In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army. They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem.
One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful.
What a tease to just stop at these two verses. If you don’t know the story, it would be natural to wonder: “And then what?” Even if we don’t know what happens next, we can pause here and reflect a little bit. Do you know what tends to capture your attention? When you have some down time to relax, or you’re simply bored with nothing to do, what do you turn to?
At a time when kings go off to war, David stayed back for reasons unknown to us. What transpires after though, is a sad tale of moral descent which spiraled out of control. David saw this beautiful woman, he sent someone to find out who she was, summoned her to see him, got her pregnant, all the while knowing that she is the wife of Uriah, a soldier in his army who went off to war. From committing adultery, to plotting Uriah’s murder, David’s fall from grace began from a momentary look of the eyes. He had not even realized the depth of his sin until Nathan the prophet confronted him: “the God of Israel, says: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul… Why did you despise the word of the Lord by doing what is evil in his eyes?'” (2 Samuel 12:7-9).
Proverbs 4:23 says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it”. Guarding something works both ways; by what we allow to come in that can affect us, and by controlling what comes out of us, i.e. thoughts, emotions, actions. If David, who was known as the man after God’s own heart, could let his eyes lead him away into greater moral failure, it can easily happen to us. Today’s verse is a good reminder for us to check ourselves of what captivates us, what is our tendency in response, and most importantly, find out what “guarding our heart” would look like.
Thoughts for the day
- What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
- What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
- How can you apply this message in your current situation
Lord, I ask you to help speak in ways that I can understand and recognize. Help me to be fully aligned with Your will and purpose for my life, trusting in Your Lordship in every way.