house of Your servant David be established before You. For You, O LORD of hosts, God of Israel, have revealed to Your servant, saying, "I will build you a house." Therefore Your servant has found in his heart to pray this prayer to You'" (vs 25-27). Magnificent!

Now I'm going through this in detail because this is important to understand. Because you are inspired one day and you're close to God one day closer than you were before, that doesn't mean it stays that way all the time every day unless you constantly are praying and studying and maintaining your relationship with God.

Verse 28: "'And now, O Lord GOD, You are that God, and Your words are true, and You have promised this goodness to Your servant. Therefore, now, let it please You to bless the house of Your servant, that it may continue forever before You. For You, O Lord GOD, have spoken. And with Your blessing let the house of Your servant be blessed forever'" (vs 28-29).

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Come to 2-Samuel 11, and be sure and have your seven steps of sin ready to look at, because we will see David at any point, and Bathsheba at any point, could have said no, could have stopped. We will see that all seven points that lead to sin occurred. Then we will see sin was added to sin.

2-Samuel 11:1: "And it came to pass at the turn of the year, at the time kings go forth to war... [they always took winter off. How about that.] ...David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel. And they destroyed the children of Ammon and circled Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem."

Point of temptation begins, v 2: "And it came to pass one evening, David arose from his bed... [Which must have been who knows what time, not too late.] ...and walked upon the roof of the king's house.... [And to this day in Jerusalem they have flat-roofed houses. So there he is walking around.] ...And from the roof he saw a woman bathing.... [Question: What was she doing out there bathing? We know from later accounts here that her husband Uriah the Hittite was out to war. What was she doing there? Did she know that it was where the king could see her? I'll just put in here, there is a place in the Song of Solomon where the woman says, 'My breasts are like ivory towers.'

  • So can we conclude that Bathsheba was not innocent?
  • Could it also be that she had something in her mind because her husband was gone?

David saw that. "...And the woman was very beautiful to look upon." David could have said like Job, 'I've got a covenant with my eyes'—zoom, right back into his bedroom. Could he not have done that? Yes! She could have said, 'Oh,' when she looked up and saw the king, she could have covered herself if she saw the king. But what was she doing on the roof in the first place and what was David doing out there letting himself be enticed by his own looking at the situation? So we have both at fault. Remember, in all these cases, like they say, it takes 'two to tango.'

Verse 3: "And David sent and asked about the woman. And one said, 'Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?'.... [David could have dropped it right there again—right? But he didn't, he probably had this going in mind. All the wheels are going and Satan is right there tempting, his own lust is tempting, and you know, it would be a benefit.

So what did he do? He took the next step: beginning to be drawn away. How does he do that? By sending messengers. "And David sent messengers and took her. And she came in to him and he lay with her.... [Now all along there were choices. Did he want her? Yes! Did she cooperate? Yes! Both are culpable.] ...And when she had purified herself from her uncleanness, she returned to her house" (v 4).

The thing that adultery is a victimless crime: Two people doing things together in the privacy of their house, it's a victimless crime. No, it affects each one individually and the whole society in varying degrees. Notice what happened: "And the woman conceived... [Oh, oh. And it is true, there is no such a thing as 'I'm half pregnant,' you either is or you ain't. Then she sent a message to David,] ...'I am with child'" (v 5). Oh, oh. Now you've got to sin more to cover up the original sin—correct? Isn't that what people do? Don't people lie to cover up lies, to cover up lies? Sounds a little like Washington, D.C., today. Sounds a little bit like a lot of people's reality today and the things that they do.

Today they would say, 'Oh, well, I have my birth control pills, so everything's okay.' Really? What about your mind? What about your emotions? What about your future children? Same way with the men. What are you doing cooperating and going along with it? Now there's trouble.

So David figured out a plan. 'I've got a plan, I'm king, I can do this.' "And David sent to Joab, saying, 'Send me Uriah the Hittite,' And Joab sent Uriah to David. And when Uriah... [Now here we go again. Here's another temptation, all right, drawnaway, we have the plan, enticed in it, okay. His lust carries it out, he thinks he can get away with it as king—right? And we will see that this lust conceived even a worse plan, because Uriah was more righteous than David. Besides, he probably had a suspicion that something went wrong. Did he not know that his house was next to where the king slept? Did he not know that maybe his wife, Bathsheba, maybe had some—how shall we say—flirtatious things and ideas? Could be!] ...And when Uriah had come to him, David asked how Joab did, and how the people did, and how the war went. And David said to Uriah, 'Go down to your house and wash your feet.' And Uriah left the king's house. And a gift from the king went out after him" (vs 6-8). Another mistake, trying to cover it up with goodness. 'Oh, I'll send a gift. Uriah will like that. Take it into his wife.'

