I have had the privilege this summer of going through the Bible study "Anointed, Transformed, Redeemed." It's published by Lifeway and examines the life of David with teachings by Priscilla Shirer, Beth Moore, and Kay Arthur. David is such an interesting guy. He is extolled in the Bible as a "man after God's own heart" (1 Samuel 13:14) and yet he was an adulterer, a murderer, and caused the death of thousands of people because of his disobedience (2 Samuel 24).
I have blogged before about how I think it's interesting that these accounts of David's sin are included in scripture at all. It would have been pretty easy to just gloss over that part--indeed, the book of 1 Chronicles does just that, telling about David's reign and neglecting the whole Bathsheba incident. However, during our Bible study discussion last night, and through another book I am reading ("Desiring God" by John Piper), I think I am beginning to understand more about the nature and character of God and how His grace is most evidence in our weakness.
The book of 2 Corinthians, verses 9-10 say this:
But he [the Lord] said to me [Paul], “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.Yet another verse that I have heard many, many times, but have had difficulty understanding. One of God's major goals is His glory. The story of David, great king of Israel who killed Goliath and endured years of hiding from Saul, who took the throne and brought back the ark and received the promise from God of a line enduring forever. . . Well, that's a great story, and I could read it and think "Wow, David was so cool. No wonder God blessed him." The story of David, lustful man who sleeps with Bathsheba, tried to cover it up, kills her husband, and as a result loses a baby, has a daughter raped by her half brother and then ends up with another brother killing that brother, the same son sleeping with David's wives and taking over the throne. . . THAT David makes me see God and not David.
Who is this God who forgives sin? Who washes David clean? Who keeps His promise (indeed promises knowing full well what David will do) after David "despises" Him? David's weakness is the vessel for me to see God's glory. The consequences of sin remain, but by knowing the unvarnished truth of David's life, the glory of God is revealed as the central message of his life.
Our lives are meant to tell the glory of God, as well, which means that we are going to have to show our weaknesses as well as our strengths, so that people can look at us and say not "Wow, she's such a good Christian," but "Wow, she serves such a great God."