Suffering for sin


Dear Friends:
I am so encouraged that so many of you read my little thoughts and thoughtfully send words of appreciation. I must admit that I am ashamed of the spelling and grammatical errors that I find on my messages when I re-read them the next day, but please understand that I write these things as they come to my mind—-often after a long day—-and sometimes I miss the errors. Thus far no one has made note of this—thank you for being forbearing!
This morning I was again enjoying the narrative in II Samuel about David’s reign, and today I read about how the prophet Nathan confronted David regarding his adulterous relationship with Bathsheba and the subsequent “elimination” of her husband Uriah. Granted, I’ve read the story 50+ times, but something came clearer to me this time.  You might recall that after Nathan confronted David, he proclaimed to David that there would be consequences for David’s unacceptable behavior—-but the consequences affected others, not just David. 
David admitted his sin and repented, but “bad things” still happened. Now that might not sound “spiritually incorrect”, i.e. if we simply confess and say we’re sorry everything with God is hunky-dory. But it’s a matter of fact that David’s son, born to Bathsheba became sick by the hand of God and eventually died. Again, you can like it or not, but those are the facts. (What I don’t like in preaching is when a pastor tries to explain away what is an obvious fact!)  
The baby died because of DAVID’S SIN.                         
It’s a sobering thought. OTHERS may suffer because of my arrogant, insolent, careless actions. And not only did the innocent child die, but the mother, Bathsheba, AN INNOCENT VICTIM OF RAPE, suffered the loss of her little boy. ALL because King David chose to stay at his palace when he SHOULD have been with Abner going to battle.
How many innocent people have I caused to suffer because of my lame or thoughtless actions! None of us are ‘islands! Our actions echo across the ocean and could harm the innocent people we love. I can attest first hand how people I love have used their freedom to pursue what seemed to be totally “their business” and I suffered and am still suffering for it….
We’re not free to do whatever we want and think that no one else will suffer because of it. It’s simply not how God works.
Warmly,
Dean Barley

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