Uriah knew something was up. I think God perhaps put it in his mind, Oh, oh, there's trouble at the king's house. Verse 9: "But Uriah slept at the door of the king's house with all the servants of his lord and did not go down to his house…. [Oh! another unforeseen problem. Doesn't that always happen when you have a plan to cover up sin? Doesn't something always go wrong? Yes, indeed!] …And they told David, saying, 'Uriah did not go to his house.' And David said to Uriah, 'Did you not come from a journey? Why have you not gone down to your house?'" (vs 9-10). 'Yeah, you need to go down to your house so that the pregnancy of your wife will look like you did it and not me.' That's what he was thinking, he didn't tell him that. But that was what was in his heart. You can't scheme against God. You cannot scheme around the consequences of sin. Now here we're multiplying sin, here we're adding more sin—aren't we? Let's see how bad it got.

"And Uriah said to David, 'The Ark and Israel and Judah abide in tents. And my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are camped in the open fields. Shall I then go to my house to eat and to drink and to lie with my wife?.... [He probably knew or suspected what had happened? 'Why would the king do this with me? Why would he bring me back, why not the whole contingent of troops at the same time?' A lot of questions going on in Uriah's mind.] ...As you live, and as your soul lives, I will not do this thing'" (v 11). Oh! Now he's in real trouble, because he can't cover it up to make it look like the child that Bathsheba would bear was the offspring of Uriah. And everyone would know it—right? Yes! because Uriah would have been gone to battle during the time that the child was conceived and everyone would have understood it—right?

Verse 12: "And David said to Uriah, 'Stay here today also, and tomorrow I will let you go.' And Uriah stayed in Jerusalem that day and the next day. And when David had called him, he ate and drank before him. And he made him drunk" (vs 12-13). He said, 'This is my last chance. If I get him drunk, he's surely going to stagger home and go lie with his wife. I've got to solve this someway.' Look at everything he's scheming to do, you see. So here we have

  1. temptation
  2. drawn away
  3. enticement
  4. lust
  5. conceiving
  6. birth to sin
  7. and death

—right? All of it.

"…And at evening he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but he did not go down to his house…. ['My scheme didn't work. I've got to figure something else out.] …And it came to pass in the morning, David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by the hand of Uriah.... [Wooo, what a lot of gall—right? Yes! He carried his own death warrant, because a letter written by the king to the general was sealed and he couldn't open it. Irony of ironies, adding to sin, have him carry the letter of his own death sentence to Joab.] ...And he wrote in the letter, saying, 'Set Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and draw back from him so that he may be stricken and die.'…. [Add sin upon sin, scheming upon scheming—right?] …And it came to pass when Joab observed the city, he sent Uriah to a place where he knew brave men were. And the men of the city went out and fought with Joab. And some of the people of the servants of David fell. And Uriah the Hittite also died" (vs 13-17).

Now Joab is privy to the sin—right? He probably suspected something because did Joab know that Uriah's house was next to the king's? Did Joab know that Bathsheba was a very beautiful woman and was Uriah's wife? So he probably figured in his own mind, 'Yes, this is what happened.' Nevertheless, he carried out the order.

"Then Joab sent and told David all the things concerning the war. And he commanded the messenger saying, 'When you have made an end of telling the matters of the war to the king, And if it be so that the king's wrath arise, and he say to you, "Why did you approach so near to the city when you fought?.... [So if he says that, then he's angry and he knows that it was a mistake. So he told the servant this, so the servant would come back and tell him David's reaction. That was probably to verify what he had suspicion of, why he was told by the king to let him die in battle.] ...And you shall say... [last part of v 21]: ..."Your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also"'" (vs 19-21).

So they came and told David, told him everything that was going on, told him what happened, and David said to the messenger. Now notice his answer, it wasn't in anger. He was relieved, because finally his plan had succeeded—right? Wrong!

Verse 25: "Then David said to the messenger, 'So you shall say to Joab, "Do not let this thing displease you, for the sword devours one as well as another. Make your battle stronger against the city and overthrow it. And you encourage him."'" Far from angry, he was relieved. Uriah was dead. He murdered him through this means. What does it say? When sin is finished it brings forth death!

Verse 26: "And the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, and mourned for her husband.... [This reminds me of the Godfather funerals. Everybody's murdered and they go there and pat each other on the back, and all the while they are having their spies try and find out which mafia father is doing what so they can also eliminate him.] ...And when her mourning was past, David sent and brought her to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing that David had done was evil in the eyes of the LORD" (vs 26-27).

Every process of sin right there. At any point he could have stopped. Then when you reach a point where you haven't stopped, and you try and cover it up, what do they always say? The cover up is worse than the crime—right? What was his cover up? Using his authority to have Uriah the Hittite killed. Make it look like, well it was in battle; the sword comes to one, it comes to the other. Now notice the change of attitude from what it was when he was sitting in the house praying to God, when he was thinking about building a house for God. And God gave him the promise that He would establish his throne, that it would go on for generations to come. God gave His word! So God didn't change His word, but we will see how He punished David and also Bathsheba.

