In 2 Samuel 7, the prophet Nathan is itching to give King David some good news. ‘Go ahead with your plans, O King. The Lord is with you!’ A prophet brings God’s message. Not telling them what they want to hear. But that’s what Nathan does.
He has a lesson to learn: speak only what God tell you. In 2 Samuel 11 we observe obedient Nathan. With a message no one would ever want to give anyone, let alone the king!
Chapters 11 and 12 tell the story of David with Bathsheba, who is almost always referred to in the Bible as ‘the wife of Uriah the Hittite’. The King has committed murder and adultery. He’s lied, coveted and stolen. Nathan must now confront him.
Nathan goes to the King with a story about the theft of a lamb from a poor man. The thief is wealthy but greedy, not satisfied to share one morsel of his food with his guest. No. He steals, from this destitute man, a lamb that was more like his child than an animal.
King David can’t believe what he’s hearing. Such mercenary selfishness . He wants that thief to pay with his life. ‘Who is he?’
Nathan says– ‘You are the man!’ (12:7). King David, you are the thief… you are the liar… you are the murderer! You!
David collapses… in confession and repentance. The outcome could have been rather bleak for Nathan. It wasn’t.
There’s no guarantee that if we receive this gift of courage, and speak out for Him, that the outcome will always be good. May be laughed at and derided. Lose our job or business. Neighbors and family turn their backs on us. Or much worse.
To obey our Lord requires courage. Are you happy with your gift this Christmas?
Lord, give us backbone for You. Amen.