Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sin and Consequence

There was an American game show on TV years ago, called Truth or Consequence.  In this game, the contestant had to answer a trivia question that most people would not know the answer to.  If they got it wrong, as most contestants usually would, then they had to play the second part of the game, since they did not tell the "truth." In the second part of the game, the contestant was required to perform the consequence.  This was usually some stunt to entertain the audience.

Today I want to talk to you about sin and consequence. In other words, I want to try and show how sin has very serious consequences.  Unlike the silly game show, when we sow sinful seeds through our words and actions, we most certainly reap the consequences for them.  And the consequences are not to entertain you, God, or anyone else.  They are unpleasant and sometimes deadly.  This is the immutable law of sowing a reaping, just as when you plant seeds in the soil and eventually reap what you sowed.

The book of 2 Samuel is full of examples of sin and the consequences, even the domino effect it causes.  Just take a look at the examples below and observe the progression from the initial action to the final outcome:

Abner’s Actions lead to his murder
  1. Abner made Ishbosheth son of Saul to be King (2:8,9)
  2. Abner and Joab decided to have the young men fight hand to hand (2:14)
  3. There was a fierce battle that led to Abner’s defeat (2:17)
  4. Asahel chased Abner and would not heed Abner’s warning to stop (2:18-22)
  5. Abner killed Asahel (2:23)
  6. King Ish-Bosheth accused Abner of sleeping with his father’s concubine (3:7)
  7. Abner deserted Ish-Bosheth & went over to David in retaliation (3:8-11)
  8. Joab murders Abner in revenge for killing his brother Asahel (3:26,27)
  9. Ish-Bosheth & all Israel became alarmed at Abner’s death (4:1)
  10. Seeing King Ish-Bosheth’s imminent downfall, 2 men murder him (4:5,6)

Michael’s contempt lead to her barrenness
  1. David’s wife Michael despised him & spoke evil of his worship (6:16,20)
  2. Michael never had any children to the day of her death (6:23)

Ammonite’s contempt for David lead to their defeat
  1. David showed kindness to Hanun, son of his deceased Ammonite enemy (10:1-2)
  2. Hanun King of the Ammonites responded to David’s kindness with contempt (10:3,4)
  3. David and his men defeated the Ammonites (10:13-14; 11:1)

David’s Idleness leads to immorality, murder, rape, rebellion
  1. Instead of going to war in the Spring, David walked on his roof (11:1-2)
  2. David was tempted and fell into sexual immorality with Bathsheba (11:2-3)
  3. Bathsheba got pregnant by David (11:5)
  4. David tried to get Uriah to come home & sleep with his wife Bathsheba (11:6-13)
  5. David murdered Uriah the Hittite, one of his mighty men (11:14-21; 23:39)
  6. David took Bathsheba as his own wife (11:27)
  7. After David murdered Uriah, the sword never departed from his house (12:9-10)
  8. The Lord struck David’s child by Bathsheba’s and he died (12:15-18)
  9. David’s son Amnon raped his step sister Tamar, Absalom’s sister (13:1,14)
  10. Absalom retaliated against Amnon by killing him & going into exile (13:28,29)
  11. Joab brings Absalom back from exile (14:1,21)
  12. Absalom had himself appointed king while his father was still alive (15:7-14)
  13. David’s son Absalom slept with his wives in broad daylight (12:11,12; 16:21,22)
  14. Ahithophel advised King Absalom to attack his father David (17:1-6)
  15. Since Absalom didn’t follow his advice, Ahithophel committed suicide (17:23)
  16. Absalom pursued his own father in order to murder him (17:12-14)
  17. Absalom’s beautiful head got caught in a tree during the battle (18:9)
  18. Joab killed Absalom while he hung from a tree in midair by his head (18:14,15)
  19. Absalom during his lifetime had built a monument to himself (18:18)
  20. Absalom in his death was thrown into a pit and covered with a pile of rocks (18:17)
  21. All the troops of Judah and half the troops of Israel helped the King return (19:40)
  22. The men of Israel complained that the men of Judah brought the King over (19:41)
  23. The men of Judah defended their actions (19:42)
  24. The men of Israel accused the men of Judah of treating them with contempt (19:43)
  25. The men of Judah responded even more harshly than the men of Israel (19:43)
  26. Sheba, a Benjamite led Israel in rebellion against David (20:1)
  27. David ordered Amasa to summon the troops of Judah to battle against Sheba (20:4)
  28. Amasa took longer to summon the troops than the king had set for him (20:5)
  29. Amasa was killed by David’s military commander, Joab (20:9-10)
  30. Wicked Sheba’s head was cut off and thrown to Joab from the city wall (20:20-22)
  31. Saul put to death the Gibeonites, whom the Israelites had sworn to spare (21:1,1)
  32. Israel experienced a famine for three successive years (21:1)
  33. The Gibeonites were avenged by killing 7 of Saul’s male descendants (21:5,6)
  34. God answered prayer in behalf of the land of Israel (21:14)

David’s prideful census resulted in a deadly plague
  1. David counted all the fighting men in Israel and Judah (24:1,2,8,9)
  2. The Lord sent a plague on Israel, killing 70,000 people (24:10,15,16)
  3. David offered up a sacrifice to the Lord (24:24,25)
  4. The Lord answered prayer in behalf of the land and the plague stopped (24:25)

Putting it All Together
This book is full of murder and revenge, sexual immorality and the resulting rape and adultery in David’s family.  It is a great illustration of how sin will always take you further than you want to go, cost you more than you want to pay, it will keep you longer than you wanted to stay. 

“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption..." (Gal 6:7-8a)

If you have realized one or more areas where you've been sowing to your sinful nature, there is only one solution.  Only Jesus Christ and faith in Him can set you free.  True and sincere repentance with contrition and tears will break the cycle of sin and the Lord will set you free. I'd like to encourage you to do that today.

You will still have temporary consequences to deal with, which could last the rest of your earthly life, but at least you can stop sowing to your own destruction and avoid eternal, fatal consequences.  And if you faithfully follow the Lord the rest of your life, He will give you grace and peace.  He will also enable you to sow to please the Holy Spirit, and then you can begin reaping the good consequences. "The one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life." (Gal 6:8b).

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. The photo of sowing seeds is from Christinas View - Love Like Crazy

Author's note: If you enjoyed this post, you may also like the other posts in this blog available through the Home page for this blog, and you can also find my complete blog directory at "Writing for the Master."

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.

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