God is not going to let this thing stand by. 2-Samuel 12:1: "And the LORD sent Nathan to David. When he came to him and said to him, 'There were two men in one city, one rich and one poor. The rich one had exceeding many flocks and herds, but the poor one had nothing except one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up. And it grew up together with him and with his children. It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup, and lay in his bosom and was to him like a daughter…. [And that's the way little sheep are.] …And there came a traveler to the rich man and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd to dress for the traveler that had come to him. But he took the poor man's lamb and dressed it for the man who had come to him.'.... [So he stole the lamb. After you're done with the crime and the sin and you think you have succeeded, you become righteous—right? Isn't this what happened to David? That's why God sent Nathan with this message to entrap him in his own scheme.] ...And David's anger was greatly kindled against the man. And he said to Nathan, 'As the LORD lives... [Oh, yes, call upon God in your sin!] ...the man who has done this shall surely die. And he shall restore the lamb fourfold because he did this thing, and because he had no pity'" (vs 1-6). Quite a thing—huh? Don't people justify themselves right up until the last minute?

Verse 7: "And Nathan said to David, 'You are the man!.... [Now I wonder how David felt with Nathan standing right there and pointing the finger and saying, 'You are the man!' Always remember, no man is invincible, no man can succeed in sin even if you're the king. May Washington, L.D.C., learn that, Washington, the 'District of Liars and Corruption.'] ...Thus says the LORD God of Israel, "I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you out of the hand of Saul. And I gave you your master's house and your master's wives into your bosom, and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if that was too little, I would have given you such and such things besides. Why have you despised the word of the LORD to do evil in His sight?'" (vs 7-9).

Whenever you sin, you're despising the word of the Lord, even if you think you can get away with it. But like everything else, no one ever gets away with sinperiod! Now other people may not know of certain things, but you never get away from sin before God. What did Jesus say? 'Every idle word that you have spoken, you shall give account of in the judgment'—right? Yes, indeed!

" despised the Word of the LORD to do evil in His sight.... [The anointed one of God, the one who would go before the tent with the Ark in it and sing praises to God. Amazing—isn't it?] ...You have stricken Uriah the Hittite with the sword and have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the children of Ammon. Now therefore... [Here's the punishment coming.] ...the sword shall never depart from your house because you have despised Me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife'" (vs 9-10).

Total abuse of a power. Every congressman, governor, senator, president, needs to read this account, as well as every individual citizen. Maybe you will learn you can't get away with sin, so you better repent! But there are going to be some penalties that you're going to have to live with if it is a severe sin like this.

Verse 11: "Thus says the LORD, "Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house..." And look what happened to his family? Sin affected David, affected Bathsheba, killed Uriah, affected Joab, affected the army, affected the whole royal household, and now it's going to affect his household the rest of his life. And instead of having peace and rest, which God had given him as we read in the beginning of 2-Sam. 11, now he's going to have warring and fighting and there was even civil war and Absalom his son stirred up a rebellion to make himself king. And none of that would have happened had he continued with the attitude that he had in 2-Sam. 7.

The lesson is: You must maintain your relationship with God every day, day-by-day, day-by-day, and do not let temptation and vanity get the best of you.

"'...and I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbor. And he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun... [So now all the wives that he had became what? Hookers and whores! Look at what happens!] ...For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel and before the sun.'…. [So that all Israel will know and understand that the king cannot get away with this.] …And David said to Nathan, 'I have sinned against the LORD.' And Nathan said to David, 'The LORD also has put away your sin; you shall not die.... [because He gave the promise to him concerning his throne] ...Only, because by this deed you have given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, this child born to you shall surely die.' And Nathan left to go to his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah's wife bore to David, and it was very sick" (vs 11-15).

Then David tried to fast and change God's mind, but it died. God took the child's life because think what the kingdom would have been like with that son born of whoredoms and adultery, would have been like to inherit the throne.

So then let's come to Psalm 51 and see David's repentance. At that point he was right on the verge of losing the Holy Spirit of God. You need to understand that. So if you find your life in desperate sin and you need to repent, you need repent like it is here in Psalm 51. Remember this: There is no such thing as a secret sin. God knows and God will judge. If you repent, God will forgive.

I also call your attention to all of us know the profligate evangelist in one of the large Churches of God, who had hundreds of women secretly for years and years and years. And it was found out and there was not the repentance necessary so what did God do to that Church, in addition to that and other corruption? One sin leads to another sin. One corruption leads to another corruption. That Church of God no longer exists!

  • Should that not bring us some fear?
  • Should that not bring us a lesson?
  • Should that not bring us something we need to understand?

You cannot feign repentance. It has to be just like this here:

Psalm 51:1: "Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your loving kindness; according to the greatness of Your compassion, blot out my transgressions…. [And there were many—adultery, murder, lying, conniving.] …Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin... [Because now it was a part of his heart and his mind and his memory. And how do you overcome great sin? We're told in Eph. 5 by the 'washing of the water of the Word.' The water is the Spirit of God. The Word is the Truth of God. You have to fill your mind with repentance, with yielding to God. You have to fill your mind with the Word of God. You have to let that heal and repair your mind and your thoughts.] ...For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me" (vs 1-3). He's probably thinking, 'Oh, how could I ever have planned that! How could I ever do this?'

He understood one thing: "Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done evil in Your sight... [But yet sin affected every one—didn't it? Yes, indeed!All sin is against God and only God can forgive sin.] ...that You might be justified when You speak and be in the right when You judge" (v 4). So then he admits something that is absolutely true. Human nature is sinful from conception. And just because you're the king or just because you're in an important position, just because you think that you are some big mucky-muck doesn't change the fact that we are all sinners from conception and we have lust and we have evil within us that we need to overcome, as well as without. in the world that we need to fight and resist against.

Verse 5: "Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.... [He wasn't born of adultery. This means that sin comes through conception, the sinful nature of human beings. That's what Jesus said. 'For from within, out of the hearts of men proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornication, foolishness, murders, thefts, covetousness,' and all of this—correct? Were not all of those involved in what David did? Yes, indeed!] ...Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts; and in the hidden part You shall make me to know wisdom" (vs 5-6).

So that washing and cleansing has got to be by the Truth. That evil, sinful, deceitful nature must be changed by the Holy Spirit which is the Spirit of Truth and the Word of God, which is the Truth of God, and your complete repentance and behavior must change just like this.

"Purge me with hyssop... [Like a scouring pad] ...and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness that the bones which You have broken may rejoice. Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities" (vs 7-9). Boy, what a prayer. I imagine he was on the floor, bawling, crying, really seeing and understanding what was going on—right? Yes!

"Create in me a clean heart... [The thing of conversion is creation of a clean heart in us through the Spirit of God. That's why there's repentance. That's why there's baptism. That why it is necessary to be baptized, because without the Spirit of God, this will never happen.] ...Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.... [notice his plea here]: ...Cast me not away from Your presence, and take not Your Holy Spirit from me" (vs 10-11). That's how close he came.

Now it's a sad situation that that has happened. Let me ask you a question: don't you think that only God would inspire the sins of those that He has chosen to be recorded for us? What other book exposes the depths of the sin of the person being written about? No other book! Now there be exposés  against some people, but you read the autobiographies of people and you read the biographies of important people, and their sins are not dealt with this way—are they? This is another proof that God is behind it.

So this is the lesson. Let's go over the seven steps to sin. Let's remember them:

1. Temptation and vanity

Stop it at step number one! Do not wait! If you're drawn away, stop it at step number two:

2. Drawn away

If you're enticed and deceived, then you better come to yourself and stop at step number three:

3. Enticement

If lust is really getting involved and it becomes an obsession and a passion for you to do this, cut it off. Recognize it for what it is and stop and repent at step number four:

4. Lust

5. Sin conceives

Now you've started sinning. You can still stop there—correct? If you really apply yourself, yes!

6. Lust gives birth to sin

Once you have sinned, there it is. Just like when a woman is pregnant, she's pregnant. Just like when a baby is born, there's a baby. It's there. Now if you don't repent, when it's finished it brings forth:

7. Death

So we have seen from the life of David how all of these seven steps of sin that lead to death were all right there. And the only thing that can repair it or stop it is repentance. So now maybe you will understand why we are told every day in the model prayer: 'Forgive us our sins as we forgive others.'

You need to ask God to cleanse your mind with the washing of the water of the Word, to get rid of the temptations, to get rid of the lust, to get rid of the enticement, and being drawn away, regardless of what it is. Now sin is sin, so you can't say, 'Well, I've never done that.' Have you hated? Jesus said that is murder. Have you ever lusted? Jesus said that is adultery. Have you never stolen? God says covetousness is idolatry.

So all of those are points where we can learn the lesson: don't let sin rule in your life. And this is how to do it right here.

Scriptural References:

  • James 1:12-15
  • 2-Samuel 7:1-29
  • 2-Samuel 11:1-21, 26-27
  • 2-Samuel 12:1-15
  • Psalm 51:1-11

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Matthew 24
  • Isaiah 3
  • Mark 7
  • Galatians 5
  • Revelation 12:9
  • 1-John 5
  • Matthew 5:48
  • Psalm 89
  • Isaiah 9
  • Song of Solomon
  • Ephesians 5

Transcribed: 7-19-10
Formatted: b0—7-20-10